Dogs and insurance have been at odds for years and, because of some extremely bad claims situations, some carriers maintain lists of restricted breeds—breeds the carriers would not place homeowners' coverage on due to perceived aggressive tendencies.
Because any dog can bite and cause injury, though, most state legislation focuses on a definition of what makes a dog dangerous and statutory provisions for how that dog is to be maintained. By defining certain actions as dangerous or vicious, states have made it possible for any dog to be listed as dangerous purely because of its behavior, and not because of its breed. This allows a sweet Doberman some leeway and puts the blame where it belongs: on the specific actions of a dog.
Despite howls from many owners of this dog breed, the CDC says Rottweilers ranked second in dog bite-related fatalities with 39 deaths from 1979-1988. When combined, Rottweiler and Pitbull breeds were involved in approximately 60 percent of human deaths in the CDC's study.
#3 German Shepherd
German Shepherds may be targeted for "banning" in certain areas, or refused coverage on some homeowners' insurance policies because of their tendency to become territorial and protective, which can result in aggressive behavior. The CDC says German Shepherds were involved in 17 dog bite-related fatalities from 1979-1988.
Most temperament descriptions of Husky-type breeds include such words as "outgoing" and "friendly." However, this breed was responsible for 15 dog bite-related fatalities from 1979-1988, ranking it fourth on the CDC's list.
Although similar looking to husky-type dog breeds, the Malamute is its own unique breed. Despite their distinctive appearance, this breed is not "part wolf." However, the CDC notes that the breed was still involved in 12 dog bite-related fatalities from 1979-1988, ranking it fifth on the CDC's list.
Doberman Pinschers were once common as guard and police dogs, and thus have a reputation of being intimidating and aggressive, especially towards strangers. In the CDC's study, this breed was involved in nine dog bite-related fatalities from 1979-1988, ranking it sixth on the CDC's list.
#7 Chow Chow
According to one pet site, Chows are known as an aggressive breed, fiercely protective of their people and property and should only be adopted by experienced dog owners who have the time and energy to devote to proper training and socialization. This temperament is reflected in the CDC's data, which ranks it seventh in dog bite-related fatalities from 1979-1988 with eight.