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5 Fierce Small Dog Breeds Your Family Must Be Afraid Of


Dr. Mark is a veterinarian. He has been working with dogs for more than 40 years.

Firece dog breeds that you should be afraid of.

Firece dog breeds that you should be afraid of.

This is the ultimate list! These are the five breeds you must be afraid of (editor's note: This is meant to be in good fun!).

5. Maltese

Although this slacker breed likes to bark, at first glance, this cute and hypoallergenic dog seems like a great choice for a pet. However, psychological tests reveal that this dog actually harbors feelings of repressed violence and deep feelings of resentment (because of its size and saccharine cuteness). Those buyers foolish enough to choose one of these dogs to be with their family soon find out what a mistake they have made.

Although not usually violent, the Maltese will turn around in the middle of grooming or a play session and stalk off to be alone. This passive-aggressive behavior means that this is obviously a dog to be afraid of.

A Yorkie pretending to rest while waiting for an unprotected ankle to stroll by.

A Yorkie pretending to rest while waiting for an unprotected ankle to stroll by.

4. Yorkshire Terrier

This breed of dog was bred to be a killer of rats in the sweatshops of Old England and the killer trait still survives. Yorkies are most vicious when facing visitors and will attack and use their ankle-biting techniques to draw blood. Despite (or because of) their ability to hide in a purse, this breed's violence should never be underestimated.

A Pug assuming an attitude!

A Pug assuming an attitude!

3. Pug

Since the introduction of the Men in Black movies, this dog has proliferated and become a threat to vet techs everywhere. The dog looks innocent enough with its smushed-in face and big eyes, but as soon as it is presented for a nail trim, the Pug turns into a bloodthirsty killer. Anatomical limits prevent the dog from being muzzled, and its chubby body means that these round little dogs cannot be restrained like a larger dog. This dog may not have been bred to be dangerous, and may not look like it to the average person, but the Pug is.

A Papillon escaping for a meeting with his alien contact.

A Papillon escaping for a meeting with his alien contact.

2. Papillon

This breed looks innocent enough. It will pounce around the home doing calculus homework or day trading until it's time to kill. We interviewed Jean Blue from Tennessee, a well-known Papillon breeder, and she told us about the pack she keeps in her third-floor walkup. “I started out with these dogs because I heard how smart they were and thought they would be great pets, but they get worse every day. The aliens taught them to pick the locks and now they get out when I am at work. These dogs have been responsible for the polar shift and the weather changes all around the planet.”

You may not be afraid of this dog, but you should be.

These Chihuahua puppies may look innocent, but we know better.

These Chihuahua puppies may look innocent, but we know better.

1. Chihuahua

This breed of dog was originally bred for llama-baiting in the Chihuahua area of Mexico; after that sport was declared illegal, unscrupulous breeders selected these dogs to fight each other. (Or they were bred for meat? Maybe watchdogs? The sources vary on this one.) This breed of dog has now masqueraded as a pet and infiltrated the homes of many unsuspecting families. Although some countries have been wise enough to ban this vicious animal through BSL (breed-specific legislation), in other areas it is still bred and kept as a family dog. The Chihuahua has the most powerful jaws of any known domestic animal, is able to lock its jaws and hold on while shaking its prey to death, and, most frightening of all, has a brain larger than the size of its skull and the pressure drives him into fits of frenzy.

We interviewed a Chihuahua owner (who asked that she be kept anonymous), and she told us of the trials she has faced with a yard full of these dogs. “I got this one male and all he does is lay around and growl at everyone. He ain't got no papers so I can't stud him out, and he only got one ball so he's firing blanks anyway. I wish I never would have got him.” That is a typical story. The breed attracts those buyers looking for a teacup dog that will fit in a purse but soon develops into a ferocious monster.

This is the most vicious breed of dog, one that no family should consider.


Holly on February 20, 2020:

Of course it’s meant to be a joke but I find it to be incredibly true!

Dr Mark (author) from The Atlantic Rain Forest, Brazil on June 19, 2019:

Ron, you may be reading challenged. THis is a satire. Do you understand the concept of satire?

You are a very rude person.

