For the first time in three decades there’s a new top dog in town.
The French bulldog has dethroned the Labrador retriever as the United States’ favorite dog breed, according to the American Kennel Club.
For 31 years year Labrador retrievers have reigned supreme, but this year French bulldogs claimed the top spot while the Lab dropped to number two.
The AKC made the announcement Wednesday.
According to a press release, the Frenchie has jumped in popularity over the past decade. In 2012 the petite dog was the 14th most popular dog breed. Now, for the AKC’s 2022 list they’re number one in the nation.
“They’re comical, friendly, loving little dogs,” French Bull Dog Club of America spokesperson Patty Sosa said. “They offer a lot in a small package.”
And while they make great companions for a variety of people, the breed is often seen as controversial due to their flat faces.
French bulldogs are a brachycephalic breed, meaning they have been bred to have a shortened skull and small muzzle.
While their appearance is nearly irresistible, it’s also the cause of many health issues.
Brachycephalic breeds are prone to breathing issues as well as skin allergies, eye problems, and heat stroke.
Despite their health risks they remain extremely popular.
A newcomer may have topped the AKC’s 2022, but some familiar faces remained in this year’s top 10.
The Labrador retriever fell to second place followed by golden retrievers, German shepherds, poodles, bulldogs, Rottweilers, beagles, dachshunds, and German shorthaired pointers.
The stats are based on more than 716,500 puppies and other dogs newly registered last year. Registration is voluntary. Mixed-breeds are not counted.
What do you think of this year’s rankings? Let us know your thoughts in the comments section!