obsessed with dogs

The Top Five Smartest Dog Breeds

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Is your dog a tail chaser or a canine genius? Perhaps your dog is neither. Whether they’re a brainiac or a bonehead, dogs are still a man’s—and woman’s—best friend. So, with all biases aside, we’re going to take a look at the five smartest dog breeds in the world, starting with number five.

5. The Doberman Pinscher

Many would be surprised not to find the Doberman at the top of the list. The Doberman Pinscher is an assertive loyalist and fearless workhorse, and will do anything to protect its master. If trained properly, Dobermans can be ideal family dogs. A lot of hospitals employ the talents of Dobermans. They vary greatly in temperament, but it’s hard to find a tail chaser in this group.

4. The Golden Retriever

The Golden Retriever may very well be America’s favorite breed of dog. They’re loving, loyal, patient, and incredibly eager to please. Retrievers are easy to train and easy going. With so many great traits, people often forget how intelligent they are. In fact, retrievers excel in obedience competitions and trick shows.

3. The German Shepherd

Originally bred as a sheep herder, the German Shepherd has become a legendary guard dog and a vital member of countless law enforcement units around the world. They are courageous and incredibly intelligent. If trained properly from an early age, these dogs can be great for families. But because of their strong intellect and industrious nature, the German Shepherd needs to have a job or purpose in life to stay happy.

2. The Poodle

Yes, that poodle. You may not have expected to find Poodles so high on the list. Poodles are commonly believed to be one of the most intelligent breeds in the world, and perhaps the easiest breed to train. They love people and hate being alone.

1.   The Border Collie

The Border Collie tops our list. This canine king of the cortex is also known for its agility, obedience, and herding skills. Much like the German Shepherd, the Border Collie is born and bred to work. They can cause problems if left at home for too long. This sheepherding breed is fit for country living; although, they make great family pets so long as they are given space to roam and plenty of companionship. 

This blog post was provided by HowToPayMyVet.com, a website dedicated to providing help with vet bills. Whether you need help with vet bills for a dog, cat, or other pet, howtopaymyvet.com can provide the assistance you need to pay your bills on time.

Images: tinali778, santanartist, Magnus Brath, nickton, keepwaddling1


  1. I think those breeds make sense – what surprises me is the Labrador isn’t there. Should Golden’s have instead been Retrievers?


  2. Awesome list! I like that you point out that these dogs need a JOB and their minds kept busy in order to be happy. Thank you for that. So many people buy the smartest breeds thinking that they don’t need training, but they need even more training. It’s like having a little genius kid in your house a lot of the time. :D

  3. I read an article some years ago where dogs were tested for their ability to solve a problem to get a treat. The researcher posited that Golden Retrievers were dumber than Border Collies because the GR looked to a person sooner for help instead of continuing to work at the puzzle himself.

    Of course, it depends on how you definite intelligent. If the GR gets the treat with less work by asking for help and the BC works like a fiend to get it himself, which dog is really smarter? :)

  4. @Laura, I totally agree – having a job makes such a huge difference! And, you know, whenever I see one of those kid geniuses on Oprah or whatever, I’m always so grateful that I don’t have one of those! Too much pressure!! :)

    @Pamela, GREAT point! The GR might be creating and using a tool – his people!


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