What are the most popular dog breeds in the US right now? According to the American Kennel Club stats they're a mixed bunch, but every one of them deserves a spot in the Top 10!
We all have our favorite dog breeds, and of course every single one of them has their own unique looks, personality and charm.
Personally I LOVE big dogs like my Rottweilers and German Shepherd, but one of my daughters adores pint-sized pooches and her two Miniature Dachshunds are feisty and adorable, and they've managed to wiggle their way into my heart!
These three breeds aren't just at the top of our personal popularity charts though. In fact, all three of them are featured on the most recent 'Top 10'. This image gives you the 'big picture'.
They're all listed in order from the top, left to right, with the Labrador Retriever being in the #1 spot and the Rottweiler being at #10.
America's Favorite Dog Breeds
Okay, so now you know who the favorites are, let's take a closer look at each breed individually....
1. The Labrador Retriever
This breed's #1 position probably won't come as any great surprise to anyone who's ever met a Lab! They're the quintessential family dog and have been in this number one spot every single year for the past two decades (yes, that's TWENTY years, if anyone's counting!).
What is it that makes the Labrador Retriever so enduringly popular? There are a whole host of things, the most important one being their wonderfully sunny and friendly personalities, but the undeniable cuteness of roly-poly Lab puppies has got to factor in!
The German Shepherd dog is entirely different from the Lab in just about every way you can think of, and yet it is also consistently among the most popular dogs both here in the US and around th world.
Extremely intelligent, hard-working, sturdy and courageous GSD's love to have a job to do and excel in obedience, tracking, search & rescue, drug detection, police work and much more.
They also make wonderful family pets. Gentle, affectionate and loyal to the core, German Shepherds will happily accompany 'his' people on almost any outing or activity you can think of, is prepared to protect those that he loves should the situation arise, and yet still enjoys a cuddle on the sofa with mom.
This happy, outgoing little dog has been ranked as one of the USA's top 5 most popular dogs for the past 12 years, and if you want a bright, lively dog that isn't of the 'teeny-tiny' variety, and is small enough to be portable and sturdy enough to be fun, this breed would make a great choice!
The energy that embodies the Beagle can also be a bit of a challenge.... and this breed has a touch of 'Houdini' in them, so a securely fenced yard, and regular obedience training is a must. But when they've used up that energy store, they make great cuddlers too :)
Like it's close 'Retriever relative' the Lab, Golden Retrievers have been counted among the most popular dog breeds in the USA for a L-O-N-G time!
Looking remarkably like Labradors, but with a longer, thicker coat that ranges from pale yellow to deep red-gold, this is a happy, laid-back, intelligent dog who loves nothing more than to be part of the family.
The biggest drawback to owning a Golden is also one of their best features... their coat. It looks gorgeous when they're wearing it, but not so wonderful when it's all over your home. This breed sheds, so be prepared!
The feisty little Yorkie is a little dog with a huge personality! 100% terrier through and through, these spunky, lively little guys will keep you entertained and on your toes.
Originally bred to kill rats and other vermin, the Yorkshire Terrier breed is brave to the point of being fearless and chances are you'll need to protect your pocket-sized pooch from himself a time or two. He won't think twice about taking on the biggest dog at the park!
This breed is also very loving and loyal, and they adore curling up on a lap or sleeping under the blankets with you at night. They can look regal or sassy depending on their hairstyle but the love and mischief in those sparkly little eyes is always the same :)
The English Bulldog (aka the British Bulldog or even just the Bulldog) is a breed that has evolved and changed a lot since it was first used as a 'bull-baiter' in England during the 16th century.
Today's Bulldog embodies everything that is best about this breed. They're steady, calm, loving and laid-back. Quiet (except when they're snoring!), and low-energy these dogs make the perfect companion for just about anyone. They're fantastic with children and very gentle.
Their original aggressive streak - necessary for dealing with huge bulls - has been totally eradicated, but they do retain a stubborn streak.
Another dog breed that positively fizzes with energy and enthusiasm is the lovable Boxer! Originally bred as hunting companions, these big, bouncy dogs are now firm favorites with active singles and families alike.
They're endearingly clownish, and seem to carry the happy-go-lucky attitudes of puppyhood right into maturity - and sometimes beyond. Boxers are intelligent, active and extremely loving... and they need a lot of exercise :)
The stylish and intelligent Poodle is a breed that has been around for a very long time! Originally a working dog who braved the cold north European waters to retrieve game, it is now much better known as an excellent competitor in obedience, agility and other activities... and of course, the Miniature and Toy variety are often much-loved lap dogs.
They're a sturdy breed who is more rough-and-tumble than they appear, and their brain-power makes them a joy to train and work with.
Their coat doesn't shed much at all which makes them a good choice for anyone who suffers from allergies, and many hypoallergenic dog breeds are Poodle hybrids.
I can personally vouch for the adorable-ness of these spunky little dogs, and once you meet a Dachshund he/she is going to capture your heart.
As their name suggests, this is a Hound breed, and they have the stubborn and tenacious temperament that goes with that heritage. They're also very affectionate, have tons of energy for little guys and are sturdy and robust.
One of a Doxie's favorite things to do is dig, they also love to chew, and if you give them lots of sturdy chew-toys and a yard to play in they'll be in doggie heaven!
Of all the popular dogs on this list, the Rottie is my personal favorite! My 6 children have grown up with at least one Rottweiler in the house at all times and I can honestly say they are one of the easiest breeds to train... they're also unbelievably easy to love :)
Intelligent, strong, self-confident and surprisingly goofy, these big dogs make awesome family pets in the right home. They need lots of love and companionship, plus regular training and socialization and deserve to be seen for the incredible breed that they are.
Once you've met the REAL Rottweiler, you'll be a fan for life.
The breeds listed above are all hugely popular in the USA, but many of them originated in other countries around the world.
I thought it might be fun to also look at the most popular American-made dog breeds, and the following list is courtesy of Pets Best Insurance, who compiled the information from their extensive customer records...
Chesapeake Bay Retriever
American Staffordshire Terrier (Amstaff)
American Cocker Spaniel
Blue Tick Coonhound
Many of these breeds are closely related to European dogs such as the English Cocker Spaniel, bulldogs, terriers and more. Some (such as the Carolina Dog) are native to north America.
Regardless of their earliest beginnings, these breeds are now proud to carry the Made In The USA banner and make fantastic pets both here, and around the world.
You can learn lots more about the different types of dog breeds on my Dog Breed Information page. There are a huge number of breeds to choose from and each and every one of them has it's own strengths and weaknesses and not every dog is right for every family, so it's important to choose the right breed for your home and lifestyle.
That way you all look forward to sharing many years of happiness and memories together!