Now, before we continue, it should be noted that there are many factors that are involved when slapping an entire dog breed with the “DANGEROUS” label. There are no evil dogs out there. Dogs only act and behave based on how they’ve been trained and treated by people.
However, there are some dogs breeds out there that have the POTENTIAL to cause more harm than others, based on their size, weight and other physical and behavioral characteristics. Here are the 25 dog breeds that could cause you some serious harm.
25. Perro de Presa Canario
The Perro de Presa Canario is a large pooch, weighing a minimum of 100lbs when it reaches adulthood. These dogs were originally bred for working livestock, with their name meaning “Canarian catch dog” in Spanish. Presas require socialisation from a young age, along with intense obedience training. In some situations, the Presa can be aggressive toward other dogs and suspicious of strangers.
If you want a dog that can look after you in all situations, this is the one for you. It’s friendly with family members, but if you bring a new friend home, don’t expect them to take that easily.
24. Akita Inu
A large spitz breed of dog that originated from mountainous regions of Japan, it is known for its two breed types: the Akita Inu (Japanese Akita) and the Akita (American Akita). A strong, independent and dominant breed, they are affectionate with family members, but can be very aggressive with strangers due to their territorial nature.
They are really lovely dogs to have when they are friendly… but when they get too big for their boots, sometimes it’s hard to remember who the boss is. These dogs certainly think they are.
I have grown up around boxers, and have always known them to be typically passive by nature. However, they are listed here due to the 48 negative incidents involving the breed from 1982 to 2012. Originally from Germany, they can reach between 50-70lbs, and their playful and energetic personalities are countered by their “headstrong” characteristic.
This is an obvious one. If you’re going to cross a cuddly domestic pet with a wild beast, then you are going to have some problems keeping it as just a domesticated pal. Especially when the full moon is out.
22. Wolf Hybrid
As the name suggests, the Wolf Hybrid is a cross breed between a dog and a wolf (typically a grey wolf). Consequently, Wolf-dog hybrids have a mixture of genetic traits, resulting in unpredictable behavior patterns.
These dogs are honestly one of cutest dog breeds when they are just small puppies. But as they get older… well, it appears that it isn’t really in their nature to be that cute. Watch out.
21. Chow Chow
This breed of dogs requires a lot attention and physical exercise if their owners do not want them to become aggressive in the future. Originally from China, the 50-70lbs Chow Chow can also be referred to as Songshi Quan or “puffy-lion dog” – which makes it sound adorable! This breed has discernment skills against strangers and can be aggressively protective of their owners. Listed as high-risk dogs, they are considered “unacceptable”, and may require insurance due to the 238 fatalities from dog bites from 1979 to 1998.
These dogs would probably make wonderful dogs if they weren’t trained to hunt down baddies. These dogs are extremely with-it, their senses are beyond incredible. But once trained, their senses take over their personalities.
20. Doberman Pinschers
Admired for their alertness, loyalty and intelligence, this breed of dog is considered to be the best guard dog in the world. A breed of domestic dog that originated from Germany in 1890, they were developed by Karl Friedrich Louis Doberman, and can weigh as much as 65-90lbs. Once used as guard dogs or police dogs, they exhibit fierce behaviour to strangers and other dogs. Their aggression, due to their size and strength, makes them potentially very dangerous.
These dogs, despite having outstanding strength and stamina as well as a killer bite, will never ever hurt another human being. But still, they are dangerous enough to be able to kill any other animal out there…
19. Dogo Argentino
The Dogo Argentino is a muscular dog developed predominantly for big-game hunting, including wild boar and puma. The breeder wanted to develop a dog which was loyal, brave and would protect it’s owner to the death. Therefore the Dogo Argentino is not aggressive towards humans. Despite this, it is in fact illegal to own a Dogo in the United Kingdom.
It’s quite easy to recognise a Bull Terrier, not only because of their peculiar sized bodies, but also because of their almost oval egg-shaped heads and slanted eyes.
