For decades we have been taught that dogs and cats are colorblind. Recent research has destroyed these myths and explained that dogs and cats cannot see certain colors; yet they see others perfectly. However, in contrast to humans, dogs and cats have excellent peripheral vision and superb night vision.
When it comes to goats, their square pupils are the focus of most attention, with people not realizing that this is not the most impressive point regarding their vision. In fact, the most impressive is that they can see at a 330 degree angle in comparison to humans who can only see at around a 185 degree angle.
Moving to the wild, horses, zebras and other such mammals have eyes which actually point sideways so that they can see peripherally. This gives them a far better chance to escape from predators; yet also gives them the disadvantage of a blind-spot directly in front of their noses. They also mostly see the world in shades of grey. In contrast to humans who see two images as one merged vision, these animals always see two separate images.
Bees and insects are really interesting where sight is involved. They see the world as a sort of mosaic owing to eyes which are made up of anything from ten to 30,000 tiny lenses, each one giving a different image to the overall picture that they see. When it comes to what colors they can see, this differs according to each insect. For example, butterflies can apparently see more colors than humans can; while bees cannot see the color red and mostly only see yellow, green and blue. The interesting thing about bees is that they are able to see ultraviolet light - a level of sight to which humans cannot even desire to reach.
Birds can also see this ultraviolet light, as well as many more colors than humans. Researchers also say that birds see color far more vividly than humans do. In the case of birds of prey, their binocular vision is excellent, and so they can spot prey from thousands of feet away.
Snakes have long been thought to have no or very low vision and operate according to smell. This is incorrect. In general they see worst before they shed their skin and best just after but snakes also have two sets of eyes - one for day use and one for night use and they use both. The difference is that snakes see things according to movement and so will often not notice, or pay attention to a motionless object. On the other hand, they have the ability to pick up infrared heat signals from warm objects.
The list is endless with each animal having its own special visual ability. At the end of the day, however, the comparison of animals to humans ends at the point of visual loss. When a wild animal loses its ability to see, the rules of the wild usually hint at near death by a more superior animal. There is no room for weakness in the wild. Human beings however, have developed methods for improving weak sight and treating damaged eyes.
We live in a world in which we stress the importance of going for annual eye examination. Each year we are able to update oureyeglasses prescription and then buy glasses which treat our optical needs. Unlike animals, we have optical options that ensure perfect sight for many years - it would serve us well to take full advantage!