Dr. Joyce Ashamalla
Dr. Joyce Ashamalla is the managing partner at Hinsdale Animal Hospital with Kremer Veterinary Service, as well as a partner at CARE Animal Emergency Hospital. She received her BS in Animal Sciences from the University of Illinois- Champaign Urbana, where she also completed her Doctorate in Veterinary Medicine in 2007. She is AO certified, USDA-APHIS accredited, and is a member of the CVMA, ISVMA, AVMA.
Music has incredible power. It can stimulate our brains, elevate our moods, relax us, and motivate us. It’s helpful in healing and can aid in development for babies. The list of benefits for humans is endless and not surprisingly, music can also have a positive effect on dogs. Read on to understand the power of music for dogs and find out the benefits music provides to our furry friends.
Do Dogs Like Music?
Many dog owners leave the TV on for their pups when they are not home as a way to soothe and relax them. It’s no secret that having something on in the background seems to calm dogs and make the empty house feel less lonely and the noises outside seem less frightening. But is the music actually calming the dog down, or is it something else?
People have theorized that dogs respond to the sound of the music as well as their owner’s response to the music, therefore, creating a positive association with the music. If the music relaxes you, your dog recognizes it and acts in a similar manner when the same song is played. This is not surprising since we know that dogs tune in and respond to our emotional state. We all know that one of the most amazing talents your dog has is knowing when you need a boost if you are feeling down or knowing when need a cuddle because you are sick. So next time your dog is scared during a thunderstorm, return the favor and help your furry friend calm down by playing your favorite song because a happy, stress-free owner equals a happy, stress-free dog.
Classical Music For Dogs
A quick search on the internet brings up countless classical music selections made specifically for dogs and pet owners have time and time again praised the benefits of classical music for dogs. But is there scientific fact that links classical music to relaxation in dogs?
A recent study conducted at the University of Glasgow played classical music to dogs in kennels, an environment that is frequently stressful. The dog’s heart rates, cortisol levels (stress levels), and behavior were observed and it was found that classical music decreased the dog’s stress immediately. However, within a few days, the calming effect was no longer observed, as the sound of the music became habitual.
Additional studies were conducted using different genres of music, including reggae, soft rock, pop and heavy metal. The dog’s heart rates, cortisol levels and behavior were again recorded. Upon hearing heavy metal, the dogs became agitated, while the dogs relaxed when they heard reggae and soft rock, just as they had with classical music. It was quickly determined that the kind of music dogs listen to makes a difference in how they respond, with classical music still being number one.
Next time you turn on your favorite song, watch your dog to see how he responds. If you see a positive reaction, create a playlist with similar music specifically tailored to your dog’s preference and use it when your dog is stressed or agitated. There is no doubt in music’s calming effect on dogs. And us humans can benefit from it too!
LOOKING FOR A NEW PET BOWL?