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Home > Dogs > 10 Most Popular Dog Breeds in North Carolina in 2023 (With Pictures)

10 Most Popular Dog Breeds in North Carolina in 2023 (With Pictures)

australian shepherd dog sitting outdoor in the nature

Learning about different dog breeds can be great fun, and if you are thinking about getting a new puppy, it can be interesting to learn about the most popular dogs in your state, as they will likely be the easiest to find and maybe even the least expensive.

If you live in North Carolina, keep reading for a list of the top choices for dog owners in the Old North State so you can be better informed.


Top 10 Popular Dog Breeds in North Carolina

1. Cane Corso

black cane corso dog standing at the park
Image Credit: Tymoshenko Olga, Shutterstock
Average Weight: 90–120 pounds
Average Height: 23.5–27.5 inches
Lifespan: 9–12 years
Temperament: Protective, loyal, intelligent, and confident

The Cane Corso recently became the most popular dog breed in North Carolina. They are a large and powerful Italian breed with strong guarding instincts and a muscular physique. They protect their families, and their loyalty and intelligence make them excellent companions for experienced dog owners who can provide proper training and socialization.

2. French Bulldog

fawn french bulldog walking on grass
Image Credit: Irina Nedikova, Shutterstock
Average Weight: 16–28 pounds
Average Height: 11–12 inches
Lifespan: 10–12 years
Temperament: Affectionate, playful, adaptable, and friendly

The French Bulldog, or Frenchie, is a small, lovable breed. Their charming personality makes them a great companion for various living situations, including small apartments. They’re affectionate toward their owners and enjoy human company, often sitting on their owner’s laps. They also get along well with children and other pets.

3. Australian Sheperd

yellow australian sheperd dog lies on a green field with yellow flowers
Image Credit: Ermolaeva Olga 84, Shutterstock
Average Weight: 40–65 pounds
Average Height: 18–23 inches
Lifespan: 12–15 years
Temperament: Intelligent, energetic, loyal, and trainable

Despite their name, the Australian Shepherd originated in the United States. They have amazing herding abilities and are highly intelligent and energetic. They thrive in active households and excel in dog sports and agility training, but they do require plenty of mental and physical stimulation to lead happy lives.

4. Shih Tzu

white shih tzu dog playing and running outside in the green grass
Image Credit: Jayne Klein, Shutterstock
Average Weight: 9–16 pounds
Average Height: 9–10.5 inches
Lifespan: 10–18 years
Temperament: Affectionate, friendly, independent, and lively

The Shih Tzu is a small and adorable toy breed originating from China. They have long fur and a friendly demeanor. They are lively and can enjoy playful interactions with their owners or children (as long as they don’t pull the dog’s hair), and the Shih Tzu also usually gets along with other pets. Their independent streak might make training challenging, but their affectionate nature makes them a wonderful companion.

5. Shiba Inu

shiba inu dog sitting on grass
Image Credit: Maks Akinin, Shutterstock
Average Weight: 17–23 pounds
Average Height: 13.5–16.5 inches
Lifespan: 12–15 years
Temperament: Alert, confident, independent, and loyal

The Shiba Inu is a Japanese breed that has a foxlike appearance and a spirited personality. They are independent and often have a cat-like aloofness, making them less needy for constant attention and less likely to suffer separation anxiety. While they can be loyal and affectionate with their families, their strong-willed nature requires consistent training and socialization from an early age to help them get along better with children, strangers, and other pets as adults.

6. Labrador Retriever

a long haired labrador retriever on grass
Image Credit: Angel Luciano, Unsplash
Average Weight: 55–80 pounds
Average Height: 21.5–24.5 inches
Lifespan: 10–14 years
Temperament: Friendly, outgoing, obedient, and gentle

The Labrador Retriever is one of the most popular dog breeds in the United States. These friendly, gentle, and social dogs get along well with people, children, and other pets. Their intelligence and eagerness to please also make them easy to train and suitable for various roles, including as service dogs, therapy dogs, and family pets.

