There's A New Top Dog In The US — And It's Not The Labrador Retriever

For the first time in more than 30 years, the much beloved Labrador Retriever has been knocked off its throne as the most popular dog breed in the U.S.

A sad Black Laborador Retriever on a sofa.

For the first time in more than 30 years, the much beloved Labrador Retriever has been knocked off its throne. No longer holding the crown for America's Most Popular Dog Breed, a new pup now sits on the top and is more than happy to take reign.

According to the American Kennel Club (AKC) 2022 registration statistics, the new most popular dog breed in the U.S., dethroning the Labrador Retriever, is the French Bulldog.

“The French Bulldog has moved into the number one position after climbing the ranks in popularity over the last ten years,” the AKC announced. “In 2012, the Frenchie was ranked at No. 14. Since then, registrations have increased by over 1,000%, bringing this playful breed to the top. French Bulldogs held the No. 2 spot in 2021.”

Typical French Bulldogs live around 10 to 12 years and weigh only 28 pounds on average. They’re ranked high as being very "lovey-dovey" and "good with children," but they're not great at being a watchdog. They do come with a slew of potential health issues, including breathing problems, eye conditions, and allergies.

Will the French Bulldog be more popular than the Labrador Retriever in coming years, or will the Labrador Retriever make a comeback next year? That’s all yet to be seen.

Here are the top 20 dog breeds, according to the American Kennel Club’s 2022 registration statistics:

  1. French Bulldogs
  2. Labrador Retrievers
  3. Golden Retrievers
  4. German Shepherd Dogs
  5. Poodles
  6. Bulldogs
  7. Rottweilers
  8. Beagles
  9. Dachshunds
  10. German Shorthaired Pointers
  11. Pembroke Welsh Corgis
  12. Australian Shepherds
  13. Yorkshire Terriers
  14. Cavalier King Charles Spaniels
  15. Doberman Pinschers
  16. Boxers
  17. Miniature Schnauzers
  18. Cane Corsi
  19. Great Danes
  20. Shih Tzu

The five least popular dog breeds, according to the club’s statistics, are:

  1. English Foxhounds
  2. Norwegian Lundehunds
  3. Sloughis
  4. American Foxhounds
  5. Belgian Laekenois

If your family is looking to add a four-legged pup to the mix, it’s important to research the breed to determine if its potential health issues are ones you and your family can manage, plus how their personalities tend to jive with families. Do you want a dog who keeps up and wants to adventure? Or would you rather a couch potato?

Also, if you insist on getting a purebred dog, ensure you’re only using responsible breeders or adopting from breed-specific rescues. And always remember that there are dogs waiting for their perfect homes — including pure-bred dogs — at your local animal shelter or humane society.

And remember, although the AKC has a list of the most popular dogs, whichever doggy you have is the best dog.