The Most Popular Dogs Around the World

Different dogs isolated on white
© Dora Zett/

Written by Drew Wood

Published: April 19, 2024

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Dogs are more popular in some parts of the world than others, and the preferred breeds differ by country as well. In some countries, dogs are more valued as pets, while in other places, they primarily serve functions like guarding people and property and working on farms. Based on Google searches for dogs in different countries, these are the most popular dog breeds around the world:


Boerboel in the woods

The powerful boerboel was bred to defend livestock from African predators such as lions and hyenas.

©Natalia Fesiun/

Larger guard dogs are popular across most of Africa. Rottweilers win out in Libya, Tunisia, Algeria, Morocco, Mali, Burkina Faso, Côte d’Ivoire, Cameroon, Angola, Mali, and Madagascar. In Central and West Africa, German shepherds are more popular. This includes Senegal, Ghana, Togo, Benin, Niger, Nigeria, Ethiopia, Kenya, Uganda, Congo, the Democratic Republic of Congo, and Gabon. Southern Africa is the domain of the boerboel, a powerful guard dog. They are the most popular breed in South Africa, Namibia, Zimbabwe, and Mozambique. Botswana favors the Rhodesian ridgeback, Rwanda prefers the bulldog, and Egyptians like the golden retriever.


Musher and his Greenland dogs on a tourist dog sledge trip

Greenland dogs are one of the breeds once used in Antarctic expeditions.


Antarctic explorers brought sled dogs to the continent as early as 1899. Dogs continued to be part of scientific teams there until an international treaty in 1994 banned all non-indigenous animals on the continent except humans. Some breeds that used to be kept on the continent were wolf-husky hybrids, Greenland dogs, and Argentine polar dogs (now extinct).


Golden Retriever Dog on a road trip

Golden retrievers are goofy love-monsters, beloved in Asia and around the world.

©MPH Photos/

Around most of South and East Asia, golden retrievers are very popular. They are the choice of people in Mongolia, Nepal, India, Laos, Malaysia, Brunei, and Indonesia. Second place goes to the German shepherd, the most popular dog in Pakistan, Bangladesh, Bhutan, and Myanmar. Third place goes to the Shiba Inu, which is popular in Japan, South Korea, and Singapore. In the Philippines, shih tzus are preferred. Cambodians like pugs and Vietnamese people like poodles.

Australia / Oceania

Close up portrait of a adorable purebred Border Collie dog looking aside raising up one of his front paws isolated over grey wall background with copy space. Funny puppy showing tongue, mouth open.

Extraordinarily smart and trainable, border collies are popular in Australia.


In Australia itself, border collies are the top breed. This makes sense, given the large amount of sheep and other livestock raised in Australia—there’s plenty for a herding dog to do! What about other parts of Oceania? Golden retrievers are the top dogs in New Zealand and German shepherds are in Papua New Guinea and Fiji.


Grey Cane Corso dog playing in field

The cane corso is particularly popular in the Balkans.


When it comes to dog breeds, Europe is all over the map. Dog ownership is popular, and many of the countries are wealthy, so virtually every breed is available there. Here’s a list of some of the favorite breeds on the continent:

  • Australian shepherd – France, Germany, Austria
  • Beagle – Portugal
  • Border collie – Czech Republic, Hungary, Iceland, Slovenia, Belgium, Andorra, Spain
  • Cane corso – Croatia, Slovakia, Montenegro, Serbia, Georgia, Macedonia
  • Doberman – Russia, Lithuania, Belarus, Ukraine, Moldova
  • German shepherd – Latvia, Cyprus
  • Golden retriever – Denmark, Luxembourg, Greece, Ireland, Italy, Norway
  • Labradoodle – Netherlands
  • Labrador retriever – Finaland
  • Maltese – Poland
  • Rottweiler – Albania, Bosnia & Herzegovina, Armenia
  • Rough collie – Bulgaria
  • Shiba inu – Estonia, Malta

Middle East and Central Asia

Young german shepherd puppy laying down looking at the camera

German shepherds are one of the most popular dog breeds in the Middle East.

©josephgruber/iStock via Getty Images

Traditionally, dogs are considered an unclean animal in Islam. So popular dogs in the Middle East and Central Asia tend to be those that are used as working dogs, not pets so much. Large guard dogs are especially popular. German shepherds rule in Afghanistan, Bahrain, the Maldives, Oman, Qatar, Iraq, and Jordan. Dobermans are popular in Kazakhstan, Turkey, and the Palestinian territories. People in Uzbekistan like Rottweilers. Border collies win in Israel.

Surprisingly, golden retrievers are the most popular dog in the region in Kuwait, Saudi Arabia, and the United Arab Emirates. These dogs tend to be popular in the West. These particular countries have large numbers of international workers and send a lot of students to study in western colleges and universities, so this may help explain the interest in goldens there.

North America

chihuahua dog at the ocean shore beach wearing red funny sunglasses

Chihuahuas are sitting pretty in Mexico.

©Vibe Images/

Google searches indicate that Australian shepherds are highly popular in the United States, but according to the American Kennel club, French bulldogs are actually the most popular breed in the country, followed by Laborador retrievers, golden retrievers, German shepherds, and poodles.

Golden retrievers are at the top of the charts in Canada and Puerto Rico. In Central America, Rottweilers are particularly popular, especially in El Salvador, Honduras, Nicaragua, Panama, St. Vincent and the Grenadines, Jamaica, the Dominican Republic, the U.S. Virgin Islands, and Haiti. Pugs beat them out in Costa Rica and Guatemala. The cane corso is top dog in Guateloupe, the akita in Antigua and Barbuda, and, adorably, the Chihuahua in Mexico.

South America

Happy rottweiler puppy running and playing on a beach at sunset. Cute little dog jumping and splashing water. Sand play.

Rottweilers are one of the most popular dog breeds in South America.


Rottweilers are particularly popular in South America, being the top breed on Google searches in Brazil, Paraguay, and Ecuador. The golden retriever is popular in Guyana, the border collie in Uruguay, the bull terrier in Argentina, and the pug in Chile.

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About the Author

Drew Wood is a writer at A-Z Animals focusing on mammals, geography, and world cultures. Drew has worked in research and writing for over 20 years and holds a Masters in Foreign Affairs (1992) and a Doctorate in Religion (2009). A resident of Nebraska, Drew enjoys Brazilian jiu-jitsu, movies, and being an emotional support human to four dogs.

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