You may think of your dog as one of the family, but if you think your pooch sees the world the same as you do, you’re wrong.
A Web app called Dog Vision alters any picture from what we see to what they see. You can adjust the level of colorblindness and brightness, but for the most part, you simply upload a picture and click “process.”
So what does a dog see?
— EcoBark (@EcoBarkPet) July 17, 2015
It’s an old misconception that dogs are colorblind. They see color, but they don’t see color like we do. That’s because humans have three kinds of color-sensing cone cells in our eyes, whereas dogs only have two, leaving them unable to see the color red.
In addition, they have lower visual acuity. Everything is blurrier to a dog than it is to a human. Normal human vision is described as 20/20. Dogs, by comparison, have 20/80 vision, meaning that a dog needs to be 20 feet away to see clearly what a human can see from 80 feet away.
Not all differences between human and dog vision are negative for our four-legged friends, however. Because dogs’ eyes are on the sides of their heads, they have about 240 degrees of vision, compared to humans who have about 200 degrees. The field of focus is more narrow with dogs than humans, though.
Dogs also have a big advantage over us in the dark — they can see in it, we can’t. That’s because their pupils dilate further, and they have a reflective layer under the retina called the tapetum, which reflects and intensifies light. This reflective layer is responsible for the eye-shine you see when you shine a light on a dog’s eyes in the dark.