Buff Dogs: 21 Biggest & Muscular Dog Breeds In The World

Biggest & Muscular Dog Breeds

Dogs come in different shapes and sizes; whether tall, short, muscular, or lean, they remain a man’s best friend. However, some dog breeds are more athletic, and for some reason, some dog owners prefer these kinds of breeds.

Usually, muscular dog breeds are preferred for scaring away intruders and strangers; in other cases, their personalities draw people to them. Muscular dogs are not necessarily vicious and ruthless, except they are trained to be, but then with them, you have a friend and a guardian angel.

Their strength and athleticism are highly distinctive and spectacular; this is no wonder why people use them for sports or strength training competitions. The vitality and agility of buff dogs are second to none.

So if you are researching the giant and most muscular dog breeds based on your likeness for big dogs, you should probably consider surroundings, feeding, family, and lifestyle, as these will determine if the dog will get a perfect home.

Getting a dog solely based on its physical appearance may seem unfair; you must love everything about the dog to have a great bond with it.

If you are interested in discovering the world’s 21 biggest and most muscular dog breeds, you are definitely in the right place.

21 Biggest & Most Muscular Dog Breeds In The World

Every dog in their different sizes and forms is very eccentric, and each dog breed has unique behavioral traits and other things that may excite or scare them off, and we love them all the same. But we will gladly introduce all 21 of them to you when it comes to buff dogs. Let’s dig right into it.

Dog BreedFun Fact
RottweilerOften confused with Pit Bulls, American Staffordshire Terriers are muscular and intelligent dogs. They are known for their loyalty and are usually trained as police dogs due to their strength and intelligence.
BoxerThe Boxer was originally bred to be a hunting dog. They are known for their muscular build, energy, and their tendency to use their front paws in a way that resembles a boxer throwing punches.
American Staffordshire TerrierOften confused with Pit Bulls, American Staffordshire Terriers are muscular and intelligent dogs. They are known for their loyalty and are often trained as police dogs due to their strength and intelligence.
BullmastiffBullmastiffs are powerful dogs, originally bred to guard estates. Despite their intimidating physique, they are known for being gentle and great with families.
Doberman PinscherDobermans are muscular and fast, with a proud stance. They are one of the top breeds for working as police or military dogs due to their strength and intelligence.
Alaskan MalamuteAlaskan Malamutes were bred for strength and endurance to haul heavy freight as sled dogs. They are one of the most unyieldingly strong dog breeds.
Saint BernardThough they are gentle giants, Saint Bernards are incredibly strong. They were originally used for rescue in the Swiss Alps, capable of moving through deep snow and carrying heavy loads.
Belgian MalinoisOften confused with the German Shepherd, the Belgian Malinois has a lean and muscular body. They are favored by police and military for their strength, intelligence, and trainability.
Rhodesian RidgebackOriginally bred for hunting lions in Africa, Rhodesian Ridgebacks are athletic and muscular dogs known for the unique ridge of hair growing in the opposite direction along their back.
Dogo ArgentinoBred in Argentina for hunting big game like boar and puma, these dogs are incredibly powerful. Despite their muscular physique, they are also known for their gentle nature regarding their human families.
Staffordshire Bull TerrierDespite their muscular build and powerful jaws, Staffordshire Bull Terriers are known to be excellent with children and are sometimes called “nanny dogs”.
AkitaThis breed from Japan possesses a strong, powerful build. Akitas are known for their loyalty, and in Japan are regarded as symbols of good health, happiness, and long life.
American BulldogAmerican Bulldogs are strong, muscular dogs originally used for farm work. They are known for their courage, strength, and heart.
German ShepherdGerman Shepherds have a well-muscled body and are incredibly versatile. They are used in a variety of roles, including police, guide, and search-and-rescue work.
English BulldogDespite their stout and muscular body, English Bulldogs are generally docile and friendly, and they have a surprising history as bull baiting dogs in the past.
MastiffOne of the heaviest breeds, Mastiffs are powerfully built. Despite their size, they are known for their gentle and calm demeanor.
Bernese Mountain DogOriginally used for pulling carts in Switzerland, Bernese Mountain Dogs have strong, muscular builds. They are also known for their good-natured and friendly temperament.
NewfoundlandNewfoundland dogs were originally bred as working dogs for fishermen in Newfoundland. They are powerful swimmers, and their muscular build allows them to rescue even a fully grown human from drowning.

