iCalmDog Reggae: Survey Results Are In!

iCalmDog Reggae Survey 

An anecdotal survey of the first 30 iCalmDog Reggae (iCDR) customers was conducted in December 2019 and has brought us increased understanding of our first non-classical therapy music for dogs. iCDR has been a stretch–both stylistically and conceptually. While Through a Dog’s Ear classical music is soft, slow, and predictable, iCDR is very different in energy, orchestration, tempo, and attitude.

As producer of the Through a Dog/Cat’s Ear catalog, I’ve learned that every pet, like each person, is individual: environmental circumstances, physical/psychological dynamisms, and aging nervous systems make auditory effectiveness different for each animal, and possibly different each day.

 

What’s Our Survey Takeaway? NUANCE!

Lots of surprises! Some people love the new music; some don’t! Some dogs could care less about the style or orchestration; others show preference. To this group of 30 respondents, Through a Dog’s Ear (TADE) classical music is potent. It’s calming is industrial-strength and immediate. The classical music definitely calms people and this impacts their animals.

iCalmDog Reggae, also by the TADE team, is calming by design, however because it is energetic, one doesn’t expect the calming effect upon initial hearing, yet it does take place. Pets entrain to their human’s reactions and energy becomes the fun before settling. As gleaned from this survey, iCDR is a specialty album with many surprises – bioacoustic nuances that makes it a valuable addition to the TADE library. Similar to people having certain remedies for certain purposes, the same specificity is now possible with iCDR. It is not either/or with iCDR and TADE classical: we recommend the specially designed reggae as a supplement to our classical offerings. They each have their time and place.

iCalmDog Reggae is unique:

  1. Calm Focus. iCalmDog Reggae (iCDR) brings a calm focus–ideal for classes, grooming, shelters, exercise, and whatever you cook up! This is due to progressive tempo slowing of each song. The arc of slowing tempos is not from minute 1-60, rather the arc is contained within each tune and changes with each tune.
  2. Strong Noise Masking. iCDR is greatly effective at masking sound phobia-inducing sounds like fireworks, thunderstorms, construction, etc., because of predominant percussion and denser instrumental arrangements. This makes it harder for outside sounds to penetrate your indoor sonic environment.
  3. Keeps Dogs Calmer Longer. iCDR breaks habituation found in our classical catalog. Researchers have found that by mixing varied musical styles, habituation is minimized and canines actually stay calmer even longer (i.e., it is good to mix the reggae with the classical).
  4. Soothes Elderly and Hearing Impaired Dogs. Because of strong rhythms and enhanced bass frequencies, iCDR brings greater calming for elderly  or younger dogs with hearing deficits, who actually feel the sound vibrations more than hearing them.
  5. Fun and Healing. iCDR brings a different vibe into the canine household. Many owners are glad to have something different that the soft, slow classical. The more energetic reggae music presents fun interactions with often problematic pet/guardian relationships.

This is what we know so far and we learn more with each conversation or communication we have with you, our good pet-loving compatriots. Please email your input at CustomerSupport@iCalmPet.com.

Survey Results and Comments

  • Reggae calms more quickly.
  • My girl doesn’t react one way or the other but I LUV IT.
  • My puppy cocked his head when it first began as if to say, “that’s different.” He has been listening exclusively to the classical. He did quickly find his mat, get relaxed and fall asleep. 
  • It is hard to tell which one it is better. I still prefer classic music because I feel so calm. I am sure my dogs feels that, too. Reggae makes me dance!!
  • I think there is a difference because I use the Reggae when I am with them and we are focused on a task. Have not used it when I am gone.
  • They seem to enjoy both forms of music. I also use this as part of my dog training classes.
  • He reacted to the Reggae the very first time we played it. With the classical music he seems to be in the sleep mode while the Reggae music he is calm but more alert and seems very content.
  • With the classical, it seems to put him to sleep more. The reggae calms him but he is still active.
  • I play reggae in the car and she does great with it.
  • He goes into other room when I leave. I can’t tell if that’s because he’s less stressed or if he just doesn’t like the music.
  • Definitely more effective with the older dogs as I feel the bass is felt just as much as it is heard.
  • Seems to prefer classical.
  • I think it helps them more and we all enjoy it.
  • Not home to view my dog’s reaction but I love the reggae!

