Map illustration of Canada showing popular breeds in each province

Popular breeds by province: Which dog breeds are Canadians most drawn to?

A survey of 2,000 Canadians reveals that the number 1 dog breed in Canada is the Labrador Retriever! 


A new study by dog food delivery startup Kabo Fresh Dog Food has revealed an interesting and consistent trend among Canadian dog owners when it comes to their favourite dog breeds. While every dog is special, there are some standout breeds in Canada when it comes to popularity.


This study was completed by surveying a sample of 2,000 Canadian dog owners across Canada, using a consumer study led by TapResearch. For the purpose of data clarity, only purebred dog data was collected. Sorry doodle owners, this means that designer dogs were excluded since there was too much variability within the responses. Furthermore, only provincial breeds were considered as the territory sample sizes were too small to gather accurate results.


Canadians seem to be on the same page when it comes to dog breeds as the survey results were very consistent between provinces. The labrador retriever was the most popular overall in Canada, with 12% of all Canadian dog owners having a Lab. See below for the results of each province.


“It seems that most Canadian dog owners prefer a large breed dog,” says Andrea Geiger, R&D Scientist and Nutritionist, “with 42% of Canadians owning large breeds, they may view them as more versatile than a small, medium or jumbo breed. Labradors specifically are known to be affectionate, active and happy dogs. Traits that many pet owners are looking for. ”


While large dogs were the dominant breed size, there was also one small breed that reigned supreme. Surprisingly it was the chihuahua that has won the hearts of Canadians who prefer a small breed. Of the small breed owners, 16% of respondents had a Chihuahua as a companion.


“Given the lifestyle and housing changes in Canadians over the last decade, having a small, intelligent canine breed like the Chihuahua is not surprising. Smaller dogs can be easier on budgets and on space and be a great choice for busy families, and for older individuals with mobility or time challenges.” says Dr Suzee Camilleri.


Regarding the popularity of the larger breeds, Dr Camilleri also feels: “There is a comfort in feeling ‘protected’ by a larger breed dog by many owners, and the three most popular ones on this list come with ‘super’ intelligence, making them very easy to train. As a result, there may be less behavioral problems in the home and less likely to be adopted out due to unruly, uncontrollable behaviour.’ 


Another interesting finding of the study was where owners acquired their dogs. It seems Canadians prefer to get their dogs from a breeder or a shelter. The survey showed that 37% of owners got their dogs from a breeder and 31% of owners got their dogs from a shelter, creating almost an equal balance between the two.


Overall, the results of the survey showed that there were some consistencies in dog breeds across Canada. The best thing you can do as a dog owner is to select the best breed that suits you and your family’s lifestyle style. Maybe for you that’s the ever popular Labrador Retriever with its ever wagging tail or perhaps it’s the intelligent Jack Russell Terrier. Regardless of the breed or where you get it from, there’s a dog out there for everyone! Do you see your favourite dog breed in the top 10 Canadian breeds?


  1. Labrador Retriever
  2. German Shepherd
  3. Golden Retriever
  4. Siberian Husky
  5. Chihuahua
  6. Shih Tzu
  7. Poodle
  8. Pitbull
  9. Pug
  10. Yorkshire Terrier

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Try Kabo

Freshly cooked dog food. Delivered.

Now serving Ontario, British Columbia, Montréal, Winnipeg, and Calgary.
Formulated by expert nutritionists.
Free delivery!
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