Top 17 Popular Police Dog Breeds

police dog

Top 17 K-9 Breeds


Canines are known to be loyal, loving, hardworking and intelligent creatures. Their bond with humans is so strong that many dogs will put their own lives at risk to protect the lives of humans.

Dogs also have impeccable senses which are not easily matched by other animals.

Below is a list of 17 police dog breeds.

We know there are other breeds used in law enforcement as well as in the military but this list is of the most used breeds.

When considering these canine facts, it is no wonder that they are not only man’s best friend, but they are also frequently called upon to serve alongside firefighters, military men, and women, as well as police officers.

The following dog breeds are among the best choices to serve with the Police Force.

17- The Cane Corso

CaneCorso (23)

The Cane Corso is a somewhat reverent dog that descended from the Roman war dogs. Being alert, courageous, strong and intimidating, this breed is perfect as a police or military dog.

Currently, there is only one Cane Corso working in the police/military service.

16- The Airedale Terrier

Airedale terrier police dog

Photo: Wikimedia Commons

The Airedale Terrier sports an athletic demeanor.

Being of a breed that is known as “The King of Terriers,” this dog is primarily used as patrol dogs. Both World War I and World War II officers used this breed as protection.

The Airedale Terrier is the largest of the Terriers and has an outstanding sense of smell that and is used for sniffing out drugs and bombs.

The Airedale Terrier was originally bred and used to hunt and catch small prey.

15- The Briard

Aramis briard police dog

The Briard has a keen sense of alertness making it perfect for a guard dog with police. This breed is easy to train and is fearless and brave.

Currently, the Briard is used in search and rescue missions and also as emotional support dogs for those that suffer post-traumatic stress disorder.

14- The Bouvier des Flandres

Bouvier des Flandres police dog

Photo: Wikimedia Commons

This large fluff may appear to be a big teddy bear, but don’t mistake its prowess and courage. It has been known to be aggressively protective!

The Bouvier des Flandres is used as K-9 police officers and will quickly become fierce with a loud growl that can be very intimidating!

13- The American Pitbull Terrier

american pitbull terrier police dog

Photo: Wikimedia Commons

Being the most misunderstood breed, the Pitbull has quickly become widely used in law enforcement.

This breed is the most common dog that is in shelters and because of the stereotypical labeling of this breed as being aggressive, efforts to rescue these dogs are at an all-time high.

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This breed is exceptionally confident and high trainable in being fast, fearless and an essential member of law enforcement.

12- The Beagle

beagle police dog

The Beagle has finally caught up with the larger breeds in being used in law enforcement as K-9 officers.

You can find these dogs in airports and other locations where they are used to sniff out drugs and other illegal substances.

Because of their sense of smell, they are also used as cadaver dogs to find human bodies or remains.

Their size is easy to lift into areas that are too small for humans to access. They are quick and agile in performance!

11- The Belgian Malinois

Belgian Malinois polce dog

The Belgian Malinois resembles a German Shepherd; however, they are a breed not to be reckoned with!

This breed is used to track and apprehend criminals as well as sniffing out drugs and bombs in airports.

This dog makes an outstanding K-9 Officer!

10- The German Short-Haired Pointer

short haired german pointer k9

This dog breed has been around since the early 1800’s making them one of the oldest dog breeds on this list.

The German Short-Haired Pointer is a wonderful hunting companion and working dog due to their natural tracking instincts.

They are not a large dog breed, but their appearance should not fool you!

They are active, loyal, friendly, and diligent canines that would serve the Police Force well.

It is important to mention that the German Short-Haired Pointer is not commonly used by the Police Force, simply due to their potential health problems.

They are prone to gastric torsion which can be fatal if it is not properly treated.

9- The Bloodhound

bloodhound k9

This dog breed may scream “hunting companion” rather than “K9 Unit” but, they would make wonderful working dogs regardless of the job.

The Bloodhound has long floppy ears and a long innocent looking face. However, there is immense power behind those cuddly features!

The Bloodhound is incredibly loyal and will follow his owner’s commands without hesitation (once trained).

They are a very disciplined dog breed that could be trained to hunt and collect birds and other game or could be raised as a service dog.

8- The Boxer

boxer police k9

Boxers are commonly known as fighting dogs due to their natural “rough n’ tough” demeanor.  However, they would make excellent Police Force dogs as well. ​

The two types of Boxers that would best serve the Police Force are the Schutzhund Boxer as well as the Deutscher Boxer.

