Skip to main content

A List of the 100 Smartest Dog Breeds

I've been an online writer for over eight years. My articles often focus on pet ownership and my travels through national parks!

Check out this list of the 100 smartest dogs, according to Professor Stanley Coren.

Check out this list of the 100 smartest dogs, according to Professor Stanley Coren.

This list was compiled by Stanley Coren, a professor of canine psychology at the University of British Colombia, and published in his 1994 book, The Intelligence of Dogs.

Top 100 Smartest Dogs

Here is a list of one hundred of the smartest dog breeds in descending order, with the smartest breed at the end.

100. Afghan Hound: This breed has a unique appearance, with silky, flowing hair and a runway-model build. While beautiful, the Afghan Hound can be hard to train because hounds have a reputation for being stubborn and fiercely independent.

99. Basenji: This medium-sized hunting breed, also nicknamed the "barkless dog," is one of only a few breeds that don't bark much. Instead, the Besanji is known for its famous yodel.

98. Bulldog: Their easy-going nature and physical laziness might be mistaken for slow-wittedness, but these dogs are by no means dumb—they're just too lazy to perform tricks or obey silly commands when they can just relax and drool themselves to sleep.

97. Chow Chow: The Chow Chow needed 80 out of 100 attempts to do what it was asked to do. It only took the Border Collie five tries to perform the same task. Many owners, however, believe that the Chow Chow possesses a different type of intelligence—one that is not suitable for obeying repetitive commands. Instead, they are great problem solvers.

96. Russian Wolfhound (Borzoi): Like all hounds, this breed is stubborn and seems to have a mind of its own. Of course, refusing to obey commands does not signal a lack of intelligence. Quite the opposite. To quote Nellie Martin's book The Russian Wolfhound: Its History, Breeding, Exhibiting and Care, "the wolfhound is not a servant but a born aristocrat. He objects to being your servant."1

95. Bloodhound: They have a gifted sense of smell and will follow a scent if they choose to do so, but they may not be too keen on following your commands.

94. Pekingese: A toy dog bred for royalty, the Pekingese is hard to train because it is independent, strong-willed, and stubborn. It may not learn commands, but it certainly does not lack intelligence. This breed has a large sense of self-importance, enjoys being pampered, and doesn't care to be your jester.

93. Mastiff: They are very stubborn and are not easy to train, especially if you use a harsh voice. They have high emotional intelligence and are very in tune with their owners, so if you plan on training them, do so in a gentle and excited voice, and you may get better results.

92. Beagle: This hound breed likes to follow interesting scents, not orders, so don't be surprised if your Beagle ignores your calls. Even though they are hard-headed, they have a very playful and loving nature, and they are among the breeds that get along great with kids and even cats.

91. Basset Hound: This sad-looking dog is extremely stubborn. On a good day, you'll get a measured and contemplative response, but don't expect quick obedience.

90. Chinese Crested: These hairless little buzzards are hard to housetrain, so don't give them any chance to make repeated mistakes. They like routine, so allowing them to routinely potty in the house will make it harder for you to later train them to go anywhere else. Other than that, they are playful, love attention, and do well with big families.

89. Chihuahua: These tiny dogs are fast learners, but they don't often retain what they learn. They aren't people pleasers and are free spirits, so this may explain why obedience is not their strong suit.

Scroll to Continue

Read More From Pethelpful

88. Chinese Shar-Pei: These wrinkly pups are independent thinkers and are sometimes aloof. They belong in the same group as some of the most excellent medium-sized watchdogs but can be quite aggressive with other people and other dogs, so they must be socialized at an early age.

87. English Bulldog: They're not very fast thinkers or fast movers, but they have a great sense of humor and love to please their owners.

86. Pug: These dogs may be the laughing stock of the Internet world because of their smooshed-in faces and bug eyes, but don't assume that they're dumb—they just like to test your limits. Set boundaries when training, and they will quickly learn what you will and will not tolerate.

85. Pomeranian: Poms are very clever dogs, but they display princess-like behavior and will not listen if they feel inconvenienced. This applies especially to potty training. They may not go outside to potty if it is cold or raining, so provide them with potty mats if needed.

84. Maltese: These regal pooches are smart, loyal, and love to please. It also helps that they are hypoallergenic and are one of the breeds that don't shed.

83. Boston Terrier: These black and white pups are extremely intelligent and quickly pick up on emotional and verbal queues but are known to be stubborn at times.

82. American Pitbull Terrier: Highly devoted to their families, these often misunderstood dogs will defend their owners to the death. They are also extremely intelligent and love learning tricks.

81. Mini Schnauzer: These little guys were originally bred to guard. They are very smart and have proven that, on average, they can understand new commands after five to fifteen repetitions and obey a command 85% of the time. They are also very good to have around if you are looking for dogs that are good at catching rats.

80. Shih Tzu: This toy breed is loved for its playfulness and propensity for humor, but can be hard to housebreak. Consistency is key when training because Shih Tzus prefer to play over obedience lessons. However, once trained, they are very well-behaved. They also don't shed and are great dogs for seniors.

79. Lhasa Apso: Originally bred to be guard dogs for Tibetan monks, these dogs have a keen sense of hearing. They love to play and get along with children and seniors. They can live up to 16 years, making them one of the breeds with the longest life expectancies.

78. Rat Terrier: These feisty pups crave attention and are known to have a stubborn streak. They are great rat catchers, if you haven't guessed that already. They will chase away all mice and vermin with fearless aplomb.

77. Bull Terrier: Most recognized as the face of Target, this dog is described as protective, playful, and sweet-tempered. It is also trainable.

76. Tibetan Mastiff: This large and competent defender is highly intelligent but extremely independent, so they don't do well with obedience. As one owner puts it, "Tibetan Mastiffs want to be with you, but they think that if they are in the same country as you, they are with you."

75. French Bulldog: Once the favorite pets of French "belles de nuit" (a.k.a. prostitutes), these bat-eared dogs are a great breed for people who work all day because they don't require a lot of exercise. They like nothing better than to stay inside with you and nap while you slave away at your desk.

