According to MyGermanSheperd.org:

In the USA alone there are about 78.2 million dogs, and about 4.6% of all AKC registered dogs are German Shepherds. This gives over 3.5 million German Shepherd dogs in the USA alone!

Meanwhile, according to Dog Bite Law:

There are approximately 4.5 million pit bulls in the United States, making up approximately 5.8% of the country's canine population.

which cites

(Merritt Clifton, Breed Survey 2019: More Puppies Yet Fewer Homes for Pit Bulls, https://www.animals24-7.org/2019/07/09/breed-survey-2019-more-puppies-yet-fewer-homes-for-pit-bulls/.)

for their data. That page say more precisely

Among the estimated 78 million dogs in the U.S. as of July 2019, about 5.8%, or about 4.5 million, appear to be pit bulls or pit mixes. This is slightly more than one dog in twenty.

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It surprises me that there are more Pit bulls than German Shepherds.

Note: The term Pit bull is broader in the United States than other countries. Animal Foundation explain:

Today there are at least five breeds of dogs that are commonly misidentified and lumped into the category of the pitbull-type dogs: the English bull terrier, the American bulldog, the boxer, the American pit bull terrier and the American Staffordshire terrier.

Ideally, I am looking for an answer that uses either the United Kennel Club or American Dog Breeder's Association [which is dedicated to the American Pit Bull Terrier] definitions.

I first posted this question at Pets but was recommended to post it here instead.

Update: The reason I ask this question, is that I want to related the numbers in this Wikipedia article https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/List_of_fatal_dog_attacks_in_the_United_States to the total population of each breed.

  • 11
    "4,6 % of all dogs in USA" It doesn't say this. It says 4.6% of dogs registered in the AKC. If we use that same data to count pit bulls, that's 0%, since the AKC doesn't include "pit bull terrier" as a breed.
    – Laurel
    Sep 26, 2022 at 13:06
  • 3
    I'm hardly an expert on dog breeds, but it doesn't seem to be suitable Q here because it involves comparing statistics from different sources which apparently used different definitions of breeds etc. None of your quotes makes a direct comparison between those percentages, so the claim is essentially yours alone, AFAICT. Further, the "Dog Bite Law" middle quote doesn't claim their def of "pit bull" is according to any of the associations you ask data from.
    – Fizz
    Sep 27, 2022 at 12:50
  • 2
    @Fizz: I agree that we should prefer to use the definitions provided/intended by the claimant rather than the OP.
    – Oddthinking
    Sep 27, 2022 at 14:02
  • 3
    I agree with the comments that taking the 4.6% from the registered dogs and applying it to all dogs is unsafe and likely leads to an over-estimate, but that makes the data even more counter-intuitive (to the OP's personal experience) so it doesn't invalidate the question. The fact that the sources of the estimates are different doesn't invalidate the question either. Either both, one, or neither source is correct; let's find out.
    – Oddthinking
    Sep 27, 2022 at 14:05
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    @Fizz: The OP's skepticism is fueled by their personal experience. It may well be massively skewed, but no, we shouldn't rely on our own personal experience. We should use empirical evidence; that's why we are here. I guess I see this as a perfectly on-topic question. Let's answer it.
    – Oddthinking
    Sep 27, 2022 at 14:20


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