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Spotify Creates Pet Playlists to Ease Separation Anxiety

— February 7, 2020

Playlists prove pets enjoy listening to music.

The popular Sweden-based music site, Spotify, has announced its created playlists and a podcast for pets listen to in their owners’ absence to ease anxiety.  The decision was made “after finding that nearly 74% of UK pet-owners play music for their animals,” the company said.  The pet playlists offer songs selected by algorithms to match pets’ characteristics.  Spotify said it “found in a survey that one in four pet owners play music for their pets to listen to for company when they are away from home, with 42% of owners saying their pets have a favorite type of music…A quarter of pet owners said they have even seen their pets dancing to music.”

Spotify said that it was intrigued by the fact that a vast majority of pet owners worry about the emotional well-being of their pets while they’re away with “70% of animal parents considering the emotional wellness of their pets daily.  Plus, 8 in 10 people believe their pets like music, and 46% feel music is a stress reliever for their furry friends,” it announced.

Spotify Creates Pet Playlists to Ease Separation Anxiety
Photo by Adam Griffith on Unsplash

The new option is fairly straightforward.  First, owners pick their pet from the most popular options – dog, cat, iguana, hamster, or bird.  Then, they describe their pet’s personality – energetic, friendly, relaxed, etc.  Next, owners add a name and photo, and a playlist is generated based on the input received.

Spotify looked at data conducted from “an online survey with 5,000 pet owners in the U.S., U.K., Australia, Spain and Italy.”  In addition the findings regarding music and pet well-being, the surveys found that “nearly 1 in 5 pet owners also named their pet in an ode to their favorite musician or band…The top 5 artist-influenced pet names include Bob Marley, Elvis, Freddie Mercury, David Bowie and Ozzy Osbourne.”  The study also found, “55% of pet owners think their pet has the same taste in music as their human and 53% said if they really had to choose, they’d pick their pet over their partner.”

A hyperactive or fearful pet can be paired with soothing nature sounds while more relaxed animals that need to get their heart rate up every now and again can be energized with chirping squirrel sounds or more intense music.

While music and sound therapies are still considered a new and still-evolving practice, one of the best-known applications is an ultrasound that uses the “echo” of high-frequency sound waves to take diagnostic pictures inside the body.  There are also musical toys and other devices that are marketed to soothe infants, and music has become a popular form of counseling for children and adolescents who have experienced trauma or are diagnosed with anxiety and depression.

“Therapeutic harp music helps relieve pain that drugs don’t, soothes an emotional upset, and has become of particular help in hospice situations for human patients,” according to Spotify.  And, since animals are generally are more sensitive to sounds than humans, they often need simple noise or a relaxing tune to soothe them and ease separation anxiety.  Whatever the situation may be, Spotify has a playlist for that.


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