Did you know that around 48,000,000 American households have a dog? If that doesn't prove that dogs are man's best friend, we don't know what does! 

But why do we love dogs so much? Is it their fluffy coats, unconditional love, or something else? Something we often overlook is how clever many dogs are. In fact, a dog can be far more than just a pet. 

If you're interested in the most intelligent dog breeds, you've come to the right place. Here we'll review the smartest dog breeds and what incredible skills they can learn. 

Read on to find out more. 

Border Collie 

The border collie typically lives 12-15 years, weighs 30 to 55 pounds, and is 18-22 inches high. It is also consistently ranked as the smartest dog in the world. 

The smartest border collies have learned to recognize over 1000 words, learn new commands in under five repetitions, and follow them 95% of the time. Border collies are the over-achieving workaholics of the dog world, and they're never lacking in energy. 

Poodle 

With its reputation for being high maintenance, many people are surprised to hear that the poodle is an incredibly intelligent dog breed.

Poodles possess superior emotional and cognitive intelligence and were used during wartime to deliver supplies to soldiers in the line of duty. 

German Shepherd 

The German shepherd was bred to nurture its naturally intelligent genes and is used widely in policing work today. 

German shepherds are highly focused, obedient, and protective. Because they're so obedient, it makes them easy to train for law enforcement services. You can see here about training dogs to nurture their intelligence. 

Golden Retriever 

The golden retriever is a classic family-friendly companion, but did you know it's also one of the most intelligent dogs? Weighing around 55-75 pounds and living 10-12 years, golden retrievers were originally bred in Scotland and used for hunting. 

What sets them apart from other smart dogs is their 'need to please.' They have a happy disposition and will never tire of attention. A golden retriever is never happier than when it's following directions. In fact, they can learn up to 200 commands. 

They're no longer used for hunting purposes but are often the preferred dog breed for people with disabilities that need assistance dogs.

Many seniors also choose to adopt golden retrievers. However, if you're in this situation, consider whether you have the energy and mobility that a golden retriever requires. 

The Most Intelligent Dog Breeds Ever

Did any of these intelligent dog breeds surprise you? Between posh-looking poodles and intimidating German shepherds, these dogs all possess incredible levels of intellect. 

If you're thinking about buying a smart dog this year, make sure you put in adequate training so you can have the best relationship with your new companion. Why not see how many commands they can learn? 

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