Seven Super Smart Breeds of Dog

Intelligent Dog Breeds

Have you ever asked yourself what the most intelligent breed of dog is?

Or what are the really clever dog breeds?

So, while we can’t say for sure which breed of dog is the cleverest, we have shared a list of some of the most intelligent dog breeds.

Table of Contents

So, now let’s take a look at each breed in more detail…

Border Collies

World-famous as one of the most intelligent dog breeds known to man and with a legendary appetite for working relentlessly, there is an excellent reason why this breed is such a popular working dog.

Originally Border Collies came from the border area between England and Scotland and were bred as herding dogs that would work high up in the wild fells and moorland of that area.

In more recent times, while they are still used as herders in many countries across the world.

They are also by far the most popular dog for owners competing in obedience and agility competitions.

Their brains and work ethic make them the perfect breed for this type of competing.

Belgian Malinois

Belgian Malinois are another highly intelligent workaholic livestock herding breed that made our list of the cleverest dog breeds.

While they are still used as herding dogs, they have also gained huge popularity and military and police dogs.

The breed’s intelligence, work drive, speed, aggression, size, and overall toughness make them perfect for police and soldiering work.

So much so that even the world-famous SAS and Navy Seal Teams use them in their special operations activities.

Labrador Retrievers

More commonly known as simply Labradors, they are another smart, hard-working dog breed. First bred to work in the cold ocean waters of Canada to work alongside fishermen.

The breed is now commonly used as a game retrieving dog and is very popular for various types of search and rescue and guide dog roles due to its brain and ability to work in very tough conditions.

German Shepherds

As the name suggests, German Shepherds originate from the Germanic regions of Europe and were originally livestock herding dogs.

While they are still used for farm work, they as hugely popular now as police and army dogs.

They have famous for being incredibly brave, clever, and very easy to train to a high level of skill and obedience.

Doberman Pinschers

The Doberman Pinscher is another famous breed of dog from Germany.

They were bred as guard dogs and are still a very commonly used breed for this particular task.

Anyone who has ever owned one will tell you how they have a highly effective instinct for protecting the home and the family.

They can make great pets but must be highly trained to ensure they are totally under their owner’s control.


Once again, another world-famous breed of dog that originally comes from Germany. Rottweilers were bred to be herding and general working dogs.

They are still used for livestock herding but are also commonly seen work with the police and armed forces worldwide.

Standard Poodles

Poodles are often thought of as toy dogs with elaborate coats styling rather than hard-working and highly intelligent.

The reality is that both are true.

There are three standard poodles sizes, miniature, toy, and standard. Miniature and toy are only used as pets.

However, Standard Poodles are considered one of the most intelligent working dog breeds there is.

Wait, What About Mixed Breeds?

It would not be fair of us to write about clever breeds of dog without at least giving an honorary mention to mongrels of mixed breeds.

While it is obviously impossible to quantify this type of dog due to the infinite potential variations.

As dog lovers, we felt totally obliged to mention that some of the most intelligent dogs we have ever seen have been mixed breed and mongrels.

PS – If you ever have issues with your dog’s bed stinking really bad, please check out this blog post about odor resistant dog beds.

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