Discover the 18 Strongest Bite Forces of Animals Found in the U.S.

Bull shark facts - mouth of a bull shark
© Willyam Bradberry/

Written by Katie Downey

Updated: August 15, 2023

Share on:


The strongest bite force in the world has been discussed multiple times, as has the strongest bite force of any dog. Now, let’s take a look at the strongest bite force of any animal in the United States. Some of the contestants might come as a surprise to you.

Most of the animals’ bite forces in this article are measured by force per square inch, but you must also take into account the size of the animals inflicting the bite force. Some of the smaller animals may have a more impressive bite force than some of the largest animals on the list.

18. Mountain Lion (Puma concolor)

Mountain lions can reach 50 mph in short bursts.

Mountain lions come in last place on this list, but their bite is much more impressive than a human’s at 162 psi.


Bite Force: 350 psi

Size: 64 – 220 pounds and 2 – 3 feet at the shoulder with a length of 6.9 – 7.10 feet in length.

The bite force of a mountain lion is more than enough to get the job done, especially when you take into consideration their speed, size, and claws. Mountain lions are also excellent at stalking which is how they are able to land such hefty prey. They also sneak up on their target on foot, by swimming and in trees which makes knowing where to look difficult, especially in the dark.

17. Grey Wolf (Canis lupus)

grey wolf

©AB Photographie/

Bite Force: 406 psi

Size: 66 – 180 pounds, 30 inches at the shoulder, and up to 6 feet long.

The grey wolf may not have as strong of a bite force as some of the animals on this list, but what they lack in bite force, they make up in other ways. Pack numbers assisting in the attack, size, and age of the wolf, speed, and power ultimately play into how severe a grey wolf’s attack might be.

16. Humbolt Squid (Dosidicus gigas)

Preserved scientific juvenile squid specimen, collected from Bournemouth coastline, Southern England. Isolated on black.

The Humboldt squid is sometimes referred to as the giant flying squid because it can launch itself out of the water to avoid predators.

©Chris Moody/

Bite Force: 600 psi

Size: 100 pounds and up to 8.2 feet long.

These are certainly some very large and potentially frightening squid, but what can further their advantage in the wild in the number of squids who hunt with them. These deep-sea beasts are armed with lots of sharp teeth, speeds up to 15 mph, and a whole bunch of sticky suction cups. They are also sometimes called the red devil squid because they change to a bright red color when caught or evading predators. They really aren’t someone you want to mess with.

15. Cane Corso (Canis lupus)

dog on a black background. Blue, Gray Intalian Cane-Corso

The Cane Corso is a massive dog with huge jaws that ranks higher than the mountain


on this list.


Bite Force: 700 psi

Size: 88 – 110 pounds, 23 – 28 inches at the shoulder, and 41.5 – 55 inches long.

The cane corso is a very large dog with an impressive bite force, though it isn’t too far from the strongest bite force of a dog, belonging to the Kangal at 743 psi. The Corso is a dog that requires specific training and handling to ensure the safety of the owner. These dogs have been known to take down lions who have a bite force of 650 psi.

14. American Bandogge (Canis lupus)

Happy American Bandogge Dog Breed , merle color pitbull concept dog or bandog type #uniqueSSelf

American Bandogge is a cross between an

American pitbull

terrier and a mastiff or an American bulldog and a mastiff.


Bite Force: 730 psi

Size: 85 – 150 pounds, 25 – 29 inches tall at the shoulder and 22 – 33 inches long.

The American bandogge is simply a mixed breed dog with a very powerful bite. The breeds used to create it are known to be affectionate and very protective. Specific training is important for these types of dogs, as is the education of the owner on what it takes to ensure the health and happiness of one.

13. Kangal (Canis lupus)

kangal laying in grass by flowers

Kangals have the strongest bite of any dog breed.


Bite Force: 763 psi

Size: 90 – 145 pounds, 28 – 32 inches at the shoulder, and 37 – 44 inches long.

The kangal is the dog with the strongest bite force. Humans have fought them against lions, which would still be an unfair fight because the lion is bigger, stronger, and has claws. These are technically livestock guardian dogs that kill wolves but have since become pets. They are loyal and gentle but, like all dogs, they should be watched around children.

12. Brown Bear (Ursus arctos)

Brown bear, scientific name: Ursus arctos. Summer season.

©Sergey Uryadnikov/

Bite Force: 850 psi

Size: 180 – 1300 pounds, 2.3 – 5 feet tall at the shoulder, and 4.6 – 9.2 feet long.

The brown bear is not the bear with the most bite force or even the strongest bear, but it ranks close to midway on this list of the top bite forces, which isn’t bad at all. They are enormous and can run at speeds of up to 35 mph, which makes this one strong and ferocious animal you can’t outrun.

