Most Popular Dog Breeds: A List of Famous Dog Breeds in the UK

Dogs have been recognised to be loyal companions for generations. For hundreds of years, they have served and helped humans as either a best friend, a protector or with anything they were capable of. Pet dogs make the best family addition because of their obedience, love and loyalty to their master. They will truly treat you like their own, if not more. Having them could be very beneficial if you could understand them. They offer not only great companionship to remove your loneliness but also bring significant changes to your health by making you laugh and exercise. According to a scientific survey, dog owners live longer and happier than ordinary people or people with different pets. Dogs have a certain charm and absolute reputation that makes them a very desirable and sought after companion to millions of people in the UK. Besides being friendly family members, they are also known to be hard workers. You can use a dog for small labour works, aiding military jobs, finding criminals, gaming shows, and whatnot.

Since ancient times, dogs have been seen aiding humans by helping hunters or protecting emperors. Dogs have great traits which sometimes even humans lack. A few most commendable characteristics that dog lovers love in the dog breeds are:

  • Dogs are known to be the most loyal creatures. Once you have warmed the hearts and they have accepted you as an owner, they would do anything for you! They will shower you with love, protect you from harm, play with you, fetch things for you – anything within their paws. They will never abandon you; instead, if they are abandoned, it will break their heart, and they will do anything to come back to you.
  • Dogs are very courageous. Some dogs were bred for hunting purposes, and some were to use as protection. These activities demand courage. Besides, very few dog breeds are known to be timid. You can have them as pets for safety since they could aid you greatly in times of danger with their remarkable courage.
  • Dogs are dedicated, little buddies. Whatever is assigned to them, they will do it passionately and dedicatedly. Be it playing fetch or running to become champions. Domestic dogs are more passionate than sports dogs as domestic dogs are trained to live in family environments. 
  • Dogs are protective towards their owners or packs – the ones they care about the most. In a sign of danger, they will fight tooths and paws to protect their owners. Some dogs are primarily bred to fight, and with the proper training, they could be the best guards for your kids and family.

Why should you love dogs?

Why not! Dogs have so much to offer, including: 

  1. Dogs make the best companion as they never leave you alone or unattended. Instead, they literally bind themselves to you for every moment. 
  1. Dogs are highly affectionate and friendly. As a pet, they will shower you with their tongue to show their love for you. And they are the best cuddlers. 
  1. Dogs are good for your health. As dogs require daily exercise, you must exercise with them. They walk, so you walk. Besides, dogs are funny. They will make you laugh with their silly entices, which works as a therapy. A dog for a day keeps your depression away!
  1. Dogs are excellent watchdogs. They will guard you and your home dedicatedly. With their incredible sense of hearing, you can sleep without any worries. They can also protect you with their teeth or barking as it will alert others. So they also work as best protectors.
  1. Dogs are great little helpers. You can train them to help you with little domestic chores such as waking up your kids, bringing in the newspapers, passing stuff, entertaining toddlers (so that you can finally work) and many more.

There has always been a decent number of dog lovers present in the UK, and over the years, the number only increased. But it drastically soared in the last two years when the country went under lockdown due to the global pandemic Covid-19. So, if you are a dog lover curious about dog breeds or a newbie trying to find a suitable pet for you, below are the list of most popular dog breeds in the UK as of 2021 that might interest you:

Top UK Dog Breeds in 2021

1. Retriever (Labrador) 

The Labrador Retriever is one of the most friendly companions in the canine kind you could ever come across. They are also one of the most popular working dog breeds. They were first recognised as fishermen’s helpers from the North Atlantic. Even in today’s time, the Labrador Retriever still works as helpers such as assistance dogs, lab workers, search and rescue dogs, etc.

They are also ideal as pets because of their sense of loyalty, affection and never-ending energy. They are also said to be highly intelligent, which also makes them fast learners. They are super loving to their owners, highly sensitive and have minimal bearing to loneliness. You can’t leave them alone for long due to their optimistic nature. They are easy to train and need high maintenance both health-wise and food-wise.

The Labrador Retriever has 10 to 12 years of approximate life span. They could weigh around 55 to 80 pounds max. They are also named sports dogs due to their athletic and masculine body.

All these qualities of a Labrador Retriever make them one of the most popular dog breeds of all time in the UK.

2. French Bulldog 

A French Bulldog is usually known as the companion dog breed among the British. They make excellent ratters, but they are primarily seen in couches or stages in today’s time. They are highly affectionate, making them the second most popular choice of dog breed in the UK.

