Every dog owner secretly thinks their pooch is the smartest. But, which race can really boast this title? Thanks to an in-depth study, carried out by experts from the University of Helsinki, the mystery is finally solved.
The underside of an unprecedented study
Ever wanted to know where your dog ranked on the canine intelligence scale? This curiosity can now be satisfied! Finnish researchers have carried out impressive tests. They collected 1,002 dogs from 13 different breeds and subjected them to cognitive and behavioral assessments. Why this choice of age? The dogs chosen were aged one to eight years because beyond that, doggies can show cognitive decline. Attractiveness to food and non-aggressive behavior were essential criteria for participation.
Many factors were analyzed, such as impulsivity, social cognition, ability to solve spatial problems, logical reasoning and short-term memory. The results showed that each breed has its strong and weak points. “The Labrador retriever, for example, excels at understanding human gestures, but struggles with spatial problems,” the study explains.
The list of canine champions: some names will surprise you!
“The Belgian Shepherd Malinois shined in many cognitive tasks, outperforming most other breeds in a majority of tests,” says Saara Junttila, study co-author and expert in canine cognition.
Without further ado, here are the breeds that stood out:
1. The Belgian Shepherd Malinois
2. The Australian Kelpie
3. The Labrador retriever
4. The border collie
5. The golden retriever
6. The hovawart
7. The Spanish water dog
8. The Shetland Shepherd
9. The English Cocker Spaniel
10. The Australian Shepherd
11. Cross breed dogs
12. The German Shepherd
13. The Finnish Lapland Shepherd
And so, where is your doggie in this ranking?
I am a student and I am part of the editorial staff of joehovasmf.com. I have the chance to enjoy writing, however, I also like to discuss all subjects and especially anything related to Science.