NATIONAL NEWS

The US has a new favorite dog breed — and it’s not the Labrador Retriever

Mar 15, 2023, 10:42 AM

French Bulldogs are now the most popular dog breed in the U.S., unseating the Labrador Retriever's ...

French Bulldogs are now the most popular dog breed in the U.S., unseating the Labrador Retriever's 31-year reign. (Angyalosi Beata/Adobe Stock via CNN)

(Angyalosi Beata/Adobe Stock via CNN)

(CNN) — Move over, Labrador Retrievers. There’s a new top dog in town.

For the first time in 31 years, the Labrador Retriever has been unseated as the most popular dog breed in the U.S., according to the American Kennel Club’s 2022 registration statistics. In its place sits the cute and compact French Bulldog.

The French Bulldog has been steadily climbing the AKC’s rankings over the last decades, hitting No. 14 in 2012. In 2021, the breed held the No. 2 spot, behind the popular labs but ahead of Golden Retrievers.

Who, after all, can resist their adorable bat-like ears and wrinkly nose? The breed has become a favorite among celebrities, beloved by everyone from Reese Witherspoon to Megan Thee Stallion.

Part of what makes this breed so easy to love is its small size and quiet demeanor, according to the AKC. French Bulldogs aren’t typically prone to barking and don’t need as much exercise as larger dogs, making them a good fit for those living in apartments or smaller homes.

However, like many dog breeds, French Bulldogs are prone to certain health problems, including those that affect their ability to breathe. Flat-faced breeds, which include the English Bulldog and Pugs, are particularly prone to these troubles due to their narrow nostrils and smaller airways. This has led some veterinarians to warn against buying such dogs, which have been bred to exhibit such characteristics.

The AKC recognizes 200 dog breeds. Here’s a look at the breeds rounding out the top 10 most popular in the U.S.

  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

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The US has a new favorite dog breed — and it’s not the Labrador Retriever