French Bulldog has a high level of adapting instinct to houses or apartment living. They aren’t known to be too sensitive but hate being alone. They have a very low tolerance to cold weather and even lower tolerance to hot weather. On the other hand, they are friendly and very easy to groom and train. They don’t have that much intelligence, but with patients, you can teach them the necessities. 

A French Bulldog is more of a laid back creature. They have a moderate energy level with little need for daily exercise, but they are famous for their playfulness and showcase of affection to their owners. A French Bulldog weighs around 16 to 28 pounds and has a lifespan of 11 to 14 years.

3. Spaniel (Cocker)

The Cocker Spaniel is your ideal definition of a pretty-birdy dog buddy. They are recognised as one of the most beautiful dog breeds around the UK. They are cheerful and adorable, which makes them the perfect choice for a pet. They also love to cuddle!

A cocker spaniel has a high adapting capability to the living environment and tends to be super sensitive. Like most other British dog breeds, they also have zero tolerance for being left alone. They are pretty adapted to cold weather too. The best thing about cocker spaniels is that you could quickly train them as they have a friendly nature. They are also intelligent and energetic. 

The cocker spaniel is generally 1 foot 2″/3″ tall with a lifespan of 12 to 15 years. They weigh around 24-28 pounds and usually a healthy breed.

4. Bulldog 

The English Bulldog or British Bulldog is a masculine and hefty dog that comes in a medium-sized. It’s a playful and friendly dog that has a wrinkled face. Bulldogs are comparatively low maintenance and usually gets satisfied with a little bit of nap. However, daily exercise is a must for them as they love to laze around and spend the day happily on the bed. 

Bulldogs love being alone and would spend the time lying on the floor rolling lazily. They are somewhat sensitive and poorly adapting to extreme weather conditions. They enjoy and quickly adapt to house living and are family-friendly but aren’t fans of their fellow canines. They tend to drool a lot but are really easy to groom. It’s a bit difficult to train them as they are known to have low intelligence, but they could make the best pets out there once comfortable.

Bulldogs were known to be a ferocious breed in the past due to their fighting origin with the mastiffs. But today, they are known for being the most loving and affectionate breeds. The authentic version of a puppy face! English Bulldogs fall under the group of only companion dog breeds as they have lazy nature, making them the least favourite choice for working or sports dogs. A Bulldog usually lives up to 8 years max and grows around 15 inches tall at the shoulder. They are pretty healthy for their size, measuring up to 50 pounds. 

5. Dachshund (Miniature Smooth Haired) 

Miniature Short Haired Dachshunds are among the most active and alert dog breeds in the UK, which always enter into the most common dog breed lists. Their alertness and protectiveness make them the perfect watchdog. The Dachshund was believed to have originated from Germany in the 15th century through some evidence suggesting otherwise. They were bred to be hunters, which they excelled at that time in successfully hunting large animals. According to experts, The Miniature Smooth Haired Dachshund is a crossbreed with toy terriers and miniature pinschers.

Miniature Short Haired Dachshund has a series of nicknames earned throughout the eras. Some famous nicknames include hot dog, wiener dog, Dachels, sausage dog, Doxie etc. They are also well-known for having short legs and a long body. Miniature Smooth Haired Dachshund lives around 16 years and is categorised as the Hound Dog group. They are friendly but not stranger friendly. They could be somewhat sensitive and have zero tolerance to cold weather. 

6. Spaniel (English Springer) 

The English Springer Spaniel dog breed could be both working dog and companion like a pro! They have a history as a gun dog, show dog or game dog in the field, hunt tests and more. Experts say they make the best companion for hiking in the mountains as pets. You will never have a dull moment with them for sure.

The name Springer Spaniel came from the way the breed ‘springs’ at a game for hunters. They are enthusiastic creatures who are known to be loyal and intelligent to the family. Very affectionate and friendly. They are even pet-friendly but might see birds as prey since they were brought up to hunt them. The English Springer is an active and energetic dog and requires much exercise as they were bred to be hunters. However, they are obedient and great athletes. 

You can’t leave an English Springer alone for a long time as they are very people-oriented breeds. They also don’t adapt well to the apartment living environment as it goes against their nature. You can call them a bit sensitive, but they adapt well to warm weather conditions. They are not that easy to groom. You definitely need to hassle on that part. 

You can quickly train an English Springer as they have a level of intelligence. An English Springer is a 1 foot 10 inches tall max at the shoulder and weighs around 45 to 55 pounds. They are super playful and love playing with their owners, especially outdoor games. They usually live up to 15 years.

