All dogs can make great companions, and their behavior and personality mainly depend on being responsibly bred and trained. However, some dogs breeds are more stigmatized due to their dogfighting past, reported cases of aggressive behavior, or their overall bulky, muscular frame that makes them look intimidating. That’s why these breeds are considered the most dangerous in the world:

Pit Bull

This breed always tops the list of the most dangerous ones in the world, though it is not the strongest or heaviest. Pit bulls aren’t highest-ranking in bite force, either – 242 PSI (pounds per square inch).

Despite the claims that 64% of deaths in dog bite victims are caused by Pit bull or Pit bull mixes, any data on Pit bull attacks are questionable due to the stereotypes and misidentification. More often than not, an aggressive dog is identified by people as a Pit bull when they don’t know the breed.

Thus, the notoriety of Pit bulls builds upon itself, which is why they are still banned in many countries, states, and communities. However, the reputation of Pitbull breeds has been tarnished by people who exploited them for animal baiting and dog fighting. Today, Pit bulls excel as search and rescue, border patrol, and service dogs.


Rottweilers are considered the second most dangerous breed behind Pit bulls, yet exceed them in jaw force – 328 PSI. According to the data between 2005 and 2019, Rottweilers were responsible for 9.8% of fatal dog attacks. Due to being physically large, Rottweilers are potentially more dangerous than smaller breeds – when charging, they can easily knock anyone over, which can result in significant injuries and broken bones. But if trained properly, Rottweilers should not show aggression unless they see someone’s behavior as a threat.

Being one of the oldest herding breeds, Rottweilers are highly protective and territorial rather than aggressive in nature. Ironically, research shows that Chihuahuas – the weakest bite force record holders (100-180 psi) – are naturally more aggressive than Rottweilers, who are banned or restricted in many countries.

German Shepherd

German Shepherds have a bite force of 238 PSI – and a strong tendency to attack intruders, trespassers, and other offenders. The breed known as the №1 police dog and excellent guard or patrol dog is popular for exceptional tracking abilities and quick reaction time when it comes to attacking criminals or chasing down suspects. However, a fully trained German Shepherd is expensive, so no wonder some individuals lack the proper training and have weird behavioral predispositions.

Doberman Pinscher

These tough-looking dogs with 230-300 PSI are bigger than Pit bulls and have a mixed reputation of a “vicious breed” and loyal guard dog. Dobermans are renowned for being very protective of their owners, but tend to exhibit aggression towards strangers and other dogs. Historically, Dobermans have also been used as military and police dogs, but they do not have the same work intelligence and endurance as German Shepherds.


Mastiff family breeds have a bite force ranging from 500 to 800 PSI. Originally bred for herding cattle and guarding, their ancestors were supposed to be able to stand up to the attacks of predators and chase away or kill those. So, Mastiffs can be overprotective by instinct and may overreact to any threat. They should be trained and owned by experienced handlers.

So, are these breeds as dangerous as public opinion and breed-specific legislation make them appear? Any dog who is untrained, mistreated, or has gone through traumatic experiences has a higher chance of developing behavioral issues or showing aggression. In some breeds and mixes, genetics – which includes years of selective breeding meant to promote aggressive personality traits – will play into shaping such behaviors as chasing or aggressiveness. But an individual dog’s temperament is a result of environmental factors, responsible ownership, and training.