|Barked: Mon Sep 25, '06 6:07pm PST |
|I completely agree with Marlowe (I love the name, btw! haha). Whether or not you would consider a breed "smarter" than another definately depends on how you define "smart". From your original post, you seem to be implying that some breeds are more trainable than others. In this case, definately so.
There is an interesting book written by Stanley Coren called "The Intelligence of Dogs". It begins with attempting to define canine intelligence and separate it into the different types of "smart" that a dog can be and how individual breeds tend to fall into those types based on what they were originally intended to do. It then tries to summarize a method of determining how smart dogs are. It touches upon trainability based on the accounts of trainers and obedience judges across the US and Canada, and also delves into logic and reasoning obtainable by different breeds. There are, of course, biases and problems with integral aspects to these tests, but they set out an interesting series of results.
Coren attempts to then create a list of the smartest dog breeds based soley on trainability in basic obedience. Obedience, he says, is representative of a dogs ability and willing ness to learn a taught task. On this list, Border Collies, Poodles, German Shepherds, Golden Retrievers, Doberman Pinschers, and Shetland Sheepdogs make up the top 6. (I had to choose the top 6 so that my Gio was included haha). Where the bottom 6 consist of, in decreasing "smartness" order, the Bloodhound, Borzoi, Chow Chow, Bulldog, Basenji, and Afghan Hound. We see that the top 6 is dominated by herding and hunting/retieving breeds while the bottom 6 are dominated by hounds with the exception of the Chow Chow. This is definately not to say that these bottom 6 are the stupidest dogs out there, they just ranked the lowest based on the particular test they were judged in, in this case the ability to learn obedience.
So, in summary, yes there are "stupid" dogs out there, but to try and classify them based on breed is quite impossible (and unfair for the dog haha), because each breed was originally intended for a different purpose, so will learn to different extents and in different ways, making them completely uncomparable. I don't like to put too much store in what books tell me, though in the case of Stanley Coren's books, they are often very interesting and occassionally informative, if nothing else than to enjoy an amusing and well written book on our favorite species.
|my posts | my page | msg me | my family's posts | gift me | become pals|| [notify]|