74. Skye Terrier: Despite his small size, the Skye Terrier is a fearless and self-assured dog. Skye Terriers are playful and affectionate with people but can be stubborn.

73. Silky Terrier: As a hunter of small prey, this terrier breed is assertive and confident. These silky companion dogs learn commands quickly, but don't expect them to always be obedient. They enjoy participating in the occasional mischievous antic—they are hunters, after all.

72. Keeshond: Sociable, outgoing, and affectionate are just some of the qualities attributed to this all-around friendly dog. The Keeshond does well with strangers, children, and other animals. Although this dog is smart enough to outsmart you, it is not a fan of repetition, so keep training sessions short and dynamic.

71. American Hairless Terrier: This breed loves human companionship and is easy to train. The breed also gets along well with cats.

70. Manchester Terrier: This feisty dog possesses wit and keen intelligence, but, like all terriers, can be hard-headed. Along with the other terriers on this list, the Manchester Terrier is a great catcher of vermin.

69. Cavalier King Charles Spaniel: Classed as a sporting toy breed, the King Charles Spaniel has the energy of a sporting dog and the cuddly affection of a toy breed. They love to please their humans, so training will be a breeze. They thrive on human companionship and are among the breeds of dogs that are the most affectionate. In fact, they will suffer from separation anxiety if left alone for too long.

68. Dandie Dinmont Terrier: These dogs are affectionate with their families but can be reserved with strangers. They will also bark their lungs away at anything they deem strange or suspicious. Train them with consistency and socialize them at an early age.

67. Redbone Coonhound: These attractive hunting dogs have striking auburn-colored coats and use a lot of thinking power to trap prey for their masters.

66. Italian Greyhound: A fast thinker and a fast runner, this clever and athletic dog does well in obedience training and rally. They may struggle with housetraining, but if you potty train them correctly when they are puppies, you will not need to worry about accidents.

65. Samoyed: These "smiling" dogs are joyful, alert, intelligent, and affectionate, but they are a talkative breed. They love expressing their likes and dislikes with howls, yelps, barks, and every imaginable noise in between.

64. Greyhound: Quick-witted and fast-moving, this slender racing breed prefers quiet and peace. The Greyhound is also easy to train and doesn't bark much.

63. Whippet: These dogs are great athletes and do well in obedience training, agility, flyball, and lure coursing. They are also great therapy dogs because they are gentle and affectionate with people. But, if you have smaller pets, like cats or rabbits, don't get a Whippet. They love hunting small prey and your small pets will not be safe.

62. Welsh Terrier: These bright dogs are inquisitive and persistent, which means they can get themselves into mischief even when they are told not to do something. Train them with confidence and consistency so that they learn from the get-go that you will not tolerate nonsense.

61. Plott Hound: These big-game hunting dogs are confident and crafty. Leashes and fences are a must with Plott Hounds because they will relentlessly pursue interesting smells and/or prey. Because they have such high hunting drives, they need plenty of exercise and opportunities for exploration, otherwise, they may develop anxiety and even depression.

60. Pharaoh Hound: Existing for 5,000 years, this ancient and royal Egyptian breed is smart enough to outlast the Pharaohs. This hound is now the national dog of Malta and embodies the typical characteristics of a hound: intelligent, keen hunter, and stubborn.

59. Miniature Pinscher: This elegant toy breed is convinced that it is bigger than it actually is. This dog is also a ball of energy—always moving and always barking. The breed is trainable but requires someone with just as much energy to keep up with it.

58. Patterdale Terrier: These active guys are highly intelligent and love to please their owners—the perfect formula for trainability.

57. Kerry Blue Terrier: This breed is not actually blue but is actually smart. The Kerry Blue Terrier is a highly adaptable multi-tasker and was originally bred to hunt, herd, and do chores around the house.

56. Harrier: This hound breed will follow scents so intensely that no amount of calling will get it to come back. Other than that, the Harrier is extremely smart, and training should come easy if you use positive reinforcement and lots of treats.

55. Bedlington Terrier: This dog looks like a lamb but sure doesn't act like one. The Bedlington Terrier takes his job as a watchdog very seriously, so barking can become a nuisance if left unchecked.

54. American Bulldog: Larger and leaner than the English Bulldog, the American Bulldog loves socializing and outdoor activities with its human companions. The breed is born to please and also loves to be pleased, so training with treats and praises is best.

53. West Highland White Terrier: These cute little dogs may look like lapdogs, but they prefer digging, chasing, and hunting to lounging around all day. They need plenty of training to eradicate excessive barking, digging and destructive behavior. Exercise and endless activities will keep the energetic "Westie" obedient and mild-mannered.

52. Havenese: This is a quick-witted dog that enjoys pleasing people. He is a pleasure to be around and is easy to train.

51. Cairn Terrier: These dogs are very smart and highly independent, and no amount of training can rid of their natural hunting instincts. Be sure to keep the Cairn Terrier on a leash to help him resist the urge to follow smells and other animals.

50. Dachshund: Journalist H. L. Mencken might have joked called the Dachshund, "half a dog high and a dog and a half long" but don't let this breed's comical build fool you. The Dachshund is tough, confident, and extremely cunning.

49. Yorkshire Terrier: Smart, easy to train, and adaptable, this cute toy breed learns commands quickly and is willing to please.

48. Irish Red & White Setter: This beautiful hunting dog is playful and boisterous but is also emotionally sensitive. When training, be kind. This breed has an excellent memory, so whatever you train it to do, it will remember for a lifetime.

47. Boxer: These dogs are known as the Peter Pan of the dog world because they are playful and mischievous. The Boxer doesn't fully mature until age three, so it has one of the longest puppyhoods among dog breeds. Despite the Boxer's childlike innocence, it is very alert and obedient.

46. Airedale Terrier: This is the largest terrier breed. Airedale Terriers are hardy, water-loving dogs that are extremely witty and inquisitive. They make great family dogs so long as they get enough exercise.

45. Belgian Shepherd: These German Shepherd lookalikes are extremely intelligent working dogs that excel at many tasks. They often do well in police work, search and rescue missions, and agility. These active canines need room to run and plenty of activities to exercise their brains.

