The American Kennel Club Announced Its Most Popular Dog Breeds

The number one spot has been held for 27 years!

By Catalina Barrios

Photo: Shutterstock Ysbrand Cosijn

Making it to the top of any list is a great feeling. Being number one? Nothing like it. Imagine the rush for a recording artist that ranks #1 for consecutive weeks, even months, on the music charts. Well, translate that to 27 years at the top spot! The American Kennel Club (AKC) has released its annual list of the “most popular breeds” and can you guess which one has risen to the top AGAIN?

Wait for it…

This is a spotlight on the top 10 most popular dog breeds, in no particular order; number one is in there!

Yorkshire Terrier

Photo: Shutterstock Birute Vijeikiene

These adorable little dogs have had a name change since first arriving to England. The Yorkshire Terrier used to be called the Broken-Haired Scottish Terrier. The name was kept until one day, after the Westmoreland Show in England, Angus Sutherland (a reporter for the British Magazine, The Field), said the name should be changed. He said even though the breed originated in Scotland, it was perfected after arriving in Yorkshire. Many people agreed with Sutherland’s view and this cute breed acquired their cute name in 1870 – Yorkie. The Yorkshire Terrier’s bright and bold temperament is a favorite in America.


Photo: Shutterstock Olexandr Andreiko

Did you know Rottweilers were once used to protect the money cattlemen received for their livestock? It was certainly safe inside a small purse, tied around this dog’s neck.  The Rottie’s success as a guard dog may be because the breed looks menacing and has a naturally reserved personality. Rottiweilers want to know you before they let their guard down, but once they do, this goofy and fun-loving breed is an excellent companion. Rottweilers are dedicated family members, protecting and loving their “pack” for life.

German Shorthaired Pointer

Photo: Shutterstock everydoghasastory

The German Shorthaired Pointer was developed in Germany during the 1800s. Breeders were trying to create a dog that would carry out different hunting related jobs, suitable for work on land and in water. The result is the beautiful German Shorthaired Pointer – very smart and dedicated to making their owners happy. These are the perfect dog if you enjoy exercising, as they have a high activity level. In fact, this dog is one of the most energetic, sociable breeds!


Photo: Shutterstock Chendongshan

This hair dog (not fur) is great for people with allergies and has been bred in three sizes: Standard, Miniature, and Toy. According to the AKC, this breed originates from Germany as a water retriever. Some say even the name “poodle” is a misspell of the German word “pudel,” meaning one who plays in water. The Poodle is one of the longest-living breeds (12 to 15 years) and also one of the smartest. These make for high energy, very sensitive, loyal companions, but be warned – Poodles are high maintenance for grooming needs due to the way their hair grows.


Photo: Shutterstock Ammit Jack

Historically the British Bulldog (featured in photo) was brought to England by the Romans, as a fighting mastiff breed, used in a bloody sport called bullbaiting. After this sport was outlawed in the mid-1800s, this ferocious dog was exported to America and other parts of Europe. From there it was bred to be the lovable and adorable family dog it is today. Bulldogs do have some trouble giving birth, however, due to the size of their head. Over 80% of Bullies are delivered via Caesarean section.

Labrador Retriever

Photo: Shutterstock Lunja

Labs come in different colors – black, chocolate and yellow – and all of these can be found within the same litter. The bred originates from Newfoundland, Canada, used as a fishing dog – retrieving nets, ropes, and fish that escaped. Today, most labs are loveable family members. This breed is very people oriented and willing to serve as working dogs for humans with specific needs (blind, epilepsy, autism, etc).  The Lab almost went extinct when the Newfoundland government started taxing female dogs at a higher rate and only allowing one dog per family. This meant that girls were culled from the litter. Thank goodness this little sweetheart survived!

French Bulldog

Photo: Shutterstock Angyalosi Beata

The French Bulldog originated in England, but was brought to France by British lace makers.  This bulldog is small but solid, with a gentle disposition. It is considered a rare breed and is wholly dedicated to its family. It has been said that the French Bulldog will defend his family with his life. As a pet, this breed only requires daily walks but you must take be careful in the hot weather. Frenchies are prone to heat exhaustion and must never be left outside on a hot day. The English Bulldogs were bred with terriers to create the affectionate and friendly French Bulldog.

Golden Retriever

Photo: Shutterstock Lunja

Love to swim? The Golden Retrievers are your best partner as they enjoy spending time in the water. These smart dogs are used by search and rescue teams thanks to their sense of smell and tracking abilities. They are also known to be great therapy dogs. The Golden Retriever is commonly used as a hunting dog but also makes a good family pet. They are kind and friendly but care must be given to their level of dedication for the Golden Retriever will work until she collapses. They are a working breed that is very dedicated to the task in front of them.

German Shepherd

Photo: Shutterstock Monika Chodak

Did you know there are over 250,000 German Shepherds in Germany and around 15,000 puppies born each year? These dogs are very smart and 95% of them will obey a command when it is given the first time. German Shepherds are dedicated working dogs and you often find them in the military, police service, and heading off search and rescue operations. This breed played a key role in the recovery of victims of the 9/11 attacks. They were some of the first responders, searching for survivors and providing comfort to those who needed it.


Photo: Shutterstock Andreina Nunez

The first beagles were miniature – 9 inches tall and were small enough to be carried in a pocket. Later, these tiny dogs were bred into larger hunting hounds. You know a Beagle is purebred by looking for a white-tipped tail at its tail. The Beagle was bred for this trait so that hunters could track their movement through the tall grass. These are high-spirited and loving pets, but also very stubborn and require careful training.

The Number One Breed According to the American Kennel Club

Labrador Retriever!

Photo: Shutterstock Rosa Jay

Being friendly, active, outgoing, intelligent and people oriented are some of the reasons why labs take the top honor award year after year. They are very lovable, don’t you think?

Interesting to note, the popularity of the French Bulldogs has increased significantly over the years. Over the past 20 years, the Frenchie has climbed from 76th to 4th on the AKC annual list.  Geographically speaking, these are also the most popular dogs in New York City, Los Angeles, San Francisco and West Palm Beach.

Did your favorite dog breed made it to the top 10 list? You can check the full ranking list of the most popular dog breeds by visiting the American Kennel Club page.