Monday, August 20, 2012


According to the American Kennel Club, for 21 years the Labrador Retriever has been the most popular dog in America. The Poodle and Cocker Spaniel also had their day in the sun.

But what about the not so popular?  The Harrier, American Foxhound, and English Foxhound, all scent-trailing hounds, have hovered at the bottom of AKC's list for 40 years and longer.


American Foxhound

English Foxhound

AKC tabulates popular breeds by the number of dogs registered in the year.  For instance, more than 124,000 registrations catapulted the Lab to the top, whereas only 11 English Foxhounds, 23 Harriers, and 44 American Foxhounds were registered. 

In fairness, it's not because people don't care for these scent-focused, baying hounds. They were bred to hang out in large packs and consequently are not ideal house dogs.

On the other hand, their close cousin the Beagle, was the third most popular AKC breed in 2011, so go figure.
If Charlie Brown's dog, Snoopy, had been a Foxhound, would I be barking up a different tree?


  1. I worked in a kennel that bred beagles, it is a breed you have to like and have the type of home for them, but they can be wonderful pets.


  2. 2011 - wasn't that the year Uno the beagle won? He certainly had personality whichever year that was.

    We have a beagle - sweet dog, smart, but when she gets something in her head, it takes a heap of convincing to get her to do otherwise. And even then, I think she just bids her time until we aren't looking.

  3. My guess is that Foxhound and Harrier breeders have better things to do than register their dogs with the AKC! ;)

    I like looking at those AKC stats, but I always wondered how they weigh the data relative to total population of a breed in the country, or in a region. Not that there are reliable data on that...

  4. Most Foxhounds and Harriers are registered with the United Kennel Club is my guess. The AKC maintains that, of their more popular breeds, one in ten is registered, so you can estimate population of breeds that way. But I'm not so sure their formula is accurate. I'm going to be posting some statistics on the population of purebred dogs v. mongrels etc. as soon as I finish collecting the numbers. So stay tuned.

  5. Of course our foxhound would rather spend time with us on the couch than ever with a pack of fellow doggies. go figure. she is our love and that is the end.