43. Lakeland Terrier: These scruffy canines were bred to hunt and kill foxes that preyed on sheep. They are smart but hard to train. Like all terriers, they are stubborn. Lakeland terriers are also fond of barking, digging, and guarding their possessions.

42. Elkhound: Despite the Elkhound's small size, this dog loves playing the dominant role. This breed is smart as a whip, full of energy, and endlessly loyal. If you are willing to be stern, then the Elkhound will serve you well as a faithful and protective companion.

41. Cocker Spaniel: This adorable floppy-eared dog is exceptionally affectionate and also keenly intelligent. Although the Cocker Spaniel was originally bred as a gun dog, it does not require too much exercise and does well snuggling on the couch with the family.

40. Shiba Inu: Described as almost cat-like, this dog is quiet, clean, alert, and highly intelligent, but he will not do what you want him to do. Like a cat, he is an independent free-thinker. He is also possessive and reserved, so he must be socialized at an early age and taught how to properly act around strangers and dogs. Luckily, he is one of the few dogs that are easy to housetrain.

39. Bichon Frise: This cotton ball of a lap dog is both highly energetic and intelligent. The Bichon Frise is a great all-around family dog and is as eager for playtime as it is snuggle time.

38. Parson Russell Terrier: These energetic and intelligent canines love the hunt and still retain strong hunting instincts. This breed requires constant socialization and training, otherwise, it may develop "small dog syndrome."

37. Gordon Setter: This highly intelligent and sociable dog must have adequate physical and mental activities if destructive behavior is to be avoided. They are great family dogs and can develop separation anxiety and depression if they are kept away from the people they love.

36. Field Spaniel: These docile dogs are very hardworking and alert. They are not as excitable as the Cocker Spaniel but are still playful and loving. He's a quick learner and loves to please his human, so training should be a breeze.

35. Newfoundland: These big teddy bear dogs are strongly protective, yet sweet-natured and loving. The Newfoundland is versatile in the field and can be a great babysitter as he loves children. This breed learns quickly, and there is little that they can't do.

34. Pointer: The Pointer is a highly active hunting dog that excels on the field, in show rings, and in obedience training. He is great for active families, loves playing with children, and can be an excellent watchdog.

33. English Shepherd: This working dog is highly trainable and learns quickly. He needs a lot of physical exercise and mental stimulation to stay happy. The English Shepherd excels in agility and advanced obedience.

32. Rhodesian Ridgeback: This is a powerful big-prey hunting dog that craves the outdoors, but he also loves relaxing on the couch. These qualities make the Rhodesian Ridgeback a great hiking companion and an even better snuggling buddy.

31. Bernese Mountain Dog: These are massive dogs with massive brains. They are also affectionate and are well suited for obedience, tracking, herding, and carting competitions.

30. Old English Sheepdog: It's always a mystery how this dog can see with so much hair covering his eyes, but he proves to be an exceptionally great watchdog time and time again. The Old English Sheepdog is devoted and hardworking but is also an independent thinker, only responding to tasks that "make sense." Be sure to use reward-based training to give him something to work for.

29. Bearded Collie: This quick-witted and lively shepherding breed craves attention and activity. Left with nothing to do, the Bearded Collie will dig, chew, and bark to entertain himself.

28. Jack Russell Terrier: This feisty dog's energy gets him into a lot of trouble, but he is always witty enough to avoid detection and is so affectionate that he is almost always spared from scolding.

27. Weimeraner: With hunting instincts running through its blood, this elegant breed will not disappoint an active outdoorsman. This dog requires daily physical and mental stimulation in order to thrive and must be trained well to keep it from chasing after scents and other animals.

26. English Springer Spaniel: Another smart hunting dog that needs plenty of exercise. The English Springer Spaniel excels in agility, obedience training, flyball, and tracking. This breed is very sociable and should never be left alone.

25. Pembroke Welsh Corgi: These brainy dogs can be extremely stubborn and manipulative. Although they are small, they require a lot of exercise and mental stimulation, otherwise, they might resort to destructive behavior to keep themselves entertained.

24. Irish Setter: This breed is the perfect marriage of beauty and brains. The Irish Setter is known for its clownish personality and loving nature. He thrives as a member of an active family and excels in obedience, rally, tracking, and agility competition.

23. German Shorthaired Pointer: In 1929, C.R. Thornton wrote, “As a breed, the German all-purpose dog will do it all and do it well.” This eager-to-please hunting breed is well-suited for pointing, flushing, and retrieving, but also makes an excellent family pet because of its affectionate disposition towards children.

21. Alaskan Husky: This is the breed that is typically used in sled racing. They are playful, strong, and do great in obedience training.

20. Siberian Husky: The Siberian Husky is a pack breed that responds well to leadership. Although friendly and well-mannered, the Siberian Husky can be quite mischievous and is known to be a great escape artist, sometimes digging its way out the yard to wander the neighborhood.

19. Alaskan Malamute: Like its cousins above, the Malamute excels at sports and is an A student when it comes to obedience. Activities that this breed enjoys include weight pulling, skijoring, backpacking, and recreational sledding, but he will also be just as happy living with an active family.

18. Collie: In 1943, Lassie made this breed famous. In addition to the breed's beauty and obedience, the Collie is also known for being able to foresee its owner's needs. Because of this rare mix of mental and emotional intelligence, the Collie excels as an assistance or therapy dog.

17. Chesapeake Bay Retriever: This breed learns quickly and has a high hunting drive. Chessies need experienced owners who are willing to be strong leaders and who can give them plenty of room to run and play.

16. Australian Shepherd: Strong herding and guardian instincts, as well as human-like intelligence, makes this breed a versatile working dog. The Australian Shepherd requires hours of exercise and outdoor activity as well as chores to do around the house in order to keep him physically and mentally satisfied.

15. Saint Bernard: Gentle and patient, this large dog was originally bred to guard Switzerland's St. Bernard Hospice and rescue injured travelers. He is now a pampered indoor dog and loves to be close to his family.

14. Akita Inu: This dog is too smart for his own good. He uses his intelligence to serve his own purposes and can be stubborn and domineering. Owners report that the Akita is also opinionated and will often wail or mumble under his breath.

