Special Report

America’s 50 Most Popular Dog Breeds

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45. Shiba Inu
> 2017 rank: 45 out of 192
> 2007 rank: 67 out of 136

The shiba inu originated in Japan and is a muscular dog once used as a hunter. It is that country’s oldest, smallest and most popular breed. The shiba inu was first brought to the United States after World War II and has been growing in popularity ever since.

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44. West Highland White Terriers
> 2017 rank: 42 out of 192
> 2007 rank: 35 out of 136

Known as the Westie, this breed originated as a hunting dog in Scotland where the tenacious dog pursued vermin and has retained a strong prey instinct. It has an all-white double coat and an inquisitive expression. It is smart, independent, and energetic, and needs careful training and lots of exercise.

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43. Bichon Frises
> 2017 rank: 46 out of 192
> 2007 rank: 32 out of 136

Bichon frise translates into English as curly dog. This breed’s most distinctive feature is its white coat, which accentuates its dark, inquisitive eyes. It has been described as a fluff ball of a dog and as a canine comedian, reflecting its winning personality.

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42. Rhodesian Ridgebacks
> 2017 rank: 41 out of 192
> 2007 rank: 53 out of 136

The Rhodesian Ridgeback is named for its land of origin, now Zimbabwe and Zambia, and for the distinctive ridge that runs along its back, which is formed by hair growing in the opposite direction from the rest of its coat. Bred to hunt lions, but not kill them, it’s an imposing looking dog. They are devoted to family and affectionate toward children.

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41. Belgian Malinois
> 2017 rank: 44 out of 192
> 2007 rank: 79 out of 136

This dog was bred to herd livestock around the Belgian city of Malines. It is versatile and hard working and is also used as a military and police dog. It makes for a great pet but needs more exercise than most dogs. Belgian Malinois bears a resemblance to a German shepherd dog.