1. Greyhounds

Breed Profile

HeightMale (72-76cm), Female (69-70cm)
WeightMale (28-40kg), Female (25-35kg)
Lifespan12-15 years

Greyhounds are massive, tall dogs with well-toned muscles. They are great options for pets or companions, as they are well-mannered and very protective. Besides being muscular, greyhounds have great personalities; they are brilliant, brave, affectionate, and gentle if necessary.

Typically, greyhounds were bred as hunting dogs back in the day; over time, they evolved to become race dogs as their height, and long legs enabled them to run fast.

Presently, greyhounds have become family members in many homes across the United States, as people take so much pleasure in having them in their homes.

Greyhounds are easily loveable pets; the fun fact is they love sleeping by the side of their owners, mostly on their backs and all fours in the air.

2. American Alsatian

American Alsatian
Image: Animalso

Breed Profile

Height Adult Males (63.5 – 71 cm), Adult Females (61 – 68.5 cm)
WeightAdult Males (36 – 55 kg), Adult Females (34 – 45 kg)
Life Expectancy12-14 years

American alsatians are friendly and easygoing dogs; despite their intimidating size, they are very calm and friendly. They are total to the core of family members and friends and are playful to an extent when stimulated or encouraged.

Asides from being friendly, American alsatians are brilliant and very watchful dogs. They listen to even the softest commands and obey them. They love to exercise but not as much as some other dogs; they love to go on slow and short walks to the park.

Unlike some other larger dogs, American alsatians can live in small apartments, but their environment ought to be cool, and the AC should always be on because their coats are very thick and have a low tolerance to heat.

3. Cane Corso

Cane Corso
Source: Topmoretta//Wikimedia Comms

Breed Profile

Height23.5-27.5 inches
Life Expectancy9-12 years

One thing these buff dog breeds are known for is their intelligence; they are very independent dogs and can be left home alone.

Cane Corso is distinctive with its broad chest, big head, and wrinkly skull. They are very active, playful, calm, adorable, and good around kids and other pets they are familiar with.

It is straightforward to teach them commands as they are smart; it essential to note that this breed love is exercising and carrying out activities. A fenced backyard will be a plus when you own a Cane, Corso. However, you can also walk them through helping burn out energy.

4. Dogo Argentino

Dogo Argentino
Source: Paul Hermans // Wikimedia Commons

Breed Profile

Size Large
Height 24 – 27 inches (61 – 69 cm)
Weight80 – 100 pounds (36 – 45 kg)
Life spanAn average of 10-12 years

Dogo Argentino breeds are courageous and intelligent guardian dogs. Originally they were used for sport and hunting before people began taking them in as pets. This breed is very protective and loyal. They are always alert to scare away any form of danger.

Also known as Argentine Dogo or Argentinian Mastiff, these dogs are massive, muscular, and strong. Their bite is mighty and can cut deep. However, the aggressiveness of this breed depends on how they are being trained.

If there are no attempts to socialize them, then they might turn out to be very unfriendly. How social this breed becomes is solely dependent on the owner. To train Dogo Argentino breeds, you must be very confident and consistent and put out rules that the dog should follow. Obedience training is very much required for this breed.

5. Doberman Pinscher

Doberman Pinscher
Source: John Adams // Wikimedia Commons

Breed Profile

HeightMale(26-28 inches), Female (24-26 inches)
Weight30-40 kg
Life ExpectancyAbout 10-12 years

Doberman pinschers are very adorable dogs. Despite their size, they can be super friendly and people-oriented. They are also very protective and loyal dogs that love to always stay around their owners.

This breed is also brilliant and can quickly learn even the softest commands; they can easily bond with the entire family but remain closer to just one person. Doberman pinschers love to be active, which means a lot of exercise and walks.

Taking them out for a stroll is essential, or they can become pretty irritated, leading to aggression. Dobermans are natural guard dogs, and their first instinct is to protect, which is why they are mainly used as rescue, military, and therapy dogs.

