How Smart Are Dogs?

Canine intelligence is measured in a variety of ways, including memory, agility, problem solving abilities and adaptability. Some dogs have problem-solving abilities similar to that of human children, and can recognize human facial expression and hand gestures in a manner that is more advanced than primates.

The intelligence of any dog can vary widely depending on breed, age, environment and the individual. The first canine intelligence test was developed beginning in 1976 by Kathy Coon, with research and revisions made continuously until the testing was finally standardized in 2003.

Dogs are pack animals known to have a high understanding of social obligations, which is another marker of intelligence.