Top 10 Smartest Cat Breeds

Updated on September 14, 2019
Larry Slawson profile image

Larry Slawson received his Master's Degree from UNC Charlotte. He has 15+ years of experience with dogs and various pets.

Ten smartest cat breeds.
Ten smartest cat breeds.

The 10 Smartest Cat Breeds

10. Turkish Angora

9. Siamese

8. Persian

7. Japanese Bobtail

6. Singapura

5. Scottish Fold

4. Cornish Rex

3. Burmese

2. Bengal

1. Abyssinian

The beautiful Turkish Angora.
The beautiful Turkish Angora. | Source

10. Turkish Angora

The Turkish Angora is a highly intelligent breed of cat known for its affectionate nature, adaptability, and high level of energy. As its name implies, the Turkish Angora is believed to have originated in Turkey and was brought to the United States by American servicemen during the 1950s (cfa.org).

The cat is a medium-sized breed known for its long fur, silky coat, and predominantly white coloration. The Angora is also well-known for its natural ability to bond with humans. Similar to Chihuahuas, the Angora often favors particular individuals over others and enjoys being held and petted on a regular basis.

The Turkish Angora is also extremely intelligent and is known for its problem-solving skills, and ease of training. They can be taught basic commands, and actively respond to human emotions, making them an “emotionally intelligent” breed (cfa.org). For these reasons, the Angora is often referred to as “dog-like” in its behavior (cfa.org). As an adaptable and playful breed, the Angora is an excellent choice for families with children and other pets (including cat-friendly dogs).

The Siamese cat.
The Siamese cat. | Source

9. Siamese

The Siamese is a breed of cat known for its affection, intelligence, and social nature. Believed to have originated in Thailand, the Siamese cat is a slim breed known for its distinctive head and face, short hair, blue eyes, and pale body that contrasts sharply with its darkened features.

The Siamese is quite affectionate and actively seeks out attention due to its “love for socializing” (bengalcats.co). They are also well-known for their vocal behavior and can become quite loud if they feel neglected. For this reason, the Siamese is best suited for households with other cats (in particular, another Siamese), or with owners capable of providing them with the attention they desire on a daily basis.

The Siamese cat is also highly intelligent and requires ample stimulation (mental) to keep their minds busy. As an energetic breed, failure to provide this stimulation often results in destructive behavior and mischief as the Siamese attempts to entertain itself through various means. For this reason, challenging puzzles and toys are excellent choices for this breed.

The cat is also capable of learning advanced commands, and have even been observed playing fetch with their owners. Because of their ability to form social bonds, the Siamese is a perfect choice for households with children or other pets (including cat-friendly dogs). Proper care and supervision should be taught to small children, however, as the Siamese is known to become aggressive when harassed or provoked.

Persian cat.
Persian cat. | Source

8. Persian

The Persian is a highly intelligent breed of cat known for its long hair, rounded face, and friendly (yet quiet) demeanor. Believed to have originated in Iran, the first Persians appeared in the Western World around 1620. It wasn’t until the late 1800s, however, that the Persian became a popular choice for households (becoming the second most popular cat for American households as of 2001).

Persians are incredibly docile; a characteristic tied to their overly sensitive and cautious nature. Despite their shyness, however, the Persian is quite affectionate towards its owners, and “loves to be held and coddled” (bengalcats.co). For this reason, the Persian is a perfect choice for families with children, as the cat loves human interaction and attention.

Apart from their beautiful appearance, the Persian is also highly intelligent and can be trained to respond to various commands, including “no” and “come here” (bengalcats.co). Due to their attentiveness, the breed is also highly receptive to human words, and is capable of “understanding sound association” (bengalcats.co). For these reasons, the Persian makes for an excellent addition to nearly any home.

Japanese Bobtail.
Japanese Bobtail. | Source

7. Japanese Bobtail

The Japanese Bobtail is a breed of cat known for its short tail (similar to the tail of a rabbit), gentleness, and intelligence. Originating in Japan and Southeast Asia (as its name implies), the Japanese Bobtail comes in a wide array of colors, and is considered a medium-sized breed reaching upwards of 9-pounds when fully matured. Capable of living nearly fifteen years, the Bobtail is a good choice for families as their long life, gentleness, and affectionate nature make them excellent companions for small children.

Japanese Bobtails are exceptionally smart and are capable of learning a wide array of tricks and commands (including fetch). They are also known to respond to their name and have a heightened sense of awareness to their surroundings. For this reason, experts believe that the Bobtail actively studies its environment, and is capable of learning through both trial and error (hillspet.com).

As with most intelligent breeds, the Bobtail requires mental and physical stimulation on a daily basis to prevent boredom and frustration. For owners up to the challenge though, the Bobtail makes for an excellent pet and companion for both children and adults alike.

