Dogs have a unique way of seeing the world. But despite what you may have heard, the dog perspective isn’t black and white. Dogs, like the people they love, can see color. They just can’t see as many colors as their handlers. This is because dogs only have two types of color recognition cells (or cones) in their retinas.
In his experiments with dogs, Jay Neitz — a color vision scientist at the University of Washington — found that dogs’ color perception is similar to that of red-green-blind people. Just as dogs only have two types of cones that allow them to see color, so do red-green-blind people who either lack the third type of cone entirely or have one type of cone that is defective in some way.