The Top 10 Smartest Dogs

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MEMPHIS, Tenn. — For centuries, dogs have been lauded for their skill and ability to help their human companions with difficult tasks.

Of course, some dogs are simply a cute face and a friend to snuggle with, and that’s just fine. But others have a beauty and brains.

PetBreeds, a Graphiq vertical search engine, used data from University of British Columbia psychology professor Stanley Coren’s The Intelligence of Dogs , to identify and rank the 10 smartest dogs.

According to Coren, the top 10 most intelligent dogs need fewer than five repetitions to understand a new command, and obey the first command 95 percent of the time (or better).

The second tier of dogs, which he names “excellent working dogs,” understand new commands after five to 15 repetitions and obey the first command 85 percent of the time (or better).

The third tier, which he names “above average working dogs,” understand new commands after 15 to 25 repetitions and obey first commands 70 percent of the time (or better).

The dogs on the list will be ordered according to intelligence tiers, and then ranked alphabetically within that tier.

#10. Australian Cattle Dog

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Australian cattle dogs require regular exercise to maintain their health, but owners will be rewarded with a very smart herder. Even though they are commonly used on ranches, this breed also makes a great service dog.

#9. Border Collie

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Border collies make newspaper titles frequently with their heroic acts and incredible abilities. This breed is easy to train and is great around kids.

#8. Doberman Pinscher

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Doberman pinschers are the third-best watch dogs, outranking the Rottweiler and German shepherd. This breed combines elegance and strength with speed and endurance.

#7. German Shepherd

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The common face of police dogs, German shepherds are extremely loyal and protective. They are commonly used in sniffing out narcotics and lost persons.

#6. Golden Retriever

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The golden retriever is a bright and loving breed. These dogs respond well to basic and advanced training and they excel in hunting and search and rescue.

#5. Labrador Retriever

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The Labrador retriever has an amazing ability to learn. Even new and inexperienced dog owners will be able to teach this breed.

#4. Papillon

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Papillons are a gorgeous breed with their butterfly-like ears and silky fur. The breed is so smart that they can be trained to win competitive agility trials at the sport’s highest levels.

#3. Poodle

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Not only is the poodle extremely smart but it is also easy to train. Poodles, along with German shepherds and border collies, have even been found to be as smart as an average two-and-a-half-year old.

#2. Rottweiler

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The Rottweiler is a strong and fearless breed from Germany. These dogs are very smart and are inclined to obey their owners on command.

#1. Shetland Sheepdog

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Commonly called miniature collies, Shetland sheepdogs are so smart that training is a breeze. They are also an energetic dog, so expect them to be active.

Learn About These Dogs on PetBreeds

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