  • It seems he really listens to the Reggae.
  • They seem to be more relaxed with the classical.
  • I actually made a video and sent to dog and music friends showing my puppy sleeping to Reggae. They thought it was hilarious given I was classically trained musician!
  • I think Reggae may not calm my dog yet, I see my dogs are so calm. I am not very sure. I want to try something new with my reactive dog, but I am sticking with classical music. He is on his anxiety medicines.
  • The reggae music is fun – I was glad that you added another genre of music based on what studies have shown is calming.
  • Katie responds well to the more calm music.
  • The day I received it was a particularly windy day (one of my little guy’s anxiety triggers) and I could see he was getting somewhat anxious. I loaded it into my iCalmDog and within 10 minutes he was in a “chill” zone! Love it!
  • Nice for the human end for a change in the music.
  • They did not go lay down and relax like they do with all the other music we have from you for them.
  • I think we were having some very positive reactions with our dog (as well as with our parrots) during stressful times. I think because of the severity of our dog’s phobias, it will take more work and take longer.
  • I’ve been playing the classical since he was 9 weeks old. It’s nice to switch things up with the reggae.
  • She settled with both styles.
  • Overall, not as calming as the classical music.
  • Love the change in tempos, sounds in general, etc. I do feel the enhanced bass is beneficial to the dogs.
  • My dog leaves room when reggae music is on.
  • They settle more quickly in the car. Our family members who borrowed our car commented very positively on the music. Even without a dog!!
  • The new music is so upbeat & fun.
  • I don’t know how the dogs feel about it since I play it when I’m leaving the house, but when I’ve listened to it I’ve noticed that my mood remains steady and possibly a little uplifted, whereas the classical ones tend to feel more depressing than calming.

Share your own experience with iCalmDog Reggae in as much detail as you like. (e.g., is there anything you’d change, what do you like the most, observations with other pets?)

    • At work there are two aisle of shelter. In the one in which I play the reggae the dogs are more calm than the one where I play classical music.
    • I really like the beat and instruments. Wouldn’t change anything.
    • I find that I have to play it much quieter than the classical, but I think that’s what I prefer. I’ve had the classical for such a long time that anything new will take time to get use to.
    • It is hard to tell because I am hearing impaired. I think it would be good for happy dogs and playful puppies. Have you thought about country music?
    • One of my cats (7y, DMH, FS) really relaxes in response to the reggae; she stretches out in the middle of the floor.
    • I like the music because I can play it when we are focused on a workout or another exercise. Not sure I would consider it calming as such, but more focusing and invigorating.
    • I enjoy dancing with them to the Reggae music! We have fun. I love the upbeat type of music for a change from classical.
    • Pretty unhappy with the recording overall. The sound is poor quality, sounds very tinny! It doesn’t sound much like reggae for the most part.
    • It felt too repetitive, no real melody. I enjoy Reggae and have some CD’s, but this was not enjoyable nor did my pets respond as I had hoped. I love all the other music we have for our cats and dogs from you though.
    • The iCalmDog Reggae makes the whole household happier, I think. My dog wags his tail and just had his happy face on. One of my parrots is sensitive to noise and a lot of music bothers him. He seemed to enjoy Reggae though and the other parrot loves it. He dances to it. I tried it when some noise outside seemed to upset them.
    • My 4 month old puppy enjoys listening to the reggae music. We use it when play time happens to be the same as chore/dinner time. He stays active but in a calmer, less destructive way. I enjoy it also.
    • Dogs do great with it!
    • My 3 cats don’t seem to relax as much with the Reggae music as they do with the classical music.
    • As moods of the people change, the dogs are equally as positively affected. It great to have a more upbeat variety that’s for sure!
    • Prefers classical.
    • I do like some things about the Reggae, though I have had some trouble warming up to it myself. I wondered if the energy of the music would be less relaxing, and it is something I could play while working around the house or perhaps in the car. If it helps the dogs settle I’ll probably use it at times that I leave them at home, rather than during times when we’re together during storms or other unpleasant noisy situations.
    • I really enjoy the reggae and my dogs are settling even quicker in the car when we have it on. They used to bark for the first 3/8 of a mile in the car. Now they are usually quiet by the first 1/8 of a mile. I loaned the CD to my son who’s new puppy suddenly developed intense drooling upon entering the car. Just prior to their 7 hour drive home. She was calm and able to settle and sleep with the reggae music cd. I’m hooked and will recommend to others. Now I need to order another since my son won’t give it up!!
    • We have 2 dachshunds. Katie is prone to anxiety of new people; Abby has a neurological disorder, making her unable to walk, but she crawls. We have a therapist for Abby and she is the one who introduced me to iCalmPet. I love this product very much and wanted some upbeat music and the Reggae is perfect. Both Abby and Katie respond well, but Abby is a very active little girl and I play Reggae for her and we do exercises to the music, it is fun. The music is so soothing and she seems pretty content when I have it playing. 

