March 07, 2012
The American Kennel Club recently announced its list of the most popular dogs in the U.S. Wouldn't you know it, the Labrador came in first — a spot it has held for 21 years. And, why not? This breed makes for an excellent family pet, not to mention the fact it's one of the most versatile hunting dogs around.
There aren't many working dogs that can excel in the upland and the water. If you're a pheasant and duck hunter, it's tough to beat a Lab, especially if he's a pointing Lab.
Moving up a spot to fourth, is the golden retriever, just behind the beagle and German Shepard — one of my favorites. A state trooper friend of mine was just delivered one of these "pups" (just barely a year old, Dax is already over 80 pounds). Obviously, not a gun dog, but what a beauty.
Another friend recently purchased a yellow pointing Lab, which comes from a long line of champions — or so he was told. We'll find out soon enough. Again, I love this breed's ability to hunt multiple types of game. They may not be as accomplished in the field as a pointer or setter, or as stout as a Chessie in the water, but you won't find many dogs that can excel at both, like a Lab does.
Here's the full listing of AKC's Top 10: