Smarter Than You Think

Shteland Sheepdog.  Image credit:  Angela Bolte

Shetland Sheepdog. Image credit: Angela Bolte

A Canadian canine researcher presented a paper at the American Psychological Association this Saturday on the intelligence of dogs.  According to Dr. Coren, the average dog has the mental ability of a 2-year-old human.  His research suggests that the average dog can understand 150 words & gestures, can count to around five, demonstrate spatial problem-solving skills, and show basic emotions.  The smartest dogs, according to his research, can understand around 250 words.  Coren measured dogs’ abilities by adapting tests developed for measuring intelligence in small children.  For more information on this research, see Live Science.

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