Dog Bite Statistics

The latest statistics show that over 4.7 million people are the victims of dog bites every year. The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) published in 2000 a study on dog bite-related fatalities (DBRF) that covered the years 1979-1998. The study found reports of 327 people killed by dogs over the 20-year period. Using newspaper articles, the CDC was able to obtain breed “identifications” for 238 of the 327 cases of fatal dog attacks; of which “pit bull terrier” or mixes thereof were reportedly involved in 76 cases. The breed with the next-highest number of attributed fatalities was the Rottweiler and mixes thereof, with 44 fatalities.

Dog Bite Statistics | Zinda Law Group PLLC

The majority of Texas dog bites involve dogs biting or scratching children. Many times these dog bites occur at the house of a friend or a neighbor. Typically the dog’s instinct to protect or hunt leads to the animal’s perception of the child as either prey or a threat. Many of these bites are serious enough to require medical attention and some attacks even lead to death. Merritt Clifton, editor of Animal People, determined the breeds most responsible for serious injury and death y compiling U.S. and Canadian press accounts between 1982 and 2009:

Study Determinations

The combination of pit bulls, rottweilers, presa canarios, and their mixes:

  • 80% of attacks that induce bodily harm
  • 69% of attacks to children
  • 83% of attack to adults
  • 68% of attacks that result in fatalities
  • 74% that result in maiming

1982-2009 chart:

Breed Bodily Harm Child Victims Adult Victims Deaths Maimings
Pit bull terrier 1451 628 499 153 777
Rottweiler 447 257 115 67 244
Wolf hybrid 81 67 4 19 45
Husky 49 32 4 17 13
German Shepherd 79 52 20 9 50
Bullmastiff(presa canario) 48 17 20 8 26
Chow 52 35 14 7 34
Akita 50 34 14 1 41
*Chart ordered by number of deaths.