Dog breeds

The 15 Most Popular Large Dog Breeds of 2020

There’s a reason dogs are called man’s best friend. Not only do they provide companionship, but they are entertaining, loving, and bring us joy when times are tough.

When the closures were instituted last March, many people started working from home, which led to an increase in puppy purchases and adoptions. A total of 3.2 million households in the UK have acquired a pet since the start of the pandemic, according to the Pet Food Manufacturers’ Association.

In the United States, animal rescue centers across the country saw an increase in adoptions and fostering requests at the start of the Covid-19 pandemic, as well as sales. So what are the most popular large dog breeds in 2020? Here is the summary according to the American Kennel Club.

Labrador Retrievers

The most popular dog breed in the United States since the early 1990s, the humble Labrador Retriever remains the most popular of all dogs, big and small. Labs are known to be friendly, easy-going, obedient, and make great pets.

A labrador retriever at Crufts dog show in Birmingham, England UK on March 11, 2018.
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German shepherd

German Shepherds may seem intimidating, but they make loving, loyal companions and excel in working roles. They perform relief work within the police and military, work on farms, and assist with search and rescue and drug detection.

German Shepherd Dog NYC 2015
A German Shepherd seen at the American Kennel Club Top Breeds of 2014 event in New York City on February 26, 2015.
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Golden retriever

Golden retrievers are easily recognized by their long golden coats. They are popular as disability assistance and search and rescue dogs, but were originally bred to assist hunters and retrieve downed waterfowl such as ducks.

Golden retriever
Golden Retrievers are friendly and gentle dogs.
Jamie McCarthy/Getty


When we think of poodles, many of us imagine the tiny toy poodles that are becoming increasingly popular with dog owners. However, the standard poodle can weigh between 45 and 70 pounds, with females averaging between 45 and 60 pounds and males between 45 and 70 pounds. These athletic, attractive dogs are smart and love to learn, so training is a must.

2020 NYC standard poodle
A standard poodle poses for a photo on May 15, 2020 in New York City.
Cindy Ord/Getty Images


These large, hardy dogs were originally bred to accompany the Romans across Germany, driving their cattle and guarding outposts. The breed is named after the town of Rottweil in southern Germany where many dogs were left. Rottweilers are not suitable for inexperienced dog owners, but they make excellent pets and working dogs with the right training.

Rottweiler in Turkey dog ​​show 2019
A Rottweiler seen at the Ankara National Breed Standards Competition in Ankara, Turkey on August 25, 2019.
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Great Dane

One of the tallest dog breeds in the world, the Great Dane can grow up to 86cm in height and is descended from medieval hunting dogs. These giants were used to hunt large wildlife such as bears, boars and deer.

Great Danes
A Great Dane at the Westminster Kennel Club Dog Show at Madison Square Garden, February 2017
Drew Angerer

siberian husky

These working sled dogs have beautiful thick coats and were developed to work in packs, pulling light loads in frozen environments. Siberian Huskies are intelligent and love human company, but can be stubborn.

siberian husky
A team of Siberian Huskies pull a sled during practice for the Aviemore Sled Dog Rally in Feshiebridge, Scotland
Jeff J. Mitchell/Getty

Doberman Pinscher

Doberman Pinschers originated in Germany in the late 19th century and were primarily bred as guard dogs. They are believed to be a mix of different dog breeds including the Rottweiler and the German Pinscher. These dogs work well in police and military work, but also make friendly pets.

Doberman Pinscher
A Doberman wears a baseball scarf in Seattle, Washington.
Lindsey Wasson/Getty Images/Getty

bernese mountain dog

Bernese Mountain Dogs are farmland working dogs of Switzerland. They were developed for herding livestock, pulling carts and guarding buildings. Like many larger dogs, the breed unfortunately has a shorter lifespan of only six to eight years and is prone to diseases such as cancer.

bernese mountain dog
A Bernese Mountain Dog at the Westminster Kennel Club’s 140th Annual Dog Show in 2016
Matthew Eisman/Getty


Mastiffs are among the largest dogs in the world and the breed dates back thousands of years. Adult males can weigh up to 200 pounds and females can weigh around 150 pounds. Despite their imposing size, however, Mastiffs are calm and affectionate if introduced to many situations as puppies.

Neapolitan mastiff dog show NYC
A Neapolitan Mastiff competing at the 2015 Westminster Kennel Club Dog Show in New York
Andrew Burton/Getty Images


Originally bred in Hungary to work as pointers and retrievers, Vizslas are red-haired hunting dogs that make excellent companions. These elegant dogs like to be active and therefore need owners who are happy to take long walks and who have the time to exercise their dogs well.

A wire-haired vizsla dog in New York
A Wirehaired Vizsla competing at the Westminster Kennel Club Dog Show in 2016
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Newfoundlands were originally used as working dogs to pull fishermen’s nets and haul timber from the forest, which explains their enormous size and strong build. These dogs are gentle, but owners should be prepared to groom Newfoundlands regularly due to their thick coats.

Newfoundland UK Dog Show 2018
A Newfoundland dog pictured at the Crufts dog show in 2018
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Rhodesian Ridgeback

The Rhodesian Ridgeback comes from Southern Africa and is the product of several breeds, including Greyhounds and Great Danes. Originally, these large dogs hunted in the wild, but they also protected families living in hostile environments, keeping intruders away from homes and land.

Rhodesian Ridgeback
A Rhodesian Ridgeback
Matt Cardy/Getty


According to the Kennel Club, these big, smelly dogs may have descended from dogs once kept at St Hubert’s Monastery in Belgium. Despite their giant size, they are gentle and calm, known for their incredible sense of smell and tenacious tracking instinct.

A bloodhound in Washington, DC
Saul Loeb/AFP


Akitas come from the mountainous regions of northern Japan, where they were used to guard households and track big game, including deer, elk, and bears. Although Akitas can make great pets, they prefer to be just animals and don’t always get along with other dogs unless they are very well trained.

American Akita Budapest 2017
An American Akita seen at the Budapest Exhibition Center in 2012.
Attila Kisbenedek/AFP via Getty Images