What Animals Are Color Blind?

Animals are extremely intelligent and fascinating creatures, but there is so much about them that we do not know about them. They do lots of things that are similar to us, but what about their senses? 

When it comes to animals’ senses, there are a lot of things that differ from humans. As there are lots of animals who have sharp eyesight or some who see well in the dark, what about animals that are color blind?

What Animals Are Color Blind

You might know of some, but more animals are color blind than you might think!

This article will explain more about what animals are color blind to help you discover more about your favorite animals. You can find out more below to see what colors animals see or if there are any that some species can’t see at all.

You will find out how their eyesight can differ from one another and what they can and cannot see!

What Is Color Blindness?

Color blindness means that color-blind people or animals struggle to tell certain colors apart. This can mean that they see different colors from other people or that they struggle to tell others apart.

It is very common for both people and animals to be color blind, but we are more aware when humans are compared to animals. 

This is mainly because we can communicate with other humans about their color blindness, but it is difficult to talk to animals about it.

When an animal is color blind, it means that the rods and the cones in their eyes are different, affecting how they see certain colors. It can affect lots of different animals, but which ones?

What Animals Are Color Blind?

There are lots of animals that are color blind, probably many more than you think. You can find out more below about the animals that are color blind below to see how their vision differs from ours!


It is known that owls are color blind as they do not have many cones in their eyes, meaning that their vision is affected and they cannot see the same colors as us.

They are nocturnal animals as they hunt their prey in the dark, so they have more rods to help them see better in the dark.

As owls have lots of rods to help them see, they do not have as many cones. This means that they cannot see colors and live a monochromatic life.

It is believed that the only shades that owls can see are gray, black, and white, so they are not known for being able to see in bright colors.


Dogs suffer from color blindness due to their genetics, meaning that they often see shades of white or black instead of colors like green or red.

They can see colors such as blue and yellow, but not tones like orange, red, or green. They will still be able to see objects of this color, just in tones of gray, black, or white. 

As dogs see in yellow and blue, you must find toys in these colors. They enjoy seeing these colors and find them exciting, so having toys in these colors will allow them to enjoy playing more than usual. 


Although cats are not completely color blind, they struggle to see certain colors. Humans have red, blue, and green cones to allow them to see a wide range of colors, and although cats can see a variety of colors, they only have green and blue cones.

What Animals Are Color Blind (1)

This means that they struggle to see red and pink. 

Pink and red look gray to cats as they do not have red cones in their eyes, but blue and green colors look very vibrant to them. Cats have more rods in their eyes than humans, so they have better vision in the darkness compared to humans. 


Humans have trichromatic vision, meaning that they have three cones for blue, green, or red lights. Mice, on the other hand, have dichromatic vision. This means that they only see yellow and blue lights, but these colors are not very bright or vibrant. 

As mice do not have the third cone pigment that humans have and only have two, they cannot see the same wide range of colors as we do. They see most of the world in shades of gray and occasionally blue and yellow. 


Hamsters are color blind as their eyes are made up of 97% rods and only 3% cones. This means that they can see extremely well in the dark, but they struggle to see colors.

As they have some cones, they can see some colors. Syrian hamsters can see shades of green, while Siberian hamsters can see blue and UV ranges of the color spectrum. 

Hamsters see extremely well in the dark due to the rods in their eyes, but the best time for their eyesight is at dawn or dusk when it is dark with some light.

They are near-sighted, so having some light helps them navigate, but they do not see a wide range of colors. 

Final Thoughts

To conclude, there are lots of different animals that suffer from color blindness.

Despite having color blindness, this does not mean that they cannot see any colors at all. Lots of color-blind animals can see certain colors and other colors look gray, black, or white, so it doesn’t mean that they can’t see specific ones. 

For pets, making sure that they can see the colors of their toys is important as it makes them more excited to play.

If you get them a toy that they can only see in gray or black, they will not be as excited as when you get them a toy that is in a color that is visible to them. 

Knowing what colors animals can see allows you to learn more about their senses, especially if they are your pets. You will then be able to buy them toys and bedding in colors that they can see to make it more enjoyable for them!

Olivia Kepner