Music of Animals

A brown horse looking down at a small white dog beneath it

Music has often been called the language of the soul. I think most of us would agree that music can influence our mood, helping us to feel happy, or sad, or recall a long ago memory, but are humans the only ones on this planet that music can sooth?

In the early1990’s, Dr. Emoto began exploring the true nature of water. With the help of a microscope, Dr. Emoto photographed water crystals before and after music and words were applied. What he found was amazing.

The water changed into beautiful crystals when positive thoughts and music were applied to the water. When the water was exposed to negativity and harsh music, dark and deformed looking crystals formed. According to Dr. Emoto, organs and diseases have measurable amounts of energy present. Music, words and thoughts also have a measurable energy. “As research progresses, it may be possible to compose music that has vibrations and rhythm corresponding to a certain disease – for example, a piece of music that can cancel the vibration of liver cancer.”

The ability of music to affect a person’s mood has been studied for many years. Music can help us to relax and reduce stress. Classical music has been shown to be uplifting and relaxing, while hard rock or angry music creates feelings of anger and frustration.

If music can soothe and heal humans, can it do the same for our animal companions? Many people believe that animals do receive the benefits of healing music and since animals are more in tune to the energy of their surroundings for survival, they may be affected even more then people.

In 2002, Debra Wells, animal behaviorist and psychologist, researched the effect that five different types of music had on dogs. Her researched indicated that classical music had a calming effect and increases resting and reduced barking.

A study by Joskua Leids and Susan Wagnar took this research a step further. They discovered all classical music is not the same. The most profound calming effect was produced by slow, simple piano music.

Knowing that music effects your dog’s mood can help if you are experiencing behavior problems, such as,

  • Anxiety
  • Stress of Boarding
  • Riding in the Car
  • Separation Anxiety

Prior to using music to correct behavior, it is imperative that the animal is introduced to the music during a relaxed and positive time. This is known as conditioning. When the animal is exposed to the music when it is feeling happy, the music will eventually come to represent that state of mind and can be used in times of stress to bring calm back to your pet.

To begin, find a time when your pet is relaxed and happy and play the music. Do this for several days. Then when you think your pet is ready, play the music during a time of stress. If the pet does not relax, stop the music and go back to conditioning your pet during happy times. Your pet will eventually begin to associate the music with feeling safe and relaxed.

Music can be one tool you use to help your animal feel safe and secure. But remember, a holistic approach takes into account the effect the guardians energy has on their animal companion. Maybe you and your animal companion should listen to slow, piano music, curled up on the couch together. I bet you’d both agree it’s a great way to spend an afternoon.

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