A study, published this week in the journal Applied Animal Behaviour Science, with researchers questioning 6000 dog owners had some surprising conclusions.
The dog breed most likely to bite was not the Pit Bull, Rottweiler, or German Shepherd, but …wait for it…the Dachshund. And second was the Chihuahua, followed by the Jack Russell Terrier.
Known as sausage or weiner dogs, Doxies were originally bred to hunt badgers in their holes. The research, conducted at the University of Pennsylvania, found that one in five Dachshunds have bitten or tried to bite strangers or have attacked other dogs and "one in twelve have snapped at their owners."
One of the researchers, Dr. James Serpell said that smaller breeds might be “more genetically predisposed towards aggressive behavior than larger dogs.”
Previous research into dog aggression has focused primarily on dog bite statistics, but researchers said that these are misleading since most dog bites are not reported. Furthermore, bites from small dogs are less likely to require medical attention and are almost never reported.
Breeds scoring low for aggression included Basset Hounds, Golden Retrievers, Labradors, Siberian Huskies and Greyhounds.
The Rottweiler, Pit Bull and Rhodesian Ridgeback scored average or below average marks for hostility towards strangers.
In defense of small dog breeds, many owners may not discourage biting the way owners of larger breeds might. Also small dogs may learn early in life that biting an obnoxious child (or adult) is necessary for their own protection.
Watch this moron teaching a tiny puppy to bite while she laughs idiotically.
Whether the study is valid or not, what is important to remember is that almost any dog might bite in the right (or wrong) situation.
Thanks for the story, Denny.