You may have heard that certain dog breeds are more intelligent than others. While different dogs within the same breed may differ in brainpower, there are some breeds recognized as smarter overall.
We’ve rounded up the breeds consistently acknowledged for their superior intelligence, listed here in alphabetical order.
- Australian Cattle Dog – Also known as the Blue Heeler or the Queensland Heeler, the Australian Cattle Dog is known not only for its intelligence but for its endurance as well. This herding breed has a bit of an independent streak, however, which makes them quite challenging to train.
- Australian Shepherd – Not only are Australian Shepherds very devoted and loyal to family, but they exhibit an impressive degree of focus. This intelligent breed responds very well to training and excels at obedience and other dog sports.
- Border Collie – Commonly ranked as the number one breed for intelligence, the Border Collie is a hardworking breed. These dogs have seemingly endless energy and they live to work. Though these dogs were developed for herding, they excel at various other dog sports as well.
- Collie – The Collie is one of the smartest breeds of dog and one of the easiest to train. These dogs are very friendly and easy to please and they excel at herding, in particular.
- German Shepherd – Known for its natural protective instincts, the German Shepherd is a highly intelligent breed. This type of dog is not only one of the smartest out there, but also one of the most adaptable – they can learn just about anything dogs can learn that you are willing to teach them.
- Golden Retriever – Known for their gentle spirit and their affinity for children, Golden Retrievers are a very smart breed. These dogs are incredibly loyal and affectionate with family and they make great therapy and service dogs.
- Jack Russell Terrier – Though this breed may be small, it is very intelligent. Jack Russell Terriers demand a good deal of attention and exercise, but they typically respond well to training. These dogs excel when given a job to do.
- Labrador Retriever – The Labrador Retriever has a reputation for being a mischievous breed but, in most cases, behavioral problems are the result of boredom or lack of training. This intelligent breed loves to run and play and they are particularly eager to please.
- Poodle – Though the Poodle may look a bit prissy, it is one of the smartest breeds out there. Poodles are gentle and affectionate, but behind their soft eyes lies a great deal of intelligence.
- Shetland Sheepdog – Commonly referred to as the Sheltie, the Shetland Sheepdog looks like a miniature Collie and is just as smart. Shelties can be a little bit goofy but they are a very athletic and intelligent breed that excels at dog sports.
How smart is your dog? Let us know in the comments below. Our mutt isn’t that clever; in chess, we usually beat him two out of three.
Content reviewed by a veterinarian