How do I know if my dog is smart?

Assessing a dog's intelligence is extremely complex and is based on various factors such as instinct, adaptability, obedience and many others. For example, one dog may be more capable than another dog of surviving in the wild, while another may be distinguished by its speed in understanding an order and executing it. In any case, studies to learn more about the intelligence of dogs have determined that the Border Collie, Poodle and German Shepherd are the breeds that do best. However, it appears that with training, a dog can improve significantly, regardless of the breed to which it belongs. Zoom on the intelligence tests to give your dog.

Smart Dogs


How can we determine a dog's intelligence?
The notion of intelligence in dogs can be assessed in particular by taking into account their cognitive abilities, i.e. the capacity of their brain to process various information. It is therefore important to be able to analyse its capacity:

  • Spatial or ability to analyze its environment,
  • Adaptation,
  • Careful,
  • Memorization,
  • Reasoning,
  • Decision-maker,
  • Perception,
  • Learning,
  • Language.

Measuring his dog's intelligence through tests
To get an idea of your dog's level of intelligence, you can subject him to various tests that will allow you to see, for example, if the animal remains attentive, if he assimilates as quickly as possible what is expected of him, if he is able to memorize and then execute an order, or even to solve a problem, to trick or even to make himself understood. The first step is to have a stopwatch to measure how quickly the dog understands and executes.

The labyrinth test
This consists of creating a simple course with few obstacles and then an increasingly complex course, full of pitfalls, leading to a kibble. There is only one way to reach the kibble, but for the test to be conclusive, the master must not show his dog the way. The test is successful only if the animal quickly takes the only passage leading to its reward, without pushing the obstacles but, on the contrary, avoiding them.

The cup test
The principle consists of having three totally opaque plastic cups and placing a kibble under one of them. First we show the dog that we place a treat under one cup and turn the other two over. Then we take him out of the room for about 30 seconds at first (we can lengthen the wait later) after which we ask him to go and get his reward. If the dog has an excellent memory, he should find without hesitation the cup under which his kibble has been hidden.

The interactive game test
Buy an interactive dog intelligence game at a specialty store. Some are in the form of a puzzle that includes treats that the animal must find in a minimum amount of time. These games are generally well appreciated by intelligent dogs and can be left in the absence of their master so they don't get bored.

The towel test
The master covers his dog's head with a large towel. The animal must be able to free itself from it in less than half a minute. Even if it looks like nothing, this little exercise is not so easy since not all dogs solve it in the time allotted (or even not at all well beyond 30 seconds).

The obstacle bypass test
It is an exercise to be practiced outdoors, in a park for example, which has a non-occulting fence or a fence of a length at least equivalent to a good fifteen meters and with an opening. The master must pass on the other side of the obstacle without the knowledge of his little companion and then call him. A very intelligent dog does not hesitate and goes around this obstacle. An unintelligent dog will not immediately understand that to reach his master on the other side, he simply has to go around the obstacle.

Do not confuse a docile dog with an intelligent dog. A doggie can be perfectly capable of obeying its master without having a great capacity of reasoning for example. But we should not despair: improvements are possible if we give his dog the possibility to train his cognitive abilities through games and exercises of all kinds that the dog will appreciate a lot because it allows to create a privileged relationship and a beautiful complicity between the master and the animal. It should be noted that, thanks to these trainings, the master will learn to better understand his dog's behaviour and therefore his language.

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