Chuckles on May 01, 2018:

Im trying my darndest to disprove most of these...since my chuck the dog is Maltese,Yorkie, and Pug mix. He is so nice, doesn't bark, deathly afraid for the most part. However, its is true he sometimes walks away after playing awhile (Maltese), will chase a tiny birds (yorkie), and the strenghth of an excited pug. OK...he bit me once hard...but if he does get your finger, he controls the bite so so well....I think I have the perfect dog for us.

the pink umbrella from the darkened forest deep within me. on January 04, 2015:

lol I read this and thought ...this has to b a joke right? because I have a Chihuahua and she is precious. they are actually #1 in affection!!!

Nora on April 11, 2014:

I have a yorkie-maltese mix and I can tell you, she's not just vicious, she's diabolical. She does this thing when you walk in the door where she scrambles around at your feet. She's quite clever--makes it look like she wants a belly rub. In reality she's waiting for you to trip over her. After that, she can lay on your back and pin you down (so you don't do anything too risky, like move).

I'm not fooled. I know a stealth attack when I see one. But my guests...they fall for it every time.

Anyone know where I can find "Beware of Lap Dog" signs for my house?

Anni Takison from california, USA on May 14, 2013:

amazing for me giving valuable info. i just love dogs. they are my best buddies. so love your hub.

Dr Mark (author) from The Atlantic Rain Forest, Brazil on April 20, 2013:

If she is a teacup Chihuahua, I think the major arteries in his neck are safe too! Can you imagine her biting down with enough force to go through a few layers?

Thanks for your comment.

BTW, I just found some "snake boots" for sale on Amazon. I think they were really invented to protect spouses of Chihuahua owners!!!

Patricia Phillips on April 20, 2013:

I have a teacup Chihuahua that I rescued from a high-kill shelter. Although she worships the ground I walk on, she regularly tries to kill my husband. If she could reach his neck, he'd be a dead man. He's just lucky to have no major arteries in his ankles.

Loved the hub. Absolutely spot-on!

Highland Terrier from Dublin, Ireland on April 09, 2013:

How do think this stuff up? I truly enjoyed this hub. Excellent.

Dr Mark (author) from The Atlantic Rain Forest, Brazil on April 06, 2013:

Thanks for commenting on this. Poor Pug!

On the humor issue, you´ll note that I did not write in big letters "THIS IS SATIRE" nor try to classify it as humor. Just like your first humor article, a lot of people do not get it and call me an a**, p*****, and various other things. Needless to say I just deny those comments. My whole point in writing this was "so what?" How much damage can a little flat-face Pug do?

Theophanes Avery from New England on April 06, 2013:

You might be onto something here... I've had 3 of these 5 dog breeds try to bite me at one point or another. The Pug was the funniest. I had him sitting on my lap like a baby trimming his front paws. Ooooh he wasn't happy with that, snapping at me. Sadly I couldn't resist taunting him more, "Really? You're going to try to snag me with that flat face GOOD LUCK!" Everyone was laughing at the poor dear. 'Course the yorkie was funny too. I came in and it was yapping at me so I jokingly looked at it dead in the eye and growled. It was lodged behind a chair barking for the next four hours even though I'd long since gone upstairs. SIGH. They apparently don't have a sense of humor.

Anyway, thanks for the laugh. I couldn't agree more - these dogs should be feared!

Dr Mark (author) from The Atlantic Rain Forest, Brazil on February 17, 2013:

Sounds like a good time to sleep on the couch.

Michelle Dee from Charlotte, NC on February 17, 2013:

When I was a kid we had another family come visit and stay with us for a few days and they brought their chihuahua along (to this day I can't believe my dad agreed to let the creature stay inside the house). That dog decided it liked my pillow on my bed, in my bedroom, and laid in there during the day. I went into my room towards the bed to pet the creature and that dog started growling at me. Hey it's my bed already! I've hated chihuahuas ever since. LOL

Dr Mark (author) from The Atlantic Rain Forest, Brazil on February 14, 2013:

A BC terrorized by a Maltese! What a great story. Kiri sounds like she had a good "fireside story" too with the Chihuahua. Thanks for coming by and sharing that experience.

