Energetic, brave and hard working, pastoral dog breeds are a great choice when looking for your perfect puppy.
Dog ownership soared over the last two years according to the Kennel Club, with lockdown meaning people felt more able to open their home up to a new puppy.
But with 221 different breeds of pedigree dog to choose from, there’s plenty of thinking to do before you select your perfect pooch – whether you want a large dog, family-friendly dog, or crossbreed.
The Kennel Club separates breeds into seven different groups, each of which have a particular set of attributes.
If you are looking for an intelligent and courageous dog that will naturally form a close bond with you, then it’s worth considering a breed from the Pastoral Group.
They are dogs that have been bred to herd or guard livestock so they also respond very well to training and are eager to please.
These are the 10 most popular breeds of pastoral dog in the UK, according to Kennel Club registrations.
1. Border Collie
Named after the area around the England/Scotland border where it was first bred, the Border Collie is the second most popular of the pastoral breeds. There were 1,718 registrations with the Kennel Club in 2020. Photo: Canva/Getty Images
2. German Shepherd
There's no doubting the top dog when it comes to pastoral breeds - there were 7,067 new German Shepherd registrations with the Kennel Club last year. Photo: Canva/Getty Images
3. Welsh Pembroke Corgi
WIth 887 Kennel Club registrations in 2020, the Pembroke Welsh Corgi is the third most popular breed of pastoral dog. They were originally bred to herd cattle. Photo: Canva/Getty Images
4. Shetland Sheepdog
Originally called the Shetland Collie, confusion with the Rough Collie led to this breed, affectionately known as the Sheltie, being renamed the Shetland Sheepdog. There were 640 new registrations in 2020. Photo: Canva/Getty Images