Can a horse bite harder than a Pit Bull?

Did you know that the power behind a horse bite is greater than the majority of dogs? To be a tad more specific, did you know the bite of a horse is more than DOUBLE the power of a Pit Bull’s jaws? Me neither!

I spend my days as a dog trainer working closely with a species of predatory animal. Lately, I am enjoying a wonderful opportunity of working with horses – a beautifully elegant yet very strong PREY animal.  Imagine my surprise when curiously quizzing my colleague at the manege (that’s Dutch for ”riding school”) how hard a horse bite is and they laughed and replied ”one could take your hand off!” Say what???

I enjoyed this rabbit hole of surprise so much and thought you might appreciate chewing over the topic too..

So, first off, how do we measure the power behind a bite? The kPa (kiloPascal) or PSI (pounds per square inch) is a unit of pressure measurement. Basically, the higher the PSI, the ”better” the bite. We humans rank pretty low on the list with under 200 PSI but then again, so does a Malinois. A great white shark has less PSI than a Cane Corso. Yeah, seriously!

Remember, we are talking about pounds per square inch – a great white’s gob is MUCH larger than a Cane Corso’s, so it’s important to remain objective of the size of the animals we are comparing! Just to mention, this is a list of animals and dog breeds that I randomly researched. It is a list formed from but a light Google search. I have NOT personally wrestled a wolf, sacrificed my hand to a horse, been bitten by a bull shark nor have I petted a polar bear…

  • House cat : 70 PSI (think of those tiny needle teeth though…)
  • Humans: under 200 PSI
  • Pit Bull Terrier: 225 PSI
  • Wolves – 406 PSI (when in attack mode, over 1000 PSI)
  • Horse – 500 PSI
  • Great White Shark – 625 PSI
  • Lion – 650 PSI
  • Polar Bear – Over 1200 PSI
  • Grizzly bear: 1160 PSI
  • Gorillas – over 1300 PSI
  • Bull shark – 1300 PSI
  • Jaguar – 1500 PSI
  • Hippo – 1820 PSI (holy heck!)
  • Nile Crocodile: 4000  – 5000 PSI (wtf, never smile at a crocodile!)

Because we are dog people, I took the liberty of comparing a few dog breeds listed lowest PSI to highest PSI. You’ll find a longer list of comparisons below the infographic:

  • Chihuahua – >100 PSI
  • Dachshund/ Yorkshire Terrier/ Jack Russel Terrier – 100 – 200 PSI
  • Golden Retriever – 190 PSI
  • Malinois  -195 PSI (I’m just as shocked as you are when comparing the other breeds.)
  • Shiba Inu – 200 – 400 PSI
  • French Bulldog – 210 PSI
  • Labrador – 230 PSI
  • Pitbull Terrier – 235 PSI
  • German Shepherd – 238 PSI
  • Collie – 245 PSI
  • Leonburger- 399 PSI
  • Dougue De Bordeaux – 556 PSI
  • Cane Corso – 700 PSI
  • Kangal (Anatolian Shepherd) – 743 PSI

Thanks for reading and share your own surprising species comparisons! 😉


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