Recent dog bite-related incident data confirms that serious dog bite-related incidents are not a breed-specific issue; furthermore, the data validates what multiple peer-reviewed studies have concluded such as breed does not determine risk and that safety is not a breed-specific issue. In fact, since only 2016, at least 28 different breeds and mixed breeds have been involved in fatal dog attacks (listed in Table 1 below) including: Akita, Belgian Malinois, Boxer, Chow Chow, Doberman Pinscher, German Shepherd, Giant Schnauzer, Husky, Labrador Retriever, Mastiff, Rottweiler, and many others. While every serious dog bite-related incident is tragic, the number and variety of breeds implicated in fatal dog attacks is clear evidence that these incidents are not a breed-specific issue.
The dog bite-related fatality (DBRF) data for JAN/2016 through DEC/2018 confirms that:
Table 1 - Breeds involved in fatal dog attacks between JAN/2016 and DEC/2018 include:
(in alphabetical order, references to news sources with breed information provided in Table 2 below)
Table 2 - Incident date, breed(s) involved, location, and sources for the breeds listed in Table 1:
(excluding pitbull-type dogs, see "Notes" below)
The data, scientific studies, and risk rates all confirm that serious dog bite-related incidents are not a breed-specific issue. For canine regulation, it is important to understand the differences between the two major forms of regulation - Breed Specific Legislation (BSL) and Breed Neutral Legislation (BNL). BSL is a limited, single-factor, appearance-based approach while BNL is a comprehensive, multifactorial, behavior-based approach. For public safety, BSL imposes regulations on a minority of dogs based only on their appearance or breed (regardless of a dog's behavior or responsible ownership) while breed-neutral regulations address all potentially dangerous dogs, all irresponsible owners, and all unsafe dog-related situations - regardless of a dog's appearance or breed. Consequently, multiple peer-reviewed studies have concluded that BSL is ineffective; furthermore, it is a discriminatory trend in decline evidenced by the vast majority (98%) of cities and towns that use breed-neutral regulations as their primary and only form of regulation because of the many advantages of breed-neutral regulations summarized on our Breed Legislation page.
Breed specific ordinances have proven ineffective in reducing the ... number of dog bites. Breed Specific Legislation ... has generally been discredited in actual experience of cities, professionals and academic research as being both ineffective and expensive.
Blog & News
Insight, news, and analysis on issues and topics relevant to pitbull-type dogs.