The Singapura.
The Singapura. | Source

6. Singapura

The Singapura is a highly intelligent breed of cat known for its small size, playfulness, and friendly demeanor. Believed to have originated in Singapore during the 1970s, the Singapura reaches only 6 to 8 pounds at full maturity, and usually maintains a sepia color described as dark brown with ivory green.

The Singapura thrives on attention, and loves interactive playtime with their owners (purina.com). They are also quite friendly and social toward other pets, particularly cats and dogs. Due to their disdain for loud noises, however, the Singapura is not well-suited for households with small children (purina.com).

The Singapura is considered “socially intelligent” due to the fact that the cat actively uses its agility, natural cuteness, and high-levels of energy to garner extra attention from its owner. For this reason, the cat is often unfairly labeled as “pesky,” as the breed is considered extremely “extroverted” and “needy” (bengalcats.co). Nevertheless, their ability to actively engage with challenging toys and games coupled with the breed’s desire for strong social bonds makes the Singapura a highly intelligent cat, as well as a great companion.

The Scottish Fold.
The Scottish Fold. | Source

5. Scottish Fold

The Scottish Fold is a highly intelligent breed of cat known for their folded ears, friendliness, and playfulness. Believed to have originated in Scotland during the 1960s, the Scottish Fold is a medium-sized breed that comes in a variety of colors, including white, black, blue, red, silver, and cream.

Reaching nearly 13-pounds at full maturity, the Scottish Fold also maintains a relatively long coat of hair that is soft to the touch. Because this breed sheds year-round, weekly combing is often required to remove loose hair (purina.com). The Scottish Fold is also quite friendly, and makes for an excellent companion as it prefers the “company of their humans or other cats” over “being left alone for hours at a time” (purina.com).

As an intelligent breed, the Scottish Fold loves toys and games that challenge (and test) their intelligence. Similar to Burmese cats, the Scottish Fold is also considered “emotionally intelligent,” and is capable of responding to a wide array of human emotions. This breed is considered highly observant by many experts, and actively studies human behaviors to better understand their surrounding environment (purina.com).

For this reason, it is not uncommon for the Scottish Fold to actively watch television or to closely follow their owners around the house or yard (similar to a dog). Because of their closeness to humans, the Scottish Fold makes for an excellent family pet, particularly for families with children.

The Cornish Rex.
The Cornish Rex. | Source

4. Cornish Rex

The Cornish Rex is a domestic cat breed known for its intelligence, playfulness, and curiosity. Believed to have originated in Great Britain, the Cornish Rex is often referred to as the “Greyhound” of the feline world, due to their sleek bodies, and natural speed. They are also one of the few cats known to lose much of their hair, giving them a bald-like appearance over their relatively long lifetime.

Similar to the Abyssinian, the Cornish Rex breed is extremely active with a high-level of energy unmatched by most felines. For this reason, physical stimulation is a must for this breed; a trait that makes the Cornish Rex a perfect choice for households with children and existing pets (particularly other cats and even dogs).

As an intelligent breed of cat, the Cornish Rex also requires mental stimulation on a daily basis to prevent boredom. Experts agree that puzzle games and advanced toys that challenge the breed to think critically are the best option for the Cornish Rex (bengalcats.co). The cat is also one of the few breeds capable of learning tricks and is known to exhibit both verbal and non-verbal communication skills to get their owner’s undivided attention.

The Burmese.
The Burmese. | Source

3. Burmese

The Burmese is a medium-sized breed of cat known for its intelligence, learning capacity, and gentleness. Upon maturity, the Burmese reaches weights of nearly 12-pounds, and comes in a variety of colors that include blue, platinum, sable, and champagne.

The cat is quite social, energetic, and curious by nature, and thrives on attention from its owners. As its name implies, the Burmese is believed to have originated in Thailand, and was first brought to the United States in the 1930s. Today, it is a popular cat in both North American and Europe.

As an intelligent breed, the Burmese requires substantial mental and physical stimulation to prevent boredom and frustration. For this reason, owners are encouraged to challenge their Burmese by providing them with interactive toys.

Aside from its ability to learn new tricks with ease, the Burmese is also considered “emotionally intelligent,” and is capable of responding (appropriately) to the moods of their owners (bengalcats.co). They are also quite observant and have the capacity to learn through trial and error. For these reasons, the Burmese is cited as one of the smartest cat breeds in the world, and makes for a wonderful pet to both children and adults alike.

The Bengal cat.
The Bengal cat. | Source

2. Bengal

The Bengal is a relatively large breed of cat known for its rambunctiousness, intelligence, and curiosity. Despite their large size (reaching nearly 18-pounds when fully matured), the Bengal is also quite athletic and requires daily exercise. The cat’s physical needs are due, in part, to the fact that Bengals are hybrid animals. In 1963, Jean Mill crossbred a wild Asian Leopard with a domestic cat, resulting in the Bengal as we know it today. To this day, the Bengal is the only domestic cat with markings that resemble leopards, ocelots, and jaguars (purina.com).

