The 25 Smartest Dog Breeds According to Science
It goes without saying that all dogs are adorable. But as anyone who’s spent two minutes with a beagle knows, some breeds are just a little goofier than others. So when it comes to obedience and training, which dogs are the leaders of the pack? Psychologist and University of British Columbia professor Stanley Coren surveyed 200 dog-obedience judges to find the smartest breeds in his book The Intelligence of Dogs.
Here are the 25 dogs that he says are best in show when it comes to working intelligence (i.e., learning commands).
The Border Collie
According to Coren, these dogs are able to learn a new command in under five seconds and follow it at least 95% of the time!
Second place on Coren’s list of smartest pups, these hypoallergenic dogs are also great family pets.
The German Shepherd
There’s a reason why these guys make great crime-fighting pals – they’re obedient and alert (and handsome too!).
The Golden Retriever
The ultimate family-friendly dog, these pooches are loyal, whip smart and very patient.
Playful and fun-loving, this breed is easy to train and fiercely loyal.
The Shetland Sheepdog
Also known as a Shetland Sheepdog, only a highly intelligent breed would be able to raise a pig (if you don’t get this Babe reference, please go rent the movie immediately!).
The most popular dog breed in the US is also one of the smartest. Great with families, these guys are loving and loyal.
Named after the French word for ‘Butterfly’ (just look at those sweet pointed ears), this toy breed is intelligent, energetic and friendly.
Fans of children’s book Good Dog, Carl, won’t be surprised to discover that Rotties are fearless, devoted and confident. (And also very obedient, according to Coren.)
The Australian Cattle Dog
No wonder these canines are such excellent working dogs. But even without cows to herd, this breed makes great companions thanks to their obedience, loyalty and protective nature.
The Pembroke Welsh Corgi
We wouldn’t expect anything less from Her Majesty’s favourite breed.
The Miniature Schnauzer
Full of energy, these friendly pups are fast learners and sociable (and they have the best mustaches).
The English Springer Spaniel
Affectionate, athletic and attentive, these tail-waggers were bred as hunting dogs.
The Belgian Tervuren
Idea watch dogs, these pooches are highly trainable and have boundless energy.
From the Belgian region of Flanders, this breed is curious, confident and clever (although these small pups definitely think they’re bigger than they are!).
The Belgian Sheepdog
Those Belgians really know a thing or two about smart pooches, don’t they!
Well duh, have you ever seen Lassie before?
Outgoing and playful, this sturdy breed is known for the markings around their eyes that looks like glasses.
The German Short-Haired Pointer
Co-operative and trainable, these pups are popular hunting dogs so they need plenty of exercise.
The Flat-Coated Retriever
Great with kids, this friendly breed is also a popular therapy dog.
The English Cocker-Spaniel
With their soft and luxurious coat, these guys love being friendly with kids, adults, and even other pups.
The Standard Schnauzer
Devoted, loving and playful, these guys are also hypoallergenic.
Known as sensitive souls who are very clever and attentive.
The Cocker Spaniel
Thanks to a certain fictional female dog, the cocker spaniel has a lot to live up to!
The Nova Scotia Duck Tolling Retriever
If you’re looking for a dog that loves to play fetch, then look no further than this smarty-pants.