Lincoln’s 20 Most Popular Dog Breeds of 2021

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As a pet care company, we look after all kinds of animals, from dogs and cats to reptiles and birds of prey.

That said we spend the majority of our time looking after Lincoln’s many dogs. And that got us thinking, ‘What are Lincoln’s most popular dog breeds?’

So we did the research, gathered the data and here are the results;

popular dog breeds infographic
(Click on image to enlarge it)

How We Came Up With Our List

We decided to ask the residents of Lincoln using various Facebook groups including;

We asked one simple question;

“What breed of dog do you own?”

We then went through our customer database and took down the breed of every dog we walk, groom and pet sit.

This gave us exactly 3,202 entries to break down;

Breed of DogNumber of Entries
Mixed Breed981
Cocker Spaniel312
Labrador Retriever306
Springer Spaniel196
Staffordshire Bull Terrier178
Border Collie172
Jack Russell Terrier117
Border Terrier94
Shih Tzu76
Golden Retriever61
Cavalier King Charles Spaniel58
German Shepherd58
Lhasa Apso44

Fun Facts About Lincoln’s Most Popular Dog Breeds

Want to know a little more about our most popular breeds? Have a read through our list;

1. Mixed Breeds

mixed breed dog

A mixed breed, mutt, mongrel, whatever you want to call them is a mix of 3 or more breeds.

As a result, mixed breeds are always unique in both looks and temperament. They’re often much healthier and live longer than pure breeds and crossbreeds. This is down to the diversity of their genetics.

Because of this mixed breeds are much cheaper to insure than pedigree or crossbreeds.

Every mixed breed dog is completely unique in the way it looks and behaves. You never know what you’re going to get until you’ve lived with them.

And that’s part of the fun of owning a mixed breed pooch!

2. Cocker Spaniel

cocker spaniel

Cocker Spaniels started out as gundogs, bred for hunting woodcock.

Thanks to their affectionate and super-fun personality, Cockers have become a family favourite.

They’re intelligent too which makes them pretty easy to train. That said, they have lots of energy and need regular exercise.

When they’re not romping around having fun, they’re happy to lay around in front of the TV, enjoying a fuss and a cuddle.

3. Labrador Retriever

labrador retriever

The Labrador Retriever originated in Newfoundland, Canada. Bred for swimming, they have webbed feet and a thick waterproof coat. Fishermen used them to retrieve fish and fishing line from the cold, Canada waters.

The Lab has long been a favourite amongst dog owners all over the world. Thanks to their affectionate, playful personality.

They don’t only make the most wonderful companions, they’re fantastic working dogs too. From gun dogs to guide dogs, there’s not much you can’t train a Labrador to do.

4. Cockapoo


A mix between the fun-loving Cocker Spaniel and the noble Poodle, the Cockapoo is a popular choice of pet.

They’re the oldest ‘designer breed’ and have been popular in America since the 1950’s.

Because the Cockapoo a crossbreed, you never really know you’ll get when you pick up your puppy. You could get a relaxed pooch with the demeanour of an elegant poodle. Or you could get super-active dog who’s always on the go.

Whichever you end up with, your Cockapoo will be loyal, affectionate and eager to please.

5. Springer Spaniel

springer spaniel

Springer Spaniels and Cocker Spaniels used to be the same breed, bred for hunting game birds.

A litter of puppies were separated by size. The smaller dogs called Cocker Spaniels, the bigger dogs called Springer Spaniels. They weren’t given their own individual breed status until the turn of the 20th century.

As a result, a Springer has much the same traits as its now cousin, the Cocker. They’re intelligent, versatile, you can train them for hunting, agility and scent detection. And thanks to their fun, affectionate nature, they make excellent therapy dogs.

Because they’re so intelligent and energetic, they need regular training and exercise. If you can commit to giving them that, they make wonderful family pets.

6. Staffordshire Bull Terrier

staffordshire bull terrier

The poor Staffie gets a bad wrap.

Bred for dogfighting and bull-baiting, they have struggled to escape that reputation. Unfortunately, some people (we use the term loosely!) have them as status dogs. They train them to be aggressive and still use them for fighting.

But any normal Staffie owner will tell you of a different side. They’re gentle, silly, affectionate and fiercely loyal. As such, they make a brilliant family pet.

