The Pomsky hybrid dog breed wasn’t ever supposed to be a “real” dog breed at all.
In fact, the very first Pomsky, whose pictures went viral on social media, was a classic case of mistaken identity. The real dog was a Finnish Lapphund puppy, as Northern California Pomskies explains!
But the seed of an adorable idea got planted and pretty soon experienced dog breeders got to work to bring the already in-demand Pomsky breed to life. But these cute dogs are not just photogenic – they are also keenly intelligent.
In this article, we take a close look at just how smart the Pomsky truly is from the perspective of learning more about each parent dog, the Pomeranian, and the Siberian Husky.
Are Pomskies Smart?
The short and sweet answer is YES – Pomskies are very smart. If you have ever had the opportunity to enjoy the company of either of the Pomsky breed’s parent dogs, the Pomeranian, and the Siberian Husky, you may remember how incredibly attentive and alert both dog breeds can be.
In fact, according to Fetch WebMD for Pets, the Pomeranian ranks 23rd (out of 110 dog breeds) in terms of dogs that can learn and repeat new commands the fastest.
See a Super Smart Pomsky Puppy in Training
Watch Anna the young Pomsky learning new commands in a single try!
This adorable short video by an experienced Pomsky breeder and trainer really shows how intelligent the Pomeranian Siberian Husky hybrid breed can be.
Understanding Canine Intelligence in the Pomsky Dog Breed
According to the American Psychological Association (APA), one of the preeminent research societies for studying human intelligence, recent research places canine smarts right at the same level as the average two and a half-year-old human child!
This is pretty amazing if you think about it!
Here are just a few of the research findings pointed out in the APA paper on canine intelligence. Most of these probably will not surprise you if you have ever cared for a dog before.
- Dogs can count at least up to five.
- Dogs can detect basic math errors.
- Dogs can understand at least 150 to 200 different human words.
- Dogs can think and act deceptively to win treats from people and other dogs.
- Dogs can learn to operate simple gadgets such as latches on gates and door handles.
- Dogs can intuit people’s thoughts and emotions by watching their facial expressions.
- Dogs can calculate the best routes to achieve desired goals.
So it isn’t at all surprising that Anna the Pomsky mastered commands so rapidly or that she seemed to clearly understand exactly what her trainer wanted her to do almost before the command was even issued.
There Are Different Kinds of Canine Intelligence
The Pomsky has two different purebred dog parents: the Pomeranian and the Siberian Husky.
While the Pomeranian dog breed scored at number 23 (out of 110 purebred dog breeds) in the canine intelligence study, the Siberian Husky came in at number 45.
This might seem to suggest that the Siberian Husky breed is not as smart as the Pomeranian breed.
However, one of the foremost canine intelligence psychologists and researchers, Dr. Stanley Coren, explains in Science Alert that there are all kinds of canine intelligence.
In Psychology Today, Dr. Coren outlines the following main types of canine intelligence as follows:
Adaptive intelligence is a type of smart that focuses on figuring things out.
For example, Pomeranians are great at figuring out how to get their people to give them more treats. Siberian Huskies are great at working out pack dynamics within a sled dog team.
Working intelligence is sometimes also called simply “obedience intelligence.” This is the type of intelligence Dr. Coren was measuring in the Science Alert article.
Here, you will notice that neither the Pomeranian nor the Siberian Husky scored in the top 10 in terms of working intelligence. The Pomeranian was 23rd and the Siberian Husky was 45th.
This explains why both Pomeranians and Siberian Huskies are said to be somewhat stubborn as far as purebred dog breeds go. This is because of what these dog breeds were bred to do – their instinctive intelligence.
What we can learn from this is that sometimes scoring very high in one type of canine intelligence might also mean scoring lowering in another kind of canine intelligence.
Spatial intelligence is a type of intelligence that deals with figuring out how puzzles work.
A great example would be watching how quickly a dog figures out how to roll a treat ball around to get the kibble stashed inside to fall out.
Instinctive intelligence refers to a dog’s innate or native instincts. These are instincts that every dog in a particular breed will have to some degree.
So for example, all Pomeranians have the instinct to guard their territory and their people. And all Siberian Huskies have the instinct to run long distances without stopping.
Kinesthetic intelligence is a type of intelligence that is closely linked to instinctive intelligence in dog breeds.
The reason being, kinesthetic intelligence is a type of smart that focuses on using the body to achieve goals.
So let’s take the Siberian Husky. These dogs are famous for running all day and all night without stopping to rest. The most famous such dog was Balto (yes, the same dog from the movie Balto!).
According to Outside Online, scientists now know that Huskies and other Iditarod racing dogs have special physical adaptations to maximize their use of oxygen while expending minimal energy.
Finally, interpersonal intelligence is a type of intelligence that modern domestic dogs, Canis lupus familiaris, have been selectively bred for right from the start.
Puppies begin learning interpersonal intelligence skills right from weaning, which is why it is so important for puppies to stay with their moms and littermates until at least eight or nine weeks of age.
And the moment a Pomsky puppy comes home with you, they will start learning from you as well, studying your body language, facial expressions, habits and patterns, speech inflections, and more.
So if it sometimes feels like your Pomsky has you wrapped around their cute little paw, this is because your dog has figured out exactly what makes you tick!
Pomsky Intelligence: How Smarts Can Differ Between Pomsky Puppies
As a newer modern hybrid dog breed, the Pomsky is far earlier in its breed development than either parent dog breed.
Pomeranian dog breed history
The American Pomeranian Club states that the Pomeranian as a dog breed originated as early as the 16th century in a region in Iceland that used to be called Pomerania. But these dogs also have much older spitz-type ancestors that date back centuries.
Siberian Husky dog breed history
According to the Delaware Valley Siberian Husky Rescue, the Siberian Husky breed dates back at least 4,000 years to an ancient nomadic people in what is now called Siberia in Asia.
Contrast the lengthy and noble history of the Pomeranian and Siberian Husky with the very new Pomsky breed, which was developed only in the last decade or so according to Breeding Business.
There are many advantages to developing new potential purebred dog breeds, which is a practice called hybrid dog breeding. Combining desirable traits with greater genetic diversity can result in a dog with better health and unique smarts.
But as a new breed gets developed, there is a lot of genetic uncertainty as well. This is because it is hard to predict which traits and genes a Pomsky puppy will inherit from each purebred dog parent.
So your Pomsky puppy may be larger or smaller, long-haired or short-haired, tall or short, an endurance athlete or a couch potato, a great guard dog, or a poor guard dog.
It just depends on which parent dog your Pomsky puppy most takes after.
Luckily, the one thing you can count on is that your Pomsky puppy will always be smart. However, here again, you may find your Pomsky has smarts that are more like the Siberian Husky breed or more like the Pomeranian breed.
Pomeranians are quick studies in training and learning tricks. They can be stubborn because they have excellent interpersonal and adaptive intelligence and can learn how to behave so they get what they want.
Siberian Husky smarts
Siberian Huskies are incredibly adept at canine athletics, a form of instinctive intelligence. They are also high scoring in interpersonal intelligence and really need and crave human as well as the canine company.
When you take the time to learn about Pomsky dog’s intelligence, you will be able to use this information to provide the right training, exercise, and daily enrichment to keep your precious Pomsky pup healthy and happy.