Impurrfect vision: Images reveal the differences between cat and human eyesight

The pictures show the same scene as viewed through the eyes of a human and a cat - and the contrast is surprising in some cases

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The Independent Online

New research into feline vision has revealed the stark differences between cat and human eyesight. A series of images created by Nickolay Lamm show that cats have much better eyesight in some instances compared to humans.

The pictures make an accurate hypothesis of what feline eyesight could look like. Cats have a visual field of 200 degrees compared to only 180 degrees in humans, meaning felines can see more in general.

However, humans have better long distance vision, which means that a cat would have to stand 20 feet away to see something that a person can see clearly from a distance of 100 - 200 feet.

According to the research, humans see a wider spectrum of colours because of the shape of our retinas, so we can see a vibrant range colours during the day. A colourblind person would be able to see a similar range of colours as a cat.

While the shape of our retinas enhances our ability to see different colours during the day, it limits our vision in dim light unlike cats whose sight excels under these conditions. In fact cats can see six to eight times better in dim light than humans because of the shape of the retinas, their elliptical pupils and large cornea. The images show the clarity and sharpness of feline vision at night compared to humans who cannot see as much when there is little light. 

Lamm carried out his research with the help of Kerry L. Ketring, DVM, DACVO of All Animal Eye Clinic, Dr. DJ Haeussler of The Animal Eye Institute, and the Ophthalmology group at Penn Vet.

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