Poodle

That’s right, poodles, known for their ‘dos, snagged the eighth spot on the AKC’s popular dog breed list. Though its airy curls may have you believe differently, the poodle is not a fluffy toy, and rather the breed sports major smarts and excels in obedience training.

The breed comes in three size variations: The standard variety, the oldest of the three, is the only one to have its genome sequenced, a feat reported in 2003; the miniature may have been used to sniff out truffles — an edible fungus considered a delicacy; and the toy poodle, which was often used in performances and kept as a pampered pet. For instance, during the reign of Louis XVI in France, toy poodles were all the rage.

Though poodles come in a variety of coat colors — including white, black, apricot and gray — research published in 2007 in the journal Science revealed that all poodle coats and those of nine other breeds arise from the same gene called beta-defensin that encodes black and yellow coat color. And all colors in between are just modifications of yellow and black, the researchers said