We all know that it is not easy to select the top 20 smartest dog…
23 Dumbest Dog Breeds You Want To Avoid
Do you really want to know the dumbest dog breeds you should avoid if you are looking for the smartest dog breeds? The bond between you and your dog is a powerful one and of course, there is nothing that could change your mind thinking your lovely dog is the best there is.
While I wanted to highlight the flip side of the top 20 smartest dog breeds you can ever own, I am not trying to insult your cute pup because I know you love your canine so much. After all, he/she is an important part of your family.
Just to let you know: The term “dumbest dog breeds” is not all-encompassing as it is highly subjective. While each of these breeds is on this list of dumbest dog breeds for one reason or another, some of them may be considered smart in some aspects.
First, you need to know what determines the smartest or dumbest dog breeds.
Dog Intelligence Ranking: What Determines The Smartest or Dumbest Dog Breeds?
So, what makes the smartest or the dumbest dog breeds? The answer is not far-fetched. It is how trainable a dog is. His sense of direction, ability to remember things, energy level and something else.
Some years ago, precisely 1994, a psychologist called Stanley Coren, PhD., DSc., FRSC, wrote a book titled, The Intelligence of Dogs. He ranked over 100 dog breeds based on 3 specific types of intelligence:
- Working and obedience intelligence
- Adaptive intelligence
- Instinctive intelligence
Dog Intelligence Ranking: The Dumbest Dog Breed
How smart your pup depends on the test. It is no secret that purebred dogs have different skills based on what they are bred to do. For example, herding breeds such as Corgis, Australian Shepherd and Border Collies are known to be highly intelligent. Because of their nature, they are good at taking instructions from humans and making independent decisions.
Here is the list of the dumbest dog breeds.
13. Cavalier King Charles Spaniel
1. Afghan Hound
The Afghan Hound tops the list of the dumbest dog breeds, but I am sure Afghan Hound lovers will disagree. Afghan Hounds are bred for speed and great eyesight, but they can also be a little reserved and standoffish. They can also be independent and stubborn. Unfortunately, they are difficult to train.
To train them, you might have to be more creative because they are not easy to train.
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2. Basset Hound
Though Basset Hound’s droopy ears make them irresistible, their desire to smell things and search is too strong that they tend to get lost in the moment and forget what is going on around them. The worst thing is that if you search Google for the dumbest dog breeds, you will find Basset Hound on most lists,
Because they often get lost in smelling and searching for things, pet owners tend to wonder what is going on in their minds when they are wandering.
Basenji is another dog breed that makes the list of dumbest dog breeds because of its aloofness and independence. The Basenji breed has feline qualities and can groom themselves like cats. Unfortunately, the breed is untrainable, which is why it is on this list of the dumbest dog breeds.
Sometimes, raising a Basenji can feel like taming a wild animal because Basenji can easily get into trouble if not watched carefully. They are wary and watchful, and although most of them bond with their owners, they may not like your friends. So, Basenjis are not consistently obedient and are stubborn, but you can still train them using positive methods.
Bloodhounds are excellent hunting dogs with an amazing nose. Most people have argued that this breed’s amazing nose alone proves they are not as dumb, but it is difficult to train a Bloodhound. Their training involves a long process because they are not easy to train.
You are more likely to find Bloodhound running after ascent than obediently listening to your commands. Although they are well-tempered pups, their independence can be frustrating at times.
5. Shih Tzu
According to American Kennel Club, this small toy breed is the 20th most popular dog breed and it is a favorite amongst royals for centuries. They are a sought-after companion lap dog that doesn’t need to learn too many new tasks or excel in obedience.
Although the Shih Tzu breed does not necessarily need to learn to obey many commands, their intelligence and trainability raise alarm.
Bulldogs are lovable and their amusing disposition makes them dopey yet kind creatures. Even if you don’t exercise them, they don’t worry because they love sitting on their owner’s lap than anywhere in the house.
Bulldogs are stubborn and can be difficult to train. Bulldogs are capable of learning but are not easy to train because they are lazy.
7. Chow Chow
Although Chow Chow dog breed looks adorable, they are not always the cuddly type. Chows are aloof, independent and serious because they are originally bred to be guard dogs. They are stubborn and strong-willed, making them more difficult to train.
They are intelligent and have a mind of their own. If they are not trained properly, they might challenge their human authority, which can become problematic. This is why Chow Chow dog breed requires firm but fair training. They also need extensive socialization from an early age.
Borzoi dog breed is an independent freethinker. This breed is stubborn and training them requires patience. They are great when it comes to frequent, short training sessions rather than long training sessions. Borzois are calm, well-mannered, clean and affectionate, especially when they are with their special people, but are difficult to train.
Pekingese are a bit slow because they are somewhat sloth-like. They enjoy surveying their domain and lounging about at home. Pekingese are stubborn and difficult to housebreak, making training them challenging. To make sure this breed is well-trained, start their training early and be consistent.
Mastiff dog breed is known to be laid-back, but very chilled. They are a bit stubborn and training them might be more challenging than some other breeds. Being stubborn and difficult to train might not necessarily mean they are dumb but it is essential to start their training early and make sure to socialize them so that they can develop into discerning and well-behaved companions.
Beagles are like Bloodhounds who like to follow their nose, which may get them into trouble. This is what lands them on this list of the dumbest dog breeds. The Beagles are affectionate and have a happy-go-lucky outlook which might make people think they are empty-headed, but they are not that dumb.
