A Dog's Breed Doesn't Determine its Behavior, such as Aggressiveness

May 10, 2022

Current assumptions are challenged by a new study suggesting that the breed does not determine if the dogs are more affectionate, aggressive or obedient.

"A genetic study involving more than 2,000 dogs, paired with 200,000 answers from dog owners on related surveys, suggests that breed alone is a poor predictor of behavior.

The findings, published in the April 29 issue of Science, challenge current assumptions surrounding dog breed stereotypes — notions used to explain why some breeds are more aggressive, obedient, or affectionate than others.

According to the findings, breed explains less than 10% of the behavioral variation in individual dogs; for certain behavioral traits and survey items, age or dog sex were the best predictors of behavior. Investigators failed to find behaviors that were exclusive to any one breed."

A Dog's Breed Doesn't Determine its Behavior | American Association for the Advancement of Science (aaas.org) 

by: Walter Beckwith