A University of Pennsylvania School of Veterinary Medicine study by the Center for the Interaction of Animals and Society has found that the much maligned greyhound is rated the most docile or least aggressive canine by breed.
The research involved researchers from the University of Pennsylvania questioning 6,000 dog owners.
Breeds scoring low for aggression included Basset Hounds, Golden Retrievers, Labradors and Siberian Huskies.
The Rottweiler, Pit Bull and Rhodesian Ridgeback scored average or below average marks for hostility towards strangers.
Greyhounds rated the most docile and were the least aggressive toward both humans and other dogs.
The most vicious breed ?
Heading the list of 33 dog breeds that were rated for their aggression in a study that analyzed the behavior of thousands of dogs, was the Daschund.
Dr. James Serpell, a University of Pennsylvania researcher who worked on the study, said smaller breeds might be more genetically predisposed towards aggressive behavior than larger dogs.
“Reported levels of aggression in some cases are concerning, with rates of bites or bite attempts rising as high as 20 per cent toward strangers and 30 per cent toward unfamiliar dogs,” he added.
Most research into canine aggression up to now has focused on dog bites, but researchers said that data (pit bulls aren’t at the top of that list either) is misleading. Most dog bites aren’t reported, and because the bites of big dogs are more likely to get reported, they are generally viewed as more aggressive.
The Aggressive Top Ten
- 1. Daschund
- 2. Chihuahua
- 3. Jack Russell Terrier
- 4. Akita
- 5. Australian Cattle Dog
- 6. Pit Bull
- 7. Beagle
- 8. English Springer Spaniel
- 9. Border Collie
- 10. German Shepherd