13. English Settler: This easygoing dog is moderately easy to train, is a good watchdog, and loves humans. His perfect day would involve a balanced itinerary of cuddling on the sofa and running around at the park.

12. Great Dane: Known as the "gentle giant" of the dog world, this breed is sweet, lovable, and easy to train. He does great with kids but can be a klutz due to his gawky size.

11. Brittany: A walk around the block will not be enough for this breed. The Brittany is a bright, high-energy dog that craves attention. If you are sporty and active, then the Brittany will be a great fit. If you are a couch potato, you and your dog will suffer the consequences of his destructive behavior.

10. Australian Cattle Dog: This smart and independent breed can be a challenge to train. This dog craves activity and will only be happy if given work to do. You must be a strong leader and be willing to include him in numerous family activities, such as outdoor play or farm work.

9. Rottweiler: This breed is highly intelligent but must be well-trained and given opportunities to use his brain for work or problem-solving. Otherwise, he will use his brain to try to escape or cause destruction.

8. Papillon: The papillon's high level of energy and love for physical activity belies his tiny size. He is regarded as the most intelligent and responsive of the toy breeds and does not do well as a lapdog.

7. Labrador Retriever: Built for sport and service, the Labrador Retriever works in search and rescue missions, therapy assistance, and drug detection. Along with his lovable and sweet nature, the Labrador Retriever makes for a well-rounded family pet.

6. Shetland Sheepdog: Grab your frisbee and get ready to see this active and animated dog perform. The Shetland Sheepdog loves showing off new tricks and, according to this intelligence test, he can learn a new command in less than five tries.

5. Doberman Pinscher: If you want a protective and loyal pet, the Doberman Pinscher is the breed for you. But don't be surprised if you find him outsmarting you. He is trainable but can be destructive and naughty if he is not given enough physical and mental stimulation.

4. Golden Retriever: This classic American breed is a well-rounded and capable working dog and family companion. He does well in sports, and he also excels in drug-sniffing and therapy. Although the Golden Retriever is a serious worker, he is also playful and sweet. The Golden Retriever retains his puppyish nature well into adulthood.

3. German Shepherd: The police and the military don't let just anyone join, but the German Shepherd passes all tests with flying colors because it possesses strength, endurance, obedience, focus, and keen intelligence. Because the GS works in fields with high-security information, it helps that he is undyingly loyal, too.

2. Poodle: The poodle comes in all different sizes, but they all possess the same level of intelligence. Many wonder how the poodle ended up placing second because this breed, while smart, does not exhibit any exceptional problem-solving skills. It turns out that most of the poodles that were tested were professional show dogs that had already had years of obedience training.

1. Border Collie: According to countless lists, this is the world's smartest dog breed, and they have been widely considered the smartest breed for many decades. They have the ability to herd flocks of sheep into predetermined patterns and are described as having almost human-like intelligence.

Any dog can learn new tricks with this toy


The rankings were based on the results of obedience trials conducted by the American Kennel Club and the Canadian Kennel Club. In his book, Coren theorized that there were three aspects of intelligence: instinctive, adaptive, and working and obedience. Instinctive intelligence is a dog's ability to perform what it was bred to do (hunt, retrieve, herd, etc.). Adaptive intelligence refers to a dog's ability to learn new things on its own, and working and obedience intelligence is a dog's ability to learn from humans.


  • The judges only tested working and obedience intelligence, which favors some breeds over others.
  • The dogs that were tested were all show ring dogs, so they were likely very experienced in obeying commands.
  • The test did not include an evaluation of two of Coren's theories of intelligence: instinctive and adaptive. Again, this means that the list is skewed to favor dogs that are good at obeying repetitive commands and doesn't account for the intelligence of canines that are better at problem solving on their own.
  • The evaluation does not include emotional intelligence, language skills, memory skills, and perception.
  • Some breeds were left out of the judging.

Final Thoughts

In 2006, Coren published a second edition; this time it included survey responses from owners. The results were similar and confirmed that some breeds are more trainable than others. But, again, the survey did not include measures of instinctive and adaptive behavior. Some breeds are born to be more perceptive or more skilled at certain tasks than other breeds, but who is to say that a highly skilled search and rescue dog is dumber than an excitable herding dog or vice versa?

We cannot judge a dog's intelligence solely on its ability to follow commands when it is clear that many breeds that do not do well in obedience instead excel at tasks that are far more useful, such as tracking drugs or sensing and warning others of imminent danger.


  1. Stanley, Coren, PhD, "Canine Intelligence—Breed Does Matter," Psychology Today. July 15, 2009. Accessed October 31, 2017.
  2. Nellie Martin, The Russian Wolfhound: Its History, Breeding, Exhibiting and Care. Vintage Dog Books, 2005. Accessed October 3, 2017.
  3. Gus Lubin, "Here Are the 'Smartest' Dog Breeds, According to a Psychologist," Business Insider. January 26, 2017. Accessed October 31, 2017.
  4. "The Intelligence of Dogs," Wikipedia. Accessed October 31, 2017.

The first interactive toy we used with our dogs


Doflamingo on September 08, 2020:

Is the belgian malinois counted as belgian shepherd or is it not on the list.If it isn’t on the list then i would be very mad and will say the person who made this list is a dumbo and don’t know nothing about dogs.

Clinton O'Connor on August 02, 2020:

My Irishwolf hound stands 4.8feet and weighs 100kg and 6.6ft when standing on back feet. Think you guys need to do some more research as they are super intelligent fast and power thats should not be taken for granted one irish wolfhound could take out a wolf single handedly in a heartbeat thankfully there not bred for that now. But they are one of the largest dogs in the world.

Elaine Pearson on July 24, 2020:

I had a cross of 2 pure breeds, a daschund and a medium sized poodle and ended up with either a long poodle and a short daschund with poodle wool which didn't shed - hooray! The little"darling" was always 1-2 steps ahead of me but once he learnt he didn't forget.

Anne Chubb on July 15, 2020:

Thx so much for this helpful i nfo. I had and my family many different dog breeds. Ive had great success with rescue dogs, most not purebreds. Happy tails!

