There is no hard and fast definition of a medium-size dog, but in general you can figure that they weigh somewhere between 35 and 65 pounds and are around 16 to 22 inches tall. They are big enough to romp with, but small enough to fit into most homes.
The bulldog is a devoted companion, and is the top medium-size dog on the American Kennel Club’s popularity list, ranking sixth in overall popularity in 2011. Bulldogs have an easy-care coat but need extra care in hot weather, due to a short, flat muzzle that makes them prone to overheating. Though it was originally bred to fight bears, selective breeding has produced the gentle but protective temperament for which the bulldog is known today.
Poodles, eighth in popularity in 2011, come in three sizes, with toys and miniatures for those who prefer very small dogs, and the standard poodle, standing anywhere from 15 inches on up, for fans of a more medium-size dog. They are very smart, entertaining and fun to be with, and are also a good choice for allergy sufferers due to the hypoallergenic nature of their coats. They do need frequent grooming.
Sixteenth most popular overall, Siberian huskies are hardy, outgoing dogs with great endurance. They need plenty of regular exercise to stay happy, and their thick double coats need a lot of brushing when they’re shedding. They may chase other pets, so they need to be kept in a fenced yard and taken out only on a leash.
Active and intelligent, the Australian shepherd needs plenty to do if he’s to stay out of trouble. Ranking twenty-fourth overall, this breed is excellent for people who want to get involved in dog sports or who have active lifestyles. He’s not a good choice if you’re gone for much of the day, since he’ll make his own entertainment, and it won’t usually be what you’d choose.
Pembroke Welsh Corgi
The low-to-the-ground Pembroke Welsh corgi is number 25 on the AKC’s registration list, and is a solid dog who is generally easy to live with. These dogs do love to herd and tend to need plenty of exercise, but they adapt well to living in a house.
English Springer Spaniel
Sitting at number 29 on the AKC list for 2011, the English Springer spaniel has a long, flowing coat that needs plenty of attention. Like most spaniels, he is eager to please. He makes an excellent companion, has a sunny, affectionate nature and is devoted to his family.
This spaniel's short, dense coat is fairly easy to care for and doesn’t require trimming, but does need regular brushing. The Brittany, AKC number 30 in overall registrations, is very active and needs a lot of exercise every day—like all spaniels, it was bred for hunting.
Low to the ground with long, droopy ears, the basset hound is hard to forget once you’ve met her. The breed ranks number 41 with the AKC. Although she’s a sweet, loving dog, the basset is stronger than she looks and can be a bit of a challenge if she decides to follow a trail when you’re out for a walk with her.
Ranking 45th in registrations and considered by his fans to be the smartest of the breeds, a border collie can be a challenge to live with if you aren’t prepared for his extremely active nature. These dogs need plenty of vigorous exercise every day, along with enough mental stimulation to keep them out of trouble.
Bull terriers love to play and have a reputation as clowns, earning them the distinction of being called three-year-old kids inside doggy suits. They are 51st in registrations, and are loved for their loyal natures and enthusiasm. The breed requires plenty of daily exercise.
- AKC: Dog Registration Statistics
- AKC Meet the Breeds: Bulldog
- AKC Meet the Breeds: Poodle
- AKC Meet the Breeds: Siberian Husky
- AKC Meet the Breeds: Australian Shepherd
- AKC Meet the Breeds: Pembroke Welsh Corgi
- AKC Meet the Breeds: English Springer Spaniel
- AKC Meet the Breeds: Brittany
- AKC Meet the Breeds: Basset Hound
- AKC Meet the Breeds: Border Collie
- Bulldog image by Benjamin Huseman from Fotolia.com