7. Border Collie

border collie

Bred for herding livestock on the Scottish borders. The word ‘Collie’ is a Scottish term for ‘sheepdog’. Hence the name Border Collie.

It’s a super-intelligent dog that has a strong work ethic bred into it. As a result, it has lots of energy. They need regular, ongoing training and a lot of exercise to keep them stimulated. If you’re thinking of getting one, you need to invest a LOT of time them.

They’re a sensitive breed though. They don’t like chaotic households with screaming kids and lots of noise. Nor do they react well when left on their own.

If you can provide a Collie with time, training and a calm environment, you’ll have a friend for life.

8. Jack Russell Terrier

jackrussell terrier

The Jack Russell has been around for centuries and bred for hunting foxes.

They’re a lively and very clever little dog with a strong will. As such, they can be a challenge to own. They can jump up to five times their height too so you need to keep an eye on them while they’re running around the garden.

Some Jacks can show aggression towards other dogs. They’re not bothered who they pick a fight with either, even if the other dog is five times its size!

Jack Russell’s need a firm, confident owner. When provided with strong leadership they pay you back with loyalty and affection. As well as lots of fun.

9. Border Terrier

border terrier

Like the Jack Russell, the Border Terrier was bred for hunting foxes. Driving them out of their hiding places for hounds to chase.

These days, they make wonderful companions who like to play hard. They have the instinct to chase so they’re always up for a good game of fetch.

You do need to provide firm leadership to keep them in check. If you can do that, they’re super affectionate, they have a very cheeky side and make brilliant family pets.

10. Shih Tzu

shih tzu

The Shih Tzu breed is over 1,000 years old and has a long history.

They originated in Tibet and sent as gifts to Chinese royalty. The Chinese bred them with Pugs or Pekingese to create the modern-day breed you see today.

The name Shih Tzu, is Mandarin for ‘Little Lion’. It comes from its association with the Tibetan Buddhist god of learning. According to legend, this god travelled with a small lion-dog that could transform into a full-sized lion.

Today though, the Shih Tzu comes with a big personality in a little package. It’s a very loyal, very loving dog with a playful side.

They’re small and not the most active so they make an excellent choice for first-time dog owners. That said, they do need regular grooming to keep their coat in tip-top condition.

11. Golden Retriever

golden retriever

The Golden Retriever has been a favourite breed among UK dog owners for many years.

Bred to retrieve shot game like duck and fowl, they’re intelligent and energetic. These days though, they’re most commonly owned as family pets. Although their high intelligence also makes excellent guide dogs and therapy dogs.

Retrievers have one of the most friendly personalities of any dog. They’re often quite slow to mature too. They often have a puppy-like attitude and playfulness for a lot of their life. And that makes them fun to be around. Especially for families with kids.

12. Cavalier King Charles Spaniel

cavalier king charles spaniel

Cavalier King Charles Spaniels are big dog personalities in little dog bodies.

They’re super cute and show their owners with endless amount of loyalty and affection. And it’s not only their owners who benefit from all that love, they’ll dish it out to whoever they meet.

This makes them one of the best therapy dogs there is. Brightening the days of residents in hospitals and care homes.

Cavaliers share their intelligence with their Cocker and Springer cousins. This makes them easy to train and a good choice for novice owners.

13. German Shepherd

german shepherd

Also known as the Alsatian, the German Shepherd is one of the most recognisable breeds there is.

Their intelligence levels match their energy levels. This makes them a super versatile breed. They’re used in TV shows and films, as police dogs, guard dogs, assisting the disabled, search and rescue, herding and in drug enforcement as sniffer dogs.

German Shepherds show unwavering loyalty to their families. Despite their sometimes intimidating demeanour, they can be very silly. That said, they can be quite stand-offish to strangers until they suss them out.

Because they’re a large dog with lot of energy, they need plenty of space and regular walking.

Provide the mental and physical stimulation they need, a German Shepherd will make one of the best pets there is.

14. Chihuahua


The smallest dog breed in the world! Despite that, the Chihuahua has one of the biggest personalities of any dog.

They’re a charming and love nothing more than spending every minute with their owners. That said, they’re often suspicious of people and dogs they don’t know and as a result, they can be a little yappy.