Kitty on June 30, 2020:

Yay Alfie is top 2 (poodle)

ThxzMatch on June 18, 2020:

Hi thx for the list!

Mari on June 09, 2020:

What about dalmatians

neptune on May 05, 2020:

you guys are idiots

Riley Campbell on November 05, 2019:

I own a Australian cattle dog and she Is the dumbest dog I’ve ever had. And when we went to get her the guy there said she’s as smart as her mama ..... well her mama must be dumb.

BM on August 27, 2019:

Hello guys. I think da person who made this website done he’s or hers best. We can’t actually say which dog bread is da smartest because bread doesn’t Matter on dogs intelligence. Only personality matters just like people.Looking forward to hear your thought.

Chris Williams on August 15, 2019:

Fed my Golden a treat on a paper plate. When she was finished I told her, "Bring me your dish." She picked the paper plate up, brought it to me, and dropped it at my feet.

I had never taught my Golden the meaning of the words "bring" or "dish." We had never practiced them whatsoever. She had apparently gleaned my meaning entirely from context, and possibly from having heard those words before in non-training situations, being curious, and observing.

To me, that fits the definition of an intelligent dog.

You skipped number 22 on May 30, 2019:

I don’t think you noticed but you skipped number 22.

Elizabelle Yam on April 11, 2019:

I Want To Know How I Can Stop My dogs from eating there poop

Corgi Owned on January 23, 2019:

I've had a lot of smart dogs, all rescues. The smartest, by far is now our Corgi. This dog will tell me "yeah" if I say no. He's got a sense of humor, understands pretty much everything that is said and has more intelligence and personality then most humans I know.

Nothing like a Corgi.

Nsbcb on January 20, 2019:

Where are cockapoo’s?

VIROSHLAN on October 12, 2018:


PomeraniaFan on August 12, 2018:

I disagree with this test....I've looked through lots of these and the Pug is normal 57th and the Pomeranian is usually the 13th...

I’m ANGRY on August 01, 2018:

‘ Like ALL HOUNDS they are STUBBORN and FIESTY!!!! ‘ What kind of joke is this not all hounds are stubborn and fiesty you can’t just label every single hound I have met many hounds mostly Afghans and greyhounds, whippets and they have been sweet and kind and when their owners told them to do things guess what ah shocker they did it and descriptions of some dogs are shallow and cruel, no dog is ugly or plain dumb they all have amazing qualities and you should learn a lesson if you don’t have anything nice to say don’t say it you have been rude to people standing up for their dogs and personally I wouldn’t take any of it so don’t try and back chat to me you have been rude and critical of dogs and people’s opinions so just keep your mouth zipped shut

Whippets&Cats on August 01, 2018:

I have read differently about whippets they can get on with cats as long as they were brought up with them but you can never ever put them in the same house as a rabbit

Toni Sherman on June 03, 2018:

Love how they say Pit Bulls will defend their owners to the death.

Border collie 22 on May 01, 2018:

I have two border collies a male and female and they are very smart and they are service dogs.They are the best dogs ever and I’m planning on breeding them.

zac lainchbury on February 22, 2018:

what about the AMAZING Maremma Sheepdog.. they made a movie about one in australia that saved a threatened species of penguin, colony from the likes of foxes etc... they are very clever and amazingly gentle dogs .... unless ur a fox!

David Beattie on February 15, 2018:

86th!! Sorry but my Pug is very smart! Just last week he discovered the Gravaton, 2 new elements & the universal theory between quantum physics & relativity theory!!

mike higby on January 01, 2018:

i love how they put pitbull 82 out of 100 for intelligence then put very intelligent. i havent met 1 intelligent one. intelligent for protecting family or biting kids not part of the family or people, but not for learning. they take way more than 10 reps to catch on. intelligent is the wrong word to describe the american pitbull.

Pewdiepie on November 08, 2017:

Wow I'm surprised pugs did it

billy bob joe on October 12, 2017:

great danes in top 15? thats hilarious!

Thomas Fleming on September 22, 2017:

Pit bulls out of the top 50? And huskies and malamutes in the top 20? That's hilarious!

heatherjasper on August 17, 2017:

Maltese don't shed. They have hair, not fur.

J on July 23, 2017:

I'm offended at some descriptions. 'Ugly and stupid'? 'Just plain ugly' for the keeshonds, which isn't even spelt correctly in this article? They're really beautiful!

I'm sorry, I just found this article really bias and unhelpful. It would be better if you actually wrote a nice, honest description of every dog breed, instead of an unnecessary opinion. You call dogs gross and ugly, every dog is beautiful and this upset me.

Once or twice I even wondered whether you actually know what some of these breeds look like... a Samoyed isn't any more weird-looking than an Alaskan Malamute.

ReegesC on July 22, 2017:

I wonder what a list of stubborn dogs would look like? I had black lab that was stubborn as shit. She was lovable as all get out and just as sweet as could be, but man she had a mind of her own, that's for sure. She also liked to take herself for walks. Mind you, she got walked every day, taken to the lake, to the ocean, to the mountains, out for hikes. I used to say she was half lab and half gypsy.

nice on July 15, 2017:

what you have said to some of the people that have commented on you list was mean and unnecessary, especially what you said to Jennifer 4 years ago.

Maria Elizaveta on July 01, 2017:

I've found, after training the top 10 smartest breeds, that the BEST LEARNERS ARE THE MEDIUM INTELLIGENCE DOGS, NOT THE SMART ONES. Smart dogs exist to outwit you. They think, "And what if I refuse?" while you're training. Medium-smart dogs are not thinking up complex, evasive, and devious games while you're trying to demonstrate pack leader & obedience thereunto. Medium IQ dogs are into pleasing you. Full stop. My Boston was best, easiest trained of all breeds. Astonishing learning because, humbly, all he cared about was making me happy. Poodle: THE WORST! At 11 years old, still not potty trained, thinks it's funny to break rules. Sassy attitude and superiority complex are not what you want when you train a breed.

Bernice Chan on June 20, 2017:

I thought Shih Tzu is in 70th place. Is that correct? And a Shih Tzu could actually be quite smart, I watched a video and it could fit puzzle pieces.