What’s our takeaway? Canine sound therapy continues to mature  and has become nuanced! Observations by producer and psychoacoustician, Joshua Leeds:

This first iCalmDog Reggae survey is a treasure chest of valuable feedback. Some people love the new music; some don’t! Some dogs could care less about the style or orchestration; others show preference. This all makes sense to my psychoacoustic and bioacoustic experiences; we know that every animal is individual, and sound–being powerful AND subtle–impacts us differently from day to day, even hour to hour. Here are my primary survey observations.

To this group of 30 respondents, Through a Dog’s Ear classical music is transparent. It’s calming is mostly immediate and industrial-strength in effect. The assumption that classical music is calming also transfers from the owner’s belief system to the dog’s reactions. The classical music calms the owners and this, too, impacts their animals. Additionally, the classical music translates to owner’s leaving; the animals are inured to these predictable sequences.

The iCalmDog Reggae (iCDR) music, also by the TADE team, is calming by design, however one doesn’t expect it upon the initial hearing because it is energetic and exciting by nature. As gleaned from this survey, iCDR is a specialty album with bioacoustic nuances that makes it a valuable addition to the canine calming library. Similar in how we, as people, have certain pieces of music we use for different purposes, the same is now possible with the addition of the iCalmDog Reggae album to the expansive Through a Dog’s Ear library.

1. It appears that iCalmDog Reggae brings a calm focus, ideal for classes, grooming, shelters, exercise, etc. The Reggae music is mostly a delayed and lighter calm; this is due to a continuing and progressive slowing of tempo of each song. In other words, the arc of slowing tempos is not from minute 1 to minute 60, rather the arc is contained within each tune, and changes with each tune.

2. iCDR may be more effective at masking sound phobia-inducing sounds like fireworks, thunderstorms, construction, etc., because of its ever-present percussion and denser instrumental arrangements. This makes it harder for outside sounds to penetrate the indoor sonic environment.

3. iCDR breaks habituation found in our classical catalog. Researchers believe by mixing varied musical styles, habituation is minimized and canines actually stay calmer even longer, i.e., it is good to mix the reggae with the classical.

4. iCDR, because of strong and loud rhythms and enhanced bass frequencies, may be of greater effect for elderly dogs with diminished hearing (or perhaps any dog with little or no hearing), who actually feel the sound vibrations more than hearing them. This may also prove to be true with people, as well.

5. iCDR brings a different vibe into the canine household. Many owners are glad to have something different that the soft, slow classical. The more energetic reggae music presents fun interactions with often problematic pet/guardian relationships.

The one thing that stands out to me, as conceptualizer and producer of this reggae music, is an unforeseen impact – FUN! Why is fun important in a pet household? For pet owner’s, nothing is sadder than when a human/pet relationship becomes tattered. We have our pets as heart partners. When something goes awry, be it pathological, environmental, or accidental–and we can’t find a solution that helps our animals to be comfortable in our human environments–it can be a heartbreaking result. We wanted a heartfelt result, not a heartbreaking consequence of circumstances not always in our control or of our making.

In an environment where there is tension or increased stress–due to a lack of balance between the people and animals of the household, for whatever reason–FUN may be a critical component of the healing that wants/needs to take place. I know from my decades of work with therapeutic sound with people, that there is a distinction between healing and curing. An unanticipated result of the iCalmDog Reggae music is a fun and joyful environment that facilitates difficult disappointments to dissipate and affectionate heart space to return.

There is a lot to explore with these important nuances. Both Through a Dog’s Ear classical and iCalmDog Reggae have been produced with similar psychoacoustic principles–mainly progressive simplification of arrangements and slowing tempos. However, everything else is different and we have much to learn. I encourage you to email your input to CustomerSupport@iCalmPet.com. I read every comment and am appreciative of your time.

From the heart,
– Joshua Leeds
Producer, Through a Dog’s Ear and iCalmDog Reggae
CEO, BioAcoustic Research, Inc.
January 2020

 

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