How Well Do Dogs See in Relationship to People?

It’s clear that dogs see differently than people, as dogs are mostly colorblind. While human eyes are made up of cones that detect color, a dog’s eyes are primarily made up of rods, which detect black and white. Most of what a dog sees will be in various shades of grey; however, this doesn’t mean that they are completely lacking color, as their eyes are made up of 10 percent rods, enabling occasional flashes of color.

Rods also work to detect movement better than cones, so a dog’s eyes will often pick up on a change in shape or movement faster than human eyes. Dogs can also see much better in low light, due to the high percentage of rods in their eyes, and a special reflective extra layer in their eye. It’s estimated that dogs can see up to four times better in low light situations than people.

Additionally, dogs are able to see an extremely wide range without moving their heads. People can comfortably view 180 degrees without moving; dogs, up to 250 degrees. This wider field of vision allows dogs to see and sense objects, people, and other animals that are near them more easily. However, dogs are thought to be nearsighted and do not possess the long-range vision that people can achieve.

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