The 11 Most Popular Black Dog Breeds

The 11 Most Popular Black Dog Breeds

Author WDF Staff


There is something special about black dog breeds we can’t exactly put our finger on. Black dogs are mystical and seem rather scary. Black dogs are least likely to get adopted from animal shelters. Some urban legends and myths are describing black dogs in a bad context and some British folk tales say that black dogs are “hellhounds” and are associated with the Christian definition of the Devil.

That, of course, is completely wrong, and black dog breeds have been around for thousands of years. Actually, genes determine which breed will be black, either solid-colored or particolored. Some breeds have a dominant black gene, some have a recessive black gene, and some dog breeds even have both.

We believe that all dogs are amazing, no matter what colors they might come in and we also think that there are a special aura and allure that surrounds black dogs and make them very attractive and elegant. It is widely believed that the color black is associated with power, leadership, and authority, but most of all - elegance. Today, the genealogy is so developed that we can understand how black dogs came to life and the science behind that is rather interesting.

That is why we made a list of 11 black dog breeds (either solid black or partly black) that are just that - elegant, powerful, and extremely attractive.

1. Black Labrador Retriever

Labrador Retrievers can come in three colors - yellow, brown (chocolate), or of course, black. Black is their usual color and nearly all of these dogs were black at the beginning of the breed. Labrador owners even went to such extremes that they discarded Labrador puppies that got recessive genes and were born yellow or brown.

No matter what their color might be, Labradors are the most popular black dog breed in the United States and the rest of the world as well. Labs are fantastic and friendly dogs that will get along with everyone.

black labrador

2. Black Russian Terrier

The Black Russian Terrier or BRT as it is commonly called is a large dog breed that originated in 20th century Russia. Different dog breeds were used to create the Black Russian Terrier and some of them were the Great Dane, St. Bernard, and Rottweiler. All in all, about 17 different dog breeds were used in the BRT’s creation and the color black prevailed as it was carried as a dominant gene by many of these breeds.

Black Russian Terriers are powerful dogs that are known for their protective characters and their beautiful, thick, black coats. They first came to life in the biggest kennel in the Soviet Union called the Red Star kennel.

black russian terrier

3. Belgian Shepherd - Groenendael

Usually, when someone mentions a Belgian Shepherd, our mind goes straight to Malinois. It is the most popular variety of the Belgian Shepherds and it is used by military and law enforcement around the world. There is a longhaired, black Belgian Shepherd variety called the Groenendael. Its coat is completely black and fairly long and straight. They are just as active and intelligent as the Malinois and the main difference is the length and the color of their coat. It is certainly a beautiful black dog breed.


4. Cane Corso

The mighty Cane Corso is an Italian dog breed that is a direct descendant of the old Molossian dogs. It is extremely powerful and loyal to their owners. It can come in several coat colors but still, the black-colored Cane Corsos have the highest numbers.

Italian Cane Corsos were used since the Roman times for protection, blood sports, and even war efforts. These dogs were just as scary in those ancient times as they are today to those who are unfamiliar with the breed. They are fundamentally a working breed that loves to have a house, family, or even an estate to guard. Most of the general public judge them based on their appearance and people are not aware of the fact that these dogs are some of the best family pets out there who are extremely careful around children.

black cane corso

5. Great Dane

The Great Dane is a German dog breed that was used throughout history for hunting large and dangerous prey such as wolves, wild boars, stags, and even bears. These days, they are peaceful family pets who do not have a shred of their hunting instinct left. They get along great with other dogs and pets.

Great Danes are large, gentle giants that sometimes forget how large they are and start behaving like they are lap dogs. Even though they have a lovely and peaceful temperament, no one can say that these dogs are not impressive and elegant, especially when they lose their “puppyness”. Cropped ears in Great Danes give them even a tougher and scarier look.

black great dane

Great Danes might be huge, but they are not too active if they don’t have to be. It would be best if such a large breed had a bed of their own, so why not check this dog bed your Great Dane will absolutely love: FurHaven Faux Fur Memory Dog Bed.

6. Bernese Mountain Dog

The Bernese Mountain Dog is one of the four Swiss “Sennenhund” breeds and the most popular one. They are extremely good family dogs that love being a member of active families that love adventures and hiking. These dogs are tricolored - black, tan, and white with black being the most dominant of these three colors.

This noble Swiss breed helped Swiss shepherds herd cattle for hundreds of years. These beautiful black dogs have an extremely friendly disposition and their appeal to future dog owners is clear. However, they are a high energy working breed so they will not be happy if they are forced to live an inactive life or if they have to be closed in an apartment the whole day. Make sure you can provide them with enough time and exercise so that they don’t develop bad behavior.

bernese mountain dog

7. Doberman

The Doberman is certainly one of the most famous black dog breeds in the world. However, they are technically black and tan, with black covering most parts of their bodies. They can also come in brown and tan, and solid brown color. Dobermans were created for protection by the man whose name they bare until this day - Karl Friedrich Louis Dobermann.

When thinking about this black dog breed, the first word that comes to mind is - elegant. There is a certain elegance in these dogs that would suit royalty. Their powerful, muscular bodies give these dogs the looks that appeal to dog owners across the globe.

black doberman

8. Schipperke

This Belgian black dog breed has one of the fluffiest, and most beautiful coats in the whole canine kingdom. They have a thick, double coat that has a distinct “mane” around the Schipperke’s neck that forms completely naturally. These dogs are extremely brave and act as the family’s watchdog from the moment it feels accepted.

These feisty little black dogs have a popular nickname - the Little Black Devil or LBD. They came to life by crossbreeding the Leauvenaar - a black Belgian Sheepdog and even the name “Schipperke” is believed to be a derivation of the words that can be translated as “little shepherd”. These dogs were rarely used for shepherding and instead, they started guarding the canal boats in the region ranging from Brussels to Antwerp.


9. Scottish Terrier

This small black dog breed originated in Scotland and is known for its fierce character. They are true terriers and share many of their characteristics with the rest of the terrier breeds. They are fearless, brave, and fairly active. Like the rest of its cousin breeds, this rather small black dog loves to dig.

They also have a high prey drive so if you are thinking about getting a Scottish Terrier, make sure you don’t keep any other small pets around like rabbits, gerbils, or guinea pigs. These proud little black dogs should never be trusted around those pets because their instinct can take over and they will most likely chase them around the house.

black scottish terrier

10. Poodle

The Poodle is a black German dog breed and not a French dog breed as many people think. These dogs are extremely smart and active. Poodles are generally known for their humor. They love being entertained and by entertaining themselves, they will most likely entertain everyone around them. They can come in different coat colors and black is the most popular one for Standard Poodles.

Poodles have three size varieties - Toy, Miniature, and Standard with the last one being the biggest one. Their deep, solid black color is one of their most attractive traits and certainly one of the reasons many Poodle owners decide to go for the black dog. Many of the black Poodle owners say that this color also gives them a dose of elegance.

black poodle

11. Black German Shepherd

One of the most beautiful dog breeds that can be black is the rare black German Shepherd. Now many people know that this is a color that is allowed by the standard of this breed and most of the black dogs of this breed are associated with a great working temperament. German Shepherds are naturally great workers and some owners bring the color black in correlation to the superior working capability of the black German Shepherd. Of course, there are no studies that proved this theory. What we can be sure of is - black German Shepherds are absolutely stunning to look at. There is a special aura that surrounds these dogs and we are always stunned by their beauty and elegance.

black german shepherd

World Dog Finder team