What Are The Smartest Dog Breeds

What Are The Smartest Dog Breeds

What Are The Smartest Dog Breeds

While all dogs qualify as man's best friend, some are presumably more clueless than others. But even so, some dog breeds stand out when it comes to working intelligence, such as obedience and following commands.

Dogs are brilliant animals. But some are more intelligent than others. They can learn human language and even understand your moods. Other dogs can learn specific traits faster than others.

So, if you are looking for the smartest dog breed to join your family, here are some great canines that will pass the test.

What Qualifies A Dog As Smart?

Generally, there are many factors you can use to determine whether your dog is intelligent or not. These factors are based on your dog's obedience, instincts, and ability to adapt to different situations. 

 However, some people argue that smart dogs are relative because some dog breeds are socially and emotionally reliant on people. Such dogs are easier to train and far more receptive to what their owners expect them to do.

One typical example is the hound. Hounds have much higher superior senses of smell and sight than most breeds. Similarly, terriers may not take too well to direction, but they have exceptional hearing. So, as you can see, every dog breed is different. Therefore, your perception of having an intelligent dog is often relative to what you think qualifies for an intelligent dog. That said, here's our comprehensive list of the most intelligent dog breeds:


German Shepherds are perhaps some of the most popular dog breeds we know today. These breeds are prized for almost everything, with the greatest combination of athleticism, intelligence, and size in the dog kingdom. German Shepherds can protect your home, perform in dog competitions, and even work as military or police dogs.

This dog breed is intensely loyal to its owner and eager to please, making them excellent family pets too. 

German Shepherds can also learn and retain new skills more quickly than most dog breeds. They have the physical attributes to accomplish some of the most astonishing feats. These dogs will accomplish almost anything other dog breeds can do.

2. Shetland Sheepdog

As its name suggests, the Shetland Sheepdog is man's best friend when it comes to herding. Shetland has a close resemblance to its larger cousin, the collie. The breed has been a consistent champion, especially when it comes to obedience competitions.

Like their collie relatives, Shetland Sheepdogs are remarkably intelligent breeds and can keep track of large herds of wandering animals for long periods, often without supervision. This trait created a small, nimble, and keenly observant dog breed that thrives on having a challenge in front of it.

3. Golden Retriever

Every dog lover has probably heard of the Golden Retriever or owned one at some point. 

Coming in behind the German Shepherd, the Golden Retriever is widely popular in the U.S. It is beloved for its affable, people-pleasing, and joyous nature. But this dog does much more than being friendly with its owner. It ranks as one of the smartest dog breeds we know today.

This has helped make the Golden Retriever an excellent choice, especially for therapy and service dogs. They can also be trained as search and rescue dogs, champion field and competition animals, and hunting dogs. 

What more would you ask for from your furry friends?

4. Rottweiler

Rottweilers are perhaps some of the meanest dog breeds you can find. This dog breed is heavily built and known more as a popular protection or guard dog. But don't underestimate this fantastic dog breed. While it may not have the same reputation as the German Shepherd when it comes to intellect, the Rottweiler is a fierce competitor in this regard.

So, this breed can be as quick on picking up new traits as anyone else on this list. Don't underestimate your Rottweiler's ability to pick up a few tricks down the road.

5. Papillon

The Papillon is the most obvious choice when looking for a dog breed with both looks and brains.

These adorable furry pets have been the more popular breed for royalties and aristocrats for the longest time. Their regal appearances and charming personalities make them a fierce contender on the "dog runway."

But inside that tiny, plumed head is a first-rate mind that delights in learning new tricks and performing complex tasks that other dog breeds wouldn't dare. If anything, Papillons relish and marvel at being the center of attention.

6. Doberman Pinscher

The Doberman Pinscher has long been one of the premier protection dogs we know today. This is an excellent physical breed, almost without equal in the dog kingdom. They are fast, strong, and agile. But their greatest feature lies inside their heads.

The Doberman Pinscher's intelligence enables it to learn several tasks and commands quickly. Here's a dog specimen you can trust to follow your commands unerringly.

7. Poodle

Don't let these fluffy hairdos fool you. Poodles are efficient water dogs, adept hunters, and probably some of the brightest breeds you will ever come across. Amazingly, Poodles of all sizes have a high degree of intelligence.

Underneath those curls, you will find a strong, slender body that's well equipped for swimming and is an excellent retriever.

8. Australian Cattle Dog

Well known as one of the finest herding dog breeds globally, the Australian Cattle Dog is highly intelligent and capable of following large herds for great distances. This breed can keep your flock in line for days on end without supervision.

But what's even more amazing is how it can transform into a quick-learning and observant family pet when at home. 

And while they might adapt well to city life, these breeds are always happiest when doing something. So, it would help if you considered herding, agility, and flyball competitions to keep your furry friend happy and engaged.

Are You Looking For A Smart Dog Breed?

Hopefully, we covered all the top dog breeds in this post. Again, while different dogs may stand out more regarding intellect, other dogs make up for it with other traits like strength, speed, and stamina. 

So, be on the lookout for your next smart pooch. Plus, we promise no favoritism when producing this post. All pups are lovable and adorable in their special ways. 

 Article made pawssible by Esther Rebecca

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