This is What it's Like to See the World as an Animal

By Jamie Condliffe on at

If you've ever wondered how animals view the world, this video should satisfy your curiosity. It shows how five different animals—cats, dogs, rats, hawks and bees—see the world.

A simulation created by the French 3D design company Dassault Systèmes, it was overseen by veterinary ophthalmologist Didier Schmidt-Morand. New Scientist explains what you can see:

Hawks have more detailed vision than ours, whereas dogs are better at seeing movement and have a wider field of view. "We used virtual cameras to precisely simulate larger viewing angles but the result made people nauseous," says Schmidt-Morand. "So we tweaked the model to give a sense of the wider view without sticking to reality."



The rat's view also departs from reality: because they are near-sighted, everything more than 15 centimetres away is a blur, so they typically move close to walls to help them navigate. "A rat would never throw itself into the middle of an open area," says Schmidt-Morand. The simulation for this animal is supplemented with a map in the top right corner to help determine the rat's position: because of their limited eyesight, most landmarks are obscured.

The simulation is actually part of an educational game, and it's hoped it will become a resource for schools. Regardless, it give a fascinating glimpse into what it's like to be an animal. Enjoy! [New Scientist]