Dog bites are a serious problem in Oklahoma, with far too many residents suffering serious injuries every year. While there are no concrete statistics for the number of dog bites in Oklahoma, nationwide data from the U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention shows that more than 4.7 million people are bitten by dogs annually.
If your family is considering getting a dog, you may be concerned about this problem and wondering which breeds are least likely to bite. While most dog bites happen because of bad behavior by dog owners rather than the dog’s breeding, some dog breeds have been recognized by dog breeders and trainers as especially easygoing, friendly, and unlikely to bite.
In this article, we’ll discuss those breeds, and we’ll also briefly discuss how Oklahoma law handles dog bites.
The Safest Dog Breeds Include Labrador Retrievers and Beagles
According to the American Kennel Club, the dog breeds listed below are the 10 least-aggressive breeds that make the best companions for families and children.
- Labrador Retriever: The current most popular breed in the U.S. according to the American Kennel Club, Labrador retrievers are friendly, playful, and intelligent. They also excel as guide dogs for the blind.
- Golden Retriever: Not far behind Labrador retrievers in popularity, golden retrievers are strong, hard workers who may serve as search-and-rescue dogs. However, they also have a playful, outgoing nature and make wonderful family pets.
- Collie: Strong, graceful, and intelligent, collies have a near-legendary status as the ideal herding dog. As pets, they need lots of attention, but they generally reward their owners with incredible loyalty and devotion.
- Bulldog: While they have a popular image as aggressive and dominant dogs, bulldogs are often lovable, gentle, and a bit lazy. They generally remain very calm around children and other dogs, and they love to soak up affection from humans.
- French Bulldog: Playful and easygoing, French bulldogs don’t require much exercise or grooming, so they make for low-maintenance pets. They can be slightly challenging to train due to their stubbornness, but their intelligence and eagerness to please will usually end up shining through for patient owners.
- Pug: Pugs are well-known for their relaxed, even-keeled dispositions. Although they often have a stubborn streak, they take well to training and make for low-key, agreeable family pets.
- Beagle: Since they were originally bred as pack dogs, beagles excel at socializing with other dogs. This outgoing nature carries over to their relationships with humans, and they’re among the most good-natured and friendly dog breeds around. However, they do require lots of exercise and sometimes have more energy than owners are initially prepared for.
- Irish Setter: Originally bred as hard-working and dedicated hunting dogs, Irish setters are athletic dogs who need plenty of activity and attention. However, as long as they have an outlet for their energy, these happy-go-lucky dogs make for crowd-pleasing companions who seem to get along with anyone and everyone.
- Newfoundland: Newfoundlands, or “Newfs,” as lovers of this breed affectionately call them, are big, strong dogs who love to swim. In fact, the Italian Coast Guard regularly uses them as aquatic rescue-and-retrieval dogs. At home, Newfoundlands are sweet and devoted pets who excel at obedience training.
- Brussels Griffon: Intensely curious, Brussels griffons may require more supervision than other dogs on this list due to their occasionally mischievous nature. Other than that, they’re cheerful, smart, and relaxed companions who make excellent watchdogs as well.
Breeding Isn’t Everything: Bad Dogs Usually Come From Bad Owners
Of course, there are many dogs whose breeds are typically considered “aggressive” — pit bulls, mastiffs, Rottweilers — that serve as loving, gentle pets for their whole lives without ever so much as nipping at a human. And there have been cases where even the smallest, least menacing dog breeds, like Chihuahuas and Pomeranians, have bitten people and caused serious harm or even death.
That’s because the most important factor that causes a dog to bite someone isn’t their breeding. Most serious dog bites happen because of irresponsible, callous, or dangerous behavior from the dog’s owners.
In general, under Oklahoma law, if you or your child suffers a dog bite, the dog’s owner is fully liable for your injuries as long as you had a right to be in the setting where the dog bite occurred (in other words, as long as you weren’t trespassing onto private property or assaulting the dog’s owner). Under the law, dog bite victims can receive compensation for damages that include scars and disfigurement, loss of earnings, medical expenses, and pain and suffering.
If you or a loved one has been injured by a dog bite because of a dog owner’s negligence, you should contact an experienced Oklahoma dog bite attorney right away. An attorney may be able to hold the negligent dog owners responsible and help get you the compensation you deserve.
Contact Atkins & Markoff if You’ve Suffered a Dog Bite Injury in Oklahoma
A dog attack can be a terrifying and traumatic experience, and the aftermath can leave you with lots of questions. The experienced dog bite lawyers at Atkins & Markoff have handled cases for many Oklahoma residents who have suffered serious injuries due to dog bites. We’re ready to listen to your story with compassion, and if we’re able to take your case, we’ll fight for you with an aggressive and efficient approach that’s tailored to your unique needs.
If you or a loved one has been attacked by a dog or another animal, please schedule your free initial consultation with an attorney from the Atkins & Markoff team by calling 405-607-8757 or filling out our quick and easy online contact form. We handle all personal injury cases on a “no recovery, no fee” basis, so there’s no risk to speaking with one of our attorneys today.
Best family dogs. (n.d.). American Kennel Club. Retrieved from http://www.akc.org/dog-breeds/best-family-dogs/
Preventing dog bites. (2015, May 18). Centers for Disease Control and Prevention. Retrieved from https://www.cdc.gov/features/dog-bite-prevention/index.html
The content provided here is for informational purposes only and should not be construed as legal advice on any subject.