Dog on Grass

Common Dog Breeds

Everyone has their favorite dog breed. In the United States, the most common dog breeds have remained mostly the same for many years. The Labrador Retriever has been the most popular breed in terms of registrations with the American Kennel Club for over 20 years. Most of the top five breeds have been popular for years or even decades. If you are interested in one of these breeds it is usually easy to find breeders who have them or even find dogs available in shelters or with rescue groups.

Labrador Retrievers

The Labrador Retriever is a medium-large Sporting dog who is known for his gentle nature and intelligence. Labs make wonderful family dogs and they are great with children. Although they were developed as water and land retrievers, they have far exceeded their original work roles. Today the Lab is often used for search and rescue work, as detection dogs for bombs, arson, bed bugs, narcotics, and anything else that needs to be found. They are exceptionally smart and easy to train and they have a strong desire to please their owners. Coupled with an excellent nose, the Lab can be taught to search and find nearly anything.

Labrador Retrievers come in chocolate, black, and yellow coat colors. They have a short, dense, water-resistant coat and they are outstanding swimmers. They love anything to do with the water. They can excel at nearly any dog sport or activity. They require regular brushing because they do shed a lot. Labs are very active dogs and they need lots of daily exercise. They are a great choice for an active owner or family. They are loyal, affectionate dogs. It’s not surprising that they have been the most popular dog in the United States for so long.

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German Shepherd Dogs

The German Shepherd is a relatively young breed. They were developed in Germany a little over 100 years ago from herding dogs but they were always intended to be superior police and military dogs. The German Shepherd is highly intelligent, easy to train, brave, and loyal. They are a medium-large dog, strong, muscular, and agile. They make an excellent family companion and are capable of protecting the home and family.

The German Shepherd is an energetic dog and they do require regular daily exercise. They have a thick coat that needs regular brushing and they do shed. They come in different colors but are most often seen in black and tan. Many people are surprised to discover that German Shepherds are fun-loving dogs at home and they’re not always serious.


Beagles have been one of the most popular dogs in the U.S. for years. Snoopy, from the Peanuts comic strip, is perhaps the most famous Beagle of all-time, but Beagles date back to around the 1500s in England when people kept packs of hounds for hunting. Larger hounds were kept for hunting deer; hounds were kept for hunting fox; and small Beagle-type hounds were kept for hunting rabbits. Beagles are still used for hunting rabbits today.

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Beagles make a wonderful family pet and they love children. They have a short, hard, smooth hound coat that is white with various markings. Their coat is easy to care for but they do shed and need to be brushed. They come in two sizes: up to 13 inches tall and up to 15 inches tall. They are friendly, happy-go-lucky, curious little dogs and they get along very well with most other pets. They are very active dogs and they need regular daily exercise to keep them out of trouble.

Golden Retrievers

Golden Retrievers are not just one of the most popular dogs in the U.S., they are also considered one of the most beautiful. They were developed in the Highlands of Scotland in the mid-1800s to be retrievers but today these handsome dogs are used for many other things. They are extremely intelligent and easy to train so they are often used as guide dogs for the blind, assistance dogs, therapy dogs, search and rescue dogs, and many of the same things that Labrador Retrievers do. Goldens are sweet, gentle dogs who are very affectionate and loving with their families. They are great with children and other pets.

Golden Retrievers have a medium-long golden coat. The shade can range from creamy golden to red golden. They are medium-large, active dogs and they need plenty of daily exercise. They do need to be brushed regularly to keep their coat from matting and tangling but otherwise they have minimal grooming requirements. Golden Retrievers are a great choice for an active owner or family.

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Yorkshire Terriers

Although they are a small Toy dog, Yorkshire Terriers are still Terriers. They were developed to hunt and kill rats and other vermin in the textile mills of northern England and they have never lost their bold, inquisitive nature. They may be small, but they are ready and willing to take on anything. They are a lot of dog in a small package. In fact, they are quite willing to take over your home if you let them, though most owners don’t seem to mind.

The Yorkie has a beautiful long, steel blue and fawn-colored coat when it is encouraged to grow. A long coat needs to be combed and cared for on a daily basis so some owners choose to keep their dogs in a shorter style. The Yorkie weighs between four and seven pounds. They make excellent apartment dogs. They get along well with older children but you should be careful about letting them play with younger kids who might not be gentle with a small dog.

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