America’s Most Popular Dog Breeds

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Pet ownership is climbing in the United States, with families that own dogs leading the way, according to the National Pet Owners Survey, conducted by the American Pet Products Association. The 2019-2020 edition found that 67% of households, or 85 million families, had at least one pet — the highest level ever reported. Of them, 63.4 million homes have a fuzzy member.

There are many different breeds to choose from — the American Kennel Club (AKC) now recognizes 196. The latest breed to gain recognition is the Belgian Laekenois, pronounced lak-in-wah. The Laeken, which is the rarest of the four Belgian herding breeds, was added in July 2020.

To identify the 50 most popular breeds in the United States, 24/7 Tempo reviewed data from the American Kennel Club released on May 1, 2020, based on 2019 AKC registration statistics.

Some breeds have been consistently popular over the years, with golden and Labrador retrievers and German shepherds regularly dominating popularity rankings. 

In fact, the Labrador retriever reigns No. 1 and has been since 1991. Golden and Labrador retrievers are especially popular among families, and for good reason. They are among the best family-friendly dogs.

Americans’ love for their pets is apparent in grooming parlors and dog parks. The ratio of dog parks to residents reflects a place’s attitude toward dogs and their owners. These are the most dog-friendly cities in America.