The Top 10 Most Dangerous Dog Breeds

most dangerous dog breeds.

When talking about extremely dangerous dog breeds, most people immediately picture a certain image — snarling canines displaying their, well, canines at you with extremely intimidating behavior. 

However, a dog's genetics determines its physical appearance and character traits. On the other hand, how they act doesn't depend on the breed to which they belong.

Dogs aren’t born with determined behavior. They develop it through life experiences that can be good or bad. A canine is forced to bite when it faces abuse, fear, health problems or when it feels its little puppies are at risk — for instance.

We propose to find out the most dangerous dog breeds and the ‘rules’ associated with having one at home.

What Makes the Most Dangerous Dog Breeds Threatening?

Aggressive dog breeds are not always the most hostile. A Chihuahua is an assertive and territorial dog, but that doesn't make it dangerous. Admittedly, it is the smallest dog on the planet and thus poses minimal threat to humans.

Hence, we concentrated on compiling a list of dogs with the possibility for violent behavior based on the objective for which they were bred, as well as their physical stature to cause injury. 

In other words, the eagerness to become violent and the potential to incite harm to people or other dogs are the characteristics that distinguish them as the most dangerous dog breeds.

Why Are Some Dog Breeds More Prone to Aggression and Attack?

Pooches can indeed be conditioned in the household to be caring and affectionate, yet there is always an untamed part of a pet. Certain dog breeds persist aggressively since they were originally bred to be savage, pack animals. 

Others, such as guard dogs, were restored from environments where they'd been acquainted with being violent. And, it's not like every home life is indeed suitable for a dog. 

According to studies, some mean dogs were raised by people with antisocial issues, who eventually had a dangerous impact on the canines, resulting in negative outcomes.

The Top 10 Most Dangerous Dog Breeds

The most dangerous dog breeds can be determined by looking at which dogs were responsible for the deadliest bites over a certain timeframe. 

Based on an analysis over a 13-year period, we've put together a list of the dogs most likely to take a life, placing them as the most dangerous dog breeds. By comparing the data on deadly attacks in the prior year, we can conclude that the following dog breeds warrant a place on our list.

1. American Pit Bull Terrier

dangerous dog american pit bull terrier.

Originating from the Bulldog and Terriers, the American Pit Bull is a magnificent beast — strong, confident, and possesses a zest for life.

Pit Bulls are fierce dogs that will enthusiastically carry out tasks until they are done — due to their extreme level of intelligence and willingness. For generations, they were bred to be dangerous — as hunting dogs. It's no surprise that these dogs are still a threat today. Moreover, they’re banned in many countries, including Australia and the United Kingdom.

Are Pit Bulls Dangerous Dogs?

This mid-sized, smart, short-coated dog is considered the most dangerous dog breed in the world. Pit Bulls have incredibly strong jaws and bite, and are known for not letting go very easily. Therefore, they should be trained and socialized early to avoid unnecessary, dangerous situations.

According to studies — dogs mortally wounded 433 people in the US between 2005 and 2017. Pit Bulls accounted for 66 percent of those deaths.

2. Rottweiler

dangerous dog rottweiler.

These dogs were known as Rottweiler Metzgerhund (butcher dogs), because they were used for herding livestock and bringing carts full of meat to market. They range in size from medium to large — reaching 27 inches in height and weighing 130 pounds or more.

Are Rottweilers Dangerous Dogs?

The Rottweiler is considered one of the most aggressive dog breeds in the world. However, while they possess no threat to their family when protecting their owners, they can be extremely vicious. Hence, they must be constantly trained — using a firm but fair approach — to avoid dangerous reactions. 

The Rottweiler accounted for 10 percent of the fatal attacks during the same period as the Pit Bull.

3. German Shepherd

dangerous dog german shepherd.

