Today's Huffington Post has an interesting look at the most popular US dogs by state with an article by Vetstreet's Kristen Seymore -including a pretty great info-graphic with data by state.
According to their numbers, the American Pit Bull Terrier was among the 3 most popular US breeds in 28 states - -ranking #1 in Rhode Island. Labrador Retrievers and Chihuahuas are the other breeds most likely to be in the top 3 with Labs being #1 in 42 states.
I confess that I don't know exactly where the information for this study comes from -- but it certainly seems to have more credible data than other reports that only include American Kennel Club numbers (AKC licensed dogs make up only a small fraction of US dogs) or licensed dogs (which make up also a non-representative sample) -- at least based on the experience of pretty much anyone who has been to a park, taken a walk in a neighborhood, or set foot in a shelter.
It's interesting to see the popularity of the American Pit Bull Terrier as one of the most popular dogs in the country and that, in spite of the created reputation, a very large number of people choose to own them. Maybe that reputation isn't so deserved after all? And if pit bulls were genetically bred to kill or whatever nonsense haters try to say, it certainly doesn't make sense that there are so few major attacks given the large numbers of these dogs. It is also interesting to think of cities who do consider legislation targeting the dogs are overwhelmed by the resistance they get by the many owners in their communities. There is strength in numbers.
Thanks to the Huffington Post and Vetstreet for the story. If anyone knows how the data is gathered, I'm curious.