Least Aggressive Dogs

As promised yesterday, here are the dogs that scored very low on the aggression scale in the study recently reported in the Applied Animal Behavior Science journal.  This study, compiled by researchers at the University of Pennsylvania, involved asking 6,000 dog owners about their dog’s behavior.  Thirty-three different breeds were catalogued and rated according to how aggressive they are.


The dogs that were least aggressive were:


Basset Hound

Golden Retriever


Siberian Huskies



The Rottweiler, often assumed to be very aggressive, ranked average in its hostility towards strangers. 


The researchers did note, however, that even though small dogs headed the most aggressive list and big dogs headed the least aggressive list, the bites from the larger dogs were more likely to have required medical attention than those from the smaller dogs.


Until next time,

Good day, and good dog!

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8 thoughts on “Least Aggressive Dogs”

  1. Ok im thinking about getting a dog a little one at that and people are saying they are more agressive than big dogs but im scared of them because i think they are more agressive and the dogs i were thinking about getting were a yorkie or a shih tzu and i dont know if thats a good idea now…. help me !!!

  2. Mr. Smith – I want nothing more than to inspire conversation, whether or not it is in agreement with the posts. You have raised several good points with your comments. if you read other posts and articles on this site, you will see that , in the main, I agree with you. No one knows for sure whether or not a dog will bite, and the temperament of a dog depends a great deal on how he or she is raised. Thanks for your comments.
    Beth Philley
    The Dog Lady

  3. Tue., 22 June, 2010

    Dear Dog Lady:


    What a pleasant, fictional “reality” this ‘study’ portrays!

    I respectfully disagree with this one ‘study’.

    Study members asked the owners…..Not a very objective study. Clear biases.

    Further, I openly acknowledge a personal bias against derelict/negligent dog owners that frequently allow their pets to run loose, sometimes adding,”It’s okay,’He/she won’t bite you.’ ”

    Non-compliance with the leash law is very common-I know–I delivered papers for nearly six years. I did not have the insulation (protection) of my own vehicle.

    I was attacked when age ten by a larger German Shepherd.

    Fortunately, I was turned away from it. Also, there was an adult present that protected me. Still, it took two good bites on my right rear and right leg.

    Also, there are some generally-accepted more aggressive dog species/breeds:

    Rottweilers are at least potentially/actually more than a mere “average” on an aggression scale! Talking about their average is easy-Try encountering one!
    One source lists them as second-most aggressive.

    Contrary to this one ‘study,’ Huskies are deemed fourth-most aggressive.

    You most likely own a personal vehicle, so, you are probably not exposed to unsupervised canines with at least a bit of wolf blood in their genetic structures.

    Generally, I dislike , moreso, the dog owners whom choose to let their “friendly, unaggressive” dogs run rampant, assuming that “My dog won’t attack/bite me, so, it won’t attack/bite anyone else.” Convenient illogics.



    Please try to remember that I generally like at least some dogs. However, I retain my right (not a mere privilege) to NOT associate with some dogs.

    Just because the ‘so-called’ “dog whisperer” says that dogs naturally want to sniff people does not mean I “must allow all dogs to run up to me and sniff me!” Cesar can try that with more aggressive dogs without a camera crew present for security!

    I doubt the ‘study’ factored in the wild wolf blood that runs in all dogs’ veins.

    I also doubt that it considered the territorial imperative, plus the instinctual tendency to attack someone moving away (especially, if they run.)

    The ‘study’ personnel, as well as you, may wish to consider careers in writing fiction!

    I always have pepper spray. Fortunately, I have not had to use it, yet.

    I just ask that you consider that not all people trust dog owners and their dogs.

    I understand if you do not respond. Alternative points-of-view may be deemed as “rude,” etc. If so, so be it.

    I just hope no children , nor elderly persons, ever have to experience what I did, with “The dog that wouldn’t bite me.”

    Let’s all try and be more responsible for our pets-Pet ownership has responsibilities, as well as “rights.”


  4. I am 11 and I have a pitbull rott weiler mix and apparently those are the 2 most aggresive breeds but we have had her since she was a baby and she is very sweet and loving she never bites us and always cuddles with me. I think it doesn’t matter the breed of dog it all depends on how they are raised and taken care of.

  5. I have a red nose pit bull our family has raised since she was 5 weeks old she is the friendliest dog we have ever had she will cuddle all over our 3 year old and no matter what our little girl does to the dog all she does is lick and walk off pit bulls have a terrible rep because of low life dog fighters.

  6. I don’t think that a dogs aggressiveness depends on the breed of a dog. I hav e had many dogs of all different breeds and i have noticed that when they had come from disturbed backgrounds, they were much more aggressive. I had had a pitbull and a yellow lab a couple years back. I had raised the pit and then adopted the lab after she was abused very badly. My pit was very loving and never aggressive. The lab on the other hand she was very timid and very territorial.

  7. I think you’re exactly right. In the event a big dog bites you it’s more dramatic but little dog bites can be handled with a band aid most of the time.

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