6. English Bulldogs

English Bulldogs
Source: Ultimoribelle // Wikimedia Commons

Breed Profile

Height Males 17 inches, Females 16 inches
WeightMale 54 lbs, Female 50lbs
Life SpanAverage of 8-10 years

English bulldogs are very distinctive with their short faces, thick necks, and heavy wrinkles. This breed has broad shoulders and a low-slung body. They are very friendly, social, and adorable dogs despite their appearance.

They socialize well with kids and other pets, interacting gently and calmly with familiar faces. These fine watchdogs have very loud breathing, and they snore a lot as well. Their endurance level is pretty low and does not require so much exercise.

7. American Staffordshire Terrier

American Staffordshire Terrier
Source: Andy15568 // Wikimedia Commons

Breed Profile

Weight 57 – 67 pounds (25 – 30 kg)
HeightMales 17 – 19 inches, Females 16 – 18 inches
Life Expectancy10-15 years

American Staffordshire terriers may look vicious, but they are very social, happy, and easy-going dogs.

They are good companions and family pets as they do well around kids and would protect rather than hurt them. This breed is a very loyal and trustworthy dog; they fight off any possible threats around their owner.

8. Rottweiler


Breed Profile

HeightMales – 61 to 69cm, Females – 56 to 63.5cm
Weight 43 to 59 kg, Females – 38 to 52 kg
Life Span8-10 years

Rottweilers are pretty popular dogs, and they are people-oriented, brave, confident, and intelligent. Their first instinct is to guard what they love, including their owners. Rottweiller may need a proper introduction to unfamiliar faces before they learn to trust them.

Naturally, rottweilers may be aggressive, but if trained from a tender age to be calm, friendly, and outgoing, they would learn and adjust.

9. Boxer

Source: Mood210 // Wiki Commons

Breed Profile

HeightMales 22 – 25 inches (56 – 63 cm), Females 21 – 24 inches (53 – 61 cm)
WeightMales 60 – 70 pounds (27 – 32 kg), Females 53 – 65 pounds (24 – 29 kg)
Life Span10-14 years

Boxers are excellent guard dogs with suitable use in police work and the military. Boxers can be very playful, active, intelligent, and curious to learn. They are very good with children and will protect a loved one at all costs.

This adorable breed is very obedient and has no problem getting along with new faces as long as they have been introduced to them. Asides from being great with kids, they also get along well with other dogs and pets.

10. German Shepherd

German Shepherd
Source: Hans Kemperman

Breed Profile

HeightMale: 24-26 inches, Female: 22-24 inches
WeightMale: 65-90 lbs, Female: 50-70 lbs
Lifespan12-14 years

These super friendly breeds are very welcoming, only too familiar faces, and fearless.

They are naturally born protectors, as they do anything to scare away or fight off any threats. For a german shepherd to be well-behaved and friendly, they must be introduced to early interactions with people.

German shepherds are very vocal, and they bark a lot, some times they bark out of boredom and other times because they sense a threat close by. This breed will need a lot of training to help curb how frequently they bark.

11. American Bully

American Bully

Breed Profile

Height33–50 cm (13–20 in)
Weight20–60 kg (44–132 lb)
Life Expectancy8-14 years

American bullies are very great companions as they are very obedient and only want to appease their owners. These muscular dogs are very confident, calm, playful, and gentle towards other people or members of the family.

However, they can be very aggressive and will need a lot of socializing to be able to curb their aggressiveness. Teaching them new things can be pretty easy as they are brilliant and do not hide their eagerness to learn.

12. Kangal Shepherd

Kangal Shepherd

Breed Profile

HeightMales (77 – 86 cm), Females (72 – 77 cm)
WeightMales (50 – 66 kg), Females (41 – 54 kg)
Life Expectancy12-15 years

Kangal shepherds are solid and powerful dogs; they can be pretty aggressive to invaders and are not to be joked with if not trained to be friendly. Kegal shepherds are hardly the indoor breed; they are mostly stock guardian dogs.

They help keep all farm animals in check and see that they do not go astray. This breed is very active, defensive, and territorial. They might seem a bit withdrawn from strangers but are loving and loyal to their owners.

13. Rhodesian Ridgeback

Rhodesian Ridgeback

Breed Profile

HeightMale (63–69 cm), Female (61–66 cm)
Weight Male (36–41 kg), Female (29–34 kg)
Life Expectancy10 – 12 years

Rhodesian ridgeback breeds are muscular dogs that are quiet, gentle, and very temperamental. These dogs hardly bark, and they are also very intelligent breeds.

