Do Dogs Like To Watch TV & Do They Understand The Concept Of It?

Do Dogs Like To Watch TV & Do They Understand The Concept Of It?

Author WDF Staff


Have you ever started to watch TV, only to notice your dog join you in this activity? Most dog owners have experienced this dog behavior and wanted to know if dogs can see what's on the TV screen or if they copy what we are doing.

This will greatly depend on the individual dog, and while some can indeed watch TV, others will have little interest in doing it. But what exactly attracts the dog to look at the TV screen? Do they enjoy it as we do, or is there something that only dogs can see? Let's check it out.

Can dogs see the television?

Dogs can see the TV and what's on it, and there could be many different things that the dogs will find attractive. All dogs are different, and while some enjoy watching TV, others are not interested.

Vision and sounds are two main reasons the TV is attractive to dogs. As you already know, dogs have much better hearing and vision than us. They will see and hear things differently and can take much more interest in them.

1. Distance

If your dog likes to watch the TV with you, you will probably notice that he likes to sit much closer to the TV to watch it, but why is that?

Dogs' vision is not as sharp as ours, and they will get a sharper image by sitting closer. Take it like this; dogs must sit 2 feet from the TV to see the same picture we would see while sitting 6 feet away, to see the same image sharpness.

dogs watching tv

2. Colors

Dogs see color differently compared to us, so they cannot see the full spectrum of color that we see on the TV, but nevertheless, they still can enjoy watching the TV in their own perception. If your dog has a specific thing he likes watching on the TV, maybe the reason behind this are colors, and there is a chance that he likes to watch things in a specific color that dogs tend to see.

RELATED: Are Dogs Color Blind? What Is a Myth And What Is True?

3. Movement

Dogs' eyes contain far more rods than humans; because of this, they can see better in the dark and have a much better sensitivity to motion. That said, they will see different motions on the screen compared to us.

Do dogs understand the concept of TV?

Dogs tend to communicate with TV or, better said, with different things seen on the TV, such as different animals. Don't be surprised if your dog is watching another dog on the TV and starts to bark. Scientists researched this topic, and they concluded that dogs, in most cases, will understand that the TV is not real, and as the main reason, they wrote a sense of smell.

As you may know, dogs heavily rely on their sense of smell where ever they go, and without it, they might feel lost. TV can imitate various sights and sounds, but what it cannot provide for the dog is proper smell, and because of that, most dogs can understand that the things seen on the TV are not real.

How come some dog watch TV and others don't?

Watching TV is an individual thing, and there could be many reasons why some dogs like it and some don't. If your dog is not too much into television, you shouldn’t force him to watch it.

For some dogs, it might be interesting to watch other animals, like squirrels, watch across the screen, and there is nothing wrong with that. Some dogs can even start barking or howling, and we assure you that this will be a cute and funny scene to watch.

For example, our dog doesn't like to watch TV, but what she does is she will sit in front of the TV and look in our direction like she is trying to get attention, and guess what? In most cases, she does.

dog watching tv

Can a TV somehow be bad for dogs?

In most cases, if your dog likes to watch TV with you, you have nothing to worry about. However, you must understand that your dog will still need to receive proper training and exercise, both physical and mental, to satisfy his daily needs.

Watching TV from time to time should be fine, but this mustn't turn into something your dog does most of his day because soon, some problems could start to appear.

Do dogs like something specific on the TV?

Every dog is different, and so are their preferences. While some could enjoy watching some TV show with you, others will want to look at some animals when they run or do other activities.

The best thing you can do is to test and confirm what your dog likes. That way, you can be sure that he will enjoy every time he is set to watch the television.

You can start by playing videos of different animals and watch for his reaction. When you find something your dog likes, you now have an additional way of keeping your dog busy for some time.

Signs your dog is enjoying watching TV

Whenever you see any of these signs, you can be sure that your dog is relaxed and enjoy spending time in front of the TV, watching in.

  1. Keeping an eye on the screen at all times
  2. Calmly sitting in front of the TV
  3. Tail wagging

dog infront of tv

Signs your dog is not enjoying watching TV

There could be a situation where your dog could be triggered by something on the screen, or something else could cause discomfort for him, and in these cases, you should be very careful because, in no time, your dog could cause damage to your TV and possibly injure himself.

Signs to watch out for include

  1. Jumping and pawing at the TV
  2. Aggressively barking at the TV
  3. Circling around the TV while keeping his eyes on the screen

These signs could indicate that your dog is triggered, and he could in no time crash the TV and possibly injure himself, and we are pretty sure you do not want that.

Should you leave the TV on for your dog?

If your dog seems to enjoy watching TV and doesn't show any signs of discomfort while doing it, you can safely leave the TV on when you are gone.

When the dogs stay alone, most of them will not be interested in watching the TV, but rather they will curl up and take a nap, but of course, there are always exceptions, and your dog might want to watch the TV.

This could be a great trick for dogs that are suffering from separation anxiety since it will give additional comfort and something that will cause the time to go by faster until you return home.

IMPORTANT: If you do not fully trust your dog while he is alone, we suggest not leaving the TV on since something on the screen could trigger him, and in no time, he could cause some damage.

World Dog Finder team

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