It is often difficult, when we look at our canine companions, to even imagine their physical capabilities. Apart from attempting to pull your arm out of your shoulder every time they tug on the leash, we cannot really see the power that they pack.
In fact, there are some pretty strong dogs out there, and some breeds have been bred with strength in mind.
From wrangling cattle to fighting bears, from bringing down raging bulls to chasing away entire packs of wolves, dogs have done it and have been doing it for a long time now.
Even though we have evolved and most of the old days are behind us, we count down the top 10 strongest dog breeds in the world and take a look at how they have evolved and how their heritage has been maintained.
Of course if you’re interested in learning about other strong breeds, we recommend you a pleasant lecture: The Dog Encyclopedia. You’ll learn quite a lot about various breeds all over the world.
When looking at the strongest dog breeds we excluded extinct dog breeds and chose to dismiss Guinness world record holding dogs as being an exceptional individual of his or her breed and not a clear cut representative of that breed.
We have also chosen to look for the dog breeds that manifest the biggest power / weight ratio and no simply stop at the breeds that rely on their body weight alone to give the illusion of strength.
That being said, let’s have a look at the dog breeds that stand out as being the stronger ones.
This one came as no surprise to anyone, and is by far the most deserving of all the dog breeds in this countdown.
The Husky was bred for one thing and one thing only, pulling a sled. These dogs, even though they are not the biggest or the meanest on the block, they are by far some of the strongest.
With strong broad shoulders to push into the harness and muscular hind legs to power them forward, these medium sized dogs have been treading the frozen tundra with their masters, pulling sleds and carrying supplies, as well as people, over great distances, through impossible terrain, while braving some of the harshest weather conditions known to man.
One of the biggest assets in this dog’s bag of tricks is its ungodly endurance level. Indeed a husky will never relent and he or she will power through anything and everything in order to reach the destination.
The husky remains a popular sled dog to this day, being one of the most versatile, nimble and powerful traction dogs of them all.
This one is by far the most famous and easily recognizable dog in the world, and it is easy to see why.
This dog is beautiful, majestic, with a royal feel, and at the same time intimidating, fierce and not exactly what you want to see running towards you at full speed.
But it does not stop here, because the military, anti-terrorist organizations, security agents, law enforcement from around the world, all prefer the German shepherd for a few good reasons, and above all is its strength.
Indeed the German shepherd is a really strong dog, and if trained properly, this dog will be able to take down a large human being in just a few seconds.
Another asset that the German shepherd possesses is a remarkable level of intelligence, and make no mistake about it, this dog knows how to use his strength, exploit weakness, and tell the difference between right and wrong.
The German Shepherd has been used throughout time as not only a guard dog, but also a search and rescue dog, a law enforcement officer, a military asset and even as a secret agent, and people still prefer the German shepherd for these jobs today.
Now, if you want to keep such a dog as a pet, it’s of paramount importance to offer him the correct level of activity and a place of its own in the house. For such a large dog you will need a durable crate that is tear resistant and a high-quality dog bed. Also, think of the fact that large breeds tend to have hip problems in the old age so you wouldn’t want him lying on the hard floor.
To learn more about what this breed has to offer, be sure to check out this article on the German Shepherd.
It’s easy to dismiss this breed by simply looking at it, with no prior knowledge. Short, stubby, makes weird noises, waddles around and generally reminds us of a couch potato.
That being said, have you ever wondered why it’s called a bulldog? Because these dogs were bred to take down bulls. This is also the reason why all the aggressive and dangerous dog breeds were created using bulldogs.
This dog breed is man made in huge proportions, and it was almost driven extinct when dog fighting was outlawed in England.
Luckily for bulldogs, people really love this breed and a handful of bulldog enthusiasts have saved the breed from extinction.
Even today, a properly bred, fed and trained bulldog will do wonders when it comes to strength and pure power.
It is not the tallest dog by any stretch of the imagination, and its short legs take swimming and excessive speeds out of the question, but a compact body, jam-packed with pure muscle from head to toe, a stubborn will and the desire to put those muscles to use, make this one of the strongest dogs out there.
Before you consider making this breed a part of your family, however, you should definitely check out this great article on the English Bulldog so that you can prepare properly.
Speaking of bulldog heritage, in comes the Pit Bull at 7, fear incarnate for those out there who have a true phobia for dogs. It’s easy to see why this breed made it on our list, however it’s more than safe to say that all the bad rep that these neat dogs have been getting is a bit exaggerated.
Pit Bulls have been bred for fighting, nothing else. They are built to a T for fighting, and every single ounce of effort has gone into making this dog the perfect fighter.
The Pit Bull is nimble, agile, fast and above all strong. His entire body, just like a bulldog, is covered in dense powerful muscle.
This dog/s body manages to exert so much power, that a pit bull jumping full power on your chest is the closest you can get to being hit with a cannonball and surviving.
These dogs are so strong that there are actually competitions in which pit bulls pull weights. The current record is the weight of a small sedan which was pulled by a single pit bull over a distance of 12 feet.
Sadly the breed is one of the most misunderstood in the world and many people fear this cute, cuddly dog. If you want to extend your knowledge on the breed, we recommend the Encyclopedia for Dog Breeds, a fantastic book for dog lovers and beginner owners alike.