They are super friendly and do not always mind being in the company of other dogs and pets. This doesn’t mean they are not territorial and protective when they feel the urge to be.

14. Carpathian Shepherd

Carpathian Shepherd

Breed Profile

HeightMales 25 – 29 inches (65 – 73 cm), Females 23 – 26 inches (59 – 67 cm)
Weight 32 – 45 kg 
Life Span12 – 14 years

This breed is a watchdog for flock or farm animals. They prefer to stay outdoors to keep watchful eyes on the animals. This breed does a very excellent job at serving their master loyally.

Carpathian shepherds are not meant to be indoors because of how furry they are; they need to stay outdoors, where they have a lot of access to a cool breeze.

15. Saint Bernard

Saint Bernard

Breed Profile

HeightMale 70 – 90 cm, Female 65 – 80 cm
WeightMale 64 – 82 kg, Female 54 – 64 kg
Life Span8-10 years

Saint bernard breeds are well-mannered and good-natured dogs. They are perfect pets for the family. This breed is excellent with kids and is quite adorable with people.

Saint bernard dogs also do well in weight-pulling competitions, show rings, drafting, and obedience trials.

16. Siberian Husky

Siberian Husky
Height  Male: 53–60 cm, Female: 51–56 cm
WeightMale: 20–27 kg, Female: 16–23 kg
Life Expectancy12 – 15 years

Siberian Huskies are intelligent, outgoing, loving, friendly, and loyal dog pals.

These dogs are beautiful, and their color range from a mixture of black and white, or pure white. They love to be in the company of humans and would require a lot of exercises as they love running free.

17. American Pit Bull Terrier

American Pit Bull Terrier

Breed Profile

HeightMale (45 – 53 cm), Female (43 – 50 cm)
Weight Male (16 – 27 kg), Female (14 – 23 kg)
Life Span8 – 15 years

American pit bull terriers are shorthaired breeds that can be stubborn, affectionate, friendly, intelligent, and funny. Despite their appearance, this breed is quite gentle, calm, and obedient.

They usually feel easily threatened by other animals, and this is why they are most times misunderstood as being extremely aggressive. With good training, this breed can be more social and welcoming.

18. Bandog

Breed Profile

HeightMale: 51–76 cm, Female: 51–76 cm
WeightMale: 45–57 kg, Female: 39–48 kg
Life Span8-10 years

Bandog breeds can be very mean dogs. They are mainly used as hunting dogs, thriving in searching, fighting, and protecting lives and properties.

19. Alaskan Malamute

Alaskan Malamute

Breed Profile

Height Male: 61–66 cm, Female: 56–61 cm,
WeightFemale: 32–38 kg, Male: 36–43 kg
Life Expectancy10- 12 years

Alaskan Malamute breeds are very hyperactive dogs that can be very playful, friendly, smart, intelligent, and obedient. This breed is a plus as they are great companions and dog pals.

They are strong and powerfully built and also have wolflike features that are kind of cute and cuddly.

20.  Australian Kelpie

Breed Profile

Height17 – 20 inches
Weight35 – 50 lbs
Life Expectancy10 – 13 years

This breed is excellent for keeping livestock safe and in check. Australian kelpies are loyal, intelligent, easygoing, and defensive dogs. They do everything they can to ensure no harm to their master or property.

21. Golden Retrievers

Golden Retrievers

Breed Profile

Height Male: 56–61 cm, Female: 51–56 cm
Weight Male: 30–34 kg, Female: 25–32 kg
Life Expectancy10 – 12 years

Golden retrievers are charming breeds, intelligent, easygoing, friendly, and the perfect addition to the family. Their playfulness and ability to tell when to give emotional support make them unique.

They can be joyful but quite protective of their owners and territory.


So there you have it, all 21 breeds mentioned in this article are exceptional. Most of these dog breeds do need to train at puppyhood to accommodate people; however, if you want an absolute guard dog, you can skip socializing them.

Without training, it will be a bad idea to leave some of these breeds with children, especially the bandogs. Make sure to let only familiar faces around them.

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