A new study has revealed the most popular dog breed in every U.S. state, with one particular type of pet pooch leading the way by some considerable distance.
Everyone has their reasons for preferring a certain type of dog: some seek a canine that’s child friendly, others prioritize a pet pooch who loves walking and the outdoors, and a few even go for a four-legged friend who is happy to sit inside a handbag.
What many may not realize, however, is that your choice of dog breed can actually say a lot about you as a person.
A study conducted by psychologists from Bath Spa University in the U.K. concluded that our breed preference can often be a reflection of our own personality.
“We go for dogs that are a bit like us, just as we go for a romantic partner who is a bit like us,” lead researcher Lance Workman explained to Live Science. The study saw 1,000 owners of purebred dogs complete a questionnaire designed to assess their personality traits.
What they found was a correlation between the type of dog and the owner’s personality. For example, those who owned golden retrievers, Labradors or Chihuahuas were most agreeable while those who owned bulldogs or German shepherds were more extroverted.
The apparent level-headedness of Labrador owners might go some way to explaining the results of a new survey conducted by Embrace Pet Insurance exploring the most popular dog breeds in each U.S. state.
Labrador retrievers led the way, with the study finding them to be the most popular breed in 80 percent of states. “Being known as one of the kindest, most even-tempered breeds out there, it’s no secret why this incredibly loyal and intelligent breed is a favorite for the majority of the country,” an Embrace Pet Insurance spokesperson said.
According to the data, Labradors led the way in: Alabama, Alaska, Arizona, Colorado, Connecticut, California, Delaware, Florida, Georgia, Idaho, Illinois, Indiana, Iowa, Kentucky, Louisiana, Maryland, Massachusetts, Maine, Michigan, Mississippi, Missouri, Montana, Nevada, New Hampshire, New Jersey, New Mexico, New York, North Carolina, Ohio, Oklahoma, Oregon, Pennsylvania, Rhode Island, South Carolina, South Dakota, Texas, Vermont, Virginia, Washington, and Wisconsin.
Golden retrievers rank as America’s second most popular breed, with the research noting that this type of canine’s “friendly and outgoing” demeanor made them a great addition for any families eager to welcome a dog into their home. They ranked as the most popular breed in Arkansas, Kansas, Utah and Wyoming.
Interestingly, German shepherds came in third, with their hardworking, protective approach making them popular in North Dakota and Tennessee.
French bulldogs were a popular choice too, coming out on top as Hawaii’s most popular dog breed while the protective qualities of Doberman pinschers helped that particular breed rank as Minnesota’s top dog breed.
There were similar outliers in Nebraska and West Virginia, where the goldendoodle and miniature schnauzer came out on top as the most popular breed in those two states respectively.
Jenna Mahan, director of claims and underwriting at Embrace Pet Insurance, further analyzed the data by region and found some interesting additional insights.
While Labradors, golden retrievers, and mixed breed dogs outnumber all others in most states, looking at the data by region revealed some unique quirks. For example, in the Midwest, there are more Great Danes, Cavalier King Charles spaniels, Bernese Mountain dogs and miniature schnauzers than average.
Mahan also found that in the Northeast, there appears to be more Cavalier King Charles Spaniels, Havanese, Cockapoo, Bernese Mountain dogs, Dachshund and Pembroke Welsh Corgi’s than average.
In the South, meanwhile, there tend to be more miniature schnauzers, Maltese and pugs than average. Elsewhere, in the West, there appeared to be more Chihuahuas, Maltipoos, shih tzus and miniature schnauzers than average.
“It makes sense that some of the larger breeds are popular in areas like the Midwest, as those breeds lend well to having larger spaces and yards to run around,” an Embrace Pet Insurance spokesperson said.
“You tend to see this same trend with smaller breeds in the Northeast, however it’s important to note that region includes states like Vermont, which can explain the Bernese Mountain dogs prevalence as well.”
In addition to the most popular dog breed data, Mahan also pulled data to determine the most popular pet names by state and found that “Luna” is the most popular pet name in 24 states. The top five states with the most Lunas are California (734), Florida (311), New York (231), Washington (228) and New Jersey (152).