New figures reveal the French Bulldog is the UK’s most popular dog

With Crufts kicking off today a new campaign from Millets reveals the UK’s most popular dog breeds.

Following the release of the official puppy registration figures, the Millets campaign uncovers the UK’s favourite pedigree dog and the stats show that there is a new dog in town.

Records reveal the French Bulldog as the UK’s favourite breed for the first time ever, following a steady period of decline for the Labrador Retriever.

After seeing an exponential surge in popularity of the French Bulldog, the Fenchie has overtaken the Labrador as the UK’s most popular dog breed.

Providing unique insight into the date, Millets conducted in-depth analysis of official dog registration statistics from The Kennel Club to find out what our favourite breeds are and how this has changed over the past 10 years (2009-2018).

The stats give a good indication as to which breeds people are most likely to be based on the number of registrations made.

The figures reveal that the overall number of pedigree puppies registered fell sharply by 14% between 2010 (257,062) and 2015 (219,965). The Kennel Club put this decline down to a rise in popularity of cross breeds.

Since then, however the number of pedigree puppy registrations has recovered well, reaching 250,611 in 2018.

For the first time on record, the most popular dog breed of 2018 was the French Bulldog, with 14.7% (36,785) of puppy registrations.

The faithful Frenchie has surged in popularity following high profile celebrity ownerships and an upwards trend for city lifestyles.

The so-called Andrex puppies with their playful nature and calm temperament have been beaten to the top spot, with 14.6% (36,526) of pups registered being Labrador Retrievers.

Also making the top five were Cocker Spaniels (9.5%), Bulldogs (4.3%) and English Springer Spaniels (4.1%). In contrast, amongst the rarest breeds registered in 2018 were Lomondors, the Laekenois variety of the Belgian Shepherd Dog, and the Hungarian Kuvasz – each with just one pup.

Other breeds that have seen significant changes in popularity since 2009 include Bulldogs (+152.9%), Pugs (+104.3%), German Shepherds (-29.4%) and English Springer Spaniels (20.1%).

Some of our oldest and most historic native breeds are declining and a total of 29 breeds are on The Kennel Club’s list of native vulnerable breeds. Included in this list are the Deerhound, King Charles Spaniels and the Cardigan Welsh Corgi.

Speaking about the data, Kennel Club Secretary Caroline Kisko said: “There were just 24 vulnerable breeds and seven seemed at risk a decade ago. There are now another seven breeds either vulnerable or at risk and we could lose even more of our most iconic and historic native dog breeds if people don’t look beyond the most obvious choices and start to explore the huge diversity of breeds, we’re lucky enough to have in this country.”

Ahead of Crufts, she added: “There are 221 breeds of dog and they were all very different, suited to different people and lifestyles. We encourage people to do their research and if they’re not sure people can meet nearly all the dog breeds in the Discover Dogs are of Crufts.”