Barbara Fitzgerald from Georgia on February 14, 2013:

Very funny and very true too! My girl Pixie, a border collie, was traumatized by a loose Maltese. We were walking in the neighborhood when it started chasing us; it wanted to "get busy" with Pixie. She was mortified by the idea, but we could shake him. I flagged down a neighbor passing by in her car, and asked her to catch him and take him to his home before he got run over. She attempted to snare him, but he curled his lips and showed her his snapping teeth. So she said she could not help us. We gave up and went home, but he beat us to the door, and did not want to let us pass. Finally I took a stick to shoo him away, and we were able to rush inside and lock the door.

Years earlier, Pixie's mother, Kiri, was similarly menaced by a Chihuahua.

Dr Mark (author) from The Atlantic Rain Forest, Brazil on February 04, 2013:

Thanks Maralexa, I am glad you enjoyed it. Have you seen that Papillon photo on one of those alien contact TV shows?

Thank you too for following. If you are a fan of the little ones or the big ones I hope to have lots more published in the future.

Marilyn Alexander from Vancouver, Canada on February 04, 2013:

One of the most entertaining hubs I have read. So well written. Soooo funny. I was so shocked by what I was reading about how dangerous these cute little doggies were, that I had to read all the comments to finally accept that it was a satire! I actually thought you were exaggerating to make your point!

"A Papillon escaping for a meeting with his alien contact".

Absolutely beautiful pictures.

Thanks for sharing your knowledge and love for all things dogs! You have a new fan. Voted up and across the board!

trish1048 on January 21, 2013:

Hi DrMark,

I'm guessing then, that it's like children. There are many parents who feel a child cannot learn before the age of three, and that is so not true. I saw it with my own eyes, when my brother-in-law disciplined his two year old daughter. I was in my early twenties when I witnessed that, and thought to myself, who's he kidding? She's much too young to get it. Well, to my total surprise, I saw my niece lean out of her highchair to see where her dad went, and when she realized he was gone, she repeated the behavior, which told me loud and clear, she knew exactly what he meant :)

Dr Mark (author) from The Atlantic Rain Forest, Brazil on January 19, 2013:

That is it exactly, singletons never learn how to play well with others.

The problem with small dogs is even called "Small Dog Syndrome" because it is so common. When a big dog shows aggression as a puppy it is taken seriously and dealt with-when it is a small breed it is usually laughed at and the dogs grow up acting out like Inky. Breed is no excuse for it.

trish1048 on January 19, 2013:

Hi DrMark,

I'm guessing the smaller the dog, the bigger the attitude, to compensate for their small stature. As far as Tucky went, he was the one and only pup born to Inky. He grew to twice the size of his mom, which leads me to believe that his father was not a purebred chihuahua, which may account for his good disposition.

I've never heard that singletons have behavioral problems. Perhaps its because they have a sense of entitlement and never learn to play well with others :)

Dr Mark (author) from The Atlantic Rain Forest, Brazil on January 19, 2013:

Hi trish, I wrote this as satire because of a stupid article I read here on HP about the 8 most vicious dog breeds, but as you noticed with Inky, little dogs are often the most fierce. I am surprised Tucky was so good because singletons often have the most behavioral problems.

trish1048 on January 19, 2013:

Well, I read this hub and thought to myself, he's kidding, right? I would never have imagined that small dogs could be vicious, with one exception. My mom had a chihuahua, which she mated with a neighbor's chihuahua, and the result was one male puppy that we named Tucky. He, unlike his mother, was a very sweet dog. The mother, Inky was her name, would jump up on the couch and lie next to me. I'd put my hand down to pet her and she'd growl and snarl. I don't think she ever bit me but regardless, I grew to hate her nasty disposition.

My son had a pug, and never once was that dog anything but friendly and loving.

In terms of ferocious, my thoughts go to the larger breeds. However, now that I've given this some thought, I suppose any animal can become mean/ferocious/vicious under the right circumstances, or, even have those traits to begin with.

Dr Mark (author) from The Atlantic Rain Forest, Brazil on December 04, 2012:

Hi DS thanks for your kind words. I was amazed at that guys comment on Boxers, but everyone has complained about his stupid comments and he replies "thank you for your comment". It is just not worth wasting your time on him.

