How dangerous are certain dog breeds? If you’re interested in bringing home a dog, but want to make sure it’s safe, the top 10 most aggressive dog breeds can tell you what to expect from your potential pet. Each breed on this list has been carefully chosen based on statistics from the American Kennel Club, so you can rest assured that you’re getting an idea of which dogs are most likely to attack their owners or other dogs/people and cause bodily harm or death. Once you know what to expect from each breed on this list, choose wisely!
What Is Aggression in Dogs?
Before we can talk about some of the most aggressive dog breeds, it’s important to understand what aggression is. Simply put, aggression is any behavior that a dog uses to harm another living creature. Dogs can be aggressive in order to gain food or access to breeding partners, and they can also be defensive if they feel threatened by another animal or person. Breed certainly plays a role in whether a dog is prone to being aggressive.
The Pit Bull’s short coat may make it look cuddly and friendly, but these dogs are known for their tenacity and can be more aggressive than other breeds. They’re originally bred for dog fighting. The breed’s popularity waned in recent years after a string of vicious attacks, but it’s making a comeback and is now often used as a police dog or therapy dog. Be sure to train your pit bull well from an early age if you decide to adopt one!
The Rottweiler was originally bred to be a working dog and guard dog. Even if you have had your Rottweiler for years, he will still exhibit aggressive tendencies from time to time. Early training is extremely important, as these dogs can become very protective of their territory and may bite if they feel threatened. While not typically a breed that attacks unprovoked, it’s best to give them space when first introducing yourself.
When it comes to police and military dogs, nothing tops a German Shepherd. Resilient, smart and fearless, these dogs are as tenacious as they come. German Shepherds also make for great guard dogs—unless you’re trying to enter your own home. That’s when a good guard dog takes on its most aggressive form, fending off any intruders with unbridled force.
The Doberman is a medium-large dog with a sleek, powerful body. These dogs were originally bred to herd and guard livestock such as sheep, pigs and cattle. When not guarding their master’s farm or home, Dobies are loyal and loving family pets who are friendly towards strangers. They have an intense dislike for other dogs but can live with other non-canine pets if trained from puppyhood to do so.
The Presa Canario is a large, strong dog that originated in Spain as a hunting and guardian breed. This breed tends to be suspicious of strangers, though it does make an excellent guard dog. The Presa Canario will only become aggressive if confronted by another animal or person. These dogs do tend to be dominant with other dogs and should be socialized at an early age. The Presat Canario is a good choice for experienced dog owners who want a loyal, protective companion and guard dog.
Not only is it one of the biggest dog breeds (standing up to 25 inches), but it’s also one of most aggressive. Given its size, you won’t want to meet an Akita head-on; cross it and you may have a problem on your hands. However, if you’re looking for a reliable guard dog for your home, then there are few other better options out there than an Akita Inu.
American Staffordshire Terrier
The American Staffordshire Terrier is a medium-sized breed with a short, coarse coat and broad head. With its muscular build and calm demeanor, it is known as one of most trusted pets in homes with children. However, be careful not to confuse its sweet and gentle temperament for weakness! These dogs were originally bred to be extremely aggressive guard dogs and will do anything they can to protect their owners.
Described as having a big personality, Alaskan Malamutes are known for being playful, energetic and affectionate with family. While great with children and other pets, these dogs are not recommended for first-time dog owners because of their highly energetic nature. They have been known to be extremely protective and territorial of their family, even without proper training or socialization. Because of their intelligence and strength, a well-trained Alaskan Malamute can make an excellent working dog.
The Siberian Husky is a medium-sized working dog breed that originated in north-eastern Siberia. This breed has a thick, wolf-like double coat, pointed ears, and eyes that exhibit an Oriental appearance. Huskies are energetic dogs who love to run, which often makes them difficult to control. When bored or neglected, Huskies will often become destructive.
Even though most Chihuahuas are calm and quiet, you never know when one might become aggressive—and that’s why they earned a spot on our list of most aggressive dog breeds. According to The Daily Puppy, these small dogs have been known to attack strangers out of nowhere, especially if they’re provoked. The worst part? These little guys don’t let go easily and will hang on until their victim manages to pry them off!
The Dachshund’s small stature and fierce temper make it one of the most potentially aggressive dog breeds around. This breed is also naturally suspicious of strangers, so socialization is crucial. Training should be firm but not too rough, because Dachshunds have sensitive skin that can tear easily if handled roughly. They are best suited for an owner who understands their needs and can offer them plenty of playtime.