Over the past 100 years, dog owners around the world have loved showing their pets off at dog shows.
Crufts, the UK’s largest dog show, was established in 1891 by showman Charles Crufts and has grown into one of the most important dog events in the world.
From tiny dachshunds to giant Irish Wolfhounds, all kinds of dogs take part in the competition every year. Over the course of the many shows, however, it has become clear that some breeds earn more than others.
Here are some of the top breeds to win the Best in Show award, starting in 2020.
The English Cocker Spaniel has won the Best in Show award at Crufts more than any other breed, winning an astonishing seven times. These dogs belong to the sporting group and, according to the American Kennel Club, are energetic and bred to follow the instructions of their owners.
The Irish Setters have won the Best in Show award four times in modern Crufts history. These dogs are happy, affectionate, and eager to please, which makes them a strong breed in competitions. The AKC states that these dogs like to have tasks to do.
Poodles often stand out at dog shows with their elaborate hairstyles, but these dogs are also extremely intelligent and energetic. These dogs are easy to train and enjoy competing in agility events.
The Welsh Terrier was a latecomer in the UK ring, but that didn’t stop the breed from winning Best in Show four times. These dogs are friendly, outgoing, and enjoy exercise.
English Setters are sensible, friendly and loyal companions. The breed has won the Best in Show award three times, but according to the AKC, these dogs are sensitive and respond best to positive reinforcement during training.
German Shepherds are known for their work in the police and military, but they are also a strong breed in competitions. These dogs are confident and quickly learn commands.
Belonging to the group of dogs, greyhounds are known to reach top speeds when running. These dogs have won the Best in Show three times and love to do chores with their owners.
Labradors are one of the most popular dog breeds in the world and are known for their friendly demeanor. This cheerful and energetic breed has won the Best in Show award three times.
West Highland White Terrier
Terriers may be known for their tendency to be stubborn, but the breed has won the Best in Show award three times. In 2016, a Westie called Devon, described by her owner as very independent and tomboy, took home the top prize.
Like greyhounds, Whippets are known for their high speed, but they are also a strong breed in dog competitions and love activities and agility games.
Wired fox terrier
Wire Fox Terriers are intelligent, agile, and responsive, making them a good choice at dog shows. The American Kennel Club describes the breed as a “show dog handler” and these dogs have won the Best in Show award three times at Crufts. The Wire Fox Terriers also had 34 wins at the Westminster Kennel Club Dog Show.
Afghan Hounds have long, silky hair and are popular at dog shows because of their elegance and style. However, these dogs can be difficult to train due to their independence.
Airedales are intelligent, eager to please, and the fact that they bond closely with family members can make training easy. The breed has won the Best in Show award at Crufts twice.
Flat Coated Retriever
Flat-Coats are very smart, responsive, and eager to please. Vbos the Kentuckian, also known as Jet, was a Jim Irvine-bred flat-haired show dog who won the Best in Show award at Crufts in 2011.
Kerry Blue Terrier
A Kerry Blue won Crufts in 2000, but these dogs are quite unusual and rare. Puppies are born black, but the blue gradually appears as the puppy grows, usually until they are two years old.
Lakelands are large dogs in small bodies and look like a smaller version of an Airedale. These dogs come from the Lake District in England and are loyal and loving pets.
Zentarr Elizabeth, also known as Elizabeth, was a Lhasa Apso show dog bred and handled by Margaret Anderson who won the Best in Show award at Crufts in 2012. Originating in Tibet, these dogs were traditionally used as indoor guard dogs.
Pointers are great pets, but they excel in so many areas, from the pitch to the ringside. These all-rounders are good at agility, easy to train, and fairly obedient.
The Scottie dog is so iconic it’s featured on the Monopoly board, but these little terriers do well in competition as well. The Scottish Terriers won the Best in Show award at Crufts and also performed well in the Terrier group competitions.
Toy poodles are smart, easy to train, and playful too, making them popular at dog shows. These dogs have a similar temperament to their larger cousins, the Standard Poodle.
American cocker spaniel
American Cocker Spaniels require a lot of grooming if they have a long, silky coat. Cockers are best trained with food, which they cannot resist.
Australians are popular among cowboys, but their good looks and eager to please personalities make them good show dogs as well. An Australian Shepherd dog was named Best in Show at the 115th Crufts Dog Show in 2006.
The Basenji are native to Central Africa and were used to hunt and control rodent populations. Exceptionally, these dogs are quiet as they tend not to bark. A Basenji dog won the Best of Show title at Crufts 2001.
The Bearded Collie dog breed was developed in Scotland to keep sheep and cattle. Although they are generally scruffy and Highland-adapted, these dogs can perform well in competition due to their obedience and agility.
In recent years, the judges at Crufts have taken the position of not rewarding breeds that generally have a higher number of health issues, including flat-faced breeds such as Bulldogs. However, these dogs are not only popular pets – their strong appearance also makes them popular in competitions.