As an intelligent breed, the Bengal is quite curious by nature (a trait that often results in misbehavior). They are also one of the few cats capable of being trained to walk on a leash, or to understand basic commands such as “sit,” or “lie down” due to their excellent memories. Some owners have even reported teaching their Bengals to turn on light switches.

Combined with their affectionate and gentle temperament, the Bengal has often been compared to dogs for their companionship and learning capacity. For this reason, they often make wonderful pets for families with children as kids provide the Bengal with ample physical and mental stimulation.

The Abyssinian; largely cited as the smartest cat breed in the world.
The Abyssinian; largely cited as the smartest cat breed in the world. | Source

"Perhaps one reason we are fascinated by cats is because such a small animal can contain so much independence, dignity, and freedom of spirit. Unlike the dog, the cat's personality is never bet on a human's. He demands acceptance on his own terms."

— Lloyd Alexander

1. Abyssinian

The Abyssinian is a small to medium-sized breed, and is considered to be the smartest cat in the world (purina.com). The cat is believed to have originated in England during the Eighteenth Century, and comes in a variety of colors, including red, blue, and fawn.

Abyssinians are both highly intelligent and inquisitive, and are well-known for their desire to explore. Because of this high-degree of intelligence (and capacity for learning), the Abyssinian enjoys a wide-array of toys and puzzles that offer them unique challenges. They are also capable of learning various tricks, and are very responsive to training efforts. Without proper mental and physical stimulation on a daily basis, the cat is known to get into mischief due to either boredom or general frustration.

Although highly active and independent, the Abyssinian also loves attention from its owner. For this reason, the cat is great for both kids and companionship. Unlike other cat breeds, the Abyssinian is also great with other pets, particularly with cat-friendly dogs who can match their high-energy levels (purina.com). Due to their relatively small size, however, adequate supervision of this breed is a necessity as they are prone to various injuries (particularly from other pets or children).

Poll

Do you agree that the Abyssinian is the smartest cat breed in the world?

See results

Works Cited

Questions & Answers

    © 2019 Larry Slawson

    Comments

      0 of 8192 characters used
      Post Comment
      • Asad Dillz profile image

        Asad Dillz Khan 

        4 weeks ago from United Kingdom

        Very informative and beautiful article Lary. I have Scottish fold and Persian breed cats. I really found these cats an amazing and beautiful pet cats. I'm happy to read this interesting article. EXCELLENT Job!

      • Juliet Acedera profile image

        Juliet Acedera 

        4 weeks ago from Valenzuela City

        What a nice and informative article. These cats are so adorable.

      • profile image

        Dacey jones 

        2 months ago

        Great Article about such incredible cats. the breeds which you encapsulated are looking so good. in my experience one common aspect should be in mind before adopting any cat or dog as a pet.

        1. prepare a cat safe pet room which can give a kitty a place to hide

        2. provide some cat toys for entertainment

        3. Cats are easily prone with fleas and ticks. if it is abundant difficult to remove. other side instead suggesting for chemical anti tick or flea spray i would always recommend to use organic tick spray. recently for my niece Turkish Angora breed affected with severe ticks. after using the natural tick spray, now the problem have been sorted.

        https://mdxconcepts.com/jasper-flea-and-tick-spray...

        4.give your cats some cat toys for entertainment where you can get from Amazon or wallmart sites

        5.Food care must, based on the age to age. for kittens i suggest to use the pedigree based on their ages

      • profile image

        Lorna Lamon 

        2 months ago

        Great article Larry about such incredible cats. I think the thing I love most about cats is that they are the 'epitome of indifference' - ours certainly is.

      • Larry Slawson profile imageAUTHOR

        Larry Slawson 

        2 months ago from North Carolina

        Haha, thank you Eric! Glad you stopped by. Yeah, I had done a Hub on smartest dogs, so figured I would do one on smartest cats as well.

      • Ericdierker profile image

        Eric Dierker 

        2 months ago from Spring Valley, CA. U.S.A.

        Not a cat person at all but you wrote it so I looked it over. I never thought about this.

      • Larry Slawson profile imageAUTHOR

        Larry Slawson 

        2 months ago from North Carolina

        @John That's a really neat idea with the kings! Very unique too.

        @Pamela I'm glad you enjoyed! That's really neat that he is that old! I've always enjoyed cats. I had a Persian one time, and he was a great pet. Acted just like a dog, always following me around, or wanting to play haha.

      • Pamela99 profile image

        Pamela Oglesby 

        2 months ago from Sunny Florida

        I have had several cats through the years but I don't think I have had aby pureblood in your list. Now we have a tuxedo cat with a big fluffy tail. he is 13.5 years old. He is smart and has been a treasure. I did like reading your list of the 10 smartest cats as I may get another one.