German Shepherds are exceptional dog breeds — hardworking, dedicated, and extremely competent. They are tall, slender, and athletic, which makes them both strong and agile. While they’re excellent shepherds, Germans are good working dogs, such as for security, police, and military personnel. These canines stand tall at over 26 inches and weigh about 90 pounds.

Are German Shepherds Dangerous Dogs?

This breed is fast-reacting, focused, and can also cause harm. Responsible for 5 percent of all dog bites, which earns them a place on this list of ferocious dogs. 

However, their aggression can be mitigated to some extent with training, socialization, and affection. You will have a loyal and loving pet this way. The German is an excellent choice for active humans. In fact, this breed's intelligence and protective behavior can make it a good choice for families with children, as long as the dog is properly trained.

4. American Bulldog

dangerous dog american bulldog.

The American Bulldog is a well-balanced, loyal dog that exhibits great strength, stamina, agility, and a friendly demeanor. These dogs, which stand 25 inches tall, can pile on muscle and weigh more than 100 pounds. In the past, they were bred as working dogs for farm work.

Are American Bulldogs Dangerous Dogs?

They are large, powerful dogs that are extremely ferocious when they attack. American Bulldogs were liable for 15 deaths throughout the 13-year survey, accounting for almost 3.5 percent of all deadly attacks. Although this is a small number, it’s high compared to some other dangerous dogs.

5. Bullmastiff

dangerous dog bullmastiff.

The Bullmastiff breed is dedicated, forewarned, and brave, resulting in the reason people desire them as four-legged friends. They will safeguard your home, however, they may not relish the appearance of strangers — which must be discouraged at an early age to avoid attacks.

Are Bullmastiffs Dangerous Dogs?

Weighing up to 130 pounds and standing 27 inches tall at the shoulder, Bullmastiff threats are uncommon, but the consequences are severe when they do attack a person or other pets/animals — due to how large they are. 

Throughout the research period, these dogs only accounted for 3.2 percent of the attacks. Yet, bear in mind, as this breed is rare within the US, it's a red flag in our book.

6. Husky

dangerous dog husky.

Siberian Huskies are treasured for their wolf-like appearance. This medium-sized breed is a member of the Spitz family. It’s much smaller than the similar Alaskan Malamute with its thick double coat, erect triangular ears, and distinctive markings.

In the chilliest terrain of North America, Huskies were and are used as sled dogs. Despite weighing only 60 pounds and standing over 23 inches in height, they are powerful and self-sufficient animals.

Are Huskies Dangerous Dogs?

This breed is also considered one of the meanest dogs. According to the earlier study, 3 percent of all fatal attacks were caused by Huskies. Catching prey is highly motivating for these dogs. Most smaller animals, including humans, can appear to them as prey.

However, with the right approach and training, you can make them friendlier and calmer. Poor socialization and training can definitely turn them into aggressive and dangerous dogs.

7. Doberman

dangerous dog doberman.

The Doberman or Doberman Pinscher is a medium-sized dog breed first discovered by German tax collector Karl Friedrich Louis Dobermann around 1890. Known for their intelligence, strength, and extreme vigilance, they will sense danger and react on their own.

Furthermore, these dogs served as guard dogs — a task they have performed well enough to evolve into being compatible with, German Shepherds aside. They weigh up to 100 pounds and stand between 24 and 28 inches tall.

Are Dobermans Dangerous Dogs?

The name ‘Pinscher’ derives from a German term referring to their biting and attacking attitude. The said breed has been fostered for centuries to be the best attack dog. Hence, it shouldn't come as a surprise that these dogs can be extremely dangerous.

The Doberman is a vicious dog that’s naturally aggressive toward strangers, and their size makes them even more intimidating. They can do some damage if they're not properly trained and restrained. They were responsible for six deaths during the mentioned period of study.

8. Alaskan Malamute

dangerous dog alaskan malamute.

The Alaskan Malamute is often confused with the Husky, although they’re considerably larger than their Arctic breed cousins. These dogs are enormous and powerful, weighing nearly 90 pounds and standing 25 inches at the shoulder. 