DS Duby from United States, Illinois on December 04, 2012:

Great satire! Reading through your comments I noticed your remark to Val about another writer claiming boxers as dangerous, that's just ludicrous. Hyper -yes, attention seeker - yes dangerous - highly unlikely these dogs are lovers through and through when taken care of. Again great hub voted up, awesome and funny! You are a great source for all of us animal lovers DrMark thanks and keep up the great work.

Dr Mark (author) from The Atlantic Rain Forest, Brazil on November 29, 2012:

I just finished reading it. You presented the points well but he will probably just come back with "Thank you for your comment Val Swabb". Another person I have spoken with wrote a sarcastic comment on his hub and he said "thank you for your input." I wonder if he even understands. After reading the misinformation that he regurgitates I am not so sure. Anyway, nice try!

Val Swabb from South Carolina on November 29, 2012:

Well, instead of arguing with him, I typed out a rebuttal; probably wont change him, but maybe it will help to stop some poor unsuspecting soul from freaking out and getting a heart attack!

Dr Mark (author) from The Atlantic Rain Forest, Brazil on November 29, 2012:

Thanks Val. I honestly doubt it will do any good, as he seems unaware of what he is writing.

I would put the link on here for you but then it would be backlinked to my article, which I do not want. The article is usually rated in the "featured hubs" section of dogs and dog breeds.

Val Swabb from South Carolina on November 29, 2012:

I cannot tell you how much time I have spent rebutting people about 'breeds'. I'll try to find that article and give him a piece of my mind!

Dr Mark (author) from The Atlantic Rain Forest, Brazil on November 29, 2012:

If you care about dogs be sure to read that other article. It lists "dangerous" breeds like the Siberian Husky and Boxer. When I complained about it, the author said that he was just a writer and was repeating what he was told!

Val Swabb from South Carolina on November 29, 2012:

I figured it had to be, was just checking, It's a great satire! Course, the same problem goes for those big dogs people are afraid of, if no one trains them, well... It's isn't the dogs fault, that's for sure!

Dr Mark (author) from The Atlantic Rain Forest, Brazil on November 29, 2012:

It is a satire. There is a writer who posted a ridiculous article about the "8 Most Dangerous Dogs That Your Family Must Be Afraid Of" and I was so angry reading it that I wrote this, which I assumed no one would take serious. Chihuahua fighting dogs, locking their jaws, BSL, etc. Papillons communicating with aliens?

Val Swabb from South Carolina on November 29, 2012:

I can't figure out if this is supposed to be a slightly serious warning, or a total joke. I'm assuming Joke, since no 'breed' is inherently bad, It's simply that people don't bother training or exercising small breed dogs...

Dr Mark (author) from The Atlantic Rain Forest, Brazil on October 26, 2012:

Cute though, arent they?

MissDoolittle from Sussex, UK on October 26, 2012:

This was useful, I knew that Chihuahua's were a little tempermental, and if I had a young family I guess they are not ideal. Voted up and interesting.

Dr Mark (author) from The Atlantic Rain Forest, Brazil on October 23, 2012:

Sad! At least all these little guys could do would be to bark, though, none of them are big enough to really do any damage.

Lady Jen Palven from Philippines on October 23, 2012:

yay!they are so cute but scary.I'm really afraid of dogs.I had a bad experience when i was walking and passed by our neighbor who has dogs (but don't know the dog's breed), i was holding a paper bag and suddenly they attacked me and i was crying and shouting but no one helped me, thank God my boyfriend came and he rescued me, and until that i was super scared of dogs that when i see one i froze..:(

Dr Mark (author) from The Atlantic Rain Forest, Brazil on October 23, 2012:

Oh my I hope your kids were not too traumatized!!!!

Dreamjar from Florida on October 23, 2012:

This made me smile and I shared this with my kids. Voted up and funny. Still smiling

Dr Mark (author) from The Atlantic Rain Forest, Brazil on October 22, 2012:

Great comment! Scary little dogs knocking on the porch...boooo.

MJC from UK on October 22, 2012:

I loved your article and now I'm afraid and can't sleep anymore! How can you show us, innocent people, such scary creatures! They even don't need any costumes for Halloween.

By the way, I want them all!

Dr Mark (author) from The Atlantic Rain Forest, Brazil on October 20, 2012:

Thanks, alifeofdesign. You realize of course that the long-tongued Maltese should send you to a corner shivering in fear? No? Oh well, they do try!

