List of the world's smartest animals, in order of their animal intelligence ranking. When putting this list of the smartest animals in the world together, I had to give myself criteria to follow. A complex brain is not a factor so much as the ability to use creative thinking. Sure, these are my own standards, and some might complain that this list is decidedly anthropomorphic– seeing as how I'm judging these smart animals by obvious human criteria.
For example, why should creative thinking mean one animal is smarter than another animal that can remember the location of 2,200 individual nuts it buried over 2 years? That's just how I decided to do it. To me, creative thinking makes an animal smart, not memorization. I couldn't limit myself to a list of just the top 10 smartest animals because that would have eliminated some incredibly smart and creative creatures.What is the smartest animal in the world? Check out this list of nerdy mammals to find out which of our pets will ultimately rule the planet when humans go extinct!