      • John Welford profile image

        John Welford 

        2 months ago from Barlestone, Leicestershire

        We name our cats after Anglo-Saxon kings! The last one - also a Siamese - was Edwy. Athelstan is known familiarly as Athy!

      • Larry Slawson profile imageAUTHOR

        Larry Slawson 

        2 months ago from North Carolina

        Haha. That's funny, John. I like that name too. Athelstan was a former king, am I right? Could be mistaken though. If so, that is a fitting name for a Siamese.

      • John Welford profile image

        John Welford 

        2 months ago from Barlestone, Leicestershire

        Athelstan, our Siamese, will be disappointed at being "out-smarted" by 8 other breeds!

      working

      This website uses cookies

      As a user in the EEA, your approval is needed on a few things. To provide a better website experience, pethelpful.com uses cookies (and other similar technologies) and may collect, process, and share personal data. Please choose which areas of our service you consent to our doing so.

      For more information on managing or withdrawing consents and how we handle data, visit our Privacy Policy at: https://pethelpful.com/privacy-policy#gdpr

      Show Details
      Necessary
      HubPages Device IDThis is used to identify particular browsers or devices when the access the service, and is used for security reasons.
      LoginThis is necessary to sign in to the HubPages Service.
      Google RecaptchaThis is used to prevent bots and spam. (Privacy Policy)
      AkismetThis is used to detect comment spam. (Privacy Policy)
      HubPages Google AnalyticsThis is used to provide data on traffic to our website, all personally identifyable data is anonymized. (Privacy Policy)
      HubPages Traffic PixelThis is used to collect data on traffic to articles and other pages on our site. Unless you are signed in to a HubPages account, all personally identifiable information is anonymized.
      Amazon Web ServicesThis is a cloud services platform that we used to host our service. (Privacy Policy)
      CloudflareThis is a cloud CDN service that we use to efficiently deliver files required for our service to operate such as javascript, cascading style sheets, images, and videos. (Privacy Policy)
      Google Hosted LibrariesJavascript software libraries such as jQuery are loaded at endpoints on the googleapis.com or gstatic.com domains, for performance and efficiency reasons. (Privacy Policy)
      Features
      Google Custom SearchThis is feature allows you to search the site. (Privacy Policy)
      Google MapsSome articles have Google Maps embedded in them. (Privacy Policy)
      Google ChartsThis is used to display charts and graphs on articles and the author center. (Privacy Policy)
      Google AdSense Host APIThis service allows you to sign up for or associate a Google AdSense account with HubPages, so that you can earn money from ads on your articles. No data is shared unless you engage with this feature. (Privacy Policy)
      Google YouTubeSome articles have YouTube videos embedded in them. (Privacy Policy)
      VimeoSome articles have Vimeo videos embedded in them. (Privacy Policy)
      PaypalThis is used for a registered author who enrolls in the HubPages Earnings program and requests to be paid via PayPal. No data is shared with Paypal unless you engage with this feature. (Privacy Policy)
      Facebook LoginYou can use this to streamline signing up for, or signing in to your Hubpages account. No data is shared with Facebook unless you engage with this feature. (Privacy Policy)
      MavenThis supports the Maven widget and search functionality. (Privacy Policy)
      Marketing
      Google AdSenseThis is an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
      Google DoubleClickGoogle provides ad serving technology and runs an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
      Index ExchangeThis is an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
      SovrnThis is an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
      Facebook AdsThis is an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
      Amazon Unified Ad MarketplaceThis is an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
      AppNexusThis is an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
      OpenxThis is an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
      Rubicon ProjectThis is an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
      TripleLiftThis is an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
      Say MediaWe partner with Say Media to deliver ad campaigns on our sites. (Privacy Policy)
      Remarketing PixelsWe may use remarketing pixels from advertising networks such as Google AdWords, Bing Ads, and Facebook in order to advertise the HubPages Service to people that have visited our sites.
      Conversion Tracking PixelsWe may use conversion tracking pixels from advertising networks such as Google AdWords, Bing Ads, and Facebook in order to identify when an advertisement has successfully resulted in the desired action, such as signing up for the HubPages Service or publishing an article on the HubPages Service.
      Statistics
      Author Google AnalyticsThis is used to provide traffic data and reports to the authors of articles on the HubPages Service. (Privacy Policy)
      ComscoreComScore is a media measurement and analytics company providing marketing data and analytics to enterprises, media and advertising agencies, and publishers. Non-consent will result in ComScore only processing obfuscated personal data. (Privacy Policy)
      Amazon Tracking PixelSome articles display amazon products as part of the Amazon Affiliate program, this pixel provides traffic statistics for those products (Privacy Policy)
      ClickscoThis is a data management platform studying reader behavior (Privacy Policy)