How smart is your dog?

Check out this list of 10 most and least intelligent dog breeds

So you think your pooch is a canine Einstein? You’re not alone, thousands of dog owners believe their furry friends are blessed with a unique intelligence but the truth is your dog’s intelligence is dependant on a number of factors including lifestyle, and of course, breed. In his book, The Intelligence of Dogs, Stanley Coren takes a look at the brightest and ditsiest breeds based on results from over 200 professional dog obedience judges.

Brightest Dogs

These breeds were able to understand new commands with less than 5 repetitions and were seen to obey the first command 95 percent of the time or better.

1. Border Collie – no surprise here, border collies are known for their ability to outsmart whole flocks of sheep in the fields.

2. Poodle – this may come as a surprise to some but despite their ditsy and high-maintenance appearance, poodles are indeed top of the class when it comes to smarts.

3. German Shepherd – there’s a reason this breed is favoured by the police force the world over and it’s not just for their intimidating looks.

4. Golden Retriever – not just a pretty face, the golden retriever is a popular choice for those who want a dog with brains and beauty.

5. Doberman Pinscher – this highly energetic and intelligent dog is well suited for police and military work as well as a family guardian and companion.

6. Shetland Sheepdog – Shelties are intelligent, vocal, excitable, energetic and willing to please. They’re hard-working dogs with a heart of gold.

7. Labrador Retriever – labs are considered the most ’employable’ breed and are put to work as assistance dogs to the handicapped, search and rescue dogs, and even retrievers for hunters.

8. Papillon – these little bundles of joy are known for their agility and obedience and are a joy to train.

9. Rottweiler – these clever sausages were among the earliest police dogs and are also very popular family guardians and friends.

10. Australian Cattle Dog – this breed thrives on having a job to do and on being part of all family activities. They are loyal and protective and a real assest in any home.

Lowest Degree of Intelligence

These fluffballs required over 80 to 100 repetitions or more when being taught new commands and were found to only obey the first command 25 percent of the time or worse.

1. Shih Tzu – these little fluffs are lovers not hunters. Bred solely to be a companion, the Shih Tzu is an affectionate, happy, outgoing housedog.

2. Basset Hound – these laid-back family friends are happiest when they’re around their humans.

3. Mastiff – this breed makes a fine companion for anyone who can accommodate their great size and oafish nature.

4. Pekingese – bred to be the cherished companions of the imperial family of China, Pekingese are indeed cute as a button.

5. Chihuahua – this pint-sized breed often sports a big personality and they love nothing more than being side-by-side with people.

6. Pug – know known as the clowns of the canine world, because they have a great sense of humour and like to show off, Pugs often live in their own little world.

7. Chow Chow – this aloof breed has a proud, independent spirit that some describe as catlike. If you’re looking for a cuddle buddy, this probably isn’t the best breed for you.

8. Bulldog – originally bred to drive cattle to market, these days they’re gentle companions who love a good nap on the sofa and a cuddle.

9. Basenji – while actually extremely intelligent this breed has found its way to the bottom of the list thanks to a unique stubborn streak. A Basenji may know perfectly well all the commands you teach him, but whether he actually performs them will always be in question.

10. Afghan Hound – Independence and indifference aside, the Afghan Hound is tender when he wishes to be and can be very amusing.