18. Bull Terrier
Bull Terriers are incredibly strong with the highest amount of lean muscle tissues in any dog breed in terms of their weight ratio. In fact, they are the top in “pound-for-pound lean muscle tissue”. Luckily, Bull Terriers aren’t too aggressive – but they aren’t a fan of smaller animals. Anything smaller than them they might consider to be their prey. Not good.
If you look at the body of this dog, you might realise it has something in common with some big cats that live in the same country as it was bred in, lions and tigers… it’s the leg muscles that reveal this.
17. Boer Boel
The Boerboel, also known as the South African Mastiff, originates from South Africa. They are bred with the purpose of guarding a home or farm. These dogs are fiercely loyal, obedient and have strong territorial instincts. The guard dogs are particularly good at tracking and holding down wounded game.
It’s quite scary to think that a dog that could overpower you could be your pet. There’s no wonder that with a possibility like this, they make the dangerous dog list.
16. American Bandogge
Originally this dog was not bred for fighting, but as American Bandogges are unbelievably strong, there’s no wonder that this dog can get aggressive. Some still use it as a fighting dog due to its enormous muscles, and killer look. Being a cross between an American Pit Bull Terrier and a Neapolitan Mastiff, this breed was bound to be strong, and a little dangerous.
These dogs are loving of one person, and one person only. They are the true romantic. They have one love and they stick to it. Their owner. But what happens when their owner isn’t around to bark commands?
15. Gull Dong
This adorable looking pooch is a cross between the Gull Tarrier and the Bully Kutta. The Gull Dong was initially bred as a fighting dog and is known to have a stubborn and aggressive temperament. This dog is said to be incredibly loving and even affectionate towards its owner, but is largely suspicious of anyone else.
There’s no denying that this is a pretty cute breed of doggy. But perhaps their seriousness makes them a little less cuddly.
14. Rhodesian Ridgeback
This breed of dog originated from the Southern parts of Africa, where they were often used by their owners to keep away lions whilst hunting prey. Although this dog is partially a domestic pet, it is still a hunting dog and needs to be socialized into their living environment so they don’t become too aggressive, especially towards strangers.
If you want to teach your dog how to sit, or fetch perhaps, or just have manners in general, don’t get this one. You might as well try to teach a tiger how to roll over instead. That would be much easier.
The Basenji is a breed of hunting dog which originated from central Africa. These dogs are known for being reserved with strangers and is thought to be the 2nd least trainable of all dog breeds.
This dog is one big dog. That’s why training this dog is so very, very important. This breed of dog can have the sweetest temperament, perfect for a family dog, but without training, it might be another story.
12. Saint Bernard
The Saint Bernard is famous for its enormous size. This doggy beast was originally bred as a rescue dog. However, due to their massive size (they can be between 65–120 kg) the St Bernard must be well trained to prevent aggressive behavior. Due to their enormity, if they wanted to cause damage, they most certainly could.
This dog breed originally was bred to be a hunting dog, so there’s no wonder that their danger levels are particularly higher than other dogs out there. Why? Because these dogs are enormous.
11. Great Dane
This breed holds the record for the world’s tallest dog and was originally bred to hunt wild boar and deer in Germany. According to studies, Great Danes are the 9th most dangerous breed and their massive size makes them an obvious threat. The Great Dane is the largest dog breed to be domesticated, however, their natural hunter instinct is still present.
These dogs are so dangerous, it is illegal from owning this breed in a number of places around the world.
10. Fila Brasileiro
Also known as the Brazilian Mastiff, the Fila Brasileiro is quite an aggressive dog and for this reason has been banned from many countries. Though it should be noted that the Brazilian Mastiff does not tend to attack prey, rather it tracks them down and holds them at bay until it’s owner arrives.
There’s a reason why this breed of dog was created originally to be a fighting dog. And that specific reason makes them so deadly that actually there’s no wonder that even Australia won’t have them.
9. Tosa Inu
The Tosa is somewhat of a rarity in the dog world. The Tosa was bred as a fighting dog and is therefore considered dangerous. These dogs stand at around and stand 24.5 to 32 inches tall and are banned in several countries including Australia.
