Are Dogs Color Blind?


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Is it true that dogs are colorblind?

Many people think that dogs are colorblind and their world is black and white. Well, this idea was a part of belief a few decades back but now, it has been proved that dogs are not colorblind. Although, they are not able to see all the colors which human can do but they are not colorblind as they can see more than just black, white and grey. Their world revolves around more than just the shades of grey. First we need to understand the definition of colorblindness. Here is more to know about this matter.

What is color blindness?

Colorblindness is nothing but a phenomenon under which a living being cannot recognize particular colors or become confused between certain colors. The first study on this disease took place during the late 18th century by John Dalton, an English Scientist. Dogs are not colorblind but the spectrum of colors they can see is limited in comparison to that which can be seen by humans.

Why do they have a limited spectrum of colors?

The basic thing that works behind the color sense of dogs is same like the human eye i.e. presence of rods and cones, two types of photoreceptors in eyes’ retina. But dogs contain more rods and no fovea which works for sharp visuals. Human eye contains more cones than dogs. The color spectrum of dogs consists of blues, violets and yellows mostly; thus, they are unable to distinguish between greens, reds and oranges. These colors appear in yellow to blue spectrum in them.

Their extensive night vision

Have you ever seen your dog paying attention to a particular direction in night and barking like he can see ‘something’ there that we can’t.? Yes, this is true that dogs have a better and extensive night vision than us. The presence of more rods makes dogs have a better vision in night and better tracking movement than human beings. This can be seen as an advantage to them in return of the lesser number of colors they see in comparison to human beings.

So, you might have understood well now that dogs have their own unique way of seeing this world. Their world is definitely not just black and white and they have just different perspective of watching things. Something that you show to your dog in red color or orange can seem to be bluish or purple to him. So, the final thing is that dogs can also see colors but they cannot see as enough colors as we can.


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