7. German Sheperd

german shepherd dog lying on snow in winter
Image Credit: Yan Krukau, Pexels
Average Weight: 50–90 pounds
Average Height: 22–26 inches
Lifespan: 9–13 years
Temperament: Intelligent, loyal, courageous, and versatile

The German Shepherd is a versatile and intelligent breed often used in various working roles, including police, search and rescue, and general service. They are also loyal and protective of their families, making them excellent guard dogs. Proper training and socialization are crucial for well-rounded behavior and mental stimulation.

8. Yorkshire Terrier

standard yorkshire terrier standing on grass
Image Credit: Imageman, Shutterstock
Average Weight: 4–7 pounds
Average Height: 7–8 inches
Lifespan: 11–15 years
Temperament: Spirited, affectionate, energetic, and brave

The Yorkshire Terrier, or Yorkie, is a small breed with a big personality. Despite their small size, they are often filled with energy and have a fearless demeanor that causes them to stand their ground, even against dogs much larger than them. They can be an affectionate companion and are well-suited for households with limited space. Their long, silky coat requires regular grooming to keep them looking their best.

9. Beagle

beagle dog crawling
Image Credit: Masarik, Shutterstock
Average Weight: 20–30 pounds
Average Height: 13–15 inches
Lifespan: 12–15 years
Temperament: Curious, friendly, merry, and gentle

Beagles have an excellent sense of smell and gentle nature. They are curious and friendly, making them suitable for families with children and other pets. Beagles require mental stimulation and exercise to prevent boredom-related behaviors, but their loyalty and sociability make them wonderful companions for various lifestyles. Their small size also makes them a good choice for apartments, as long as they can get out for walks.

10. Plott Hound

Plott Hound
Image Credit: WatersPix, Shutterstock
Average Weight: 40–75 pounds
Average Height: 20–25 inches
Lifespan: 12–14 years
Temperament: Intelligent, loyal, determined, and alert

The Plott Hound has excellent tracking and hunting abilities and is of special significance for the people of North Carolina because they are the state dog, so they will always be quite popular here. They are loyal and determined dogs that many owners often use to track large game. Their strong work ethic and alertness make them suitable for active households that can provide them with both physical and mental exercise.


Frequently Asked Questions

Why Are Cane Corsos Popular in North Carolina?

Cane Corsos are known for their loyalty and protective nature, making them sought-after as guard dogs and family protectors in North Carolina households.

How Do Cane Corsos Handle the Warm Climate of North Carolina?

The Cane Corso has a short coat that helps them tolerate warm temperatures. Nevertheless, owners should provide ample shade and fresh water and avoid strenuous activities during the hottest parts of the day to help their dogs avoid dehydration and heat stroke.

brindle cane corso dog lying on grass outdoor
Image Credit: Stivog, Shutterstock

How Do French Bulldogs Handle the Warm Climate in North Carolina?

French Bulldogs can be sensitive to heat due to their flat faces, so it’s essential to provide them with shade, keep them hydrated, and avoid strenuous activities during hot weather. Keeping them in an air-conditioned environment is often the best option.

Why Are Australian Shepherds Well-Liked in North Carolina?

The Australian Shepherd’s intelligence, agility, and versatility make them appealing to active lifestyle and outdoor enthusiasts in North Carolina. Ideal activities can include hiking, swimming, and hunting.

white australian shepherd dog with different colored eyes in the park green grass
Image Credit: Alessandra Sawick, Shutterstock

Why Are Plott Hounds So Popular in North Carolina?

The Plott Hound is historically connected to North Carolina and is the state dog. A German immigrant named Johannes Plott developed them from Hanover Hounds to hunt bears in his new home in the late 1700s.



The Cane Corso is currently the most popular dog in North Carolina, followed closely by the lovable French Bulldog. Other popular breeds in this state include the Australian Shepard, Shih Tzu, and the state dog, the Plott Hound. While they didn’t take the top spots, Labrador Retrievers and German Shepherds are popular breeds in many other states and will make great additions to any home.

Featured Image Credit: dodafoto, Shutterstock

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