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What are the most popular dogs in Canada? New report reveals which pooch breeds reign supreme

Find out what dog breeds are most popular among baby boomers versus Gen Z.

Dogs from left to right:British Boxer, Greyhound, Chihuahua, Chihuahua, Leonberger, Chihuahua, King Charles Spaniel, Schnauzer, Yorkshire Terrier, Schnauzer
Rover has ranked dog breeds in Canada. (Getty)

Rover has released its annual report on the trendiest and rarest dog breeds in Canada — and what helped pet owners make the decision on which dog to get.

The report came just days ahead of International Dog Day, marked on Aug. 26, and revealed some surprising — and not-so-surprising — data.

What are the most popular dogs in Canada?

In Canada, the majority of dog owners have a mixed dog, a breed that Rover describes as "a dog with known but varied lineages."

That makes up about 60 per cent of dog owners, making non-designer mixed breeds the most popular ones in the country. Rover said these "often hardy and always unique" dogs continually top in Canada and the U.S. for the most common breed.

About 40 per cent of dog owners have purebred dogs in Canada. Here's how the most popular breeds rank in 2023:

  1. Mixed

  2. Labrador Retriever

  3. Golden Retriever

  4. Goldendoodle

  5. German Shepherd

Doodles have made "a mark" over the past decade, Rover said.

Goldendoodles are among the top five most popular dog breeds in Canada. (Getty) A small Goldendoodle Puppy (Woody) sits upright underneath a standing larger Goldendoodle Puppy (Toby) in a backyard
Goldendoodles are among the top five most popular dog breeds in Canada. (Getty)

"This curly-haired cross-breed has more than doubled in Rover's database, growing from 5 per cent of all dogs on Rover in 2013 to 12 per cent in 2023. That's what we call oodles of Doodles!"

Though the mixed breed is most popular across all demographics in Canada, specific demographic have varied top second and third picks, according to Rover.

"For baby boomers, it's all about the friendly and outgoing Labrador retriever. Next up is Gen X, whose favorite breed is the sweet yet sassy chihuahua," it reported.

"For millennials, the top dog breed is the confident and smart German Shepherd. And for Gen Z, it's the sweet-tempered and devoted golden retriever."

What are the trendiest dogs in Canada?

Rover also identified the most trending dogs, based on breeds that increase in popularity year-over-year.

"While some breeds are perennially popular, others are just starting to make their mark as what we call trending breeds," it wrote in the report.

Pomeranians are the trendiest dog in Canada in 2023. (Getty)
Pomeranians are the trendiest dog in Canada in 2023. (Getty)

In 2023, the highest trending dog in Canada was the Pomeranian — "tiny but mighty," according to Rover.

Here's the full list of the top trending dogs in the country:

  1. Pomeranian

  2. Cavalier King Charles Spaniel

  3. Samoyed

  4. Shiba Inu

  5. Chihuahua

  6. Pug

  7. West Highland White Terrier

  8. Bernedoodle

This list differed from country to country. In the U.S., Bernedoodles won the top spot, while the continental bulldog was trendiest in France and the toy poodle in Spain.

What are the rarest dogs in Canada?

A saluki dog [Persian greyhound] running on the beach with a tennis ball in it's mouth.
A saluki dog is seen running on the beach with a tennis ball in its mouth. (Getty)

The rarest dog in Canada was identified as the Saluki dog, also known as a Persian Greyhound. It's one of the fastest dog breeds in the world.

The complete rank list for rarest dogs includes:

  1. Saluki

  2. Barbet

  3. Welsh Terrier

  4. Japanese Spitz

  5. Miniature Bull Terrier

Dog-owner resemblance common

In addition to their rankings, Rover reported on some attitudes and behaviours of pet owners.

For instance, it found that 35 per cent of dog owners don't care about the breed of their pet, adding 81 per cent "would still have gotten a dog, even if their top three breed choices were unavailable."

The most important characteristics for owners choosing a dog were family-friendliness (22 per cent), cuddliness (18 per cent), intelligence (18 per cent). Energy levels got equal votes, with low-energy and high-energy both at 13 per cent.

A whopping 64 per cent of dog owners claim they resemble their dogs — both in looks and personality.

Man kisses his best friend dog in matching blue hoodies in bright green park background outdoors
Majority of dog owners in Canada think their dogs look like them. (Getty)

An overwhelming 90 per cent of dog owners surveyed said they would choose the same breed again.

Rover also looked into social media behaviour of dog owners across demographics.

"Gen X pet parents post pictures of their dog on social media most often, with 46 per cent admitting to posting once a week or more–compared to 41 per cent of millennials."

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