You may not know that September is National Piano Month. Either way, you may be wondering what pianos have to do with your dog(s)! What if I told you pianos have the power to help calm down your pet when they are experiencing fear or when something triggers their anxiety?

Whether they are staying in a kennel, have a fear of thunderstorms or fireworks, suffer from separation anxiety, or simply have too much commotion going on around them, all you have to do is put on our good ole’ friends, Bach or Beethoven. This will help to put them more at ease and hopefully lullaby your baby right to sleep.

Music has been proven to affect the moods and behaviors of humans, so animal behaviorists decided to see if it works for animals as well. A study was conducted at the Canine Behaviour Centre in the School of Psychology at the Queen’s University Belfast in Ireland. The team was curious to see what types of auditory stimulation would have the largest impact on reducing the stress levels of dogs inside of shelters. Animals can get very overwhelmed in a shelter environment because many are scared to be in a new, unknown place with many new faces and sounds.

During this study, the dogs were exposed to five types of auditory stimulation: human conversation, classical music, heavy metal, pop music, and a control. Throughout the course of five days, the dogs’ behaviors were examined by professionals in order to determine which stimulation was most effective.

This study showed that classical music had the largest effect on dogs who are experiencing a large amount of stress or anxiety. The dogs spent more of their time resting in their kennels while it was being played, and the amount of barking was also reduced dramatically compared to the other stimulations. Overall, the study showed that classical music has a very calming effect on animals, just like it does with humans.

This tactic is not subject to only animals in shelters, but also the new additions to the family that you take home or those you already have there waiting for you. If you adopt an animal from a shelter, again, your house is going to be very new to them, and they will need time to adjust.

We know that animals cannot talk back to us to tell us how they feel, but they always hear you when you are talking to them, and that is something they love very much. If you can tell that something is making them anxious, play some classical music at a low volume or bust out some piano skills yourself, and just try to comfort them as much as you can. Spending the day inside on a rainy day cuddling with your best friend and listening to some Mozart does not sound like such a bad idea.

If you are looking to find a furry companion to help bring your stress levels down, please visit us at Wayside Waifs during our adoption hours!

* Monday: CLOSED

* Tuesday: Noon-8pm

* Wednesday: Noon-8pm

* Thursday: Noon-8pm

* Friday: Noon-8pm

* Saturday: 10am-5pm

* Sunday: 10am-5pm

Written by Cierra H.