What Mighty Big Teeth You Have!

When people find out I specialize in severe behavioral issues and aggression in dogs, they have a LOT of questions. One of the first that’s always asked?

“Have you ever been bitten?” 

Jack Russell Terrier Snarling

After the usual, “Oh yeah, by plenty of puppies, teething stage is real fun” answer, I give them what they want.


Yep, sorta. I have been full on bitten, only once, by my own dog when she was in full-on Protection Mode and had shut down all her senses except for what was in front of her. All I got was a few puncture spots across my palm, back of my hand, and fingers. It healed fast. I survived with nothing to show. She knew she made the wrong choice as soon as her mouth hit my hand, and she immediately corrected herself and didn’t chomp down completely.

There was a time when a dog specifically went after me, though unsuccessful. Actually, as I write this, I am remembering several times a dog specifically went at me, with the intent to bite me. I mean, come on, that’s my job, so, they sure do try! There was the American Eskimo, the White Shepherd Puppy (2, actually), the Pit Bull, the Border Collie (oh man she wanted to eat my face off), the Australian Cattle Dog, and several small dogs like Min Pins & Chihuahuas. These are completely different situations, and a different type of intended bite. Unlike Adie’s immediately-corrected “Reaction Bite”. These others would’ve been full-force bites. And none of them ever got me. So, no – I’ve never been bit, though many have tried. 🙂

But, that always raises another question:

pibble“What’s the dog bite force pressure? Don’t Pit Bulls have, like, the strongest bite and lock jaw?” 

Hold up…

First of all – Let me dispel something real quick for you:


I know, it might be surprising, but you’ll get through this. In fact, Pit Bulls, meaning the all-inclusive 3 bully breeds – American Pit Bull Terrier, American Staffordshire Terrier and the Staffordshire Bull Terrier, don’t even have the strongest bite, of the recorded popular dog breeds that were tested. More on that in a minute.

Now, the animal that DOES have the capability of “Lock Jaw” is you. Yep, you. It’s part of something called TMJ. It’s no fun, my sister has suffered from it since we were kids. You don’t want it.

The reason behind the Pit Bull Lock Jaw myth is because of the amount of muscle that they have in their heads. In most dogs the muscles between the jaw, head, and neck have some kind of separation. Whereas the Bully breeds muscular system is bigger – and all attached. From their jaw to the top of the head, and down the neck. That’s a LOT of muscle, and what makes them so hard-headed, literally. (Great dogs though!) And had a part in giving them their bad reputation. 🙁

Basically bite force varies from breed to breed, and even dog by dog, like a fingerprint. Just as every dog learns differently and has a different personality, their own personal bite force strength will vary. But that won’t stop scientists from giving you a breakdown anyway!

For those that are interested and want to learn more.
Here’s your site, that also quotes DVM sources:

National Geographic did several tests on bite force pressure. They not only tested dogs, but included other animals – and humans. The results are interesting.

For the sake of comparison, average human (Or Zombie, I guess) bite force pressure is 120 pounds of pressure per square inch.

Pit bulls came in at around 235 pounds psi.
German Shepherds earned 238 pounds.
Rottweiler tested at 328 psi, making it the highest of all the dog breeds.


Check out that gorgeous mouth!
The Rottweiler jaw, ladies & gentlemen.

However, there are new rumors floating around that the Mastiff has 552 psi, and the Doberman comes in at 600 (right…). IF those rumors are true (because they weren’t tested specifically, and lets still consider #context) that would make the Dobie have the strongest bite force. But, for science sake, and because #facts… The current winner is the Rottweiler.

Sorry to burst some bubbles, or back up the OTHER spouses. I do that a lot, in my line of work. It’s what I’m here for, folks! 🙂

crocodileOh, those other animals?
Lions & White Sharks come in at 600 lbs pressure (sorry Dobies, not looking good for your story… I’d believe a Rhodesian Ridgeback over you guys).
Hyenas at 1,000 lbs.
Snapping Turtles at 1,000 lbs.
And Crocodiles are 2,500 lbs psi.
That sounds… really painful…

I also decided to look up my birds because those guys HURT. All I could find was somewhere between 500-700 pounds of pressure. Not sure how reliable that is, but I know that a Macaw can crush your bone if you piss it off enough…

Moral of the story, folks?

Animals are Friends. And? They can all bite harder than you <3

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