Are Dogs Colorblind?

Are Dogs Colorblind?


4 minute read

Are Dogs Colorblind? 

Dogs can see colors, but not the same way as humans do.


What is Color Blindness Anyway?

Color blindness is a visual impairment/inability that makes it hard to tell specific colors apart. For example, some people cannot distinguish between red and green or between blue and yellow. It's often due to genetics, but it can also be caused by aging or cataracts. 


So Is My Pup Colorblind?

The short answer is no; dogs are not colorblind. But the long answer is much more enjoyable. Pooches see colors, but they don't see them the way humans do. Their vision is dichromatic, meaning they have two types of cones in their eyes instead of the three that humans have. It implies that pups primarily see colors as either blue or yellow in the shade of white, black, and grey, and they have a more challenging time distinguishing between different shades of green and red.

How Do We Know If Dogs Are Colorblind?

Dogs do have a form of color blindness called Deuteranopia. It's similar to red-green color blindness in humans, and it makes certain shades of red look yellow or brown. Pooches have fewer cones in their eyes than people, so they see fewer colors. They are thought to be red-green colorblind. It means they can't tell the difference between reds, oranges, and greens. Doggies with this condition often have problems seeing traffic lights and other red and green signs. Some pups seem to have trouble recognizing objects like toys or treats based on their color. For example, a pup may only see red as grayish-blue and green as grayish-yellow, making it difficult to tell the difference between them.

What Colors Can a Dog See?

Pups have dichromatic vision, which means they can only see two primary colors; blue and yellow. In humans, cone cells in the eye detect red, green, and blue light waves and send them to the brain. The brain then interprets these signals as colors. Pups don't have cone cells that perceive red and green light waves, so they cannot differentiate between these two colors. They can only see blue and yellow colors and black, gray, and white shades. 

What About Night Vision in Dogs?

Dogs' night vision is also known as superior night vision, making it easy to see clearly at night. Pups have the ability can see and detect movement from a distance without any difficulty. Superior night vision allows dogs to see better than humans during the night time because the pupils of their eyes open wide, allowing light to enter and activate the rods and cones in their eyes. Your furry friends have more rods than humans do, which enables them to see better in the dark. These rods and cones contain photopigments that help them see better when there is little light around.

What is Visual Perception in Dogs?

Visual perception is the ability to see, which includes the ability to distinguish colors, shapes, and objects. In other words, visual perception is how your sweet furballs know the world around them. Visual perception helps puppers get around safely by allowing them to recognize danger and react accordingly. You can do many things to improve your dog's visual perception. One of the easiest ways is to use blue and yellow or gray toys, treats, dog collars, and training leashes.

So no, our canine sweeties are not entirely colorblind, but they see colors differently from humans. This information can be helpful for pup owners who want to buy toys, treats, or dog collars and training leashes in blue, yellow, or gray colors! We recommend this Highland Blue Plaid Collar or this Fi compatible BioThane Farmers Market Flower Collar for a pop of yellow! 

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