They are a very athletic canine breed that is not easily tuckered out. Boxers are full of energy and even do well around children.

Although, Boxers can be quite powerful and may play too roughly for small children.

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Boxers (once trained) will follow commands without hesitation and they quickly snap into action when told to do so.

7- The Labrador Retriever

golden retriever police k9

Labrador Retrievers are one of the few dog breeds that seem to appear on almost any canine list.

Labs are simply an impeccable dog breed that can really do it all!

They commonly rated the number one dog breed for families with children (of all ages), service dogs (for the elderly or disabled), as well as the perfect active companion for those who participate in sports or hunting.

So, it is no wonder why they would make the list of the best dog breeds to serve in the Police Force! Labrador Retrievers are typically very easy to train and are loyal to their owners.

When a Labrador Retriever is used by the Police Force it is often to detect drugs, bombs, and various other dangerous items.

They are also very good at digging out people that are trapped under snow, dirt, or other fallen debris.

Even though they can be a very serious hardworking animal, they can also be a silly and loving playmate.

6- The Dutch German Shepherd

dutch german shepherd k9

​The Dutch German Shepherd is not as commonly found working alongside American Police Officers. However, they are an essential component to the Polish Police!

They are impeccable working dogs with powerful senses and loyalty to their owners. They are also very popular because of their long lifespans.

If the Dutch German Shepherd is properly cared for, then he should live up to 15 years old!

Their long lifespans and loyalty are what make the Dutch German Shepherd one of the best dog breeds for the Police Force!

5- The Giant Schnauzer

Giant Schnauzer k9

This dog breed demands the attention of those around him with his large stature and prominent stance.

Not only do they demand attention and respect with their physical appearance, but they can also suggest intimidation, as well.

These pups are very loyal to their owners and are very hardworking.

The Giant Schnauzer is not one of the most popular choices among Police Officers, but he would certainly fit the bill!

4- The Doberman Pinscher

Doberman Pinscher k9

These medium-sized dogs are some of the most masculine and intimidating looking canines around! Their physical appearance alone would make them great K9 Unit dogs.

They are sleek pups with impressive speed. Their ability to run, at impressive speeds, would come in handy when Police Officers are chasing down a suspect.

However, this breed has various other qualities which make them a great candidate.

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They are also very reliable dogs that stand by their owners and families.

They are all around loyal dogs that would make an excellent addition to the Police Force.

3- The Belgian Tervueren

Belgian Tervueren k9

This dog breed may be new to you as it is not commonly talked about. However, it is ranked as one of the best working dogs around!

Physically speaking, the Belgian Tervueren are very impressive and intimidating. They are often mistaken for a type of wolf upon first glance.

This alone can be why they make excellent Police Force dogs.

Although, they should not strictly be judged by their appearance. Nor should they be underestimated.

The Belgian Tervuren does not hesitate to jump into action or stand in the line of defense for their owners.

These pups are excellent at sniffing out bombs, drugs, and various other dangerous items. Overall, they are very intimidating, powerful, hardworking, and loyal canines!

2- The Rottweiller

Rottweiller k9

This dog breed is well-known for being powerful, fierce, and intimidating. They are intensely loyal to their owners and will fight to the death for them.

Rottweilers are very courageous dogs that portray themselves as warriors. These pups should not be underestimated as they could easily remove a finger with a single snap of their jaws.

While Rottweillers can be excellent in a fight, they would better suit the world as protectors and K9 Unit type dogs. Their outstanding loyalty means that they can easily be trained to serve and protect just like Police Officers.

1- The German Shepherd

German Shepherd k9

The most popular choice among Police Officers is the German Shepherd. This is the breed that you will most likely see should the K9 Unit be called into action!

But, what is it about these pups that make them the perfect Police Force dog?

One reason is that the German Shepherd is far from being a pushover type of dog. They are typically very bossy and will attempt to play the alpha dog in any situation.

Proper training should teach the dog that the owner (you) are the alpha dog and that he is to obey you.

Once training is complete and the owner is established as the alpha dog, a German Shepherd will not hesitate to serve and protect his owner and family.

German Shepherds are also the number one Police Force dog due to their ability to attack upon command, their search and rescue instincts, as well as their loyalty to stand beside their owner in the line of duty.

What other breed do you think should be on this list? Comment Below

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