Of course, you love your dog no matter what their IQ is, but if you want to know how you can test it, you might find this interesting!

But, before you read this, remember that a dog’s intelligence is highly subjective when it comes to a pet parent and their dog’s relationship.

While your dog might not excel at problem-solving skills, he might possess other talents that will make they a genius in your eyes.

There are two types of dog intelligence. Instinctive and adaptive intelligence.

Instinctive intelligence is the natural ability that is inherent to the breed or type of dog. This is a type of intelligence that, for instance, makes terriers commonly good at hunting small animals and bloodhounds good at finding things via their excellent scent.

Adaptive intelligence is the ability of a dog to learn. This includes performing certain tasks, socialisation, and language comprehension. A dog could be stronger in one category than another.

Below are some tasks from the Petinsurance.com.au team that you can do with your dog to test their IQ. These tasks are designed to evaluate a dog’s ability to learn and retain information and establish his problem-solving ability.

Task 1

Place a large towel or blanket over your dog’s head. This task will provide insight into your dog’s ability to solve problems.


3 points If they figure out how to free themselves in under fifteen seconds
2 points If it took longer than fifteen seconds and under thirty seconds
1 point If it takes them more than thirty seconds


Task 2

Place three empty cups upside down in a row. While your dog watches, place a treat under one of the containers. Distract them for a few seconds, then let them look for the treat. This test helps determine how well your dog can learn and retain information.


3 points if they go straight to the container where the treat is hidden
2 points if they check one empty container before finding the right one
1 point if they check both wrong containers before locating the treat


Task 3

In your dog’s favourite room where their favourite spot is, rearrange the furniture when they are out of the room. This task is designed to test their reasoning and cognition skills.


3 points If your dog comes back into the room and goes straight to their favourite spot
2 points If it takes them a short time to investigate before finding their spot
1 point If they gives up and finds a new spot


Task 4

Underneath a piece of furniture, low enough to the ground that only your dog’s paw can fit, place a treat within their paw’s reach. This task will test your dog’s reasoning and problem-solving skills.


3 points If it takes them under a minute to get the treat
2 points If they try to fit their head into the space first without using their paws
1 point If they give up before getting the treat


Task 5

At a time when you don’t normally take your dog for a walk, pick up their leash while they are watching. This task tests your dog’s ability to make and retain associations.


3 points If they immediately make the association and becomes excited
2 points If you need to walk to the door before, they get excited
1 point If they don’t seem to understand what is going on.


Task 6

Build a cardboard barrier taller than your dog and about 5 feet wide. Cut out a small window in the middle of it, small enough that they can see through it but not get through the hole. Stand behind your dog and throw a treat over the barrier so that it falls behind it. This task will help measure reasoning and problem-solving ability.


3 points If they take less than 30 seconds to figure out that they need to walk around the barrier to get to the treat
2 points If they take longer than 30 seconds
1 point If they try to climb through the window or bulldoze their way through the barrier instead of going around


Get ready, here’s the results…

More than 15 points – Congratulations, your dog is a genius!

Between 13 and 15 points – Not Einstein but still as smart cookie

Between 9 and 12 points – They won’t be the class valedictorian, but they will get by ok

Between 6 and 8 points – Your dog needs a little assistance when trying to figure things out

Tests aren’t infallible and some dogs are simply stubborn, and their lack of cooperation probably has nothing to do with their intelligence. Some also say the smartest dogs are the ones that have their parents wrapped around their paws and get a treat when they don’t need to even work for it! So don’t despair if your dog scores low, he might be smarter than all of us think!