After 31 years in the lead, the Labrador retriever has been replaced as the most popular dog in America, with the French bulldog taking over the No. 1 spot in 2022.
It’s the first time the French bulldog has topped the American Kennel Club’s new list of most popular breeds, though it has been gaining popularity over the past decade. After taking the No. 14 spot in 2012, registrations for the breed increased by more than 1,000%, moving it to the No. 2 spot in 2021 before it was crowned the most popular last year.
The AKC describes “Frenchies” as a “smart, compact breed” that can fit into various different lifestyles, which makes it perfect for people all across the country.
“They [French Bulldogs] are beloved by everyone from families to single owners for their charming and adaptable nature,” AKC writes. “They have surged in popularity in cities across the country since their small size and generally quiet demeanor make them good fits for apartments and smaller homes.”
Aside from the French bulldog taking the top spot, the AKC says the rest of the list of most popular breeds looks pretty much the same as previous years.
With 199 dogs on the list, the Labrador retriever (No. 2), golden retriever (No. 3), German shepherd dogs (No. 4) and poodle (No. 5) round out the top five. Rottweilers moved from No. 8 to No. 7, and the dachshund bumped the German shorthaired pointer from No. 9 to No. 10. Other breeds that gained popularity over the last year include the American hairless terrier, Gordon setter, Italian greyhound and Anatolian shepherd.
The least popular dog breeds, in spots 197-199, include the Sloughi, Norwegian lundehund and English foxhound.
You can read the full list here.
The AKC bases their annual list of most popular dog breeds on registrations from members.
“As the world’s largest registry of purebred dogs, the AKC uses our registration statistics to rank the most popular breeds of the past year,” the organization said in the press release.
If you’re considering adding one of the above breeds to your family, did you know around 25%-30% of shelter dogs are purebreds? Not only is it more cost-effective to adopt a purebred dog from a shelter, but you are also saving their life.
There are also numerous rescue organizations that focus solely on rehoming specific breeds, like the French Bulldog Rescue Network that has dozens of the now most popular dog in the country waiting for a forever home.