It’s worth mentioning that pit bulls are not bad dogs. They are loyal, playful and gentle dogs. The only way in which you can turn a pit bull into a psychotically violent dog is if you train him to become that.
Even so, pit bulls are the dogs with the highest reform rate in the world, and even pit bulls that have been abused and used in fights for 10 years have been successfully reformed.
This is not a famous breed, it is not a Hollywood poster dog, it is not a super soldier, nor a killer in the ring. What Dogo Argentino actually is, is a hunter.
That’s right! This is actually a hunting dog, bred in Argentina for the purpose of hunting medium sized game, like hogs.
This dog’s body has a very muscular appearance, and for good reason. Dogo Argentino was bred from the Cordoba Fighting dog, a dog that was notorious for his love to fight tot the death, an incredibly high pain tolerance and pure viciousness.
Dogo Argentino inherited the power, the endurance and the high pain threshold, resulting in a dog that is strong enough to fight wild boar, enduring enough to not give up, and at the same time loyal enough to always stay by his master no matter what.
We all know that big black dog with a never ending jaw line and a temper problem, the Rottweiler. Rottweiler’s have been a staple for ranchers, cattle herders and people that generally handle large animals.
This is due to the fact that a Rottweiler is the kind of dog strong enough to herd an entire herd of cows and maneuver them around without a hitch.
With powerful shoulder, chest and leg muscles, this dog can easily out power most living things that could come his way. Rottweiler’s were used in the past to guard ranches, heard livestock and even pull small wagons around to transport supplies.
When owners were no longer legally allowed to use dogs to haul supplies, a lot of Rottweiler’s became house pets, and people discovered that they had a temper problem.
That being said, if you plan to own a Rottweiler, you should remember to start training when he is just a pup and never stop, and always keep your leash arm worked up, they will dislocate your shoulder in a heartbeat if they shoot off with all their force suddenly.
This dog is amazing, and was really close to getting the number 1 spot on our list; however it was not quite strong enough.
The St. Bernard is by origin a Swiss dog, and it was used by Swiss authorities in the past to basically hunt down lost tourists and guide them back to safety.
For reference, they used to have a small keg containing an alcoholic beverage around their necks in order to help the poor tourist get warmer and survive the harsh environment, however with the recent advances in technology the St. Bernard’s services were no longer required and so they serve as pets now.
There have been a lot of stories in the past of St. Bernard’s that were strong enough to dig through the snow until they reached either the ankles or the collar of tourists that were trapped under the snow as a result of an avalanche, grab said ankles or collar and simply pull them out of the snow using nothing but their strength.
Even today this 4 legged guardian angel saves lives, and there are still tales being told of their courageous and selfless efforts. These are in fact very big and very strong dogs however there is one thing that lets them down, they are prone to a lot of shoulder problems in their old age, and can lose their strength rather rapidly.
All dogs are nice, all dogs are beautiful, and we’ve just counted down 9 of the strongest, however we have reached the champion, the strongest of them all. There is only one breed that can take this spot, the Kangal.
This is no ordinary dog, this in fact one of the oldest breed around, and can be traced to times predating the original Mastiffs. Indeed the Kangal has been on this earth for longer than we can remember, and it has served man by helping him with livestock.
Make no mistake about it, this is not a herder, this is not a sheep dog, this is not a cattle wrangler, this is a guard dog, the biggest and most powerful guard dog in the world. Standing on all 4 legs, the top of a Kangal’s head reaches just above the elbow of an average man standing upright next to the dog.
This dog is not all fat and body weight, this dog actually packs a lot of power, and the average man has next to no chance stopping a Kangal on a leash by simply pulling.
Indeed this dog will overpower humans with ease, so you might end up wondering who is actually walking who.
This dog is of Turkish origins however it has spread to Africa and Asia, and there have been a lot of stories, sightings and even videos circulating on the internet with Kangals that took on tigers, lions, packs of wolves, bears, and successfully taking them down without too much trouble.
When it comes to endurance, this dog is the very definition of it. No other dog has managed to achieve the level of endurance of the Kangal.
Combining that endurance with a hefty dose of love and loyalty, you have yourself what can be considered as the perfect dog.
This dog has a very powerful set of protective instincts, and he will literally take a bullet for you and throw himself in harm’s way just so that you can walk away without a scratch, without the slightest hesitation.
This dog also has a very high threshold for pain, being able to endure a lot of physical punishment while fighting large and potentially dangerous animals.
We have chosen the Kangal as the strongest dog because of the ancestry, the performances that the Kangal displays and the general development of the breed itself.
That being said this is our list of the world’s strongest 10 dog breeds, with brief information and a bit of insight into every single one of the aforementioned breeds. If you choose one of these breeds as a pet, remember that these dogs are a little more pretentious and a bit more demanding than your standard dogs.
Now, to lighten the mood a bit! These dogs are indeed strong and they can be dangerous if not raised properly. However, when trained and raised in a loving family they prove their loving nature, big heart, and witty personality.
So, if you’re looking to have a bit of fun or you want a Halloween partner that will guard you against evil and score you the most candy in the group, you should take a quick look at costumes for dogs.
For instance, one of the greatest costumes for a big dog is a lion wig – it won’t bother Fido and you’ll get to have the time of your life with your best pal.