Proving that bigger really is better, the American Kennel Club (AKC) announced today that the Bulldog has muscled its way into the top 5, becoming the fifth most popular dog in the U.S. according to AKC Registration Statistics, bumping the tiny Yorkshire Terrier into sixth place for the first time since 2003.
The Golden Retriever also pushed its way back to the top, overtaking the Beagle for third place, and Rottweilers continued their climb up the top 10 list by taking ninth place away from the Dachshund, both adding to the bigger breed trend.
The results were announced on The Today Show.
Labrador Retriever lovers have again spoken â?? the playful, family friendly breed remains the number one most popular breed in the U.S. for the 22nd consecutive year, tying with the Poodle for the longest reign in the top spot.
"Bigger breeds are making their move," said AKC Spokesperson Lisa Peterson. "The popularity of the pint-sized, portable pooch just gave way to a litter of larger breeds in the Top 10.
These predictable, durable, steady breeds, like Labs and Goldens, are great with kids and offer the whole family more dog to love."
2012 Most Popular Dogs in the U.S.
1. Labrador Retriever
2. German Shepherd Dog
3. Golden Retriever
6. Yorkshire Terrier
Most Notable Dog Trends in 2012 Include:
â?¢Mastiff-type breeds have risen in rank, with the Mastiff going from 34 to 26 and the Bullmastiff from 47 to 39 over the past decade, and the Cane Corso (67 to 60), Neapolitan Mastiff (116 to 112), and Dogue de Bordeaux (69 to 67) all making gains since the year they became recognized.
â?¢"Bully" breeds have pawed their way into people's hearts over the past decade with the Bull Terrier (79 to 51), Staffordshire Bull Terrier (91 to 76), and Miniature Bull Terrier (132 to 126) all making strong gains.
â?¢Dog owners are showing their love for Sporting Breeds over this past year as the Spinone Italiano (123 to 114), Boykin Spaniel (138 to 116), and Welsh Springer Spaniel (130 to 125) have all made their way up the list.
â?¢Small dogs that are on the rise this year are the Havanese (31 to 28) and Affenpinscher (139 to 138), while the Chihuahua (14 to 18), Pomeranian (17 to 19), and Pug (26 to 30) seem to have fallen out of favor.
In addition, the AKC expanded its litter of recognized breeds on January 1 to include the Chinook and Portuguese Podengo Pequeno, growing AKC's family to 177 breeds.