Chihuahuas don’t need a lot of exercise beyond their daily walk. Their size makes them ideal for apartment living. They’re also pretty easy to train which makes them a good choice for first-time dog owners.

15. Beagle


The Beagle has over 220 million scent receptors and a sense of smell 44 times greater than that of a human. This made them the ultimate hunting dog, able to chase foxes over long distances.

They’re packed full of energy and devotion to their owners and family. Although they can be pretty stubborn which can make them difficult to train.

Beagles need an experienced owner who can provide regular training and a least 2 hours of exercise a day.

16. Lhasa Apso

lhasa apso

Like the Shih Tzu, the Lhasa Apso originates from Tibet.

Despite their small size, they were used as watchdogs throughout the palaces and monasteries.

Today though, you’re more likely to find them snuggled up on the sofa with their human companions.

They’re very adaptive too and can live in pretty much any home environment. From mansions to small apartments.

Lhasa’s are independent dogs which can make training a challenge. That said, if you can gain their respect, they make a very loving, very playful member of the family.

17. Pug


Instantly recognisable with its round wrinkly head, big eyes and short nose. The Pug is a firm favourite across the UK.

They have all the personality traits a dog owner could wish for; They’re funny, cheeky and can be stubborn. On the other hand, they’re loyal, affectionate and very relaxed.

Pugs can adapt to most living environments. They don’t need a great deal of exercise and they fit in well with family life. As such, they make a good choice for first-time dog owners.

18. Schnauzer


Both Standard and Miniature, the Schnauzer was bred in Germany. Use for ratting and guarding, it was an all-around farm dog.

They’re intelligent, versatile, and love being around their family, who they’re protective of. As such, they make excellent family dogs.

The’re packed full of personality and love to be the centre of attention. Their intelligence makes them easy to train when they’re in the mood. They do have a stubborn side though so they need a confident leader.

Schnauzers are energetic dogs so they need plenty of exercise. They are terriers after all!

19. Dalmatian


Made famous in Disney’s 101 Dalmatians. The Dalmatian breed has a history which stretches back for centuries.

They started out as a coach dog. Trotting alongside carriages to protect the occupants against robbers. They’ve also been used for hunting, as firehouse dogs and even as circus performers.

Like in the Disney film, Dalmatians are full of personality. They can go from, majestic, regal animals, go absolutely bonkers and back again in seconds.

They’re very intelligent and will show unconditional love to their family. As such, they’re a fantastic dog to have around.

As they worked as running dogs, they have bounds of energy, so they need plenty of exercise. If you’re a runner and you want a four-legged running mate, Dalmatians are perfect!

Make sure you train them first. Their goofiness can sometimes make that a bit tricky!

20. Greyhound


Bred to hunt hare, fox and deer, the Greyhound is the Ferrari of the dog world, able to reach speeds of up to 45 miles per hour.

That said, Greyhounds have two speed settings; All out sprint or laying on their bed.

Despite being super fast, they’re actually very calm (and pretty lazy) dogs. They love nothing more than lounging around with their owners. They don’t need much exercise at all, their daily walk will suit them fine.

They’re a sensitive breed though, they don’t like the rain, the cold, or hot weather. They don’t react well when left alone for long periods of time either.

If you can provide them with a calm environment, a Greyhound will give you all the love and companionship you could ask for.

How Accurate is Our List?

Honestly, we can’t be sure. Without doing a census-type study, we’ll never have 100% accuracy.

That said, when we compared our findings to UK-wide studies, they weren’t that far apart. So we’re confident we’re at least in the ballpark.

And besides, it was only for a bit of fun.

To Sum Up?

We have to admit, this was a fun survey to do so we’ll run it annually to see which breeds become more or less popular over time.

Being rural, we suspect working breeds like Labradors Springer and Cocker Spaniels will also be popular.

Did Your Dog Make the List?

Did your dog’s breed make the list? Are there any breeds you expected to see on the list?

Join in the conversation on our Facebook Page.

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Ben Doyle

Ben Doyle co-owns Pet Checkers with his wife, Vicki. He spends his days looking after all kinds of animals, from dogs to eagles. When he's not taking care of animals, he's writing about them.


At Pet Checkers, we've been providing the very best pet care Lincoln has to offer since 2013.

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