Sue tgecShihvTzu on June 04, 2017:

I think this list needs updating lol! The comments made about the Shih Tzu laughable. But, if these dogs are in fact crazy, let's look much closer at why they were be a companion to humans....this should tell us all something. I will say this, I have owned Labs, several different breads, a mixed rescue a setter shepherd mix, and a couple small breads, but the Shih Tzu was the very best, most loving, devoted animal, with the drive to learn anything that pleased us humans, hands down. Maybe it was the blood line from where mine came, but I will have no other dog.

Nearrrrd on April 02, 2017:

How smart are golden doodles

hiboii on March 31, 2017:

pitbulls r smart!

Kevin on March 22, 2017:

First of all, you can at least spell keeshond correctly.

Secondly being the owner of a kees they are far from ugly

Klf on March 19, 2017:

I have a collie he is so smart but sometimes he just doesn't get it he is sweet and he protects me if there is some sort of threat but there is so much shedding when we brush him the fluff sticks together and looks like another dog but other than that I think it's worth it

Brad on March 15, 2017:

I totally disagree with this list.

Sandra on March 10, 2017:

I own a Chihuahua, a border Collie and a Rottweiler.

My Chihuahua is the smartest out of all three. He learns tricks immediately and doesn't forget them. He knows and responds to more commands than my Border Collie and Rottweiler. My Border Collie is the least intelligent. I do think he is quite possibly the most dumb Border Collie out there. I do love his dumb quirky personality though. My Rottweiler is pretty intelligent but still has nothing on the Chihuahua. So do not agree with the placement or description of this cute, small but highly intelligent breed

Betty on January 21, 2017:

How are Shiba inu's dumb there so cute

Kit on January 13, 2017:

My Beagle is fat, and stupid, but my Lhasa apso, is actually a pretty smart girl.. Shes just extremely energetic, My old Lhasa who was a boy was also very smart as well (:

Christopher Carr on January 10, 2017:

I'm helping raise an LGD mix -- 3/8 Kangal, 2/8 generic Anatolian Shepherd, and the rest Great Pyrenees.

Definitely the smartest puppy at 3 months that I've ever been around. There are different areas of dog intelligence -- this girl has very independent, wolf-like intelligence. She's already actively guarding her territory and people, but still occasionally pees on the floor. :-)

Adrianna on December 04, 2016:

You can't be calling dogs ugly,every dog is beautiful if you are saying keeshonds are ugly I disagree the American hairless terrier it isn't gross i think it's quite good looking anyways ots just rude to be be calling animals ugly and gross how would you feel you should be ashamed

scott j. kinghill on November 07, 2016:

I think you should know that 44 is missing;is it the collie?

we owned and bred Belgian Tervuren Shepherds(you misspelled Belgian);

The mother moved a pen log to go under and get to her mother-at one week

old!Her son, the pick of the litter we kept for life as well. He could unlock

doors, and I once asked him "what is it?" he bumped my hand with his nose,and then the doorknob! When I rubbed his back, if I stopped, he pointed to his back to say, more please? I also played tug of war with him with a tree branch. He stopped, got on my side and pulled the branch around me. Their intelligence is often under rated and overlooked because they are more aloof and energetic than most breeds. They tried to talk, and of course it came out as dog noise, but they did try to talk in their own way.

By the way, "expert" ,the police use these too, and they were used in Europe

as well. Ours, especially the male son, was every bit as smart as a border

collie-no joke!

Now, regarding German Shepherds, we had a 1/2 German, 1/2 Collie

who belonged to a prominent Hartford radio celebrity for 4 years.

She ,I am convinced, was one of the smartest dogs that ever lived!

She had those rare big sad dilated eyes that could melt your heart like the

ones in the 1960s impressionist paintings. She was born in 1967 and

died in 1983. Her father was likely, one of Lassies cousins. You

don't say much about mixed ones do you? Its a krapthrow I guess.

She could add numbers and knew to the day and hour when we

went to Sunday school, and likely impressed our pastor as well with

her cerebral acumen. Trouble is, how do you explain vacation?She

said, why aren't we going today?(in her own way). If I made non

sequitor noises, she would sigh in disgust. Tell me if any dog

could sigh like a human! Before she died, we took a daytrip to Newport RI

and she went out to deficate, and tried to stall for time , to try to stop us

from going.When we left somewhere, she would scatter brick a brack and

stuff al over , or line it up in order, to protest our absence.

She once took the largest potato and put it under the pillow of our 1929

Louis XIV couch! Over and out folks!

Jeff on September 05, 2016:

I must laugh at what this list describes as intelligence. First a dog that gets bored and becomes destructive is not therefore smart. Such a dog lacks the intelligence to know why being destructive is unacceptable behavior. A dog that cannot naturally control its base behavior lacks intelligence.

Some breeds have much higher emotional IQ's over their counterparts bred to utilize their higher IQ qualities of scent and other base instincts. I think this list has defined certain common select traits over many many others as an indicator of a higher IQ and fails to recognize certain "bad" or undesirable traits as indicative of a low level of intelligence.

I had a breed mid list. The dog clearly was way above average in its ability to navigate the day and the household. The mood and activities of the family. Had a Very High IQ which is way above getting bored and being destructive. High energy level too.

Sorry if your dog destroys your house it's not smart and just bored. If a breed has a tendency to destructive behavior it's not showing its high IQ. Yes it may be able to be "trained" to roll over but if it wants to get back to chewing up unapproved socks the rest of the day it lacks on the scale of IQ and clearly should be moved down the list.

Like most lists this list reflects the typical popularity contests among owners and doesn't reflect true modern scientific methods. For instance the mention by one owner of a Croation dog which no one has ever heard of. Which could be the smartest dog in the world. Yet with only one owner so not enough voices to win the popularity contest.

I know someone who had the top dog on this list. The dog was drab and laid around most of the time. Except when it went out doors. Then it seemed to like to run around as if it was in a maze. Clearly dumb behavior if it had/served no purpose.