Are Alaskan Malamute Dangerous Dogs?

Malamutes are high-energy dogs, they can become very aggressive if their energy is not actively used. While this breed can be as independent as sled dogs like the Siberian Husky, their size, strength, and stamina make them a no-no for inexperienced owners. You need to be the alpha male — otherwise, it’s game over.

Despite being liable for only four deaths, the Alaskan Malamute remains on the list of killer dogs due to their powerful bite and eagerness to use it to harm others.

9. Dogo Argentino

dangerous dog dogo argentino.

As pack-hunting dogs, they were bred from the start to hunt fearsome animals like the puma and wild boar. These large dogs are known to have the strength, quick reflexes, and intelligence of a serious athlete. The Dogo can weigh up to 100 pounds and stand up to 26.5 inches tall.

Are Dogo Argentino Dangerous Dogs?

A Dogo Argentino is, indeed, a dangerous dog. They have an outward display of explosive energy and power. However, if your training has been responsible, you will have a docile, balanced, and sensitive hound. Otherwise, you will have a beast with an aggressive and nervous personality that will react negatively to stimuli.

As a precautionary measure and to ensure citizens' safety, countries such as Australia, New Zealand, and the United Kingdom have banned possession of these domestic animals. Additionally, during the time of the study, they were accountable for 6 percent (2 deaths) of the attacks.

10. Anatolian Shepherd Dog (Kangal)

dangerous dog anatolian shepherd.

This large herding canine originated in Turkestan and came from the Mastiff family. Anatolians (Kangals) are large and strong enough to fend off powerful predators such as wolves and bears. They weigh about 150 pounds and stand at 29 inches at the shoulder.

Are Anatolian Shepherds Dangerous Dogs?

While natural protectors of their own family. Anatolians are also gentle and friendly. However, their sheer size and bite are said to be as powerful as 743 PSI. This makes them very dangerous to anyone who threatens these gentle giants or anything else they care for and possess. You must lead with a strong hand, to curb their dominant side.


Dogs were bred for protection, hunting, and fighting. These breeds are also loyal, affectionate, and courageous. They can, however, turn vicious by nature if pushed too far — especially when they're annoyed. When this happens, a dog may endanger both life and limb.

However, these dangerous dog breeds can still be adopted as family pets. You must exert effort if you want your dog to be a friendly, gentle, and fun-loving animal. Their ferocious characteristics can be mitigated with adequate training, social bonding, and positive attention.

Dangerous Dog Breeds FAQs

What Is the Number 1 Dangerous Dog Breed?

The Pit Bull is widely regarded as the most dangerous dog in the US and other parts of the world. Primarily, these dogs were raised to lure bulls and safeguard hunters from bears. Because of its notorious reputation, It's a breed that’s banned in many countries.

Are Pitbulls Really That Dangerous?

The Pit Bull is powerful enough to cause significant damage when it bites, combined with the unwillingness to let go. In short, this breed doesn’t have a great track record. 

What Dogs Are Least Likely to Bite?

While some dogs possess a propensity to bite — others are known to be less likely to snap:

  • Collie.

  • Boxer.

  • Newfoundland.

  • Bernese Mountain Dog.

  • Golden Retriever.

  • French Bulldog.

  • Cavalier King Charles Spaniel.

  • Labrador Retriever.

What Dog Breeds Turn on Their Owners?

The Pit Bull is undoubtedly the most infamous breed on this lineup, with prestige for its unpredictable nature and hostility, even unsurprisingly against its owner or family. Local and state governments have used breed-specific regulations to limit the possession of these animals.

Why Do Dogs Bite Without Warning?

Yelping, howling, snapping, and the pooch equivalent of a nasty look are examples of these behaviors — why they bite without warning. All these, along with biting, are used to ‘encourage social distance,’ In short. Your dog is saying, ‘get out of my space!’