11. Alligator Snapping Turtle (Macrochelys temminckii)

Alligator snapping turtle Macrochelys temminckii

The alligator snapping turtle is a prehistoric animal that you do not want to go swimming with.

© Vongjintanaruks

Bite Force: 1,004 psi

Size: 62 – 249 pounds and is 22 – 29 inches long.

Anything with “alligator” in its name is someone you may want to avoid, especially when swimming barefoot! This snapping turtle is massive and enjoys making farm ponds its home, which can be a death sentence for the livestock using the pond.

10. Grizzly Bear (Ursus arctos horribilis)

grizzly bear feeding on an elk along the Lamar River, Yellowstone

It’s hard to believe a

grizzly bear

has only a slightly higher bite force than an alligator snapping turtle.

©Bobs Creek Photography/

Bite Force: 1,160 psi

Size: 250 – 700 pounds, 40 inches tall at the shoulder, and 74 – 95 inches long.

Grizzlies have a lot going for them in the “things to fear” category. They are massive creatures, with claws that can kill and the ability to run 40 mph in short sprints. There isn’t much that will mess with a grizzly bear except another grizzly bear. With the amount of sheer terror surrounding grizzly bear encounters, one would think they would rank higher on this bite force list. It doesn’t make them much less scary considering their 2 – 4 inch claws capable of ripping a tree to shreds.

9. Polar Bear (Ursus maritimus)

Polar bears

may look sweet and huggable, but they are the most dangerous bears in existence.

©Karilop311 / Flickr – Original

Bite Force: 1,200 psi

Size: 400 – 1700 pounds, 2.4 – 5 feet at the shoulder, and 8 – 10 feet long.

Polar bears are known to kill humans and can easily take one’s head off with a well aimed swipe, but they are apex predators doing what they need to in order to survive. These bears can also sprint 25 mph for short distances when needed.

8. Bull Shark (Carcharhinus Leucas)

What do bull sharks eat - face close up

The bull shark is a shark who has laid claim to many unprovoked attacks on humans.


Bite Force: 1,350 psi

Size: 200 – 500 pounds and are 7 – 11 feet long.

What makes bull sharks so dangerous is not necessarily their size or even their bite force, it’s their elevated testosterone levels that make them aggressive. One bite from a bull shark with its razor sharp teeth is all it would take. They can also swim in bursts of 25 mph. The bull shark and their not-so-distant relative, the tiger shark are known for their aggression towards humans and make up more attacks on humans than most other types of sharks. Bull sharks have been found with license plates and a myriad of strange not-so-tasty items in their stomachs suggesting they will literally eat anything.

7. Jaguar (Panthera onca)

Strongest cats - Jaguar

Known for their massive jumping ability, the word jaguar means, “he who kills with one leap.”


Bite Force: 1,500 psi

Size: 150 – 200 pounds and up to 7 feet long.

Jaguars are the biggest cat in the Americas and have a much more severe bite than the mountain lion. These beautiful cats can reach speeds of 50 mph, so you better have a better plan than outrunning one. They are also very good swimmers and climbers making them an excellent apex predator. Jaguars are the big cat with the highest bite force, though they are not nearly as dangerous as their cousins, the tiger. This is mostly due to the tigers’ proximity to humans versus the human-timid leopard.

6. Pacific Walrus (Odobenus rosmarus divergens)


A walrus weighs more than a duelly truck with an extended cab and bed.

©Mikhail Cheremkin/

Bite Force: 1,850 psi

Size: 1,800 – 4,400 pounds, and up to 12 feet long.

Walruses aren’t exactly quick on their flippers at 7 mph but they do have a serious bite for anyone who decides to fight them. They can run at bursts of 22 mph if needed. They fight other males with their enormous tusks that humans poach them for. These huge creatures prefer to eat mollusks like clams and lay in the sun, or on an ice shelf. The only area in the United States that you can see them is on the northwest coast.

5. American Alligator (Alligator mississippiensis)

alligator with its mouth hanging open

Any standing body of water in Florida could house a gator, making swamps, rivers, lakes, and drainage pools all potentially dangerous.

©Deborah Ferrin/

Bite Force: 2,125 psi

Size: 9 – 15 feet long, and up to 1,000 pounds

There is a good reason why alligators have been in the world for so long and it isn’t because they are weak or slow. These enormous lizards can run up to 25 mph on land and swim 20 mph, which is faster than the bottle-nosed dolphin. The alligator can chomp animals or humans with its impressive bite force and snap our bones like twigs, literally. They can also bite through steel. These clever and mega stealth reptiles have another trick up their swampy sleeve, like their cousins the crocodile, they can snap down on a humans leg, then go into the destructive death spin and then drag the victim to the bottom of the bayou and drown them. Many times, a limb comes off when a gator goes into the deadly spin.