Just Saying


Olivia on August 07, 2016:

I've owned Maltese for years and have yet to meet one that sheds. And frankly, they're far more intelligent than several of the breeds you listed before them. Please know the dog breeds before you decide to order them :/

why is the chihuahua number 89 that dog breed and sometimes they do bark at nothing but the chihuahua is a cute loving dog breed on July 24, 2016:

Why is the chihuahua number 89 the dog breed is cute and loving and yes sometimes they do bark at nothing but that should not matter I think the chihuahua makes a good guard dog RICHARD ASHBY

Emma on March 27, 2016:

You spelled a lot of the dogs names wrong

Basil on March 25, 2016:

Several missing breeds. eg Kelpie, caucasion sheepard. Australian terrior. After reading how the tests are done I became convinced that some very intelligent dogs I have worked with would have failed. One dog would have worked out that he was being tested and refused to cooperate, if he did not have a reason to be involved

MidnightLana on January 06, 2016:

A Maltese has hair, not fur. Therefore it does not shed! There is a huge difference! And are actually quite quick to learn, and are excellent at reading human emotions...

kirstie on August 09, 2015:

Every dog is Not the same, I no because I trained a lot of different breeds.

The most intelligent dog iv come across is a standard Pomeranian and spitz dogs. U need all facts before jumping to conclusions...............

Wayne on March 30, 2015:

Pitbulls are among the smartest breeds out there. Just because you don't understand what the animal is telling you, doesn't make the animal dumb, it makes YOU the dumb one!

Andrew on February 02, 2015:

I knew Yorkies were cute and smart

somma on December 29, 2014:

i thought you were talking about the training for the bulldog, not the spit. and plus your little pooch isn't that easy either, and they're so ugly.

jhrgfj on December 26, 2014:

maltese don't shed ! and they are very playful, just maybe not the smartest.

MYHeart2dogs3 on December 04, 2014:

After I've read this list the 2nd time I've noticed that shh tzus is number 80 on the list I do not think they are crazy although I do agree on the crazy haired part but still I had a shh tzu and I loved her and she wasn't crazy or I didn't think she was dumb she even listened to most of my commands

John on November 03, 2014:

My dog didn't even make the list? Oh well. (Karelian Bear Dog)

Kate on September 27, 2014:

This is the most inaccurate thing I've read in a while.

Erica on August 11, 2014:

Pit bulls are highly intelligent and so are many of the dogs you said are ugly and stupid, this list is very wrong and misleading, sounds like you made everything up after about #10... To the other people offended by this, should go to a website with real facts, and you are ignorant for the things you have wrote to these people on comments. I'm disappointed in this list truly.

Life Made! on July 26, 2014:

Thank you to the author if this list for your comments. I am seriously in love with this! Thanks for making me laugh!

Hannah on May 03, 2014:

Well i was actual y thinking of saving a pomeranian dog at the pound.

Deb on January 12, 2014:

We have a Papillion

and she is very smart plus she is a real cutie!

Pongo on December 31, 2013:

Since Dalmatians are also smart dogs i wonder why its not on this top 100 , because i don't think that a Bulldog are smarter then Dalmatian , which makes me question this list of yours .

Loo loo on December 21, 2013:

Wow that is amazing how you can make that list but I have a beagle and she is pretty smart

Kathy on November 25, 2013:

Heather I totally agree with you. I was pretty shocked to see where the pitbull ranked but than again not so much because they have such a bad rep. I adore pits and I am around them a lot. They are very smart dogs. They are very very trainable. Every trick I've ever taught my dog he has learned after showing him only once or twice. He knows so many words. I can say things like nail clippers and he knows exactly what I am saying lol and he runs away. I love him so much. So many pits are rescued from fighting rings and can be trained to be good family dogs again. Whether people want to believe it or not it happens all the time

James on November 10, 2013:

I had a Boston Terrier that was extremely intelligent. In all seriousness you could show her something once and she knew from that point on. She learned how to open doors by watching us. I think she thought she was a person. Everyone was always so impressed with everything about her and surprised. There were people we knew

that wanted to get one because of her not realizing she was far above the typical Boston. A few of them did and were in fact disappointed that theirs didn't turn out to be like her. We even got another one so she would have company and this one was totally different from her as well - not even close. You could tell the extreme difference between them. I really believe she was one in a million in her breed. I had a German Shepherd before I got her and she was more intelligent by him by far which would seem impossible but it's true.

Silverlight on October 07, 2013:

I own a year old Border Collie/Australian Cattle Dog mix, he's one of the most intelligent and best dogs I've ever seen. I didn't need a list to know he is made up of two smart breeds, but I was curious as to what the Cattle Dog's rank was, and am pleased that it made it so high on the list. Heh, I have quite a few Chihuahuas, they defiantly are not the brightest dogs, but they are good for companionship. Although my mom owns a long haired Chihuahua, who is anything but dumb.

By the way, you didn't mention the Duck Trolling Retriever in this list. I used to own one when I was a little girl. They are an uncommon dog, originally from Canada, and have a high IQ.

Marc Anthony (author) from USA on September 14, 2013:

Hahahahaha you're an idiot go write your own list lol

Chad on July 20, 2013:

Why are some people so offended by this list? While some of the comments next to the name may say something about being dumb, they really aren't. The list isn't saying that your dog is too dumb to learn something, its just saying that its harder to train that dog. Just because your dog might be low on the list, it doesn't mean your dog can't be trained to things.

Belinda on July 18, 2013:

I believe this list isn't accurate. Basenji is #99, but they are very intelligent. Because they're independent and want to please themselves before their owners makes them dumb? I don't think so. Leave a basenji alone and bored, and they will destroy your house because they are curious and need to keep their mind going. And some of your descriptions after the breeds are offensive.

Brett on June 28, 2013:

Kerry Blue terriers should not be on this list, I love them but they're absent-minded

mariami on June 15, 2013:

Pekingese ugly and stupid ?

why ?

Nicole on May 29, 2013:

I agree with the first few dogs for being highly smart. However i don't agree with the dogs they portray as dumb,i have been around a few of these dogs and they are much smarter,beagle's included. Instead of worrying about what people think of the prettiest dog or other non professional opinions and get the facts straight before posting something like this. Many of the breeds you put as dumb or have little brains is untrue.

