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Are dogs able to see in color ?


Posted on Tuesday, 23 July, 2013 | Comment icon 26 comments


Image credit: Bogdan Giuşcă


 
New research is dispelling the myth that dogs are only able to see the world in black and white.

Early tests in to dogs' vision seemed to suggest that their ability to discern colors was no better than that of a colorblind human and that distinguishing colors was not crucial to their everyday activities. Now however a research team in Russia lead by Anna Kasparson of the Russian Academy of Sciences has demonstrated that dogs do indeed use color as a cue to differentiate objects.

In a series of experiments colored markers were placed above a number of feedboxes. Only one of the feedboxes was unlocked, prompting the dogs to identify based on color which one it was. The results indicated that the dogs were able to identify the correct feedbox based on its color up to 70 percent of the time.

"A Russian research team has found, in a study of eight previously untrained dogs, that the animals overwhelmingly preferred using color as a cue rather than brightness."

  View: Full article |  Source: Discover Magazine

  Discuss: View comments (26)

   


 
Recent comments on this story
Comment icon #17 Posted by danielost on 24 July, 2013, 17:53
You don't have colored vision at night, unless you in a lighted area, then you don't have nightvision.
Comment icon #18 Posted by Sakari on 24 July, 2013, 19:06
While humans have three types of photoreceptors in their eyes that transmit signals about color to the brain, dogs have two types of photoreceptors. We know that these photoreceptors work to transmit information allowing dogs to perceive differences in color because dogs have told us so. Well, sort of. How Have Dogs Told Us That They Perceive Color? To determine whether dogs can see color, researchers taught dogs to pick the odd-colored circle out of a choice of three circles. So if they showed colors that the dogs could not distinguish, they would fail at the task, but if they c... [More]
Comment icon #19 Posted by White Unicorn on 24 July, 2013, 23:18
Thanks for the examples I believe most dogs probably see things that way compared to us the same way birds see colors of ultraviolet light that very few people are able to see. I think some dogs do see more colors vividly but are rare. It's all genetics and usage and there are always some anonomalies in every species whether it's human or dog etc. As for a dog never seeing color like it was portrayed in the past, I never did believe that since I had one dog who obviously knew colors that would be impossible for a color blind animal, all the other dogs I ever had were never as pe... [More]
Comment icon #20 Posted by alibongo on 26 July, 2013, 0:44
Okay, explain this. I found an uneaten doner kebab in the back of my car, in a beige pitta bread (inside the plastic carton).My dog went mad for it, even though the plastic carton was beige as well! Do dogs see colours we cannot?
Comment icon #21 Posted by danielost on 26 July, 2013, 2:16
Smell.
Comment icon #22 Posted by alibongo on 26 July, 2013, 2:21
But we are not talking about smell, we are talking about sight.Do'h. Does nobody understand the OP?
Comment icon #23 Posted by danielost on 26 July, 2013, 2:35
Your question was how your dog could tell where the bowl was on a seat the same color as the bowl. The answer is your dog could smell the food in the bowl.
Comment icon #24 Posted by Technocrat on 26 July, 2013, 7:07
Oh course she likes sween'n'sour chicken. It smells, tastes and looks an awful lot better than biscuits - would you not as well?. Colour has nothing to do with it. Even if your dog was blind she would still make the same choice. Use your common sense!
Comment icon #25 Posted by alibongo on 27 July, 2013, 3:48
Oh yes. I was not taking into account her sense of smell. Her usual diet of biscuits, although healthy, probably is bland, and the human diet she prefers, as well as being more colourful, contains fats and salts and spices and sugars which she probably finds as enticing as we do. So although it is not healthy, she probably thinks it is, or is at least more interesting than her regular diet. I have probably been taken in by the dog food ads, which claim dogs "love" their products.They don't really, they "love" the same sort of crap we love- which is probably the least ... [More]
Comment icon #26 Posted by deslin on 29 July, 2013, 21:08
Dogs are also secretive. I just asked mine if she sees in color...she neither confirmed or denied it.
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