Dogs Shown to React to Music
by Lisa R. Kindel
Two recent studies have shown that the behavior of dogs can be affected by the type of music they are hearing.
When a team of researchers led by Deborah Wells, an animal behaviorist employed by Queen's University in Belfast, Northern Island, exposed 50 dogs in an animal shelter
to Vivaldi's The Four Seasons, Greig's Morning and other classical pieces, the dogs became calm and laid down.
When the researchers played music by Metallica and other heavy metal bands, the dogs became agitated and began barking.
Pop music - and radio talk shows - seemed to have little effect.
A similar research project conducted at the Rehoming Center of the National Canine Defense League in Evesham, England yielded comparable results.
"It is well established that music can influence our moods," said Wells. "Dogs may be as discerning as humans when it comes to music."
"Dogs have a taste in musical styles just as people do," said Alison Jaskiewicz, cofounder of the Canine Freestyle Federation, which is dedicated to broadening the scope of dog training
by adding choreography to it. "If you move dogs to different types of music, you will see their preferences reflected in their bodies, in their eagerness to move, in their tail set, in their ear set, etc."
© 2002 Animal News Center, Inc.