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john65pennington's avatar

Through animals eyes, how do they see the world?

Asked by john65pennington (29240points) September 27th, 2011

Has there ever been a test to see what animals see? Do they see in color? Is their vision like humans? Do animals cry? These are questions I have always seeked an answer. If animals only see in black and white, then why do bulls hate the color red? Question: in their eyes, do animals see the world as humans? Please give a reference.

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20 Answers

Neophyte's avatar

In some animals, there have been tests that show that animals have only rods in their eyes, and no cones (cones being the part of the eye that detects color, rods light). And bulls don’t hate the color red, they just hate the movement of the cape.

GabrielsLamb's avatar

*Mantis Shrimp Eyes… ROCK!


Pandora's avatar

I know my maltese probably sees our world as a land of giants. Thats probably all I know. LOL
Nah, I believe some animals cry. But maybe not in the sense that we do. But they feel morn.
My neighbor had a cat who would mew everyday at the spot where the dogs bed and bowl use to be after the dog was put down. Of course she didn’t know he was dead but she knew this is where is bowl use to be and his bed. They thought she would stop when they got another dog but she still would do it for a while. Eventually she stopped. But she really didn’t care for the new dog. Don’t blame her. The first dog was awesome. He was sweet and protective. The second dog was a jerk.

Coloma's avatar

My bedroom is green, blue and yellow, and supposedly cats see greens and blues, but not reds. My cat loves my bedroom, must be colorful for her. lol

My little female chinese goose “Sonora” is blind in one eye from having a fish hook injury before she was rescued from a lake in the mountains a few years asgo. She gets around pretty well, but, is fearful on her blind side. She is constantly having to swivel her little head around to get a “birdseye” view of her surroundings.

Most birds, along with geese, see in full color. Red is an aggressive color for geese, and other species of animals as it signifies blood.
In songbirds it is valuable for locating fruits and berries that are ripe for eating.

syz's avatar

“Animals” covers a lot of territory. Is there a species in particular that you are interested in?

jerv's avatar

It depends a lot on the animal. For instance, herbivores need a better arc of vision to keep them from being blind-sided by predators, so many of them have their eyes spaced differently than carnivores who need to be able to see something with both eyes in order to judge distance. In a similar vein, some animals need excellent night vision whereas others need to see color; as those require different cells (rods versus cones), different animals have a different balance between the two. You can’t excel at both.

El_Cadejo's avatar

@GabrielsLamb I had a Peacock Mantis Shrimp as a pet for a little over two years. I would sit there and stare at her eyes for hours. They were just so amazing looking, I could only imagine the world she saw looking out of them though.

janbb's avatar

There are also variations within species. In dogs for example, some breeds are sight hounds and some are scent hounds which track differently depending on their abilities.

Coloma's avatar


That’s so cool! I like doing that too…I was just imagining my cats perception of her world was yesterday, being only 10 inches tall. lol

marinelife's avatar

Dogs do see color just not as intensely as humans.

Other animals have different vision.

the100thmonkey's avatar

“How do animals see?” and “what do animals see?” are two different questions. We can study the mechanics of vision, but we have no access to others’ internal representations. There’s no direct evidence that humans even see things the same way.

What’s It like to Be a Bat?

LuckyGuy's avatar

Mosquitoes see in the near infra red region. The same area absorbed by the CO2 mammals exhale. That colorless gas in visible light is like thin smoke in IR. That is one of the reasons they can find you even if they are upstream. If they had to smell you first they would always be flying against the wind. This way they can see your CO2 cloud and head toward you without working so hard. The little buggers!

zensky's avatar

The Indus River Dolphin is blind. These river dolphins are the only species in the world to have eyes without lenses! Instead, they have sound imaging skills called echolocation, which is a very sophisticated sonar system that helps them swim through the muddy rivers.

LostInParadise's avatar

What I would like to know is what the world smells like to animals. What can a dog figure out with all its sniffing when you take it for a walk? With our eyes we can see what is going on in the present, but I would guess the dog could tell you quite a bit about the recent past.

El_Cadejo's avatar

@LostInParadise I always found it interesting how a dogs scent works. When they smell a stew they dont smell stew like we would. They smell each individual ingredient on its own.
this is why theyre so good at finding drugs. It doesnt matter what you try and mask the smell with they will just smell all those different things in addition to your drugs lol

Hibernate's avatar

Wish I can answer this. I can speculate they see the world as it is. Animals don’t understand cruelty. They are not racists. They do fight but they don’t fight for no reason like humans do.
Sometimes I wished I was an animal .. ohhh…

wildpotato's avatar

You must have missed cow eyeball dissection day in freshman biology. You can hold the lens up to a light and see the colors they see. For cows: most of the same colors we see, but paler.

janbb's avatar

@wildpotato Hiya! How you been?

El_Cadejo's avatar

@wildpotato ohh man that sounds awesome, we never did anything like that in any dissections I did in school

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