After spending nearly two years following quarantine rules,may have noticed hints of extra clinginess with your pawed — or feathered — friends. It’s not uncommon for them to follow you everywhere around the house, sleep in your bed or stare at you out of love. But now that we’re leaving the house for work, wanderings, vacation and other activities, separation anxiety may be kicking in. Music may be the remedy they need.
Besides being left home alone, pets are often in other situations where relaxing sounds could help. They may have trouble, riding in the car, thunderstorms, illness, trips to the vet or grooming sessions. And some animals may just be a bit hyperactive at times.
While it’s fairly known that classical music can soothe a savage breast, it’s not the only soundtrack that works. A 2017 study conducted by the University of Glasgow and Scottish SPCA highlighted how kenneled dogs’ stress levels drop when they listen to reggae or soft rock. Over the years, other studies have examined how music affects boredom, stress and emotional responses in felines, dogs, pigs and other animals. Whether you have a pet puppy, cat, pig, parakeet or iguana, why not set them up with their ownplaylist? These apps will turn little Bella or Duke into relaxed — or party-ready — musical scholars.
Retales Botijero/Getty Images
Spotify’s Pet Playlists launched in 2020, but have you taken advantage of this feature yet? The lists are curated based on your pet’s personality and your personal music tastes. Choose your animal type, then share your pet’s name and Spotify walks you through a series of questions so its algorithm can tailor a custom listening experience with music pulled from your own streaming habits.
You can also stream its This is Pets Music playlist — which has 50 tracks — or press play on Pets Music Radio. Each song is geared toward helping animals relax. Additionally, there are full albums devoted to the genre, and all you need to do is search for something like “puppy music” or “bird music” under albums and add them to your library. Of course, you can always handpick songs for your pet according to their temperament, needs or species. We’re not sure if your pet snake would appreciate Nicki Minaj’s Anaconda, however.
YouTube is home to millions of hours of free content, and when it comes to streaming music for your cat or dog, there are plenty of options. Tune in for a 24-hour livestream from a channel like Relax My Dog, which plays music along with a video to help your pup calm down — or stay entertained. If you prefer to skip the livestream, this channel also features soothing music videos that run anywhere from eight to 15 hours, or you can choose one of its themed playlists. And there’s a sister channel called Relax My Cat, not to be confused with the uber-popular video game, Stray.
You’ll also find other YouTube pet music channels such as PetTunes or Calm Your Cat, and a few that cater to rabbits, hamsters and even ferrets. But you can also go the classical music route and play hours of songs from Beethoven, Mozart, Chopin or Bach. After you dig around YouTube to find your selections, you can always create special playlists for your pets, or stream music on your TV, iPhone, iPad or Android.
Jena Ardell/Getty Images
Amazon Music offers curated playlists with music that eases your dog or cat into a chill state. You can check out the Calming Music for Dogs playlist, a nearly three-hour session that’s compiled by Amazon staff. The company’s music division prepared a seven-hour collection titled “Classical for Pets” for its playlist lineup.
Outside of Amazon Music’s own roster, there are also songs, albums and artists that fall squarely into the pet music category. Shape your own playlist. Comb through tunes from Pet Care Club or Pet Music Academy that feature bells, pianos and sounds of nature for pooches, kitties, birds and more. Or tap into white noise or pink noise if it works better for your dog or cat. If you search Amazon Music by typing in terms like “dog anxiety” or “pet relaxation,” an abundance of songs and albums will pop up for you to draw from for a special playlist. You can also take a shortcut by using voice commands with an Alexa-enabled device like Echo to tee up playlists for your pet.
Like Spotify and Amazon Music, Apple Music has full albums that you can add to your playlists from artists such as Pet Music World and Pet Therapy. Most of the pet-centric music on the service is geared toward either cats or dogs, but if you want to lean toward genres like classical, ambient music, Hz frequency or jazz, it’s all available on the platform.
Apple Music also has white noise and animal reiki selections to choose from to help your pet feel blissed out. Make your playlists stand apart by naming them after your furbaby or according to your pet’s mood, character or need (like sleep).
Services such as Tidal and Pandora also allow you to create playlists or stream pet-themed albums on repeat. They each give you the ability to collate music based on genre or artist, with the latter enabling you to stream a pet relaxation radio station. No matter where you stream, you could certainly play Beethoven or Beyoncé on a loop. But puppy lullabies, jazz and sounds of nature like falling rain seem to be among the most popular types of playlist music for our fur-bearing or feathered family members.