First of all, it is important to say, that this video is based on AKC statistics, so it is only valid for the USA. In the rest of the world, the ranking would be most certainly different. Also, the statistics are only based on official AKC registrations.
Dog breed popularity is mostly based on its puprose. Today, most people are looking for an affectionate and eager to please companion, which is a reason, why Labradors are the number one for 30 years now. But back then, dogs were bred for work and most valuable were hunting dogs, accompanied with the sheepdogs and guards.
This is a list of the most popular dog breeds of today, or better to say of 2019/2020, if you are watching this video later, some other breeds might be included, but i am sure the list will be very similar for at least a decade. I have a simple quiz for you. Only one of these 10 dog breeds can be found in the 1880s TOP 10 most popular dog breeds. Can you guess which is it? I have a hint for you, it is a true hunter with one of the cutest faces in the dog world. BTW, if we would extend the list, we would found a Dachshund on 11th place, which is a dog breed you will find in the 1880s list as well. And now lets jump into the list!
As you will see, majority of dog breeds in this list will be working gundogs, but the 10th most popular dog breed of 1880s are the English Mastiffs. And even though, Mastiffs can be used for hunting, their main purpose was guarding and protecting homes and property. The English Mastiff is still very popular dog breed, definitely one of the most popular of all dog giants.
This short legged German dog breed was always pretty popular. They were developed to find, chase and flush out badgers and other similar animals out of their dens. There is also a miniature version of Dachshund which was succesfully used to hunt rabbits and mice.
8) Fox Terrier
Today, the Wiry and Smooth Fox Terriers are considered as separate breeds, but back then they were recognized as variations of the same breed. It is a Brittish dog breed. They are named Fox Terriers, so it is no supririsng that they were used to hunt foxes, but also badgers or boars.
The Rough and Smooth Collie is one of the most intelligent dog breed in the world. This is an exception of this list, because Collies are not hunters, but herders. It is also a breed which remained popular over decades and decades and today they are very often chosen as fperfect dog family companions.
If you answer to my quiz from the beggining of the video was Beagle, than you were correct. They have one of the best noses in the dog world and they are not only used for hunting purposes, but also as detection dogs. Thanks to their friendly and playful temperament, they are very popular family pets.
5) Gordon Setter
Gordon Setters first started to hunt game birds almost 200 years ago. They are great hunters with alert, courageous, fearless and intelligent temperament. They also make good family companion, because Gordon Setters are loyal, loving and affectionate.
4) Irish Water Spaniel
You do not see many Irish Water Spaniels these days, but back then, they were extremely popular. It is the largest Spaniel type of a dog. And also one of the oldest. It is a hard worker with brave, courageous, but also playful and loyal personality.
Also known as the English Pointer, this is a versatile gundog. They are especially good at, and this is probably not a surprise, pointing and retrieving birds. The dog finds and points out the location of birds and even though they are not natural retrievers, they can be easily train to find dead or wounded game and retrieve it.
2) Irish Setter
The Irish Setter is famous for its coat and color. The Irish Setter was bred for hunting, specifically for setting or locating and pointing upland gamebirds. It is a very hard working and tireless dog. Just like most of the dogs on this list, even the Irish Setters are good active family companions.
1) English Setter
And the most popular dog breed of 1880s is another Setter, this time, the English Setter. It is believed, that the English Setter was a trained bird dog in England more than 400 years ago. They also have beautiful coat which features flecks of colour.