Whenever animals are used as protagonists in a story, it's nearly guaranteed that they'll possess senses at least on par with, and more likely [[SuperSenses far in excess of]], the human norm. Also, all animals will have very nearly the same set of senses.
A wolf protagonist? Not only can he discover your life history from one whiff of your clothes, he can also tell what color hat you're wearing from a mile away, and hear the sound of snow falling through a half foot of steel. And probably be able to [[EvilDetectingDog sense ghosts]] and the innate innocence of the AllLovingHero, to boot.

This is not how it works in RealLife.

While many animals ''do'' have interesting and novel abilities, they also lack some of the senses humans consider to be mundane - tri-chromatic vision most obviously (but not exclusively). No single animal has all the nifty keen abilities you saw on that one Creator/DiscoveryChannel special.

See also SuperSenses, SpiderSense and AnimalEyes. Compare SenseFreak. Super-awesome animal-like senses are often employed as one of the reasons why PettingZooPeople [[OurElvesAreBetter are better]], and the lack of those makes humans PunyEarthlings in comparison.

An animal-specific subtrope of BizarreAlienSenses.

'''Subversions and aversions only, otherwise we'd have [[OmnipresentTropes every critter book in existence here]]'''



[[folder: Literature ]]

* Averted in the ''Literature/{{Silverwing}}'' series - the bat main characters view the environment almost exclusively through echolocation, and colors besides silver are never mentioned. This was deliberately done by the author, and it is not something you notice until you know. (Also, in this case, "silver" probably refers to reflective gray.)
* ''Literature/{{Discworld}}''
** Spoofed in the book ''Discworld/MovingPictures'', where the talking Holy Wood animals are annoyed that Victor keeps referring to them as having "mysterious animal senses".
** Gaspode the Wonder Dog is also rather put out to find that he's seeing in color. All of a sudden, the pleasantly gray meat scraps he'd previously enjoyed are all icky red/maroon stuff!
* ''Literature/{{Animorphs}}'' usually put a lot of (relatively believable) detail into the differences in the way the protagonists' senses worked in their various animal forms.
* Much is made of how dogs and foxes perceive things through their noses in ways humans can barely understand in ''Literature/TheFoxAndTheHound'', but Copper the dog's eyesight is so bad that he seems to consider clear colour vision a Mysterious Human Sense.


[[folder: Tabletop Games ]]

* Each Species in ''TabletopGame/{{Ironclaw}}'' has one or two Natural Senses, but no more; when using those senses, they can include their Species Trait in their Observation roll. Some Species have Gifts that improve those sense even further (Keen Eyes, Keen Ears, Keen Nose), or provide exotic sensory abilities like Echolocation.
* Any [[PettingZooPeople Vector]] in ''TabletopGame/HcSvntDracones'' can develop their sense of smell as a skill, but they can't track or identify someone's mood by scent without [[BioAugmentation genetic reclamation surgery]]. And any other weird animal sense requires Surgery too.


[[folder: Webcomics ]]

* In ''Webcomic/KevinAndKell'', it's occasionally mentioned that Kell (a wolf) is color-blind, and characters are frequently shown perceiving the world primarily through scent.


[[folder: Web Original ]]

* In the Literature/WhateleyUniverse, after Merry gets turned into a werecat, she goes color-blind.
* In ''Roleplay/DarwinsSoldiers'', Dr. Kerzach, a anthropomorphic cassowary has pretty much no sense of smell.
** Also, [[SnakePeople snakes]] have poor hearing.


[[folder: Western Animation ]]

* When Momo the lemur's POV is used in ''WesternAnimation/AvatarTheLastAirbender'', the view is bubble-distorted and tinted green to show less nuanced color vision and a wider visual range. There's also the Shirshu, that uses scent alone, which is shown as different color trails on a grainy black background, and pouring a bunch of perfume next to it made it entirely disoriented.
* ''WesternAnimation/TheSimpsons'' and ''WesternAnimation/{{Rugrats}}'' also use odd visual filters when using an animal's POV on occasion.
** In ''Rugrats'', Spike's point of view is always shown in grayscale, since dogs don't see color, but his ''sound'' perception is different every time: in one, human dialogue is understandable but a bit distorted; in another, dialogue is about half understandable and half gibberish, but distorted into extremely deep voices; and another had no distortions but was all gibberish and mumbling with a different sound for each character.
* In the ''WesternAnimation/FamilyGuy'' episode "Brian Writes a Bestseller", Brian blasts Stewie for messing up his order.
-->'''Brian:''' I said no green [=M&Ms=]. They're ''all'' grey.



[[folder: Film ]]

* ''WesternAnimation/{{Shrek}}''
-->'''Donkey:''' Blue flower, red thorns, blue flower, red thorns...oh, this would be so much easier if I wasn't ''colorblind!''
** ''While wandering frantically through a bunch of hedges with blue flowers and red thorns'', for those who haven't seen the movie.
* A similar joke is used for a WireDilemma in ''Film/CatsAndDogs''.


[[folder: Real Life ]]

* In a non-fictional subversion, bats were variously hypothesized to possess either phenomenal night vision or (once blindfold experiments shot that down) a sense of touch so keen that they could feel distortions in air density from nearby objects. Only when earplug tests revealed they needed to hear to navigate was the mystery of their MysteriousAnimalSenses (echolocation) solved.
** Funnily enough, that "sensing distortions in air density from nearby objects" hypothesis? It actually does apply, just not for bats, but for ''humans''. Not usually very highly developed in people who aren't blind (and even for people who are, it hardly replaces normal vision), but such "facial vision" can help people who have impaired vision sense the general size and location of large objects.
* A lot of animals that folklore says are "colorblind" don't actually have monochromatic vision, though their color vision isn't exactly the same as that of humans. Dogs, for example, are rather ''better'' than humans at distinguishing between hues of blue, but have more trouble telling orange from red. However, many animals do seem to impart rather less importance to color than humans do... cats were thought to be colorblind until researchers realized they were just ignoring it completely and relying on their sense of smell instead (if it didn't smell like food, the cats couldn't care less what color it was, because ''cats'').


[[folder: Video Games ]]

* ''[[SamAndMaxFreelancePolice Sam & Max Hit the Road]]'': The two main characters (a dog and a rabbit) purchase a paint-by-numbers game only to find out neither can see in color.


[[folder: Webcomics ]]

* In ''Webcomic/{{Freefall}}'', Florence (an {{uplifted|Animal}} "Bowman's wolf") does have superhuman smell, but she must defer to humans as to what are "good" smells ("[[http://freefall.purrsia.com/ff700/fv00646.htm Decaying Buffalo...]] There's a scent that... Well... You just want to roll in it."). She's also colorblind ([[http://freefall.purrsia.com/ff300/fv00209.htm "It's always difficult trying to appear attractive to a sense you don't have]]), and mentions that she hears in a different range to humans (shouting to overcome a high-pitched noise her coworkers can't hear, for instance).
** However, it's later revealed that all Bowman's Wolves are ''extra'' colour blind, as a result of the 'Uplifting' modifications. Your average dog can see light and dark blue well enough to tell the difference, so presumably wolves and other canines can.