Graham Gifford from New Hamphire on October 19, 2012:

The photos you selected to put in your hub are perfect! The completely added to the humor level and I thank you for the chuckle!

Dr Mark (author) from The Atlantic Rain Forest, Brazil on October 19, 2012:

That would be cool! I wonder if they even make spike collars for dogs that tiny?He could be on that new web site, the dogs with shame signs; his would be "used my tongue to lick my owner into a state of submissiveness".

Chen on October 19, 2012:

This was great! Yes, that first photo that little guy looks like someone you don't want to mess with! All he needs is a spike collar. Great job, thanks for the interesting hub.

Dr Mark (author) from The Atlantic Rain Forest, Brazil on October 16, 2012:

Hi Will, I don't think it is shopped, but who can tell nowadays?

Will Apse on October 16, 2012:

I would be worried if I swallowed any of these dogs. Otherwise. I reckon I can face that toe curling cute like a man.

I am still laughing from that Papillion, by the way. Is that shopped?

Gail Louise Stevenson from Mason City on October 15, 2012:

The westie that my mom had died years years ago, he never tried to bite anyone. Some little dogs I saw looked like they'd like to bite, though.

Dr Mark (author) from The Atlantic Rain Forest, Brazil on October 15, 2012:

Hi Gail. You never know! Watch out for your ankles.

Gail Louise Stevenson from Mason City on October 14, 2012:

Very interesting hub! I knew of a chihauhua some people owned and it would always bark visciously. It looked mean. My mom had a westie and it was a really nice dog. It was a male and it was shy.

Dr Mark (author) from The Atlantic Rain Forest, Brazil on September 20, 2012:

Thanks for reading and commenting. I am a Maltese fan, but those big solitude dogs have a lot going for them!

Claudia Smaletz from East Coast on September 20, 2012:

Hmmm, I never had a Maltese or any dog for that matter. Interesting article. I also liked the hub about dogs that are good for people who want to be left alone. I was intrigued by the dog who looks like "a pitbull on steroids". I've never seen a dog with such a wide chest!

Dr Mark (author) from The Atlantic Rain Forest, Brazil on September 15, 2012:

One of the dog forums I participate in has a special section about behavioral issues in Maltese! Freud should have had one of these little dogs!!!!

fosginger on September 15, 2012:

Love it! so right about the maltese, my mother has one of those. Dog drives me nuts!

Rachel Koski Nielsen from from PA, now homesteading in MN on September 05, 2012:

... wow, okay, I get it! Should have trusted my first instinct that you were being humorous ;) But honestly, and no offense intended, I wouldn't own any of the dogs you mentioned - too small!

Dr Mark (author) from The Atlantic Rain Forest, Brazil on September 05, 2012:

Actually I just put that in there as a joke, since I have read several serious comments on HP about Pit Bulls with brains that have outgrown their skulls (from anti-Pit people, of course).

Rachel Koski Nielsen from from PA, now homesteading in MN on September 05, 2012:

Is that really true about the chihuahua brain being too large for the skull?! That's awful! The things we do with selective breeding, my god... Anyway, great hub. I thought it was humorous until I realized you were serious. I wouldn't own any of these dogs either, and I would add the Pomeranian to the list. Voted up :)

Dr Mark (author) from The Atlantic Rain Forest, Brazil on August 10, 2012:

My grandfather had those "teacup" chihuahuas back before the term was invented, and they terrorized me as a toddler. It sounds like you got the better deal!

adawnmorrison from The Midwest on August 10, 2012:

This is hilarious! My aunt and grandmother both owned horrible, child-hating chihuahuas and I swore I would never own one. When we took the kids to the shelter to pick out a companion for our schnauzer, what do you suppose they all fell in love with? Our chihuahua is twice the size of the breed standard (he wouldn't fit in a teapot, let alone a teacup) and loves everybody he comes into contact with. My mom casts suspicions on his "purebred" heritage because he is so unlike any chihuahua we ever encountered.

Dr Mark (author) from The Atlantic Rain Forest, Brazil on August 09, 2012:

I can picture her taking control of the house, DIYweddingplanner, great comment. It sounds like she has that Yorkie barking down to a science!

