Whether it’s a fluffy cockapoo or a lovable labrador, an estimated 10 million UK households share their home with a dog.
But despite being the number one pet among Britons, several dog breeds are at risk of being wiped out entirely.
The Kennel Club has created a list of 34 vulnerable native British and Irish breeds that have fewer than 300 registrations a year.
The list includes adorable breeds such as the Bearded Collie, King Charles Spaniel, Skye Terrier and Curly Coated Retriever (scroll down for the full list).
‘Many native British and Irish breeds are at risk of disappearing from our parks and streets, simply because people don’t know they exist, or because they aren’t considered fashionable,’ The Kennel Club explained.
The Kennel Club has created a list of 34 vulnerable native British and Irish breeds that have fewer than 300 registrations a year. 1. Bearded Collie 2. Bloodhound 3. Bull Terrier (Miniature) 4. Collie (Smooth) 5. Dandie Dinmont Terrier 6. Deerhound 7. English Setter 8. English Toy Terrier (Black & Tan) 9. Foxhound 10. Fox Terrier (Smooth) 11. Glen of Imaal Terrier 12. Gordon Setter 13. Greyhound 14. Harrier 15. Irish Red & White Setter 16. Irish Wolfhound 17. King Charles Spaniel 18. Kerry Blue Terrier 19. Lakeland Terrier 20. Lancashire Heeler 21. Manchester Terrier 22. Mastiff 23. Norwich Terrier 24. Otterhound 25. Retriever (Curly Coated) 26. Sealyham Terrier 27. Skye Terrier 28. Soft Coated Wheaten Terrier 29. Spaniel (Clumber) 30. Spaniel (Field) 31. Spaniel (Irish Water) 32. Spaniel (Sussex) 33. Spaniel (Welsh Springer) 34. Welsh Corgi (Cardigan)
The list includes adorable breeds such as the Bearded Collie, King Charles Spaniel, Skye Terrier and Curly Coated Retriever. Figures show that just one Foxhound was registered in 2022 (stock image)
According to The Kennel Club, the top 10 breeds in the UK – including the Labrador, French Bulldog and Cocker Spaniel – account for more than 60 per cent of annual puppy registrations for all breeds.
At the other end of the scale, some breeds have such low numbers that they are completely unrecognisable to many Britons.
‘[This] is a concern because it means that breeds that might be the perfect fit for people’s lifestyles are being overlooked in favour of other breeds that might not be, simply because they are not as well known,’ The Kennel Club said.
In the hopes of protecting these dwindling breeds, The Kennel Club has created a vulnerable native British and Irish breeds list, which includes breeds with fewer than 300 registrations a year.
Some breeds on the list are close to this threshold, including the Miniature Bull Terrier (293 registrations in 2022), the Bearded Collie (281 registrations), and the Gordon Setter (251 registrations).
But others have had periliously low registrations in recent years.
The Kennel Club’s figures show that just one Foxhound was registered in 2022, while Harriers (nine registrations), Greyhounds (22 registrations) and Otterhounds (30 registrations) only fared marginally better.
The top 10 breeds in the UK – including the Labrador, French Bulldog and Cocker Spaniel – account for more than 60 per cent of annual puppy registrations for all breeds. At the other end of the scale, some breeds have such low numbers that they are completely unrecognisable to many Britons. Pictured: a miniature bull terrier
The Kennel Club is now calling on prospective dog buyers to consider these vulnerable breeds. Pictured: a Smooth Collie (left) and a Welsh Corgi (right)
However, it isn’t all doom and gloom.
Last month, The Kennel Club revealed that the Curly Coated Retriever (which is on the vulnerable breeds list) is making a comeback, with a boom in popularity in the first half of 2023.
The breed has welcomed 45 puppies in 2023 so far – a fivefold increase compared to 2022, when just nine puppies were born.
Speaking to MailOnline, Bill Lambert, a spokesperson for The Kennel Club, said: ‘We are delighted that one of our vulnerable native breeds has seen a boost in popularity this year, indicating that many puppy buyers were resisting the urge to go for the most obvious and fashionable choices and instead taking the time to research the full range of breeds and select the best fit for their lifestyle.
‘We have such a wide variety of different dogs in this country, each with different characteristics, so it is encouraging to see such a historic, yet vulnerable, breed amongst those that are increasing in popularity.’
The Kennel Club is now calling on prospective dog buyers to consider these vulnerable breeds.
‘To give these dogs the chance they deserve, it is important that if you’re thinking about getting a dog you consider the lesser-known breeds,’ it said.
‘There are over 200 breeds of dog recognised in the UK so there is a breed for everyone.
‘We find that people tend to choose a breed from the pool of breeds they have heard of before, which means that the perfect breed for them and their lifestyle might be overlooked.’
The 34 dog breeds at risk of being wiped out in the UK
- Collie (Smooth)
- Spaniel (Sussex)
- Spaniel (Field)
- English Toy Terrier (Black & Tan)
- King Charles Spaniel
- Skye Terrier
- Retriever (Curly Coated)
- Irish Red & White Setter
- Spaniel (Irish Water)
- Fox Terrier (Smooth)
- Norwich Terrier
- Dandie Dinmont Terrier
- Glen of Imaal Terrier
- Kerry Blue Terrier
- Lakeland Terrier
- Sealyham Terrier
- Lancashire Heeler
- Manchester Terrier
- Soft Coated Wheaten Terrier
- Welsh Corgi (Cardigan)
- English Setter
- Spaniel (Clumber)
- Irish Wolfhound
- Spaniel (Welsh Springer)
- Gordon Setter
- Bearded Collie
- Bull Terrier (Miniature)