Some dog breeds can be quite dangerous, especially if not properly trained or socialized.
In fact, according to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC), approximately 4.5 million Americans are bitten by dogs each year, resulting in nearly 20 deaths.
Which dog breeds are considered the most dangerous? Here are the top 3, based on data from the CDC:
- Pit Bulls – Pit bulls were responsible for 66% of dog bite-related deaths in 2017 and resulted in 232 human fatalities over a 13-year period.
- Rottweilers – Rottweilers caused 47 deaths over the 13-year study period.
- German Shepherds – German Shepherds caused 20 deaths over the 13-year study period.
Let’s take a look at the 32 most dangerous dog breeds in the United States.
Dalmatian is a dangerous dog breed because of its size and strength. Dalmatians are also known for being aggressive and territorial.
They can be very protective of their owners and families, which can make them dangerous to strangers.
If a Dalmatian feels threatened, it may attack. Dalmatians have been known to attack other animals, including cats and other dogs. They may also become aggressive if they feel their territory is being threatened.
31. Labrador Retriever
Labrador Retrievers can be dangerous dogs if they are not properly socialized or trained. They are large dogs with a strong bite, and they can be aggressive if they feel threatened.
If you have a Labrador Retriever, it is important to make sure that he or she is properly socialized and trained so that they do not become a danger to yourself or others.
Labrador Retrievers are bred as working dogs, and they have a strong instinct to protect their families. They are also very friendly and loving dogs, which makes them great pets.
However, because they are so large and powerful, they can be dangerous if they are not properly trained and socialized.
Dobermanns are large, powerful dogs that were originally bred for security work.
They are still used as guard and protection dogs today and are also popular pets. While Dobermanns can be loving and loyal companions, they can also be aggressive and have been known to attack people and other animals.
Because of their potential for aggression, Dobermanns are often considered to be dangerous dogs, and many insurance companies will not provide coverage for homeowners who own them.
If you are considering getting a Dobermann, be sure to do your research and make sure you are prepared to handle this breed’s unique temperament.
29. Great Dane
If you are considering getting a Great Dane, or already have one, it is important to be aware of the potential for aggression. Their aggression comes from their size and strength, and if not properly trained or socialized, they can be a danger to themselves and others.
Socialization is also key in preventing aggression in Great Danes. Exposing them to different people, places, and experiences from a young age will help them to become well-rounded adults.
28. St. Bernard
St. Bernard is an ironic choice as a dangerous dog breed, as it is known for being gentle. However, its vicious nature has been well-documented. In fact, the St. Bernard is responsible for 7 human fatalities, more than most breeds of dog.
While the St. Bernard is not naturally aggressive, it can be a very dangerous dog if not trained and socialized properly. When they are not given the attention they need, they can become bored and destructive. If they are left alone for too long, they can become anxious and may even lash out.
St. Bernards are also known to be very strong dogs. They can easily knock over small children and adults alike. Their powerful jaws can do a lot of damage if they decide to bite someone.
27. Alaskan Malamute
Alaskan Malamutes are snappy dogs that could bite without warning. They are also known for being very aggressive and territorial. It is important to be cautious around these dogs and to never turn your back on one.
Alaskan Malamutes are strong and powerful dogs that were originally bred for sledding. They are still used for this purpose in some parts of the world, but they have also become popular as pets.
Malamutes are loyal and affectionate with their families, but they can be aggressive toward other dogs and strangers. They need a lot of exercise and space to run, and they should not be left alone for long periods of time. Malamutes are not good candidates for apartments or small homes.
This dog is a cross between two of the most fearsome and brave hunting breeds in dog history, which are the Old English Bulldog and the English Mastiff.
More often than not, bullmastiff dogs get along with children, strangers, and even small pets.
However, males in this breed are very territorial. They, therefore, often get into problems with other males, whether they are bullmastiffs or other dog breeds. In these cases, spaying is probably the best solution.
25. Perro de Presa Canario
This dog breed is also known as the Canary Mastiff after the Canary Islands, where they originate from. What is probably the most intimidating thing about these dogs is their strong face. With its broad features and powerful jaw, this is very clearly a dog you do not want to get mad with.
Due to its history of fighting, hunting, and guarding, the Presa Canario can be quite dangerous. Even with training and socialization, this dog breed has been known to attack indiscriminately, including a number of attacks against its actual owners.
24. Bull Terrier
The bull terrier is probably not the first thing anyone thinks about when they are considering dangerous dog breeds. All they seem to bring to the table is their weird aesthetic and impressive athleticism.
But do not let that weird but lovable little face fool you. These dogs can be quite dangerous, especially towards strangers and other animals, as they are very protective and territorial. They can also be very stubborn, making reeling them back in difficult.
23. German Shepherd
The German Shepherd has been one of the most popular dog breeds in the world for a very long time and currently sits at the number 2 position on the American Kennel Club’s 2019 ranking.
With its high intelligence, devotion to its family, and obedience levels, it is not so hard to see why.