We all love these dogs, so it comes as a bit of a surprise that this breed can be dangerous, especially to other dog breeds and animals, when they haven’t go much to do.
Originally bred to pull sleds in Arctic regions, they have also been utilised for sled dog racing and for adventure trekking. Yes, this dog requires a lot of exercise! In addition, they can be extremely dangerous to smaller animals due to their strong predator instinct, and have even been known to become destructive if they’re bored.
These dogs are known to be friendly and quite bubbly dogs in general, but because of their confidence, just like humans, it can cross over to arrogance. American Bulldogs can be very stubborn because of this.
7. American Bulldog
You can understand how an American Bulldog can get aggressive. Owner gets fed up, American Bulldog ignores owner, Owner yells, American Bulldog fights back. But did you know that originally, the American Bulldog worked on a farm and was bred so it could hold down cows and sheep as well as get rid of mice and guard the house?
The Cane Corso is known to be maybe the last coursing Mastiff breed around. Being a muscly breed of dog, the danger here as that the breed is a born fighter.
6. Cane Corso
Weighing in between a huge 99 pounds and up to a massive 150 pounds, this dog breed is brutal. Why may you ask? Even the Romans used to use this specific breed of dog’s ancestors in warfare, as a form of protection as well as attack. The Cane Corso was once related to the Canis Pugnax, a descendant of that breed that was used for war in the Roman era.
Not dissimilar to huskies, these animals do find it a little bit difficult to get along with others, especially strangers and smaller animals that they don’t recognize.
5. Alaskan Malamutes
A breed that requires daily exercises to maintain happiness, or else they will become bored, disobedient and potentially destructive. This large breed of domestic dog can grow between 70-100lbs. Their strong independence can cause difficulties when training, and they also cope poorly with smaller animals.
Although these dogs seem particularly vicious, it’s not actually in this breed of dog’s nature to be violent towards humans. But when they are, it’s usually because they have been abused.
Rottweilers are a very powerful breed with well-developed genetic herding and guarding instincts. They are one breed that carries a particularly strong stigma, but please remember that, like with all the breeds on this list, any dangerous behavior in Rottweilers usually stems from abuse, neglect, or lack of socialization and training.
These dogs are trained by the top forces to be the top dog on the show. They are fighters through and through and are painfully loyal. But if they don’t know you, it’s not always the best to say hello.
3. German Shepherd
The German shepherd is regarded as one of the most intelligent, confident, alert, vigilant, and fearless breeds in the world. So much so that many police forces use them for their K-9 units. However, any strangers encountering a German shepherd should exercise caution, as they can become very overprotective of their family and territory, and if they have not be trained on how to socialize correctly, they can attack.
These dogs can have the sweetest demeanors ever, but when bred to be violent and trained to be a fighting dog, this breed can get out of control. They can be extremely dangerous…
The term ‘pit bull’ usually encompasses many breeds of dog, from the American pit bull terrier, to the Staffordshire bull terrier, to the American Staffordshire terrier, to the American Bulldog. Originally bred for baiting bulls and bears, the majority of their breeds were also used for dog fighting in numerous parts of the world and is considered as the most dangerous dog in America. However, speaking as a person who has been face-to-face with a loving and well-trained Staffordshire bull terrier, I can’t stress enough just how caring these breeds can be when raised correctly.
These dogs are naturally suspicious of strangers and humans that they don’t know, so for that reason, if you are planning to own this dog, you need to train it immaculately.
1. Caucasian Ovcharka
The Caucasian Ovcharka was originally bred to protect livestock. The breed is known to be assertive, strong-willed and courageous. However, unless properly socialized and trained from an early age, these dogs can exhibit ferocious and unmanageable tendencies, as it will struggle to accept people it is unfamiliar with and view them as a threat.
Despite the fact all of these breeds of dog should be approached with caution, that doesn’t mean every single one of them is ferocious or evil – it’s all down to the owners. Dogs make wonderful pets; they really are man’s best friend. But just like friendships between humans, if you mistreat and neglect your friend, things can turn very nasty, very quickly.