The 3 Most Aggressive Dog Breeds May Surprise You

A lot of Care2 readers already know that some bigger dogs, like Pit Bulls, are misunderstood and unfairly labeled as aggressive breeds. So what are the most aggressive dog breeds? I came across a study published in the journal Applied Animal Behavior Science a few years ago, and the answer surprised me.

The most aggressive breed, the study found, was the Dachshund. The researchers discovered that that one in five have bit or attempted to bite a stranger, and one in twelve have lashed out at their owners. Chihuahuas were in second place, and Jack Russells were the third most aggressive breed. Up to 30 percent of these smaller breeds have bit or attempted to bite unfamiliar dogs.

Surprised? One of the study’s researchers thinks that bigger dogs were thought to be more aggressive because past research looked at bite statistics—but most bites are not reported. Bigger dogs have bigger bites, which makes it more likely that those–not Dachshund bites—are the ones being medically treated and therefore reported. This study, however, surveyed 6,000 dog owners instead.

The least aggressive breeds included Basset Hounds, Golden Retrievers, Labradors, Siberian Huskies, and Greyhounds. Pit Bulls and Rottweilers scored about average to below average in the study.

Image credit: fionamcallisterphotography via Flickr

Related:
13 Friendliest Dog Breeds
10 Rules Every Kid Should Know to Avoid Dog Bites

The Real History of Pit Bulls

663 comments

Cindy Smith
Cindy Smith2 months ago

thanks

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Danuta W
Danuta W5 months ago

Thank you for sharing.

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natasha p
.6 months ago

ty

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Jan S
Jan S10 months ago

My adopted Yorkie mix attacks every one! She has even bit us.
My chihuahua though is a lover.

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Clare O
Clare O10 months ago

Terriers were bred for killing rats, badgers, foxes and other creatures that live in holes. Stands to reason they need a built in level of aggression.

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Glennis W
Glennis W11 months ago

Very informative Thank you for caring and sharing

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Glennis W
Glennis W11 months ago

Great information and advice Thank you for caring and sharing

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Glennis W
Glennis W11 months ago

Very interesting article Thank you for caring and sharing

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Paola S
Past Member 11 months ago

thanks

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Jeramie D
Jeramie D11 months ago

I love pit bulls and have 3 that I rescued. I am crazy about the breed, but you do need to know how to keep them safe.

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