Despite all this awesome stuff there is to say about them, there is no ignoring the fact that they can be very dangerous attack dogs. Their ability to do harm manifest in the fact that they are often employed as police dogs in many countries.
22. Belgian Malinois
This dog resembles the German shepherd in more ways than one from the appearance to the temperament. They are actually sometimes referred to as the Belgian Shepherds.
Like their German counterparts, these breeds are often only dangerous when commanded to attack by their handlers. They are actually very popular in the United States for use in law enforcement.
This includes their use as guard dogs for the White House grounds because they are the Secret Service’s exclusively chosen dog breed for their canine task force.
The Boerboel is a giant dog breed weighing in at around 110 to 180 pounds and measuring 24 to 30 inches in height. The dog is native to South Africa where it was used mainly to guard homes and livestock.
They are very territorial and wary of strangers and can be very dangerous if not socialized early enough. They are also very energetic and need plenty of exercise to avoid outbursts due to inadequate stimulation.
This is a combination between a wolf and any breed of dog. Due to the innately wild nature of the wolf bloodline, the resulting mixed breed will most likely be very difficult to tame and control. This is why they are banned in so many places around the world.
They also tend to be driven by dangerous instincts and can pose a serious danger to children and small pets.
They also tend to be more dangerous when mixed with equally aggressive, large breeds.
19. Giant Schnauzer
The giant schnauzer is the large version of the standard schnauzer and can grow up to 28 inches and more than 100 pounds. Like its other two relatives, this breed is known for its unique form and signature bearded snout.
In order to understand the source of this dog’s aggressive streak, it is necessary to have an idea of how it came about. Breeding experts and dog historians believe that its development included mixing a wide variety of dogs, including aggressive breeds, such as Boxers, Rottweilers, Great Danes, and German Shepherds.
Let’s take a break from all the big guys and look at smaller but almost equally as troublesome breeds.
The first is the chihuahua. These little dogs are very aggressive. More often than not, all they do is charge and bark and will rarely cause serious harm to able adults. Attacks on young children and small pets may be more serious but they are rarely fatal.
Whatever the case, it is best to get them trained and socialized early to avoid any incidents.
17. Japanese Akita
The Japanese Akita dogs are very popular in the country second only to the Shiba Inu. When trained properly and cared for adequately, these are some of the best dogs to live with.
They can occasionally be a bit stubborn and mischievous but they are generally very friendly, loyal, and affectionate.
However, a traumatized Akita is one of the most dangerous dogs. They are quite sensitive to mistreatment and will eventually start to lash out violently.
16. Siberian Husky
This is another super popular dog breed that not many pooch enthusiasts realize could be super dangerous.
Siberian Huskies are incredibly smart. You have probably come across a video of one using a human toilet or saying “hello” and there is truly nothing as amusing.
Despite this, they can be very impatient with mistreatment, and volatile. This is why they commonly attack children who rough handle them especially if they haven’t been adequately socialized.
15. Jack Russell Terrier
Jack Russell Terriers may be small but they pack quite a punch as far as aggression goes. They are known for being some of the most sensitive and physically intolerant of all dog breeds.
Any rough handling will be met with violent retaliation including barking and biting. This makes them particularly dangerous to have around children as they have the same reactions even when it is obviously unintentional.
However, they can get along with the little humans if the socialization starts at an early puppy age.
14. Staffordshire Bull Terrier
Staffordshire bull terriers have a sort of yo-yo personality depending on the specific circumstances and how comfortable they feel.
When they are around people that they trust, they are highly affectionate and very friendly. In these cases, they could even get along with strangers who approach cautiously.
On the opposite end of the spectrum, these breeds can be quite aggressive. This happens when they feel threatened. Their bold and protective nature may lead them to aggressive outbursts ranging from barking fits to chasing and biting.
Dachshunds are typically very playful dogs with an impressive zest for life. They are often distrusting strangers if they are not socialized early and this trait is the root of most of their aggression issues.
They usually react to stress or suspicion with barking but they could also bite especially when dealing with other animals.
In spite of the fact that they are very devoted dogs, doxies can actually also turn against their owners.
The Tosa Inu from Japan is naturally a very even-tempered pooch that rarely shows aggression towards human beings.
However, it is evident from their use as blood sport dogs that they have an aggressive side. This usually only comes out when they are provoked either by abuse or strangers who approach intimidatingly. Their impressive strength and agility also make them very formidable foes to have.
Otherwise, it is a very friendly dog when adequately socialized.
11. Bernese Mountain Dogs
It is important to note that the Bernese mountain dog is one of the friendliest dogs on our list toward humans. This counts whether it is an adult or a child as they are very patient, friendly, and affectionate.
However, they have definitely earned their spot on this list with their colorful history of aggression mainly towards other pets. These dogs are very territorial, especially the unspayed males and are very likely to attack any pets that they feel threaten their dominion.
