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Feb. 28, 2012, 9:45 a.m. EST

German Shepherd Overtakes Labrador Retriever to Become Chicago's Top Dog

NEW YORK, Feb. 28, 2012 /PRNewswire via COMTEX/ -- Nationally, Labrador Retriever Remains America's Most Popular Breed While the Beagle and Rottweiler Make Strong Gains --

In what might be considered one of the biggest upsets in Chicago this year, the German Shepherd took the title of "Top Dog" away from the lovable Labrador Retriever according to the American Kennel Club's (AKC®) 2011 ranking of the most popular dogs in the U.S.

"Proving the 'Windy City' makes its own trends, the German Shepherd overtook the lovable Labrador Retriever last year to become top dog," said AKC Spokesperson Lisa Peterson.

        Chicago's Most Popular Breeds 2011*     Chicago's Most Popular Breeds 2010*
        1.  German Shepherd Dog                 1.    Labrador Retriever
        2.  Labrador Retriever                  2.    German Shepherd Dogs
        3.  Golden Retriever                    3.    Golden Retriever
        4.  Bulldog                             4.    Yorkshire Terrier
        5.  Boxer/Rottweiler**                  5.    Bulldog
        7.  French Bulldog/Yorkshire Terrier*** 6.    Boxer
        9.  Cavalier King Charles Spaniel/      7.    Rottweiler
        Doberman Pinscher****
                                                8.    Doberman Pinscher
                                                9.    Leonberger
                                                10.  Shih Tzu

*Registration data pulled from Chicago zip codes as specified by U.S. Postal Service **Tied for #5 (2011) ***Tied for #7 (2011) ****Tied for #9 (2011)

Notable trends in Chicago's top breeds:

The Rottweiler, which entered the top 10 nationally last year, tied the Boxer as Chicago's fifth most popular dog.

The Cavalier King Charles Spaniel jumped one place to share the title of Chicago's 9th most popular breed with the Doberman Pinscher.

You can say the 'Windy City' has a love affair with Vizslas. Bred as hunting dogs for hundreds of years, this lively and affectionate breed leapt 10 spots to become 12th most popular locally. The breed is ranked 37th nationally, but has a good chance to break into Chicago's top 10 next year.

The AKC also announced its nationwide rankings today. The Beagle made big news by overtaking the beloved Yorkshire Terrier to become the third most popular dog breed, while the Golden Retriever advanced from the fifth to the fourth most popular dog breed. The Rottweiler also made big news by unseating the Shih Tzu - which had been in the top 10 since 2000. But fans of the Labrador Retriever need not fear: the beloved Lab remained the champ - a spot it has now held for 21 consecutive years - thanks to its well-earned reputation for playfulness and loyalty, and its use as a police and search-and-rescue dog.

        Most Popular Breeds Nationwide
        1. Labrador Retriever
        2. German Shepherd Dog
        3. Beagle
        4. Golden Retriever
        5. Yorkshire Terrier
        6. Bulldog
        7. Boxer
        8. Poodle
        9. Dachshund
        10. Rottweiler

A complete list of AKC's Most Popular Breeds, including national trends and statistics for 50 U.S. cities, is available on the AKC website at .

For more information on finding a responsible breeder in your area, go to .

Get social with the AKC! Join AKC on Facebook and Twitter.

[EDITOR'S NOTE: Add to your story with a list of AKC trivia questions based on the rankings or book an interview with an AKC Spokesperson by contacting Jessica Rice at (212) 696-8346 or Photos from the press conference are also available upon request to members of the press.]

The American Kennel Club (AKC) proudly celebrated its 125th Anniversary in 2009. Since 1884, the not-for-profit organization has maintained the largest registry of purebred dogs in the world, and today its rules govern more than 20,000 canine competitions each year. The AKC is dedicated to upholding the integrity of its registry, promoting the sport of purebred dogs and breeding for type and function. Along with its nearly 5,000 licensed and member clubs and its affiliated organizations, the AKC advocates for the purebred dog as a family companion, advances canine health and well-being, works to protect the rights of all dog owners and promotes responsible dog ownership. Affiliate AKC organizations include the AKC Humane Fund, AKC Canine Health Foundation, AKC Companion Animal Recovery and the AKC Museum of the Dog. For more information, visit .

SOURCE American Kennel Club

Copyright (C) 2012 PR Newswire. All rights reserved


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