7. Retriever (Golden)

The Golden Retriever is an all-time favourite and has always made its way into the UK’s most popular and common dog breeds. They are highly social, loyal and a true definition of beauty. Once trained, they make the most disciplined pet ever and stand by your side like a good boy! They are affectionate, lively and extremely friendly. The Golden is usually slow to mature; as a result, the silly and playfulness of a baby trait stay deep-rooted in them for the initial years of their growth. It makes them equally funny yet annoying. As a pet owner, you have to be patient with your golden regarding this issue. 

Having a Golden Retriever could bring great joy to the family. They are said to be the best companions due to their gentle and friendly nature. The golden is a family dog and very much family-oriented. They love to make a beeline around their owner or the family they live with, so they forget about having any space around them. The Golden Retriever is a sensitive dog breed and finds it hard to adapt to an apartment living environment. They are welcoming to everyone, even to strangers. They demand attention to shedding as their body hairs grow comparatively long. They drool a lot, and it’s a hassle to groom them. The Golden is super easy to train, extremely playful and has A LOT of energy. They usually grow 21 to 24 inches tall and live around 10 to 12 years.

Originally the Golden Retriever was bred to do physical work such as retrieving ducks for hunters. Even in today’s time, they are trained to do a job, even if it’s just fetching a newspaper or walking up to family members. Golden also requires daily exercise. You must take them for a walk or, better, even at a beach. They love playing in the water. Moreover, A tired Golden is a true treat to the eyes. They tend to get lazy yet highly well-behaved.

8. Alsatian

Alsatian or The German Shepherd is one of the scariest yet undeniably beautiful dog breeds of all time. They are capable working dogs as well as capable protectors. Their canine teeth could literally rip a human flash into pieces. Despite the fact, they are affectionate once trained and fully devote themselves to their owners. Their courage is commendable. Alsatians are one of the most recognised and famous dog breeds around the world. Showbiz is partly responsible for that. You can find Alsatian in Hollywood movies either scaring the thugs or chasing the hero in the cold. 

A German Shepherd has a versatile job. They could be used as protectors, serving in the military, games, tracking criminals, sniffing illegal substances or simply for companionship. Alsatians are great search and rescue dogs too. In the 9/11 terrorist attack at the World Trade Center, they were used for looking for survivors, which they did a great job. Due to their versatility and high level of energy, they require a lot of exercise on a daily basis. If not, they tend to get frustrated and sometimes aggressive as they might start chewing anything in their way. So yes, they are not for everyone. 

Alsatians have an excellent trait of suspicion, which makes them the best watchdog. But they tend to stay aloof most of the time, which makes them least approaching. So you can already guess they are definitely okay with being left alone. They are sensitive and adjust well to both cold and warm weather. They are friendly and easy to groom. They don’t even drool that much and could be trained without any hardship. The German Shepherd is categorised as Herding Dogs. They live up to 14 years or more and could grow 2 feet tall at the shoulder. Alsatians weigh around 75 to 95 pounds. 

9. Pug

Pugs are addressed as clowns due to their high sense of humour and funny face in the breed circle. They are dependent breeds that feel heartsick if ignored by their owners. They love to stay close to their owners and have a high need for affection. They love to play games. Like their brother breeds, Pugs are also known to be loyal and charming. They have a playful and mischievous nature which entertains their masters greatly. But they are also famous for being willful and stubborn, which makes their training an incredible hassle.

Pugs are square and thick, weighing around 19 pounds. Their heads are large and round, with even more round and enormous eyes. They have deep wrinkles on their faces which makes them look comical. They are somewhat known to be sensitive and have poor tolerance for both cold and warm weather. They need a large amount of care with their shedding and are relatively easy to groom. They have a bit low level of intelligence and don’t require that much exercise as they lack energy most of the time. 

Pugs usually live for 12 to 15 years. They are about 14 inches tall at the shoulder, and due to their quiet, dependent and inactive nature, they are only fit to be companion dogs. 

Over 300 and more dog breeds are available globally, and the UK has around 220 more or less recognised pedigree dog breeds officially registered. The topmost popular dog breeds mentioned above have consistently ranked the UK’s dog breed popularity list due to their exceptional traits and loyal nature. Their various acts of affection, playfulness or courage will genuinely capture your heart, and undoubtedly, they could be the best of the best friends you could have in your life!

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May 23, 2023

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