Cats have the reputation for being smart, but dogs are the real geniuses. Now, before any angry cat lovers email or call, remember - I’m just the messenger! This conclusion is the result of a study done by Canterbury Christ Church University in Kent, England: 

  • The researchers wanted to test the problem solving abilities of household pets. So they devised a test where dog and cat test subjects had to pull a string with a treat tied to the end. Pulling the string brought the treat close enough to eat.

  • Not surprisingly, all the animals figured this out when there was only one string. But when the researchers added a second string without a reward at the end, the cats didn’t do so well. In fact, even though they had a 50/50 chance, they didn’t get it right even half of the time! But the canines were able to figure it out which string had the treat right away.

Britta Osthaus is the professor who conducted the study. And she says the results were surprising because cats are such good hunters, and they have a reputation for being smarter. But in terms of problem-solving, dogs actually come out ahead.