As with previous years, a few surprises took place, but not surprisingly, the Labrador Retriever remains at Number 1, a position the breed has held for more than 20 years. Bulldogs moved to the #5 slot in the Top 10, up one position from last year. This breed has been gaining in popularity during the past decade; the bulldog sat at #18 ten years ago. The Rottweiler also moved up one place, from #10 last year to #9 this year, and the Golden Retriever moved from #4 to #3, replacing the Beagle, which moved from #3 to #4. Remaining at the Number 2 is the German Shepherd Dog.
The Yorkshire Terrier slipped in ranking once again, slipping from #5 to #6; the Yorkie was the second most popular dog breed just five years ago. Also slipping a notch is the Daschund; last year the breed ranked #9 in popularity, and this year it's #10. The Daschund ranked in the top 5 most popular breeds 10 years ago.
Below is the ranking of the top 10 dog breeds in America in 2012, according to the AKC.
- Labrador Retriever
- German Shepherd Dog
- Golden Retriever
- Yorkshire Terrier
Larger dogs continue to gain popularity, as noted by the placement of the Labrador, German Shepherd, Golden Retriever, and Rottweiler in the Top Ten. Larger breeds made some large strides in this year's rankings; for example, the Doberman Pinscher moved from #13 to #12 in the past year, replacing the Miniature Schnauzer, and the Great Dane breed gained two placings, moving from #19 to #17, and replacing the little Pomeranian in popularity.
A complete list of AKC's most popular dog breeds, including statistics for 50 U.S. cities, is available at http://www.akc.org/reg/dogreg_stats.cfm. The organization uses registration statistics to gauge dog breed popularity. They also rank the most popular dog breeds in various cities across America.
View the lists and find out where your favorite dog breed ranks. The breeds of my special dogs, Sage and Cody, retained their rankings: English Springer Spaniels at #29 and American Cocker Spaniels at #27. English Cocker Spaniels are down on the list at #64; they are more popular, however, than Italian Greyhounds, which rank at #66.
No matter what breed your dog is, whether in the top 10, top 20 or below, one thing all dogs have in common is that they offer great companionship to their humans!