Chaser, The Dog Who Could Recognize 1022 Words

In this cruel world, what’s one thing in our lives that we can depend upon? Most probably a dog that loves us unconditionally, every day, and very faithfully. What if someone gets a dog who is not only loyal but also has cleverness, which means getting “loyalty with the brain”?

You wouldn’t believe but Chaser could indeed recognize 1,022 words, shocked? Yes, you must be because it is nearly impossible for a dog to have such a sharp memory.

Let’s find out more about Chaser but first some quick facts about the Border Collies.

Also known as the Scottish Sheepdog, the Border Collie is a herding and working dog breed that is highly smart, and competent to understand verbal commands easily. Interestingly, Border Collies are known as the most intelligent dog breed in the world and they have proven it many times.

This highly energetic dog breed was basically developed for shepherding and has virtuous stare power. If you want to see intelligence out of it, you must have to give it a clever owner to take its skills out because the hardworking and loving owner can find what cleverness hides inside it.

Now, let’s find some unbelievable facts about “Chaser” who was the research partner of Dr John W. Pilley.

‘Chaser’ the smartest one:

Chaser was the sharpest dog belonging to this highly intelligent breed. Up till now, no other animal specifically dogs has been found with such a brilliant memory. It was verified that she could easily recognize and recuperate almost 1022 toys by name which was confirmed by proper research.

Dr John W. Pilley, her owner was a retired Wofford College professor and psychologist who trained her so well that the Chaser became an inspiration for every dog lover and dog trainer.

How Dr Pilley Trained Chaser?

He used to drill her for 5 hours daily 5 days a week and always disciplined her like his own child. She knew the names of cloth animals, different balls, and plastic toys and everything had its unique name. She could also recognize some common nouns like tree and house

Inference and rejection training:

The way she was taught was unique and interesting called “Inferential reasoning by exclusion”, in which, she was given three objects, two objects were already known to her and the third one was new. She was brilliant at concluding by herself that the word spell was for the new object which she loved to infer and learn. Along with that she also loved Wofford College, toys, and herding sheep. Wasn’t this mind-blowing?

Where is Chaser and Dr Pilley now?

Chaser crossed the rainbow bridge in 2019 while Dr Pilley had already died in 2018. But it is a fact that both of them have been admired and remembered to date. Some other smart dogs came into the limelight but none of them was as intelligent as Chaser.

Other Smartest Dogs


Betsy is also a Border Collie and is recognized as one of the smartest dogs as she can recognize over 340 words. She lives in Vienna. Unbelievably, she learned her first command “sit”, when she was just 10 weeks old.


Interestingly, Rico was also a Border Collie and could understand over 200 words. Not only this, but he was also able to remember the item names for about a month after his last exposure to the items.

Final Thoughts:

So, it’s for sure that if you treat your dogs with love, they can do whatever you want. And when it comes to Border Collies, they can even become your search partner. If you know any other intelligent dog in your neighborhood, do let us know so we can feature him/her on our blog.

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