Dogs have more rods inside their eyes, which enable them to have much better night vision. (A-ha - they can see in the dark! That explains how they can make their way back and forth to their water bowls in the middle of the night).
Dogs are amazing - but we need not tell you that, you already agree! A dog's field of vision is also larger than that of humans; where we can see 180 degrees, a dog can see 250 degrees. If you are standing diagonally behind your dog, he can see you without moving his eyes.
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Signs That Your Dog Can See in 3 Dimensions
They have an innate sense of depth perception as well. They know a dog treat or a brushing chew is three dimensional because it actually goes in their mouth when they eat it. If it were two dimensions, like something a dog sees on television, they could not physically touch it.
Some of us teach our dogs to retrieve objects for us - the remote, our slippers, the newspaper, or even a nice, cold drink from the fridge. In order for our dogs to do this, the dog must see able to discern between two-dimensional and three-dimensional objects. When your dog can come into physical contact with an object, he or she knows the difference. Dogs do not try to eat pictures of food or toys in magazines - unless they have a taste for paper (Golden Labs, we're looking at you).
Ever see your dog hold an object between their paws? They either squeak it, chew it or lick it. If they have something they aren't supposed to have, however, they normally try to hide it from you, using their ability to decipher distance and space to stash their contraband.
- Holding Things Between Their Paws
- Mouthing Objects
- Not Running into Walls
- Darting Between Trees
The History of Dogs Seeing in 3 Dimensions
Three-dimensional sight was vital to survival when dangerous animals tried to have cavemen and their pets for lunch. Dogs have keen senses of smell and highly developed visual abilities to alert them to oncoming predators, danger, or, in today's world, traffic, firetrucks, crying children and the like.
The Science of Dogs Seeing in 3 Dimensions
Training a Dog to See in 3-D
Naturally, dogs want to chase, play, eat, lick, or nibble all objects they see, for the most part. It is up to us as responsible pawrents to let them know what is acceptable to ingest or play with (toys, treats) and what is not (fecal matter, underwear from the hamper - no Fifi, no!).
It is important to remember while your dog is figuring out the rules of what is cool and what is not, do not hit or scream at them. They are just learning, and it is never okay to harm an animal. Plus, eradic behavior only confuses them further. A firm, "No", or a squirt of water is usually enough to get the point across.
How to React to Your Dog Spotting Objects
If it is not harmful, do not take it away from them.
If it something they are trying to eat, and it shouldn't be ingested, take it out of their mouths.
If the dog brought you an object, chances are he wants to play - throw that toy!