According to a new study, dogs tend to be less stressed in the presence of music, with a particular preference given to reggae and soft rock.
The study, conducted by researchers at the University of Glasgow in collaboration with the Scottish Society for the Prevention of Cruelty to Animals (SPCA), examined the effects of music on the stress levels of dogs in kennels. Using cortisol measurements to determine stress levels as well as a rotating playlist consisting of classical, motown, pop, reggae, and soft rock, the researchers observed the dogs over the course of five days.
Researchers found that dogs tended to be less stressed in the presence of music and spent more time lying down than dogs who did not have music playing. The researchers noted that stress levels among dogs were lowest when reggae or soft rock was playing, adding that the differences across genres did not vary by much.
In addition to being used to help kennels and shelters everywhere improve the psychological health of dogs in their care, the results of the study have been directly used by the Scottish SPCA to inform their decision to install sound systems in all of their kennel facilities.