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Can Dogs Recognize You on Skype, Tablet, or TV Screen?

Have you tried video calling with your dog? Did you see the surprisingly clueless look on their face even when you are on the other side of the screen or their favorite furry friend?

The truth is dogs may find it difficult to recognize people behind the screen. Changes in the dimension of images, compressed signals, or canine sight affect how they see things on Skype, Tablet, or TV.

What Do Dogs See Behind The Screen?

It doesn’t feel good if your dog is not responding to your calls. But you shouldn’t take things too seriously. It doesn’t have anything to do with you. It’s the way they see things.

Studies show that dogs can recognize their owners on TV screens. At first, they will remember your face but the look of horror on their face once they realize that the rest of your body is nowhere in sight. They see dogs go behind the TV looking for their owners as they recognize their faces on screen.

But cellphones, tablets, or Skype calls may make it difficult for dogs to recognize your face because the screen is too small, with the image quality compressed and unusual for them. Current technological trends in pet care offer pet cameras that let you communicate with your dog in real-time. Some dogs respond to these devices, while some do not recognize their owners on screen.

In most cases, dogs can recognize you in pictures. But as soon as the image moves on the screen, dogs typically experience flicker sensitivity. This is how dogs perceive motion in pictures as it does on smartphones, tablets, and TVs. Dogs are more flicker sensitive than humans making it difficult for them to recognize their owners.

Human sight adjusts with the changes in light, and our brain recognizes the objects in the frame. But dogs see nothing but a bunch of shapes and flickering lights. They may detect things faster, but they are having trouble identifying what they see.

Sound, Smell, or Sight?

It is undeniable that dogs have a superior sense of smell and hearing as compared to humans. They can detect things from a distance. If your dog is having trouble recognizing your face, they might be able to recognize the sound of your voice. They are very responsive to a familiar tone of voice and specific words that you use to say to them. But remember to use a cheerful, calm voice. No one likes an angry screaming tone.

But like images, sounds get compressed through smart devices too. They might have trouble recognizing the sound of your voice, especially when it’s distorted due to connection problems. Some dogs react as soon as they hear their owner’s voice on the phone, while others are clueless about who’s speaking.

If it’s a competition between sound, smell, or sight, dogs will never go wrong with smell. Dogs see the world primarily because of how they smell things in front of them. If you plan to take a vacation or go away for a couple of days, it is best to leave something that smells like you. Your favorite sweater or well-worn shoes will do the trick of reminding your dog that you are still connected even if you’re not there physically. Their sensitive smell receptors will never go wrong and will make them feel like you are near.

Even though they can’t recognize you or they don’t react to your voice, make that Skype call. You’ll enjoy seeing them on screen anyway. It doesn’t matter if they don’t do as you ask as long as you can see them even from far away. This lessens your homesickness and excites you to go home and spend as much fun as you like with your best furry friend.

Stop Worrying Too Much

You are probably worrying too much about leaving your furry friend at home alone. You think that video calls, Skype calls, or phone calls will help ease your worry or your pet’s separation anxiety. First, stop panicking. You should stop making arrivals and departures a big deal; just keep it low-key. This will prevent your dog from feeling anxious as you make the apparent leave to go somewhere. You can always get a treat-dispensing camera to watch your dog while you are away!

It is your responsibility to keep your dog as calm as possible to avoid anxiety attacks while you are away. Most dogs who don’t suffer from separation anxiety spend their day sleeping while waiting for their owners. As soon as you come home, your dog will immediately jump and hug you, welcoming you back with so much love!


  • Mark Braeden

    Mark is a Boston University graduate and former electrical engineer. In 2017, he decided to combine his tech knowledge with his love for dogs. He spent a year familiarizing himself with the latest GPS tracking collars, invisible fences, and other hot pet gadgets before he wrote his first product review. After selling Technobark, Mark remained a writer and consultant but spends more time on his other passion now: raising and training his growing family of dogs.

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