Myth or Fact: Are Dogs Colour Blind?
We’ve all heard it before - “Dogs can’t see colour” or “Dogs only see in black and white”...
So, to find out if dogs really are colour blind, Willy & Dilly have decided to do some digging in order to find out the truth. Read on as we look into what goes on with dog’s vision and as we find out if dogs really are colour blind, or if this is just a myth.
What is Colour Blindness?
Colour Blindness is the inability to see colours, to tell the difference between colours or being unable to see some colours at all. All things to do with visualising colour and colour blindness originate within the receptors of the eye.
Humans can have either one of the two types of colour blindness. These are ‘Red-Green’ colour blindness and ‘Blue-Yellow’ colour blindness. The type of which colour blindness a person has comes down to which colours they cannot differentiate from.
Difference in Genetics
First of all, humans and dogs have different eyes on a genetic level which explains where the idea started. If we have different eyes, we must see things differently, right?
But only to a certain extent. Both human and dog eyes contain cells and receptors, called rods and cones. The rods detect any movement and help us see in different lighting. Whereas, cones have the job of differentiating between colours.
The difference that falls between human eyes and dog eyes is that humans have three types of cones whereas dogs only have two.
So this makes dogs colour blind?
No, not exactly. Dogs have fewer cones than the human eye, but it doesn’t necessarily make them fully colour blind. Instead, a dog’s eye sees between the two colours in their colour spectrum, which is yellow and blue, whilst a human eye sees between three - red, blue and green.
This means that dogs ‘Blue-Yellow’ vision is considered to be dichromatic (two-coloured) and that they are not “colour blind”.
So dogs aren’t colour blind?
Nope! Dogs can see colour, although the colour a dog sees is different from the colour a human sees. A dog will see human’s reds, greens and oranges with a blue to yellow hue on them.
Did you know?
Did you know that the vision of a dog allows them to see better in the dark and in low-lit conditions compared to humans?
- The number of receptors in dog eyes means that dogs can track sudden movement much quicker than humans can. (Making toys and playtime very stimulating for them!)
- What a dog may lack in ‘Green-Red’ vision, they make up for in their ability to smell - dogs can smell 10,000-100,000 times stronger than humans!
Using this Dog Vision Processing Tool, we can show you what life looks like through your dog’s eyes. See how the tone of colour is primarily hued between yellow and blue? That’s what your dog sees! Have a look at the images below…
Considering what we now know about the colour dogs have in their vision, we can declare that dogs are NOT colour blind - it’s a myth! Dog's are dichromatic, meaning they can in fact see colour in between yellow and blue hues.
Thank you for reading and we hope you enjoyed debunking dog colour blindness with us!
Shop Willy & Dilly’s colourful and scented toy collection for small, medium and large dogs and enhance your dog’s playtime.
Related blog: How to Clean and Wash Dog Toys.