How Dogs See The World

Is it all black and white for a canine?

By Catalina Barrios

My what nice eyes you have!

Dogs, dogs, dogs, a human’s most loyal companion. They easily become part of our lives. They listen to us, enjoy when we spoil them, and even are okay if we punish them. They forgive us. They get to know us so well that know when we’ve had a bad day.


They have feelings as we do, and enjoy when we hug them, when we make them feel part of our family. We see them grow and learn new tricks. But have you wondered what can they really see? I can say you probably already know their sense of hearing and smell is way better than humans’.

For a long time I asked myself if my dogs see the same as I do, will she see the same shapes, sizes, or even colors?


As you will learn in this article, dogs see different than humans. I will explain why…

The main difference between what a dog sees compared to a human lies within the eye  itself. The eye has light receptors called cones and rods. The cones help us distinguish different colors while rods help us see in low light.


Humans have more cone receptors than dogs, which means we can see more colors. Human cones can detect 3 colors: red, green and blue while dogs can only detect 2 colors; it is unknown which are those colors. According to Alexandra Horowitz, author of Being a Dog, what dogs see is similar to what we can see at dusk. In daylight, dogs see a bit blurry.

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