Agitated canines prefer Bach to Black Sabbath

November 1, 2002

Bach succeeds in calming dogs where Black Sabbath fails, but Kylie appears to have no effect.

Psychology researchers at Queen's University, Belfast, carrying out research for the National Canine Defence League on dogs in rescue shelters, found dogs rested more and barked less when they heard classical music. But they became agitated when they were played heavy-metal music. Neither pop music nor human conversation had any effect on their behaviour.

Psychology lecturer Deborah Wells said: "Dogs may be as discerning as humans when it comes to musical preference."

Rescue centres that played classical music could help more dogs to be adopted, said Dr Wells, since visitors preferred quiet dogs to those that barked.

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