This is an important breaking news bulletin. There is a fugitive on the loose in New Haven. According to some wanted posters, his criminal activity includes “creating panic and hysteria in any and all pups in the vicinity”. He casts a spell on his unsuspecting victims causing “extreme fits of barking” and a compulsion to chase down this outlaw. Beware my furry friends, do not engage this dastardly foe.
Some hoomans have identified this seedy character as a portrait of a one “Handsome Dan” on the side of a “Yale shuttle bus”, and complained to the New Haven city website SeeClickFix — but their canine compadres aren’t so sure. They have good reason for their disbelief. Compared to people, dogs have terrible eyesight.
Researchers in Hamburg, Germany evaluated a Poodle with a customized dog eye test of patterns and lines, and discovered that the best vision a pup can hope for is 20/75 compared to the human 20/20, making them rather nearsighted. (As a frame of reference, in the United States you would fail a driver’s test with vision worse than 20/40.)
But all is not lost: dogs do outperform humans in distinguishing motion at a distance and they also have a wide degree of peripheral vision. Because of these skills, dogs are able to visually discriminate the motions of different people and animals and they are able to recognize their owner at a range of 2,600-3,000 feet!
It also allows the dogs of New Haven to see and to recognize the portrait of Handsome Dan on the side of a Yale shuttle as it drives down the road, even if it is a little blurry.
Featured Image: guanda73/Instagram