Lindsay on May 29, 2013:

I still have yet to understand in what ways the Labrador Retriever is intelligent. I have owned one and many of my friends own them. They are always happy and giving every ounce of love they have, but what makes them smart? Is it the fact that they will bring anything you throw back to you? My Chihuahuas do that. I'm not trying to rile anyone up. I sincerely want to know, because in the 17 years I owned mine and being around my friends' labs I haven't seen intelligence above and beyond other dogs.

Heather on May 26, 2013:

Ive owned many PitBull Terriers, and I can tell you what they have in strength, they have just as much IQ, they are very smart dogs. I don't know where you got your information from, but it is wrong about the pittie. I don't expect them to be number 1 or anything, but you said they lack IQ....I question this list entirely based on your reasoning of "ditto" on the husky and malamute...I don't see how "ditto" means a dog is smart. Just my opinion.

Tara on May 01, 2013:

what happened to the coton de tulear they're highly intelligent

He He on April 20, 2013:

OMG! My dog is so smart. I'm so happy! Ah, nevermind.

Some One on April 19, 2013:

The beagle is a very smart dog. i own a beagle the is very rare and very important.He has different eye color.But still i disagree with the list because beagles are very intelligent dogs

Markie W on March 25, 2013:

My dog's number 47 on the list! My other one (chihuahua) isn't on here at all... I expected him to get way higher ratings than my boxer for sure lol. Interesting hub.

Marc Anthony (author) from USA on March 24, 2013:

Your ignorance of the breeding process is evident. When cross breeding takes place, certain traits are amplified (stubby legs, longer nose, hair color). While at the same time other not so pleasing traits are amplified (sickness, demeanor, and yes, Cognitive ability).

Across the board, Border collies are smarter and more capable of training than a boxer. This isn't dependent on one dog. The entire breed has proven to be the smartest dog. Go to YouTube and watch a border collie herd sheep in a designated pattern. Then ask yourself if your Dalmatian is capable of that?

edith on March 23, 2013:

this is so's like saying chinese people are smarter than's up to the individual dogs they used for the test

Debbie88 on March 17, 2013:

I had a champion bloodline pekinese who was red and gorgeous and she was far from ugly or stupid, some peks may be but not the one i had, genes play a big role and genetic defects make any breed a problem, I didn't know the papilion was any smarter than a pomeranian, are you sure this is accurate. I have seen a few welsh corgi's and they were far from bright, less so than the pekinese who were royal dogs and guarded the king back in the day, I may agree with the lasa apsa but oh they are cuddely little creatures.

ignugent17 on March 14, 2013:

I agree about the Boston Terrier. They are really very playful.

Marc Anthony (author) from USA on March 04, 2013:

It's too bad you aren't a grammar expert. It would make you easier to take seriously.

Jennifer on March 04, 2013:

I do not think that this list is accurate. I am a dog expert and I know for a fact that this list is wrong and misleading.

RDRDogman on March 02, 2013:

I believe they got it right with the top three (Border Collie, Poodle and GSD), although there are those who will argue that the title was based from the Poodle to the Border Collie for PC reasons [the poodle was long known to be the smartest breed forever until a few years back (not decades) ]. The dogs I believe deserve to be much higher on the list are the Bearded Collie (absolutely), Collie, English Shepherd (33? give me a break), Belgian Shepherd (45? anyone with dog-sense knows this canine should be in the top 5). I won’t get into the dogs which received underserved high ratings [i.e., Papillion #8 (I guess someone said to be fair a small dog has to be in the top 10) ], however, it appears with the folks charged with the responsibility of rating these pooches, perhaps toiled endlessly over the top 10, then put less effort into establishing the remaining 90 breeds. Additionally, the remaining 90 breeds appeared to be ranked not by intelligence, however, by strategic placement to placate the various breed fanciers.

Marc Anthony (author) from USA on February 21, 2013:

I've never heard of that breed. Thanks for the info

vladimir on February 21, 2013:

Probably many of you didn't hear about Croatian shepherd dog because this dogs are mostly present only in Southeast Europe (former Yugoslavia area). Croatian shepherd is also very smart, intelligent and energetic dog. Very respectful toward his owner.

Dawn Ross on January 24, 2013:

Great list! My Maya is #7. My Pierson is probably Australian Shepherd mix and is #16. However, Pierson learns a lot quicker than Maya does. I suspect he has a mix of Border Collie too, and possibly some other breed.

Marc Anthony (author) from USA on January 19, 2013:

I've had 2 Boston terriers. The list isn't saying they are dumb. It just means there are dogs that are smarter than Boston's.

Jennifer on January 19, 2013:

Excuse me how and where did you get the information for this list. I am very offended that Boston Terriers are number 83 on the list of smartest dogs. I have to tell you that if you have never owned a Boston Terrier then you have no right to say how smart they are. I have 3 Boston Terriers and they are Very Very Smart and they are very very Teachable. And yes they love to have fun.

Guest on January 13, 2013:

Where's the research behind this list?

Mike A on January 07, 2013:

I have worked with dogs for a long time. Boxers and Lhasa Apsos should be at the bottom of the list. Their owners usually aren't much brighter.

no on December 23, 2012:

shih tzus arent crazy!!

Marc Anthony (author) from USA on November 26, 2012:

If their owner's grammar is any indication, I'd have to disagree with you. Kudos

Sarah Wong on November 26, 2012:

wtf is this list it seems some one just made this up because I own 2 boxers and there not dumb they so would pass a IQ test there the smartest dogs out there and there way better looking then any of these dogs and they can out wit there owner if the owner was not me :) Boxers rule and there far from stupid !

rbm on November 01, 2012:

I always wondered how they come up with that list. Very interesting to read though, thanks! Voted up and interesting.

Marc Anthony (author) from USA on October 25, 2012:

very true, smart dogs get bored easily, which can lead to curious (and destructive) behavior

peanutroaster from New England on October 23, 2012:

Down side of smart dogs is you have to work harder to keep them from getting bored.

Related Articles