4. American Crocodile (Alligator mississippiensis)

Animals In North America Hibernate

The crocodile won’t win any races but they can run up to 10 mph and swim 20 mph making them even more terrifying.


Bite Force: 3,700 psi

Size: 300 – 2000 pounds and is 8 – 20 feet long

The American crocodile is one Florida creature that tops even the bull shark and alligator in bite force. Once their mouth is shut, it is next to impossible to force it open. They even swallow rocks to aid with digestion and help them sink to the bottom when in water. The bite force of a Tyrannasaurus Rex exceeds 12,800 psi. The prehistoric “limosine crocodile’s” bite force of 23,100 psi is more than the orca and even the least weasel, if it were bigger.

3. Great White Shark (Carcharodon carcharias)

Great white shark, Carcharodon carcharias


great white shark

is the biggest predatory fish in the oceans.

©Martin Prochazkacz/

Bite Force: 4,100 psi

Size: Up to 4,500 pounds and is 11 – 20 feet long.

The great white shark is a top apex predator for its size, speed, sense of smell and razor sharp teeth. It can swim in short bursts up to 35 mph. They are not as aggressive as the bull shark but do have one of the top bite forces in the U.S. They also have 300 teeth arranged into seven rows, which is enough to do some deadly damage even if their bite force was minimal.

2. Orca (Orcinus orca)

Orca Killerwhale traveling on ocean water with sunset Norway Fiords on winter background

The orca is a toothed-whale which belongs to the oceanic dolphin family where it is the largest member.

©Willyam Bradberry/

Bite Force: 19,000 psi

Size: 8,000 – 11,000 pounds and is 18 – 33 feet long

The bite force is an estimated guess by marine biologists and scientists, though it could be even more. The orca has the highest psi of any bite force of any other animal in the U.S. They are capable of swimming up to 35 mph, which is the same as the great white. The orca is commonly called the killer whale because it is a whale and is definitely a killer. These whales have been filmed torturing other marine life for fun and have started attacking yachts, which you really can’t even blame them for doing.

1. Least Weasel (Mustela nivalis)

This tiny weasel is the animal with the strongest bite force when compared by weight to the other apex predators and strong biters around the U.S.

©Keven Law / Creative Commons – Original

Bite Force: 1,000 psi

Size: 1 – 8.8 ounces, 1.8 – 2.75 inches tall at the shoulder, body length is 4.5 – 7.5 inches long with a tail that measures another .5 – 3.4 inches long and their width is 1.6 – 2.6 inches.

These tiny mammals are anything but “least” when it comes to bite force and ability to kill animals much larger than it. The only other animal with a higher bite force for its size is the Tazmanian devil, which is one you would expect. The least weasel only weighs a couple of ounces and is capable of crushing the spine of prey animals much larger than it is, like; chipmunks, rabbits, mice, squirrels, rats, voles, shrews and whatever else it can catch and take down. Their top speed is 7 mph which isn’t bad for such a tiny creature.

The least weasel’s bite force is just about the same as that of the alligator snapping turtle. Take into consideration that the alligator snapping turtle weighs an average of 175 pounds, whereas the least weasel only averages 2 ounces. If the least weasel was a bigger creature we would all be in big trouble.

RankingAnimalBite Force
1Least Weasel1,000 psi*
2Orca19,000 psi
3Great White Shark4,000 psi
4American Crocodile3700 psi
5American Alligator2125 psi
6Pacific Walrus1850 psi
7Jaguar1500 psi
8Bull Shark1350 psi
9Polar Bear1200 psi
10Grizzly Bear1160 psi
11Alligator Snapping Turtle1004 psi
12Brown Bear850 psi
13Kangal763 psi
14American Bandogge730 psi
15Cane Corso700 psi
16Humboldt Squid600 psi
17Grey Wolf406 psi
18Mountain Lion350 psi
* The orca wins based on psi, though the least weasel wins when you look at the size and the psi.

Share this post on:
About the Author

Katie Downey is a writer for A-Z Animals where her primary focus is on wildlife, arachnids and insects. Katie has been writing and researching animals for more than a decade. Katie worked in animal rescue and rehabilitation with handicapped cats and farm animals for many years. As a resident of North Carolina, Katie enjoys exploring nature with her son, educating others on the positive role that insects and spiders play in the ecosystem and raising jumping spiders.

Thank you for reading! Have some feedback for us? Contact the AZ Animals editorial team.