Category Archives: dog vision

The World through Canine Eyes: What Dogs See

By Linda Cole

The eyes of dogs are uniquely designed to give them maximum sight to see the slightest movement at long distances, but they still don’t have 20/20 vision. When I watch one of my dogs gazing into the distance or seemingly searching the sky, I can’t help but wonder what they see that I don’t. The world from canine eyes is much different from ours, and yet, dogs can still see the world far better than we can. And despite popular belief, dogs can see colors. Just not in the same way we see them.

Without his nose, a dog would be at a disadvantage when it comes to moving through his world. Depending on the breed, dogs have 125 to 300 million scent receptors compared to our 5 million. It’s the smell that attracts your pet to his favorite CANIDAE treats or dog food, not the shape or color. If we saw our food like dogs see theirs, most food wouldn’t be very appetizing to us by sight alone.

Like cats, canines see best in the low light of dust and dawn. Their eyes are designed to pick up the slightest movements, and they have much better peripheral vision than we do. However, a dog’s vision is half as sharp as ours. Color, focus and detail are sacrificed in order for dogs to see subtle movement.

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