Lab Tops List of Most Popular Dog Breeds

The Labrador Retriever is America’s most popular dog breed according to the AKC.

Posted: February 9, 2011, 2 a.m. EST

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Labrador Retriever puppiesAnd the winner is … the Labrador Retriever (again).

That’s right – for the 20th year in a row, the Lab is America’s most popular dog breed, according to registration statistics released last week by the American Kennel Club.

This year’s list included some shakeups in the top 10 – the Beagle overtook the Golden Retriever for the fourth spot and the Bulldog, who has been steadily rising up in rank, took sixth place away from the Boxer, who dropped to seventh in 2010.

“Not since the early 20th Century has the Bulldog enjoyed such sustained popularity,” says AKC spokesperson Lisa Peterson. “‘Bob’ was the first AKC registered Bulldog in 1886, and today the breed enjoys its highest ranking in 100 years.”

Here a look at the rest of the top 10 and where the breeds stood last year:

2010 Most Popular Dog Breeds 2009 Ranking
1. Labrador Retriever 1. Labrador Retriever
2. German Shepherd Dog 2. German Shepherd Dog
3. Yorkshire Terrier 3. Yorkshire Terrier
4. Beagle     4. Golden Retriever
5. Golden Retriever 5. Beagle
6. Bulldog 6. Boxer
7. Boxer 7. Bulldog
8. Dachshund 8. Dachshund
9. Poodle 9. Poodle
10. Shih Tzu 10. Shih Tzu
   
The statistics also include most-popular lists for several major cities. In Los Angeles, for example, the Labrador was edged out of the top spot by the Bulldog, followed by the German Shepherd in second place. The Labrador came in at third, the Yorkshire Terrier fourth and the Golden Retriever ranked fifth.

Other notable trends from the statistics:

  • The most popular breeds with the biggest increase in rankings over the past year include the Wirehaired Pointing Griffon (from 108th to 93rd), the Greater Swiss Mountain Dog (from 101st to 88th) and the Smooth Fox Terrier (from 123rd to 110th).

  • The French Bulldog made the largest leap in the past decade, jumping 50 places from 71st to 21st. Other breeds with the biggest increase in rankings over the last decade include the Havanese (from 86th to 31st) and the Cavalier King Charles Spaniel (from 54th to 23rd).

  • Closing the gap this year, a couple of breeds that had been on the decline over the past decade made double digit increases over the past year – Keeshonden (from 102nd to 87th) and Anatolian Shepherd Dogs (from 115th to 109th).

  • “Bully” breeds have been steadily increasing over the past decade, including the Bull Terrier (from 78th to 53rd) and the Staffordshire Bull Terrier (from 97th to 74th).

  • Among smaller dogs that rose in the rankings were the Yorkshire Terrier (from seventh to third), the Cavalier King Charles Spaniel (from 54th to 23rd) and the Havanese (from 86th to 31st).

  • A trend toward larger breeds is seen with the rise of the Great Dane (from 28th to 17th), Mastiff (from 39th to 28th), Newfoundland (from 53rd to 44th), Bernese Mountain Dog (from 58th to 39th) and the Greater Swiss Mountain Dog (from 104th to 88th).
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