Do Dogs Like Music

Published: 20 Apr 2024
Kathy R. Conner
Kathy R. Conner
Kathy is a licensed veterinary surgeon and writer in Miami. With over 20 years of experience in deal with pets and small animal, she hopes to share her knowledge on what she learned throughout her life to all animal lover. On her free time, she likes to attend Yoga and Meditation classes.
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Our articles are meticulously composed and vetted by veterinary professionals, guaranteeing precision and pertinence by consulting credible sources, chiefly scientific journals and veterinary manuals. Prior to publication and major revisions, we thoroughly validate the factual correctness, providing well-researched content rooted in veterinary science.

Interacting with music and appreciating its artistic characteristics undoubtedly play a crucial part in our everyday lives. For instance, you may relish listening to melodies as you prepare for the day ahead, or possibly, you pump up lively rhythms while engaging in your daily workout; or perhaps, you revel in calming melodies before falling asleep.

Whatever the reason may be, this is vivid how tunes evoke a specific emotion or promote particular moods as one specific genre is played where these moods are strongly related to specific musical keys developed from Wagner’s “musical motif”. Similarly, your pet dog feels the same way too.

As we dig deeper, we shall be able to blur the line between dog and music and identify what music dogs prefer. Furthermore, we would talk about everything you need to know regarding our canine friends, their individual music preferences, what music dogs love, and their musical tastes subsequent behavioral reactions.

Do Dogs Like Music?

A quick and simple answer to the question, “do dogs enjoy music?” is yes. Dogs are highly reactive to these types of media and sound, dog howl at the sounds if they like it . However, there is more to it than just having our four-legged companions listen to popular songs or Ludwig Van Beethoven’s classical works all day long.

If a dog howls while you listen to your own playlist, you might be thinking that they are attempting to make their own music. However, you should know that a dog howling is just an instinct to join in like how they do when they hear sirens. unpleasant as it is to the human ear, you should be aware that it is normal for them to do so and clearly do not suggest that dogs like music.

However, there are claims of dogs that have an exceptional preference in music like a bulldog named Dan who was owned by George Robinson Sinclair, the organist at Hereford Cathedral in London. Another example is Peps, a Cavalier King Charles Spaniel having a special stool in Wagner’s study which has a huge influence on his compositions.

Can Dogs Understand Music And Sounds

According to research conducted by Dr. Deborah Wells of Queens College in the year 2002 entitled “The influence of auditory stimulation on the behavior of dogs housed in a rescue shelter,” 50 shelter dogs undergone through an experiment and were observed how they react to different auditory stimuli; classical, soft rock, popular songs, and heavy metal, the sound of human conversation as well as silence.

The said experimental study suggested that classical tunes (soothing sounds) had a calming effect on dogs. This was supported by the fact that the dogs spent more time laying down and resting after it was played. Furthermore, the dogs did not show interest in pop songs while exhibited restless behavior while the heavy metal was played.

In another study, the findings claim that dogs listening to harp music develop better breathing and steadier heart rates in contrast to dogs that weren’t exposed to the particular music.

In supplementary, Lisa Spector, one of the founders of “Through a Dog’s Ear” said that slower tempos, simpler patterns, as well as lower frequencies, discharge the canine nervous system while faster and more complex music with higher frequencies charges the dogs’ nervous system. In simple words, dogs definitely love music only if it is calming to them.

Can Dogs Hear Music And Sounds Tune

Music to Soothe Dogs

Like humans, your pet dog experiences stress too. In fact, 20% to 40% of dogs have a hard time dealing with everyday noises.   Your canine’s stress signals include panting, pacing, lip licking, and stress yawning. To help reducing stress and prevent these stress signal from taking place, playing melodies is highly recommended.

Classical songs with lower frequencies are effective in calming the canine’s nervous system. To support this idea, Dr. Lori Kogan from the Colorado State University experimented with 117 kenneled dogs. The research findings suggest that classical songs enable the dogs to be less agitated. Moreover, dogs spent more time lying down.

This was due to the fact that classical genres are music designed to promote calmness in dogs. In some cases, however, the calmness only remained for a few days. Nevertheless, the findings of this research are not far from the results of the research conducted by Dr. Deborah Belfast. But in some isolated cases, reggae music was greatly endeared by their dogs since the owner himself has a strong preference for the genre.

Sound And Music Dogs Like To Listen

How Can You Use Music for Your Dog at Home?

Proven through extensive researches conducted by credible individuals, music can be an effective tool to aid dogs and owners alike, with regards to issues like separation anxieties, loud noises that cause agitation, as well as hyperactivity. Listening to music is highly advisable to be incorporated with dogs that suffer from separation anxiety whenever you leave for work.

This would also motivate calmness whenever your dog has issues with dog sitters or whenever a loud noise from the neighborhood causes him to be agitated. Having that said, music must be properly incorporated into your dog’s daily activities to ensure positive association and excited response. To begin with, you may start playing music whenever your dog is in his calm state like when resting, having meals, and playtime.

Once the dog has established its positive association, you should be able to gradually introduce the music whenever the dog feels stressed. If done correctly and gradually, it would be easier for you and your dog to deal with these particular issues.

In addition to your pet’s positive association with music, you can incorporate playing songs that dogs like during training to help your dog feel more focused while doing enrichment exercises and the like. Not only will this speed up your dog’s association, but it will also create a stronger emotional bond between you and your dog.

Can Dogs Enjoy Music And Be Relaxed

What Kind of Music Do Dogs Like Best?

As we know that our pet is responsive to songs, we now answer the question, “what music do dogs like?” Like humans, dogs have their own musical[1] preferences. However, almost all of us do not know what type of music do dogs like. In an experiment, the classical genre was greatly favored by the dogs in comparison to other types of music played.

On the contrary, the heavy metal genre agitated the canines involved in the experiment. In other words, your dog’s musical taste is based on its effect on them rather than the creative motives that we humans base our preferences on. Particularly, the best music for dogs is the ones that belong under the classical genre.

Frequently Asked Question

What kind of music calms dogs?

Classical tunes are the kind of music that calms dogs. It is scientifically proven how the classical genre has the best musical quality for dogs as it effectively calms them in comparison to other genres like heavy metal music, pop music, and the like.

Do dogs like music when left alone?

Yes, dogs like music when left alone. Music helps in lessening the occurrence of specific issues like separation anxiety, reaction to external noises, as well as hyperactivity.

Do dogs prefer music or silence?

Yes, dogs prefer hearing music rather than silence. The study of Dr. Wells supports this claim in her study entitled “The influence of auditory stimulation on the behavior of dogs housed in a rescue shelter,” as songs, particularly classical tunes, yielded a positive outcome that manifested in the dogs’ behavior and did not promote hostility. Dogs listening to music were also proven to manifest positive behaviors.


To put it concisely, dogs are scientifically proven that they respond to different genres of musical pieces differently. As it is evident to humans, it may also be true to your dogs that music has a significant impact on their mood and behavior.

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