Dangerous Dog Breeds

Any dog can be dangerous in the right situation. Even otherwise apparently-tame dogs will defend themselves if provoked. However, based on objective data, there appear to be certain breeds that are more dangerous than others.

The United States Center for Disease Control and Prevention ("CDC") gathered data about dog attack fatalities occurring in the United States over an eighteen-year period. The CDC's data included the number of deaths by breed. While this number alone is not conclusive proof that one breed is more dangerous than another, it can indicate that attacks by some breeds are more ferocious than others. Based on the number of deaths by breed, the following are the most dangerous dog breeds in the United States.

#1 - "Pit Bull"

Anyone who follows the news has heard stories about what appears to be the most dangerous breed in the U.S. - "pit bull." The term "pit bull" actually applies to a family of breeds. It seems that most dog bites covered by the media involve pit bulls. Over the eighteen-year period covered by the CDC, pit bull attacks resulted in 60 fatalities. This was twice the number of the next closest breed - Rottweiler. Pit bull terriers were bred in England, Ireland, and Scotland and were brought to the United States by immigrants from those countries.


#2 - Rottweiler

Rottweilers have a long history, extending to the time of the Roman Empire. They were originally used as herding dogs, but they were also developed to assist the Roman army. The breed is named after the town of Rottweil, Germany. Rottweilers caused nearly half the number of deaths as pit bulls during the CDC's reporting period.

#3 - German Shepherd

The third most dangerous dog in America, according to CDC fatality data, is the German Shepherd. German Shepherds are popular in the United States, being one of the most-registered breeds. The breed is relatively new - dating to only about 1899. German Shepherds were developed as herding dogs, and they are known to be the third most intelligent of pure-bred dogs. German Shepherd attacks resulted in nineteen deaths in the United States during the CDC's eighteen-year reporting period.

#4 - "Husky"

"Husky" refers to several dog breeds which are used as sled dogs. Huskies have different-colored eyes. They were originally seen just in northern regions but are now more common as pets in the lower continental United States. Their fur has allowed them to adapt to life in the more temperate regions in the U.S., because it protects them not only from cold but also from heat. Husky attacks ended with fourteen deaths during the data period.

#5 - Alaskan Malamute

The breed's name gives away its origin. Alaskan malamutes were originally used as sled dogs in Alaska. Its looks are similar to those of Siberian Huskies. Alaskan Malamutes are some of the oldest bred dogs and were quite valuable during the Klondike Gold Rush in the late nineteenth century. Alaskan Malamute attacks resulted in twelve deaths during the CDC's reporting period.

#6 - Doberman Pinscher

Dobermans are well-known in the U.S. The breed is named for its German developer - Karl Dobermann. The breed received significant negative media attention in the 1970s and 1980s. Children are allegedly five times as likely to be bitten by a Doberman than they are to be bitten by a Labrador Retriever. The CDC reports that Doberman attacks ended with the death of eight people during the reporting period.

#7 - Chow Chow

Chow chows are hairy and sturdy. The breed was developed in Mongolia thousands of years ago and was then introduced into China. Chows of the same gender might have problems co-habitating. Also, some homeowner's policies exclude claims for Chow attacks. Chows were responsible for the same number of deaths as Dobermans during the CDC reporting period.

#8 - Great Dane

Great Danes are also known as German Mastiffs. They are huge in comparison to most other breeds and at times have a member which is the tallest living dog in the world. Adult males usually weigh in excess of a hundred pounds. There is significant disagreement about the breed's origin. Great Dane attacks resulted in six deaths during the reporting period.

#9 - St. Bernard

St. Bernards are very large dogs with large heads. Adults weigh between 140 and 260 pounds. Great Danes are working dogs and originated in the Swiss Alps. They look much like English Mastiffs. St Bernards were responsible for four deaths during the CDC data period.

#10 - Akita

The tenth most dangerous dog in America, according to the CDC data, is the Akita. Akitas have bear-like heads, and adults males can weigh over 100 pounds. Akitas are not generally tolerant of other dogs of the same gender. Akitas were responsible for the same number of deaths during the reporting period as were St. Bernards.

Our law firm’s principal office is in downtown Dallas, Texas, but we represent people across Texas, for dog bite and animal attack claims, in cities and areas including the following:  Abilene, Albany, Alice, Alpine, Amarillo, Angleton, Arlington, Austin, Bay City, Baytown, Beaumont, Benavides, Big Spring, Boerne, Bonham, Bowie, Brazoria, Brownsville, Brownwood, Bryan, Buffalo, Carthage, Centerville, Childress, Clarksville, Cleburne, College Station, Commerce, Conroe, Corpus Christi, Corsicana, Crockett, Daingerfield, Dalhart, Dallas, Decatur, Del Rio, Denton, DFW Metroplex, Dumas, Eagle Pass, Eastland, Edinburg, El Paso, Emory, Ennis, Fairfield, Falfurrias, Fort Stockton, Fort Worth, Freer, Gainesville, Galveston, Garland, Gatesville, Gilmer, Granbury, Grapevine, Greenville, Groom, Harlingen, Henderson, Hillsboro, Houston, Huntsville, Irving, Jacksboro, Jasper, Kaufman, Kerrville, Killeen, Kingsville, Kingwood, Laredo, Liberty, Livingston, Llano, Longview, Lorena, Lubbock, Lufkin, Mansfield, Marathon, Marshall, McAllen, Mesquite, Midland, Mineola, Mineral Wells, Mount Pleasant, Mount Vernon, Nacogdoches, New Braunfels, Odessa, Orange, Ozona, Palestine, Pampa, Paris, Pasadena, Pearland, Pecos, Pharr, Plainview, Port Arthur, Quinlan, Raymondville, Richland, Rio Grande City, Rio Grande Valley, Sanford, Sonora, San Angelo, San Antonio, San Marcos, Seguin, Shamrock, Sheffield, Sherman, Spring, Stephenville, Sulphur Springs, Sweetwater, Tawakoni, Temple, Terrell, Texarkana, Texas City, Thurber, Tulia, Tyler, Van Horn, Vernon, Victoria, Waco, Waxahachie, Weatherford, Wharton, Whitesboro, Whitewright, Wichita Falls, Wills Point, The Woodlands, and Woodville. Website and all contents copyright 2010 by Law Offices of Dean Malone, P.C. All rights reserved.

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