Most Aggressive Dog Breeds

When you’re buying a new puppy, it’s easy for them to win you over with their cuteness. But is that puppy one of the more aggressive dog breeds? Is there a risk that the Jack Russell terrier you’re considering could be a danger to your family?

In this post, we’ll look at the most aggressive breeds so that you have a head’s up. We do want to preface this by saying that no dog is born inherently bad. If you train them correctly, all of the dogs on this list can be wonderful family pets. It’s just up to you to put in the time and effort.

If you’re not able to do so, you should consider a more docile breed.

Some Dangerous Breeds

We’ve compiled a list of the top five most aggressive breeds. Some of the entrants on the list will surprise you. We’re conditioned to think of big dogs as more dangerous. In reality, though, size is always trumped by temperament. Let’s see which breeds made the list.


Considering how small a Chihuahua is, they don’t seem dangerous. As anyone who owns a Chihuahua will tell you, though, they’re real little fire-crackers. These little dogs prove that dynamite comes in small packages.

People love this breed because they’re alert and fiercely loyal. On the downside, they can be neurotic, temperamental, and very jealous. They’ll snap at anyone that they feel is too close to you, which is problematic if you have kids. They’re more suited to single owners than families.


The Dachshund is a hunting dog. They’re great ratters and love hunting. Because they are a small dog, you might not think they’re dangerous. You’re wrong. In some parts of the world, they’re called “carpet crocodiles.”

They make excellent family pets if appropriately socialized at an early age. If they’re not, expect your ankles to come under attack. As hunters, they’re likely to chase down small pets, like hamsters.

Chow Chow

These dogs look like big fluffballs. Don’t be fooled, though; they’re an assertive breed that will try to dominate their owners. You have to establish that you’re the pack leader from the first day that you get them.

Their peripheral vision is not great, and so it’s easy to startle them. Chows might snap as a result of this.

Doberman Pinscher

Now we’re dealing with a dog that many people consider dangerous. And, if you’ve ever seen a Doberman attacking someone, you’ll understand why. When they’re in attack mode, they’re relentless. It can be challenging to break up a fight.

They’re highly intelligent and can be very protective of their owners. They require a firm pack leader and proper training from day one.

German Shepherd

The German shepherd is known for its tendency to turn on its owners. They’re highly intelligent and require a lot of exercise. If they don’t get enough exercise, they might snap at you out of frustration.

Another issue is that these dogs fiercely protect their loved ones, and they’re not good with strangers. That doesn’t sound like much of a problem. But a friend of ours can attest that it is. She fell and hurt herself but managed to get a call to 911. She passed out before the ambulance got there. The problem was that her dogs wouldn’t allow the paramedics near her. They had to call in animal control to sedate the dogs first.

Other Breeds to Be Careful Of

There are a few other breeds that deserve mention here:


If they’re well-trained, they can be the sweetest dogs in the world. The problem is that they have a lot of energy and are territorial.


Forget the Disney movie. These dogs are highly intelligent and very energetic. They do require a lot of attention, though, and can become jealous if they don’t get it.

Jack Russell terrier

These dogs can be single-minded. They’re not afraid of anything – not even a huge Rottweiler. Lack of fear gets them into trouble. They’re energetic and require a lot of exercise. They can be impatient and tend to be bad with kids.

Pit bull

Let’s face it – you thought that this dog would be at the top of the list. Pit bulls have a terrible reputation. And, if they’re not well-trained and properly socialized, they can be very dangerous. If you raise them properly, they make fantastic family dogs.

What breed of dog has the most attacks?

According to Statista, pit bulls made the largest number of fatal attacks between 2005 and 2017, during which time they killed 284 people. Rottweilers came in second with just 45 fatalities.

Now, it’s crucial here to temper the research with some common sense. If you train pit bulls as guard dogs, they can be extremely vicious. Once they latch onto their quarry, they won’t let go until it’s dead.

In many cases, people look for these dogs because of this viciousness. It’s a trait that might be encouraged. That, in turn, can explain the extremely high number of attacks.


Aggression is a trait that any breed can develop. Inadequate training, poor control, and frustration can result in behavior that reads as aggression. The dogs mentioned above are especially at risk of developing bad behavior.

As a responsible owner, it’s essential to take aggression into account when choosing a dog. Part of the problem with these breeds is that they’re highly energetic. They need a lot of exercise and an owner that takes control.

If you’re a first-time dog owner, extremely busy, or have small kids, it’s best to choose a different breed.

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