10. Dogo Argentino
This dog breed was specifically developed to display traits like being brave and protective, and that is exactly what was achieved. Given their mean streak, it is safe to say that the breeders may just have done their job a little too well.
These dogs can be very aggressive toward humans. They often start with warning barks and growls before going in for potentially deadly attacks. It is, therefore, best to walk away if you feel you have pissed one off.
9. Caucasian Shepherd Dog
This is yet another breed that though typically calm can be volatile when adequately provoked.
The fact that they are built like bears in terms of their size and intimidating appearance does not make it any easier to approach one fearlessly.
In addition to their size, their dangerous nature can be associated with other factors including the fact that they are very brave, and dominant, and they take time to warm up to unfamiliar people and animals.
8. Gull Dong
Unfortunately, aggression and general mistrust for humans and other animals has been hammered into this dog breed’s psyche for a long time given their use in dog fights.
They have also served other aggression-based tasks including working as hunting dogs as well as personal protection as guard dogs.
As a result of their volatile nature, these dogs have been banned from several countries all over the world both in public settings and at-home companionship.
7. Chow Chow
Chow Chow can become aggressive and dangerous dogs when they are not properly trained and socialized. They have a strong prey drive and can be very protective of their family and territory.
It is important to make sure that your Chow Chow receives early obedience training and socialization so that they can learn how to interact with other people and animals in a proper way.
Chow Chows can also be difficult to potty train because of their stubborn nature. They often require patience and consistency when it comes to housebreaking. Crate training may also be necessary for some dogs.
6. Fila Brasileiro
This is also known as the Brazilian mastiff and is easily one of the most intimidating dogs on our list as far as looks go. The massive pooch weighs 80 to 110 pounds and measures 25 to 30 inches and has one of the most powerful jaws.
They are bred to be aggressive and protective for use as guard dogs and this is a job that they do very well. With their build, physical prowess, and personality, this is definitely a dog you do not want to be acting suspiciously around.
The bandog is a mix of some of the most intimidating breeds including the English Mastiff, Neapolitan Mastiff, Pit Bull Terrier, and American Staffordshire Terrier.
These dogs are known for being very intelligent, loyal, and protective. With proper socialization, they can live peacefully in homes even those with children.
However, this is a waste of their true talents as they are happiest doing guarding jobs where they make use of talents like their alertness, agility, and bravery
4. Czechoslovakian Wolfdog
This is the result of mixing between a German Shepherd and a Carpathian Gray Wolf. That information alone is enough for you to understand why the Czechoslovakian Wolfdog has a cozy spot on our list of deadly dogs.
While they can be trained and socialized to be calm and social, their default setting is distrusting and aggressive. They will not hesitate to return to these ways if, for any reason, they feel they have to defend themselves.
The Deutsch Boxer is another very unexpected entry into our list of aggressive dog breeds. There is just something about their cute little, smooshed faces that makes them more adorable than they are scary.
Don’t let the heart-melting cuteness fool you. These dogs are among the most dangerous on our list. They can be very volatile and often go for potentially deadly bites over barking when they are really ticked off.
Unlike the pitbull, the Rottweiler is not a natural troublemaker. However, they are very confident and mistrust strangers. They also have a long history of use as guard dogs and have developed a pension for attacking suspicious individuals.
For the most part, if you do not ruffle their feathers or fur, there is very little cause for them to attack you. But with their strength and resilience, an attack is the last thing you want to deal with.
Pitbulls are a dangerous dog breed and have been banned in many countries. They are known for their aggressive behavior and have been responsible for many attacks on humans and other animals.
Pitbulls were originally bred for fighting and bull-baiting, two very violent activities. Unfortunately, this violence has carried over into their modern-day lives. Many Pitbull owners train their dogs to be aggressive, which only exacerbates the problem.
There have been many instances whereby a Pitbull has attacked and even killed a human being. In fact, they are responsible for more fatalities than any other dog breed. This is a very alarming statistic and one that should not be ignored.
What Dog Has Killed The Most Humans?
The pitbull is the single most implicated dog breed when it comes to fatal attacks on humans. In the United States alone, they account for more than 60% of these tragedies. This is largely due to their powerful bite and shear strength as well as their headstrong, aggressive personalities. Even with socialization and obedience training, caution is still advisable.
Which Dog Can Kill A Lion?
The Rhodesian Ridgeback is widely believed to be one of the only dog breeds capable of killing a lion. This is not entirely true. While the breed may be large, strong, and fearless enough to pose a credible threat, they rarely go for actual physical attacks. Instead, they were used to corner the wild cats by intimidating them with their agility and barking.
What Dogs Are Banned In The USA?
Different dog breeds are banned in different jurisdictions within the United States, with the most commonly banned including Wolfdogs, Pitbulls, and the Doberman Pinscher. Other lesser-known breeds include the Presa Canario, Fila Brasileiro, and Cane Corso. The degree of control varies, with some states and cities banning dogs completely and others strongly restricting their public.