A Quick Guide to Popular Dog Breeds

The following are 16 popular dog breeds that people turn to when they are looking to find a dog to own. Each of these breeds is popular for different reasons. When looking for a dog, it might be a good thing to know something about these popular breeds before you begin your search.

The 16 popular dog breeds are:


The Beagle is a scent hound and is an energetic dog, great for a family. Beagles love to hunt and are prone to wander if given the chance to escape.


The Boxer is a working dog with a shorthair coat. They are used in search and rescue work as well as police work and in the military. They are lively and strong and extremely loyal. They also have a high energy level like the Beagle does.


The Bulldog is a non-sporting dog that is strong, kind and courageous. This is NOT a vicious or aggressive dog. They crave human attention and need their humans to pay attention to them in order to be happy.

They are very possessive of food and should never be fed while kids or other pets are present. They make excellent guard dogs.


The Chihuahua is a toy breed with an average weight of only 6 lbs. They are the oldest but smallest breed in America. They can have very unique personalities and are energetic, yet graceful.

They are often spoken of regarding their “human-like” expressions. They are NOT well suited for families with kids or those with other pets.


The Dachshund was originally bred for hunting badger. “Dachs” is the German word for Bader. This is a very intuitive dog and makes a good companion who loves to be around people. This is a very friendly and outgoing dog.

German Shepherd

The German Shepherd makes a great companion dog and is a dedicated worker, good for herding. This is a strong dog that is highly energetic, curious and dependable. They usually get along well with other household pets.

Golden Retriever

The Golden Retriever is a loyal dog that is kind and very energetic. This is a water lover who also loves to retrieve objects. They are very perceptive and very intelligent. They are good with other household pets and patient and gentle with kids.

They require lots of attention and would not do well with a two-career family as they crave human companionship.

Labrador Retriever

The Labrador Retriever is a sporting dog that is a popular family pet. They are highly intelligent, loyal and a very deeply devoted pet. They get along well with other dogs and make excellent watchdogs. They are very high-spirited dogs that love to play with family members, run and swim.


The Maltese is a toy breed averaging in weight from 4 to 7 lbs. They are very playful, social dogs that are happy to be the center of attention. They are very gentle and trusting. They love to be cuddled and held.

They do not do well with ill-behaved children. They can be over-protective of their human family, and of their “territory”. They are fearless, and agile and require a high level of exercise. They do need to be securely leashed and supervised at all times.


The poodle is a non-sporting breed that comes in all colors such as silver, cream, gray, blue, black, white, apricot, red, and brown. This is a very loyal dog, can be very athletic and yet graceful.

The poodle is very devoted to its owner. They have sensitive natures and do not respond well to harsh or heavy-handed methods. They usually love to swim and enjoy walks. They will run off if not secured with a lead or leash.

The toy poodle tends to be neurotic. The Standard poodle does well with children.


The Pomeranian is another toy breed that comes in all colors and pattern of coat. They are intelligent, and extremely loyal and loving towards family members. They are not good in homes with children as they can be very temperamental.

They do make good guard dogs and will bark when they sense danger. They are easy to train but difficult to housebreak. They can be litter box trained though, so that makes up for the difficulty in housebreaking.

They only require short walks. They do well in apartments.

Pit Bull

The Pit Bull is a favorite of farmers and ranchers for protecting livestock and to catch hogs and semi-wild cattle. This dog is really loyal and deeply devoted but affectionate and good-natured.

They do NOT make good guard dogs for humans though as they are too friendly. They need early socialization and obedience training. They need lots of exercise such as long walks, hiking, and plenty of play sessions with a Frisbee or ball.


The Pug is another of the toy breed dogs but can get up to 18 lbs in weight. Pugs make excellent watchdogs despite the size. They are very sturdy and can be a devoted companion. They are extremely good with kids.

They get along with other dogs but need to be socialized when they are young. They are very lively little dogs. This dog is susceptible to breathing problems and tires easily.


Rottweilers are working dogs and are usually black with tan markings. They do well with tracking, herding, police work, and guarding. They are a fun loving dog and can be very protective of a family and their home.

They need to be socialized at an early age. Obedience training is a must for this dog. They need a very large yard to run around in, preferably fenced. They love long walks and do well in different sports. They need two hours of exercising each day.

Shih Tzu

A Shih Tzu is a very active and happy dog. This is an intelligent dog that gets along well with older kids and other pets. These dogs can be easily spoiled. The Shih Tzu needs extensive grooming because they can get tangles and mats.

They can be very difficult to housetrain. They do not respond well to punishment. They do well with obedience training provided it is done with positive motivation. They are well suited for apartment living.


The Yorkie is another toy breed favorite and loves to be your “lap dog”. They are very intelligent dogs that crave human attention and make great companions. They are loyal and do well with older children.

They learn very quickly and must be given lots of praise during training. They do not need much exercise but do love do go for short walks. They need lots of attention.