AKC Top Dog Breeds

Every year the American Kennel Club puts out a list of the most popular dog breeds based on their annual registration statistics of purebred dogs: AKC Dog Registration Statistics.

Although the breeds rankings might change a bit from year to year, I think it's safe to assume that after 20 plus years in the number one spot, Americans love the Labrador Retriever.

"Labs have been America’s top dog for nearly two decades due to their loyal and gentle nature," said AKC Spokesperson Lisa Peterson. "But the German Shepherd Dog has gained ground recently, quite possibly due to the increased attention they receive for their security efforts at home and abroad. Hailed as the world’s leading police, guard and military dog, this energetic and fun-loving breed is a loyal family pet, ideal companion and dependable K-9 partner when duty calls."

Below is a list of the usual Top Dog Breeds amongst the 175 breeds listed in the registry. And included in the AKC registration statistics as one of the Top 20 Dog Breeds is the adorable, smart, ever-loving favorite breed of Schnauzers Rule, the Miniature Schnauzer!

In 2002 the Miniature Schnauzer ranked in the 23 spot. Ten years later now 2012 our favorite dog breed slowly climbed its way into more people's lives and comes in at number 13! Think we'll ever be Number 1?

AKC Top 20 Dog Breeds of the U.S.



labrador retriever Labrador Retriever The gentle, intelligent and family-friendly Labrador Retriever from Canada continues to be the most popular breed in the United States. This versatile hunting breed comes in three colors (yellow, black and chocolate) and because of his aptitude to please his master they excel as guide dogs for the blind, as part of search-and-rescue teams or in narcotics detection with law enforcement.
german Shepherd German Shepherd Dogs The German Shepherd Dog is hailed as the world’s leading police, guard and military dog, however, this dependable breed is more than its 9-to-5 job. Consistently one of the United States’ most popular breeds, the German Shepherd is also a loving family companion, herder and show competitor. The breed is approachable, direct and fearless, with a strong, muscular body.
yorkie, yorkshire terrier Yorkshire Terriers Yorkshire Terriers, affectionately known as "Yorkies," offer big personalities in a small package. Though members of the Toy Group, they are terriers by nature and are brave, determined, investigative and energetic. They have long, luxurious blue and tan coats and continue to be one of the most popular dog breeds in the United States.
golden retriever Golden Retriever The Golden Retriever, with its intelligence and eager to please attitude, is once again in the top dog breeds list. The working ability that has made the Golden Retriever such a useful hunting companion also make him an ideal guide, assistance and search and rescue dog. The golden-colored coat is the hallmark of this versatile breed, and can range from light to dark gold.
beagle Beagle A sturdy hunting dog combined with a merry personality, has made the Beagle one of the most popular dogs in the United States. Beagles are happy, gentle, energetic dogs that fit in well with any family. The most famous Beagle of all is Snoopy from the comic strip "Peanuts."
boxer Boxer The well-conditioned middleweight athlete of dogdom, the Boxer is a powerful dog with an intelligent and alert expression. While they are instinctive guardians, the Boxer loves to be with his people. This personality has allowed them to succeed as couriers during war time and as seeing-eye dogs for the blind.
bulldog Bulldog Known for their loose-jointed, shuffling gait and massive, short-faced head, the Bulldog is known to be equable, resolute and dignified. A medium-sized dog, they are not your typical lap dog, but would like to be! They are lovable, have gentle dispositions, and absolutely adorable wrinkles. The Bulldog may be brindle, white, red, fawn, fallow or piebald.
dachshund Dachshund The Dachshund, meaning "badger dog" in German, is a lively breed with a friendly personality and keen sense of smell. Known for their long and low bodies, they are eager hunters that excel in both above-ground and below-ground work. One of the most popular dog breeds, the Dachshund comes in three different coat varieties (Smooth, Wirehaired or Longhaired) and can be miniature or standard size.
poodle Poodle The Poodle is exceptionally smart, active and excels in obedience training. It's no surprise they were once very popular circus dogs. Poodles are happiest with daily walks and lots of outdoor play. The breed comes in three size varieties as well as a variety of solid colors, including white, black, apricot and gray.
shih tzu Shih Tzu A compact and solid dog, the Shih Tzu’s long, flowing double coat is its most distinctive feature. The word Shih Tzu means "lion" and although this dog is sweet and playful, he is not afraid to stand up for himself!