DIYweddingplanner from South Carolina, USA on August 08, 2012:

I completely get this as the not so proud owner of a Yorkie/Maltese mix. Although she spends a huge amount of her time checking her eyelids for cracks, she has been known to alert the entire household if anyone comes within 100 yards of the house. She also has complete control of a queen size bed every night and woe be unto the innocent sleeper who tries to move her off of their pillow. Fortunately for her, she has made the entire household fall in love with her, despite her not so attractive personality traits like barking incessantly under the dinner table.

DoItForHer on July 18, 2012:

In the dog world sweet-looking is a euphamism for highly dangerous; you provided the perfect example. Thank for enlightening our awareness of these most deadly breeds-

Our ankles thank you, too.

Dr Mark (author) from The Atlantic Rain Forest, Brazil on July 18, 2012:

Even that little Maltese at the top looks dangerous, and he doesn't have a "chasing parked truck" face.

DoItForHer on July 18, 2012:

Anything that looks like it has been chasing parked trucks has got to go.

Dr Mark (author) from The Atlantic Rain Forest, Brazil on July 17, 2012:

And, in all seriousness, can I ask you if you now approve BSL and legal sanctions against all smush-face/pot-bellied breeds?

DoItForHer on July 17, 2012:

A few years ago I was invited to a dinner party. The host owned two pugs. They were awesome little guys, but when the host said to his dogs, "Alrighty, sweetums, let's go Pug-a-luggin!" they turned on me!

My next memory is waking up from a three week long coma in ICU.

But I got the last laugh. Turns out both dogs are mildly allergic to O-negative and had upset tummies the rest of that evening. Those pot-bellied monsters can stick that in their brachiocephalic faces!

Dr Mark (author) from The Atlantic Rain Forest, Brazil on July 16, 2012:

Great stories, just like little kids.

wetnosedogs from Alabama on July 16, 2012:

They are all too cute. In Wisconsin, I cleaned houses and really scared of one small dog. Can't remember breed. Small like a chichauhau, but long hair. The lady who owned her wished she knew of her bad attitude before she ever brought her home. One day the lady was working and i was cleaning her house and one of the dogs nails got caught in the carpet. I wanted to help the dog, but she just tried to get away and got her nail curled in worse in the thread of the carpet. Surprisingly, she didn't yap or bark at me, just wanted to get away and had those big eyes popping out of her head. I suppose over time I could have calmed my nerves down and so would the dog, but I didn't want the dog to hurt herself, so I called the lady where she worked. She came home to rescue her poor dog, and really wasn't mad, but upset with the dog cause of her sassy self. The dog had let the lady know she didn't like the predicament she was in and had to be the lady's fault, right? Just like a sassy kid.

Jaye Denman from Deep South, USA on July 16, 2012:

The photo of the maltese sleeping on a pillowbed with one leg hanging off is simply too, too cute!

My mini Schnauzer barks harshly enough to give an intruder second thoughts, but just tries to "love people to death" when callers are known to her.

Dr Mark (author) from The Atlantic Rain Forest, Brazil on July 16, 2012:

Your boxador and my pit bull mix are safe...for now. Watch out for those Maltese.

sallieannluvslife from Eastern Shore on July 16, 2012:

Thank goodness we have a mixed breed Boxador - she would NEVER make this list!! :) Very interesting hub!

Dr Mark (author) from The Atlantic Rain Forest, Brazil on July 16, 2012:

Hi there! Should have had one of those vicious Westies on here too, don't you think?

Michelle Liew from Singapore on July 16, 2012:

My mum's maltese is a terror like you've said. Bites anyone who passes him! We usually have the muzzle on. Voted up!

Dr Mark (author) from The Atlantic Rain Forest, Brazil on July 16, 2012:

Hey Jaye, even stalking away is pretty scary though! I almost put a Min Schnauzer on here in place of the Papillon (since I know so many) but they are actually big enough to scare some people.

Jaye Denman from Deep South, USA on July 16, 2012:

Funny! Since one of my "grand-dogs" (as opposed to "grandchildren) is a Maltese, I'm already familiar with that breed's tendency to "stalk away" and ignore me. No worry about ferocity, though. This particular Maltese is "all bark, no bite." (I hope.)

Voted Up and Funny.

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