Demand for pups has soared, but not all dog breeds are simply beloved pets – many carry out a range of important jobs.
It’s been a boom time for pets over the last few years – Kennel Club figures show that the number of people looking for puppies has surged to record levels.
There are a huge number of pedigree dogs – 221 to be exact – along with numerous crossbreeds, and some of them have a very particular set of skills that make them very useful to fulfil certain tasks.
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From army and police dogs, to sight and hearing dogs, they help make all our lives better.
And for those looking for a puppy, they can also make wonderful family pets, with a great combination of intelligence and empathy.
Here are the 10 most useful breeds of working dog, according to the American Kennel Club.
They may only have one job, but Bloodhounds are superb at it. They are one of nature's best trackers and are so good at finding people and things that in some countries their evidence is admissible in court. Photo: Canva/Getty Images
2. Labrador Retriever
The UK's favourite dog is more than just a pretty face. Originally used by hunters to retrieve game, Labradors still carry out this task as gun dogs, but are also popular as service dogs, guide dogs and hearing dogs. Photo: Canva/Getty Images
3. German Shepherd
It would perhaps be quicker to list the jobs a German Shepherd can't do. They are the ultimate in working dog, used by the army and police, as therapy dogs, in airports to sniff out drugs, as guard dogs, for personal protection, and numerous other tasks. Photo: Canva/Getty Images
Perhaps the ultimate guard dog, the Rottweiler has been used for this purpose since ancient Rome, but isn't a one trick pony. This breed also make wonderful customs, military and police dogs - while they have a softer side perfect for a therapy dog. Photo: Canva/Getty Images