AKC Top Dog Breeds #11 - #20



Miniature Schnauzer Miniature Schnauzer Known for his distinguished, handsome appearance, the Miniature Schnauzer is characterized by its whiskers and double coat (a wiry outer coat and a soft undercoat). Coat colors can be salt & pepper, black & silver and solid black. Despite his small stature, the Miniature Schnauzer has a naturally protective nature and an alarming bark, making him an excellent watchdog. He is also the most popular of the three Schnauzer breeds, which include the Giant and the Standard.
chihuhua ChihuahuaGraceful, alert and swift-moving with a saucy expression, Chihuahuas are highly intelligent and should not be underestimated even though small in size. The breed can be any color – solid, marked or splashed and the coat may be long or short. These sassy little dogs are well known as "purse dogs" like the famous Bruiser in the movie Legally Blonde starring Reese Witherspoon.
rottweiler Rottweiler Robust and powerful, the Rottweiler is happiest when given a job to perform. His intelligence, endurance and willingness to work make him suitable as a police dog, herder, service dog, therapy dog, obedience competitor and devoted companion. An inherent protector, the Rottweiler is self-confident and responds quietly and with a wait-and-see attitude to influences in his environment.
pomeranian Pomeranian The Pomeranian is a cocky, animated companion with an extroverted personality. This compact little dog is an active toy breed with an alert character and fox-like expression. Today, the Pomeranian is a popular companion dog and competitive show dog. They can come in all colors, patterns, and variations although orange and red are the most popular.
doberman Doberman Pinscher A square, medium-sized dog, the Doberman Pinscher is muscular and possesses great endurance and speed. He is elegant in appearance and reflects great nobility and temperament. The properly bred and trained Doberman has proved itself to be a friend and guardian, and his intelligence and ability to absorb and retain training have brought him into demand as a police and war dog. The Doberman’s short, hard coat can be black, red, blue and fawn.
pointer German Shorthaired Pointer A versatile hunter and all-purpose gun dog, the German Shorthaired Pointer possesses keen scenting power and high intelligence. The breed is proficient with many different types of game and sport, including trailing, retrieving, and pointing pheasant, quail, grouse, waterfowl, raccoons, possum, and even deer. A medium-sized breed, he has an aristocratic bearing and can be solid liver or liver and white in color.
pug Pug The Pug is well described by the phrase "multum in parvo" which means "a lot of dog in a small space." They are recognized for their even-tempers, playful personalities, and their outgoing, loving dispositions. This square and cobby breed comes in fawn, silver fawn, apricot fawn or black, with a well-defined "mask" on his muzzle. A popular companion dog, the pug also excels in the show ring.
shetland sheepdog Shetland Sheepdog The Shetland Sheepdog, or "Sheltie" as it is commonly called, is essentially a working Collie in miniature. A rough-coated, longhaired working dog, he is alert, intensely loyal and highly trainable and is known as a devoted, docile dog with a keen sense of intelligence and understanding. Agile and sturdy, the Sheltie is one of the most successful obedience breeds, but also excels in agility, herding and conformation. The coat can be black, blue merle or sable, marked with varying amounts of white and/or tan.
boston terrier Boston Terrier Truly an "All-American" dog, the Boston Terrier is a lively and highly intelligent breed with an excellent disposition. Their keen intellect also makes them easy to train and eager to learn. This compactly built little dog conveys an impression of determination and strength.
maltese Maltese A toy dog covered from head to toe with long, silky white hair, the Maltese is gentle-mannered and affectionate, known for being lively, playful and fearless despite its small size. Maltese are intelligent little dogs that are very fast learners if they feel sufficiently rewarded. They are clean, refine, and easily portable making them a popular choice as a companion dog.

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And there you have it the usual Top 20 Dog Breeds in the United States according to AKC Registration Statistics.

But no matter where the Miniature Schnauzer ranks according to AKC Statistics,

Miniature Schnauzers are always #1 on Schnauzers Rule.

Think one of the Top 20 Dog Breeds is right for you? Take the Dog Breed Selector Quiz and see your results.

Please keep in mind, owning a dog is a lot of responsibility you will be making a big commitment. Before making a dog apart of your family take this test: Are your Really Ready to Own a Dog Quiz.

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Special thanks to AKC for providing breed information and descriptions and to M/Y/D/S Animal graphics for use of their images.

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