The American Kennel Club publishes a list each year detailing the most popular breeds in the United States. The Labrador retriever, commonly referred to as a “Lab”, has long been the most popular breed, but other breeds have been surging to knock Labs from their top spot in recent years. Here’s a quick rundown of the most popular dog breeds in the U.S.A.
- Labrador retriever
For nearly three decades, the Labrador retriever has reigned supreme as the all-American dog, and it has held its first place title for longer than any other breed in the history of the AKC’s breed popularity tracking. Part of their popularity derives from their larger size, gentle disposition, and sweeter temperament. Labrador retrievers make excellent family dogs, and they love to play and run. It’s no wonder they have retained the top spot for so long.
- German shepherd
Holding steady at #2 for almost as long as Labrador retrievers have been #11, German shepherds are valued for their strength, agility, and unique coat colorations. They are often trained as security or police dogs, as they are naturally curious, possess high intelligence and take quickly to a structured training program. Families love them for their protective nature and their love of active play.
- Golden retrievers
Another favorite year over year, Golden retrievers come in at number three for many of the reasons that the Labrador retriever They are a large family-friendly breed that loves to be part of a human “pack” and are generally sweet-tempered and affectionate.
- French bulldog
Often referred to as “Frenchies” for short, French Bulldogs have been gaining popularity among pet owners who live in the city or more urban areas. Their adorable “bat” ears and squashy faces aren’t the only reason Frenchies have become so popular though: they don’t require as much exercise as most breeds (making for great indoor dogs), and their love of cuddling is well-known.
A blanket description for different breeds, the most popular is the English bulldog due to their archetypal “bully” build and push-faced muzzle.
These inquisitive short-haired hounds are popular hunting dogs. Despite their small, compact frame, they are hardy dogs and demonstrate high intelligence. Beagles have made the AKC top 10 most popular breed list every decade since the list was first published in 1885.
Once the most popular dog breed of all time, poodles’ popularity has declined sharply over the last decade or so. Whether standard, miniature, or toy denomination, poodles are fun-loving family dogs that make great companions for children and couples.
Recently achieving their #8 spot on the AKC top 10 list, Rottweilers are prized for their loyalty, confidence and protective instincts. Descended from Roman drover dogs used to herd cattle, Rottweilers transitioned to police and military roles at the turn of the 19th century. They make excellent companions thanks to their gentle nature and general emotional stability.
- Yorkshire terrier
Few small breed dogs are as beloved as Yorkies, but the AKC has tended to favor larger breeds in recent years in terms of prize selection and popularity. Yorkies make great pets to keep in smaller living spaces though, and they require far less regular exercise than larger terrier breeds.
- German shorthaired pointer
Originally bred for hunting, shorthaired pointers have been steadily gaining popularity thanks to their penchant for exercise and affection. They tend to be tall at the shoulder and fairly lightweight for a large breed dog, making them popular with active owners and families since they have high stamina and need regular exercise.
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