The Labrador Retriever topped the list of most loved dog breeds in Israel in 2008, according to figures released by the Agriculture Ministry's Veterinary Services last week.
The "smiling" and patient Labrador was followed at the top of the list by the noisy and jumpy Pinscher, which was awarded the respectable title of Israel's most popular dog breed in 2007.
Thanks to its easygoing temperament, the Labrador is considered a family-oriented animal, and is also used as a guide dog for the blind. Its sensitive nose is often used by the police to locate bombs and drugs.
According to the data, more than 18,000 pedigree Labradors were recoded in Israel last year, compared to less than 17,000 Pinschers.
The third spot on the list of Israel's most popular dogs was granted to the German Shepherd with some 12,000 dogs, followed by the Golden Retriever with a similar number of dogs living in the Holy Land.
The Pekingese, which was one of the stars of last year's list, was included on the 2008 list as well with 10,440 dogs.