Breed Tips

What is the Smartest Cat Breed?

They say that you cannot judge a fish by its ability to climb a tree. So, to judge a cat, we’ll have to look at factors like how well they can be trained, their ability to adapt to new environments, their ability to read human emotions and react accordingly, etc.

Cats are one of the smartest animals on this planet. Some of you may think otherwise but we’ve seen a cat that plays a piano to notify the owners that it’s feeding time and another that somehow called 911 when the differently-abled parent needed emergency service. 

Now we know that the human brain is extremely advanced, sophisticated, and capable. But we’ve seen the Einstein’s and the Newton’s of the world take the benchmark higher. Similarly, cats in general may be smart but certain breeds are just remarkable when it comes to smartness. 

What is the Most Intelligent Breed of Cat?

Every research, article or book that you read about cats, will say the same thing: the Abyssinian is the smartest cat species of all time. It is believed that it was brought to Abyssinia, now known as Ethiopia, from Southeast Asia by travelers who had stopped in Calcutta, India. 

The breed has earned this reputation because of its inquisitive nature and detective skills. The irony here is that they are also known as ‘The Clowns of the Cat Kingdom’ for their curiosity and high interest in playing with their humans. They are sleek, athletic, agile and affectionate. They tend to enjoy the company of other pets in the house and can adapt well to any living arrangements. They tick all the boxes of factors that we listed above that help us determine the smartness of a cat. 

Other Intelligent Cat Breeds

While the Abyssinian is considered the smartest of all breeds, others are quite smart as well. The ones topping the list are - 

  • Balinese – The longhaired version of the Siamese breed, the Balinese is undoubtedly one of the smartest cat breeds out there. Surprisingly, they are not from Bali or any other part of Indonesia. They were brought to the UK and US from Thailand in the 1800s. They are vocal, inquisitive, and active cats. They can be trained very easily. They are also very affectionate with the family. Their Siamese counterparts are also one of the most intelligent breeds out there. 

  • Bengal – The breed with the most exotic coat, one that resembles a leopard or a jaguar, Bengal Cat, is on the list of smartest cat breeds as well. It is an active breed that loves to run, jump, play and climb. They are small explorers with an inquisitive nature and even quite talkative.   

  • Burmese – The descendants of Wong Mau, a female cat from Burma, Burmese cats are known for their dog-like nature. They are very people-oriented, love to play fetch and other games with their humans, and display puppy-like energy all the time. They may not be as independent as other breeds but are among the smartest ones out there. 

  • Savannah – The rare and exotic breed, Savannah, is one of the most expensive cat breeds of all time. With wild African genes, these cats are extremely active and curious. They will seek toys and water to play in and sometimes even start playing with drawers and cabinets. Due to high intelligence levels, they tend to get bored easily if not stimulated enough. 

What is the Smartest Domestic Cat Breed? 

The Abyssinian is a domestic cat breed, hence making it the smartest cat domestic cat breed because of the reasons mentioned above. However, there is another breed that is as intelligent as it - The Russian Blue.

Archangel Blues, as they are also known, are highly intelligent and affectionate. They are known for following a strict routine as they are very attuned to their household. You may be able to use them as an alarm as well. They will remind you of their meal times, play times, and nap times. They are quite affectionate as well and are known for hitching a ride on their owner’s shoulders.

Are Cats Smarter than Dogs?

A dog’s brain has around 429 million neurons as against a cat’s brain which has around 250 million of them. This should ideally mean that dogs are smarter than cats, but it does not exactly. Neurons are directly linked to cognitive ability but are not necessarily a good indicator of intelligence. This is because cognition involves other areas of the brain as well in addition to the cerebral cortex where these neurons are stored. 

The reason why many people feel that dogs are smarter than cats is because dogs are generally more eager to please. This is because dogs have been domesticated for thousands of years and have hence learned our human ways. Cats, on the other hand, are usually less eager to please, less patient, and more impulsive. Having said that, cats are highly attentive to their surroundings and can be trained just like dogs. 

Are Cats Smarter than Humans?

According to feline behaviorists and child psychologists, an adult cat’s IQ is nearly the same as a 2 to 3-year-old human baby. Both species learn through imitating, observing, and experimenting. 

In an experiment to identify observational learning in kittens, mother cats were made to perform an organised act to check if their babies imitated. The kittens were able to perform sooner than the ones who saw a non-related adult cat perform the same task and even the ones who observed nothing and were tested on trial and error. 

Cats have around 250 million neurons as compared to humans which have 86 billion of them. So scientifically, cats may not be as smart as adult humans but do show similar learning capabilities. Some people may argue that their cat is smarter than most of the people they know though!

More About Spot Pet Insurance

With a Spot accident and illness plan, you can take your cat for treatment at any licensed vet in Canada or the U.S. Spot plans don’t have networks, so whether you’re home or traveling within the U.S, veterinary services your cat receives for the diagnosis, treatment, or management of eligible services can be covered. Spot’s accident and illness plans can help cover a variety of conditions, ranging from broken bones and bite wounds to behavioral conditions, and cancer. And while base plans do not offer coverage for preventive care services, Spot’s Wellness Riders can be added to any base plan for an additional fee and can help cover the eligible costs of wellness exams, vaccinations, dental cleanings, and more! Learn more about cat insurance or get a free quote.

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