Decades by the Dogs

They say every dog has its day – and every dog has its decade, too! Breed popularities come and go, and each time in recent history has had its own most sought after pup. In fact, the AKC has been tracking breed popularity since 1880! We, of course, think any type of  breed of doggie is the best kind of doggie, but let’s take a stroll down memory lane and see what breeds hit all-time highs through the years! 🙌

Pooches of the 1890’s

Always #1 for best snuggles!

The turn of the century was ruled by a gentle giant – the Saint Bernard! These big bundles of love were the perfect mix of family dog (due to their sweet nature) and guard dog (due to their sheer size) and were much sought after before the turn of the century. In fact, when Saint Bernards were first imported into England, they were referred to as the ‘Sacred Dog’ – awww!

Doggies of the 1910’s

All-American, baby

Marking the first of of two turns as number one dog of the decade, the Boston Terrier leaps into first place. It is the only true ‘Made in the U.S.A.” breed (as an American cross between an English bulldog and a white English Terrier) to hold the top spot. These lively and friendly dogs captured the hearts of Americans in the early 20th century and became valued playmates for children.

Pups of the 1920’s

Big bones, big heart

In part spurred by the recent end of WWI, in part bolstered by a resurgence in want of large, loyal family dogs that serve double duty as playmate and protector, the German Shepherd nabs the number one spot for the Roaring 20s. Full of courage and a want to help its human friends, this bestie took the 20s by storm.

Furballs of the 1930’s

Back in black

Back for more! The Boston Terrier fell the number two briefly in the 20s but this snappy, energetic bestie was back on top in the 1930s. In a Depression-era America, the Boston’s playful nature and ability to exude merriment was a quality most people craved.

Dogs of the 1940’s

Yas, queen

Cocker Spaniels were the glamorous winners of the undeniably glamorous 1940s. With their shiny coats and soft, glistening ears, Cocker Spaniels dominated a decade marked by a desire to climb out of the dredges of the Depression and elevate one’s creature comforts. The besties sure are beautiful!

Puppies of the 1950’s

We can already see that tail wagging!

Let’s hear it for the Beagle! Bounding in to the number one spot in the 50s, the Beagle became synonymous with the family-centric 50s. Perfect for the all-American kid and a big backyard, the energetic, loyal, and loving Beagle was the preferred bestie of the decade. (Shiloh, anyone?)

Fur-babies of the 1960’s & 1970’s

Shantay you stay

Ooh la la, the Sixties were trés chic, and the most popular dog breed, the French Poodle, embodied that sense of style and sophistication. These big beauties are great sport dogs, but the 1960s saw their human besties playing up their more fashionable characteristics. In a decade marked early on by the popularity of French fashion such as Chanel, the poodle fits right in. Come the 1970s, a decade of joy and excess, the poodle continued its hot streak – 20 years of gorgeous besties!

Bffs of the 1980’s

She’s beauty, she’s grace…

As living the high life and valuing a glamorous style came back into style with the decadence of the 1980s, so did the beauty of the cocker spaniel! Just being seen with this pretty pupper was the definition of high society – and those snuggles are 24k gold!

Besties of 1990’s – Today!


One bestie is never enough!

Let’s hear it for the labs! Peaking in the 1990s, the Labrador Retriever has held the top spot as America’s most popular dog breed every since. Big, goofy, fun-loving, and just plain loving, the lab looks like it’s here to stay. From yellow to chocolate to black, there is a flavor of America’s dog for every family. We just love these top besties! 🥇

Did your own bestie make the cut as top of a decade? Will the lab ever relinquish it’s crown 👑? Let us know your take on your own best of the besties!