Labs continue 26-year reign as top dog

A black Labrador retriever. (Photo: Andreas/Flickr/Creative Commons)

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A black Labrador retriever. (Photo: Andreas/Flickr/Creative Commons)

Black, yellow or chocolate, the Labrador retriever continues to be the most popular dog.

The breed's eager-to-please temperament, intelligence and athleticism make it the most popular breed for the 26th straight year, the American Kennel Club said Tuesday.

"The Labrador retriever has a strong hold on the top spot, and doesn't show signs of giving it up any time soon," Gina DiNardo, the dog registry's vice president, said in a news release. "The Lab is such a versatile dog that it's no wonder it makes a great companion for a variety of lifestyles."

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While the Labrador continues its reign, the Rottweiler’s popularity is slowly ascending. The breed is ranked eighth, its highest since it was No. 2 in 1997.

“Keep your eye on the Rottweiler, though. It’s been quietly winning hearts over the past decade,” DiNardo said.

The second most popular breed is the German shepherd, followed by the golden retriever. The rankings reflect the number of puppies and other dogs registered in the AKC’s 189 recognized breeds.

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