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AKC releases its list of the top 10 most popular dog breeds

January 21, 2009 | 11:20 am

The Labrador Retriever is the AKC's most popular dog breed for the 18th year in a row

The American Kennel Club today released its list of the 10  most popular purebred dog breeds in the U.S.  The list was compiled from AKC registrations in 2008.

Topping the list, unsurprisingly, is the Labrador retriever.  (It's the 18th year in a row that the breed has come in at No. 1, and the AKC notes that more than twice as many Labs were registered than any other breed last year.) 

The bulldog, which famously returned to the top 10 last year after a 70-year absence from the list, jumped from the No. 10 position it held in 2007 to No. 8 in 2008.  But it's especially popular here in Southern California, where it ranked No. 2 in L.A., Long Beach and San Diego.

Bulldog puppyThe full list:

1.  Labrador retriever
2.  Yorkshire terrier
3.  German shepherd
4.  Golden retriever
5.  Beagle
6.  Boxer
7.  Dachshund
8.  Bulldog
9.  Poodle
10.  Shih tzu

Naturally, apartment-sized dogs ranked higher in urban areas; the French bulldog, pug, Pomeranian and Maltese all ranked among L.A.'s most popular breeds. 

AKC spokeswoman Lisa Peterson notes, "The French bulldog, ranked 26th nationally, has been steadily climbing the list across the nation and has risen two spots since last year to become the sixth most popular breed in Los Angeles."  The most popular breeds for L.A.:

Pugs 1. Labrador retriever 
2. Bulldog   
3. German shepherd 
4. Golden retriever 
5. Yorkshire terrier 
6. French bulldog 
7. Poodle 
8. Pug 
9. Pomeranian 
10. Maltese 

The Siberian husky made it into Long Beach's top 10 list, coming in at No. 9.  And a few other curve balls made it into top 10 lists in other U.S. cities, among them the Great Dane (which ranked No. 10 in St. Louis); the mastiff (No. 10 in Indianapolis); and the Belgian Malinois (No. 8 in Kansas City).  Check out other major cities' top 10 lists on the AKC's website.

Though breeds like the bulldog and the French bulldog have surged in popularity, the AKC points out that several well-known breeds' popularity has been on the decline in recent years.  The rottweiler has seen a 76% drop in registrations nationwide over the past 10 years; Lhasa apso registrations are down 80% in the same time period; and basset hound registrations are down 66%.

--Lindsay Barnett

Photos: Labrador retriever by Steve Osman / Los Angeles Times; bulldog by On All 4's/Your Scene;  pugs by Peder/Your Scene.

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