If you own a Beagle, it is best to keep him on a leash, because they can’t resist the urge to explore, smell and chase small critters.
12. Bull Terrier
Clownish and playful, the Bull Terrier can best be described as a three-year-old kid in a dog suit. If that is not a ringing endorsement, I don’t know what is. However, this breed is playful and friendly. In fact, Bull Terriers are popular for their agility, obedience and show rings.
13. Cavalier King Charles Spaniel
The Cavalier King Charles Spaniel is a wonderful family dog that is loving and affectionate. However, a long history of inbreeding has somehow made this breed less sharp. This breed can struggle with learning new commands and don’t have a good recall.
It can take a lot of time to train the Cavalier King Charles Spaniel that is why it is regarded as one of the dumbest dog breeds.
14. Scottish Terrier
The Scottish Terrier is an energetic small dog with a huge personality, but its defiant and stubborn behavior makes it difficult to train. It is possible that comprehension is not the breed’s problem but the willingness to learn.
The Scottish Terrier is not easy to train, which is why it is on this list of dumbest dog breeds.
15. Saint Bernard
Known as a gentle giant, Saint Bernard can weigh more than one hundred pounds. It is calm and wonderful with children but can be really independent. This breed doesn’t obey commands quickly, which is why it is on this list of the dumber dog breeds.
Saint Bernard dog breed has difficulty remembering and obeying the tasks they have learned, but can still be trained. Luckily this breed is well-tempered and makes a wonderful family companion.
Chihuahuas are difficult because they are stubborn. They always think they are the pack leaders and if given the opportunity, will take ownership of the house. They also bark and show possessive behaviors if not trained correctly from their tender age.
Chihuahua can make a great family pet if properly trained earlier and socialized.
Although the Bullmastiff is known to be stubborn, it is not necessarily the dumbest. The problem with this breed is that it will not always listen to you because it likes to do things on its own. Thankfully, the breed can make an incredible family companion and guardian because it is sweet and compassionate.
18. Great Pyrenees
Bred to guard the flock from potential threats, the Great Pyrenees is a breed of a mountain dog. Because Great Pyrenees are built to be a guardian, they are an extremely independent thinker and will not always listen to you.
They are intelligent but their stubbornness means that traditional obedience training will be difficult. To train them, you need to be extremely consistent.
Pugs are charming and even-tempered but have a stubborn streak when it comes to obedience training. That is why they are regarded as one of the dumbest dog breeds. Pugs are bred to be a companion, so they always want to please their owners.
Pug feelings can get hurt easily that is why you should have a good balance of being firm with commands but not overly harsh and critical.
20. Italian Greyhound
Bred to chase, Italian Greyhounds are attentive and graceful but can also battle with separation anxiety and nervousness. You should not be too harsh with them during training because of their nervous nature.
Italian Greyhounds also have a stubborn streak, so you need to be firm and consistent during obedient training. You can also accompany their training with praise and rewards for a job well done.
The Maltese breed is intelligent, but they can manipulate their owners into getting what they want. They have a stubborn streak because they are used to being treated as if they are the center of the universe.
Maltese do well with positive praise but not always food motivated. You should also not overcorrect them during training. With consistent training, Maltese can become a great family dog.
22. French Bulldog
French Bulldogs are an excellent family companion with a rowdy stubborn streak. Although this breed is more intelligent than English Bulldog, you will still spend more time training French Bulldogs than you would a Golden Retriever.
Being consistent with French Bulldog’s training is the only way to train them properly. Of course, you need to motivate them with food.
23. Lhasa Apso
Confident, courageous and intelligent, Lhasa Apso breed has a stubborn streak and often quickly loses interest in basic obedience training. This breed also doesn’t do well in a longer training session, so you need to break down their training.
Dog Breeds Blacklisted By Insurance Companies
While I feel you need to know the dumbest dog breeds, you may also want to know dog breeds blacklisted by insurance companies. You might love your dog, but the companies that carry insurance for your apartment, condominium or house might not.
The worst thing about these blacklisted dogs is that they might determine whether or not insurance companies will be willing to provide coverage for your home.
Some dog breeds are blacklisted by insurance companies because of financial considerations. The insurance companies believe some dogs pose a higher risk and according to them, “Dog bite-related claims accounted for over one-third of all homeowners insurance liability claims paid out in 2013 (about $490 million).
In 2011, a Washington State Superior Court jury awarded $2.2 million verdict to a woman that was attacked by 2 neighborhood pit bulls close to her Tacoma, Washington home.
Here are the 14 most often blacklisted dog breeds:
- Pit Bull Terriers
- German Shepherds
- Staffordshire Terriers
- Presa Canarios
- Doberman Pinschers
- Chow Chows
- Siberian Huskies
- Alaskan Malamutes
- Great Danes
- Cane Corsos
These 14 dog breeds will not necessarily be on all insurance companies as each company draws its own list based on its opinion.
Even if your dog is on this list of the dumbest dog breeds, it doesn’t necessarily mean that it is totally dumb. All breeds have their shortcomings but the list is based on how trainable a dog is and their ability to learn new commands.
If your breed made this list, you don’t need to worry about it. I believe you can still train your dog properly and make it do what you want it to do. With patience and determination, your dog can reward you in many ways.
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