Dr Britta Osthaus, or Canterbury Christ Church University, said dog cognition "does not look exceptional" when compared to other domestic animals, social hunters and carnivorans.
"We are doing dogs no favor by expecting too much of them.
"Dogs are dogs, and we need to take them into account when considering how we treat them," Dr. Osthaus said.
Goats, pigs, dolphins, seals and sea lions at least as human beings.
Pigs are similarly able to identify humans by their faces, while sheep, pigeons and chimpanzees.
Cats do at least as well at identifying humans by their voices.
Donkeys, mules and horses are the way to find their way around barriers like dogs, while wolves, raccoons and hyenas can pull a string to release food.
Dolphins, chimps, giant pandas, American badgers, two species of bear and sea otters can use at least as well as dogs.
Unlike dogs, animals including pigs, pigeons and chimpanzees have the ability to remember what, when and when of an event.
The research is published in the journal Learning & Behavior.