The smartest dog breeds

February 26th, 2017

We all think our dogs are the smartest, most human fur-babies in the world. But when it comes to science and psychology, which breeds are teacher’s pets? 

Rating dog intelligence is by no means easy.

Canine psychologist Stanley Coren wrote back in the 90s, there’s adaptive intelligence (i.e., figuring stuff out), working intelligence (i.e., following orders), and instinctive intelligence (i.e., innate talent) — not to mention spatial intelligence, kinesthetic intelligence, interpersonal intelligence, and more.

Coren, in his book, “The Intelligence of Dogs,” featured the results of a lengthy survey of 199 dog obedience judges.

Here are the results:

Top tier — the brightest working dogs who tend to learn a new command in less than five seconds and obey at least 95% of the time.

1. Border collie

2. Poodle

3. German shepherd

4. Golden retriever

5. Doberman pinscher

6. Shetland sheepdog

7. Labrador retriever

8. Papillon

9. Rottweiler

10. Australian cattle dog

Second tier — excellent working dogs who tend to learn a new command in 5 — 15 exposures and obey at least 85% of the time.

11. Pembroke Welsh corgi

12. Miniature schnauzer

13. English springer spaniel

14. Belgian Tervuren

15. Schipperke, Belgian sheepdog

16. Collie Keeshond

17. German short-haired pointer

18. Flat-coated retriever, English cocker spaniel, Standard schnauzer

19. Brittany spaniel

20. Cocker spaniel, Nova Scotia duck tolling retriever

21. Weimaraner

22. Belgian Malinois, Bernese mountain dog

23. Pomeranian

24. Irish water spaniel

25. Vizsla

26. Cardigan Welsh corgi

Third tier — above-average working dogs who tend to learn a new trick in 15 — 25 repetitions and obey at least 70% of the time.

27. Chesapeake Bay retriever, Puli, Yorkshire terrier

28. Giant schnauzer, Portuguese water dog

29. Airedale, Bouvier des FLandres

30. Border terrier, Briard

31. Welsh springer spaniel

32. Manchester terrier

33. Samoyed

34. Field spaniel, Newfoundland, Australian terrier, American Staffordshire terrier, Gordon setter, Bearded collie

35. American Eskimo dog, Cairn terrier, Kerry blue terrier, Irish setter

36. Norwegian elkhound

37. Affenpinscher, Silky terrier, Miniature pinscher, English setter, Pharaoh hound, Clumber spaniel

38. Norwich terrier

39. Dalmatian



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