Fatal Dog Attack Statistics
DogsBite.org recorded 28 fatal dog attacks in 2005.1 Citations of each victim's story are located on the Fatality Citations page. The last year the CDC recorded human deaths by dog breeds was 1998. Likely due to pressures from animal advocacy groups, the CDC stopped further research into this area. Since 1998, pit bulls alone have killed 72 U.S. citizens. The only other known entity, in addition to DogsBite.org, that tracks this vital data publicly is Animal People.2
2005 Dog Bite Fatalities
- 28 U.S. fatal dog attacks occurred in 2005. Pit bull type dogs were responsible for 57%. Pit bulls make up approximately 5% of the U.S. dog population.
- The combination of pit bulls (16) and rottweilers (5) accounted for 75% of all fatal attacks.
- 46% of the attacks occurred to children (11 years and under) and 46% occurred to adults (21 years and older)3. Of the adults, 85% occurred to ages 55 and older.
- 57% of fatal attacks in 2005 involved multiple dogs; 7% involved chained dogs.
- 64% of the attacks occurred on owner property and 36% off owner property. Of the off-property attacks, 90% (9) involved pit bulls.
- 61% of the victims were female; 39% of the victims were male. Of the female victims, over half (9) were 11 years and under.
- The state of California had the most fatalities (4), followed by the states of Georgia, Michigan, Texas and Virginia each suffering 3 three.
2Dog attack deaths and maimings, U.S. & Canada, by Merritt Clifton, Animal People.
3Two victims fell within the 12 to 20 age group, ages 12 and 14.
04/22/09: Report: U.S. Dog Bite Fatalities January 2006 to December 2008
12/11/08: Who Authored the CDC Fatal Dog Attack Report (1979 to 1998)?