There are lots of debates on what the smartest dog breeds are. Some owners may think they have the smartest, or in some cases the dumbest dog… AKC has put together a list of the smartest dog breeds. Some may come to you as a suprise, other I’m sure you have heard of before.
- Border Collie
- German Shepherd
- Golden Retriever
- Doberman Pinscher
- Shetland Sheepdog
- Labrador Retriever
Lets take a look at each one of these breeds more closely starting with the Border Collie.
1. Border Collie
These dogs are very popular in the agility ring. They are extremely intelligent and every easy to train. They are the workaholics in the dog world, and are eager to please. This breed loves to be challenged and have a job. In a family setting, Border Collies are good with children but are better with older children.
This dog does require regular exercise, and stimulation of mental and physical activities. Border Collies are a seasonal shedder so it is recommended to groom weekly to help keep them maintained.
They are not a large breed, females range from 27-42lbs and males 30-45lbs. They also have a healthy life expectancy of 10-17 years.
Having Poodles myself it is no surprise that they make this list. Poodles are another active been, they love to play and keep busy. They love and are enthusiastic to participate in runs, walks and swimming adventures. Poodles are great with other dogs when introduced properly. They are also a good family dog.
The Poodle although hypoallergenic sheds minimally, but needs to be groomed daily to avoid mats and knots in their hair. There are many different ways you can cut and keep the poodles hair, this is all to personal preference. Poodles come in three different height and weight categories making them very suitable for many different families needs. They also have a longer life expectancy of 10-18 years.
3. German Shepherd
In the AKC the German Shepherd is one of the most popular and recognized breeds. They are known to be confident, courageous and smart. It’s no wonder for those reason that they are a popular choice for police and support dogs for the public. The German Shepherd is a working dog, they need regular mental and physical exercise. They love to have a job and to be included in things around the house and in the work place.
The Shepherd has a short coat and does shed. It is recommended that they get a weekly brunch and also used a sticky brunch to help collect some of that loose hair. It is also very important they have a good diet from puppy hood al;l the way to adult hood to avoid any developmental issues and other health issues down the road. Mentally and emotionally this breed is very stable, they do not however like to be left alone for long lengths of time. Proper and training and socialization at a young age is recommended.
4. Golden Retriever
This is a devoted, intelligent, and very friendly breed. The Golden Retriever is one of the most popular family dogs. They are great with children of all ages, they also get along with other pets in the home. Golden’s are very energetic so daily exercise is required to keep them happy and out of trouble. They are a seasonal shedder, regular grooming is required to keep the hair loss under better control.
Golden Retrievers are a large breed with females weighing 55-65 lbs, and males 65-75lbs. There are records of Goldens reaching the 100lb mark as well. This breed has a life expectancy of 10-12 years. There are some health concerns you should be aware of by talking with your breeder before choosing this dog. Educated owners are much better ones.
5. Doberman Pinscher
Dobbies are fearless, alert and highly trainable. They require positive reinforcement training and lots of socializing when they are young in order to raise a confident and stable dog. As with most breeds, they will need regular exercise to keep them healthy and happy. They are good with kids, and will tolerate other dogs when introduced properly. They are very eager to please, this makes positive reinforcement training easier and the best way to go. They like to be a part of things you are doing, so include them and give them jobs.
Dobbies have a life expectancy of 10-12 years. There are some health concerns related to this breed, your breeder should be more then happy to walk you through the proper care that will be needed to keep them healthy and happy. Dobbies are also a large breed, females range from 60-90lbs and males 75 -100lbs.
6. Shetland Sheepdog
The Shetland Sheepdog is a very smart and playful herding dog. They love playing with children and learning new tricks. Shelties are very commonly seen in competition for obedience, agility and herding trials. They are great with their family and love children.
Because of their active nature they do need a lot of mental and physical exercise. Because of their herding qualities they like to try and boss their people around and heard them. Some concerns that come with their naturally herding tendencies is that they like to chase things that move, this may also include cars and bcycles, because of this it is important to keep them on the leash when walking and have them in a fenced in yard at home. The ultimate setting for this dog is a farm where they have lots of land to run on, and potentially some live stock to heard.
As with most of the intelligent dogs, they are easy to train, can be great with children and other dogs, but they also don’t like to be left alone. These dogs create relationships with their people and do prefer to be around them. They can be left alone for short periods of time, but do better when they have you around.
7. Labrador Retriever
Labs are a personality plus breed, they are loyal and love to play with others, they are very active and high spirited. Labs are a seasonal sheder, but because of their shorter coat don’t require as much grooming. They are great with kids and are ok with other dogs if introduced properly, supervision is recommended.
Labs are another eager to please large breed, the females rage from 55-70lbs, and the males 65-80lbs. They have a life expectancy of 10-12 years. Labs love to play and explore. Regular exercise is required to keep their weight in check.
This one surprised me that it made it to the top 10. It is not very often that a small breed does. Papillons are known to happy and alert little guys and are not shy or aggressive. These little guys are regular winners in agility trials at the sports highest levels. They are a lot more solid then they may look.
Because of their size, they can be good with young children, but are better suited for families older children as the young ones may hurt them unintentionally. They are very easy to train and are great with other dogs. The Papillon is good in the warmer weather but does not like to be out in the cooler climates.
Papillons have a longer coat so they will be in need of regular grooming. Don’t think of this as a choir, think of it as a great bonding experience for you and your pet. When introduced to regular grooming as a puppy they will grow to like grooming and bath times. Because of the longer hair over their ears don’t forget to clean those too during bath time to keep wax build up under control.
For a small breed, they are pretty great dogs, oh and cute as heck…
Bloodhounds have a very distinctive look with their long droopy ears and their deep drown eyes hiding under their droopy brows. They are a large breed getting up to about 110lbs. The Bloodhound is a tracking dog, they are designed to track a scent for miles. They don’t have a high activity level but they do need their exercise. As puppies, they grow 3-5 pounds a week, during this growing stage keep activity lower and on softer surfaces such as grace and carpeting.
As a Bloodhound grows they have no idea how big or strong they are, so it is important to monitor them with small children and other dogs. Another thing to keep in mind with this breed, imagine what behaviours you will want the 110lb version of them to have, and make sure you train and correct their bad habits when they are young so they don’t carry bad habits as they get bigger.
Don’t let their sad faces take advantage of your heart strings or they will become the boos of the house when they get older. Bloodhounds were bred to live in packs so they love to be around their family, don’t get this dog if you are just going to leave him alone a lot.
The Rottweiler is very affectionate with their families. They are intelligent, have endurance and are willing to work, this makes them suitable for police dogs, herding dogs, service and therapy dogs. They are inherent protectors, socializing and positive reinforcement training as a pup is important to raise a level-headed and confident dog.
Rotties are a thicker breed, they will need two solid workouts a day to keep them healthy. Because of their companionship with their families, they would like to do their work out activities with you. How well this breed reacts to children and other dogs is dependent on their upbringing.
The Rottweiler is a larger breed, the females with average 77-110lbs and the males 110-130 lbs. They have some health concerns that you should known about before you choose this breed, your vet and breeder will be able to give you everything you need to raise a happy and healthy puppy. The life expectancy of this breed is 10-12 years.