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How do dogs see?

It is well known that dogs have an exceptionally good sense of smell. But how do dogs see? Are they colour-blind or can dogs possibly see colours at all? We will give you the answers to these and other questions about dogs' eyes in the following paragraphs.

How dogs see - the most important things at a glance

How Do Dogs See?
  • The field of vision of dogs is considerably wider than the field of vision of humans, at around 240 degrees.
  • Because the perception of movement was more important for their ancestors, dogs probably do not see as sharply as humans.
  • Dogs are not colour-blind, they just cannot perceive red because they lack the cones responsible for it.
  • Thanks to the tapetum lucidum and a high number of rods, dogs can still see well in the dark.
  • Eye diseases that occur in dogs include cataracts and glaucoma, in addition to inflammation.
  • Dogs can perceive UV light and therefore also see things that remain hidden to us humans.
  • For the care of sensitive dog eyes, we recommend using Bellfor Eye Care Drops.

Structure of the dog's eye as in humans

Although it is sometimes forgotten given the extraordinary sense of smell, the eyes are of course also important sensory organs for dogs that help them to perceive their environment.


The basic structure of the dog's eye is not much different from that of the human eye. Just like yours, your four-legged friend's eyes consist of, among other things, a pupil, an iris, a cornea and a choroid, as well as a retina equipped with cones and rods.

Dogs have a wide field of vision

Since the eyes of dogs are located quite far to the side of the head, the four-legged friends have a field of vision that is about 240 degrees wide. This enables them to keep a good eye on their surroundings. Dogs' eyes can therefore often see things that are not yet in our field of vision, which is only about 180 degrees wide.

Can dogs see colours or are they colour blind?

The assumption that dogs are colour-blind has been widespread for a long time and even persists to some extent today. However, dogs can also see colours. Unlike humans, however, they have only two different types of cones, not three. They, therefore, belong to the so-called dichromats.


The cones are the light receptors that are responsible for colour perception in the eyes. Dogs only have cones for blue and green. The human eye also has receptors for the colour red.


Dogs can therefore see colours. However, they do not recognise red, so their colour perception should be quite different from ours.

Can dogs see in the dark?

Dogs can see fewer colours than we can. On the other hand, they are superior to us in terms of vision in poor light conditions and can still see comparatively well in the dark.


One of the reasons for this is that dogs, like cats, have a so-called tapetum lucidum. This is a reflective layer in the eye that ensures that incoming light is reflected and thus passes to the retina a second time. Incidentally, the tapetum lucidum is also responsible for the fact that a dog's eyes glow conspicuously when they are illuminated in the dark by a torch or a car headlight, for example.


In addition, dogs' eyes have a high number of rods. The rods are the sensory cells that are responsible for seeing shades of grey. The more rods there are in an eye, the better the surroundings can be perceived in the dark.

Eye diseases in dogs

Unfortunately, dogs are not safe from eye problems either. Some breeds are particularly sensitive in this respect and are more prone to irritated and watery eyes, for example.


Independently of this, dogs can also develop conjunctivitis, inflammation of the cornea and the inner eye, or cataracts and glaucoma.


In addition, a so-called prolapsed nictitating membrane or prolapsed nictitating gland (cherry eye) is not uncommon in dogs.

Our tip for the care of sensitive dog eyes

For your dog's eyes to remain healthy and efficient, it is important that you correct existing problems promptly and, last but not least, also pay a little attention to the topic of eye care.


With Bellfor Eye Care Drops, we have exactly the right product for the gentle care of sensitive dog eyes on offer. Thanks to natural ingredients, such as aloe vera, you can rely on optimal tolerance when using the drops.


Get to know Bellfor Eye Care Drops.

Can dogs see ghosts?

Many owners are firmly convinced that dogs can see ghosts. After all, the four-legged friends often seem to react to things that we do not perceive. Of course, this is not because your dog sees ghosts, but simply because his senses are much more sensitive than yours.


Dogs can smell much better and perceive higher frequencies with their ears than humans. In addition, the four-legged friends can see UV light. This has a great influence on how dogs see and leads, among other things, to them being able to recognise things that are invisible to our eyes or only become visible with the help of black light.


So the next time you have the feeling that your dog has seen a ghost, you don't have to get scared. Just realise that your four-legged friend perceives his surroundings differently than you do, despite your close bond with each other. Although it may occasionally seem like it, supernatural occurrences have nothing to do with your dog's behaviour.

How dogs see - our conclusion

As you can see, your dog's eyesight is quite different from your own in some respects, despite having largely the same structure. Dogs can see fewer colours than humans and probably do not perceive their surroundings quite as sharply as we do.


On the other hand, dogs see much better in the dark and can keep an especially good eye on their surroundings thanks to a wide field of vision of 240 degrees. To ensure that this remains the case in the long term, you must pay sufficient attention to the eye health of your four-legged friend.


Contact a vet promptly if symptoms of eye disease appear and use our natural eye drops to care for your dog's eyes in a gentle way if needed.

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