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Dogs, like humans, can experience anxiety, whether it’s due to a new environment, separation from their loved ones, or even loud noises like thunderstorms and fireworks. Many pet owners are turning to specialized music and sound machines designed for canine comfort as a non-invasive way to soothe their anxious dogs.
In this article, we’ll explore some of best options available to help ease your dog’s stress. However, soothing sounds may not be the cure for every dog, so talk to your vet if you need help managing your dog’s anxiety.
What Should I Look for in a Dog Anxiety Sound Machine?
Choosing a sound machine for a dog with anxiety requires careful consideration, as it can greatly impact your dog’s emotional well-being. Here are some key factors to consider:
Types of Sounds
- Nature Sounds: Sounds like rainfall, ocean waves, and gentle winds can be calming for dogs.
- White Noise: Constant, soothing white noise can drown out other noises that may trigger anxiety in dogs.
- Specially Formulated Music: Some companies offer soundtracks specifically designed for canine relaxation, usually based on scientific research.
Look for a machine with high sound quality to ensure that the audio output is clear and natural. Poor sound quality can potentially irritate your dog further.
A machine with adjustable volume controls allows you to set the sound level according to your dog’s comfort. Make sure the volume is loud enough to be effective but not so loud that it causes discomfort or additional stress.
Look for a sound machine that offers continuous looping of tracks so that there are no sudden interruptions, which could disturb your anxious dog.
A timer can be beneficial if you only need the sound machine to run for a certain period, such as during a storm or while you are away from home for a short time.
If your dog’s anxiety triggers are not confined to your home, a portable machine can be handy. Some models are battery-operated or have a rechargeable battery, allowing you to use them in various settings like the car or a hotel room.
Durability is important, especially if your anxious dog is prone to knocking things over or if you plan to use the machine frequently.
Reviews and Recommendations
Read customer reviews and seek recommendations from other dog owners or veterinarians to ensure that you’re choosing a reputable product.
Consult Your Veterinarian
It’s always advisable to consult your veterinarian when introducing new forms of anxiety management for your dog, especially if the anxiety is severe or chronic.
By paying attention to these factors, you can choose a sound machine that is most likely to alleviate your dog’s anxiety and create a calmer, more comfortable environment for them.
Best Dog Anxiety Music and Sound Machines
The PetMedics Calming Pet Soothing Sound Noise Machine is designed to help alleviate anxiety and stress in pets. It offers three calming sounds – reggae, classical, and soft rock – that have been specially composed to keep pets happy and healthy. The volume is set at a safe level for pets’ sensitive hearing, and the machine has two play modes to suit different situations. It’s a noise-activated, water-resistant device powered that’s perfect for soothing anxious pets.
The iHeartDogs Heartbeat Puppy Toy is an interactive toy designed to provide comfort and security for puppies and dogs experiencing anxiety. The toy features a realistic heartbeat that helps reduce anxious behaviors such as whining and barking, making it easier for both the dog and owner to sleep at night. So, when dogs cuddle with it, they can feel like they’re cuddling with a living dog. If this toy gets dirty, you can simply remove the heartbeat and then throw it in the washing machine.
The Cozy Vest 3-in-1 Dog Anxiety Vest aims to calm dogs during moments of anxiety, fear, and over-excitement. The vest applies gentle pressure to mimic the feeling of being swaddled, providing a comforting sensation for the dog. Additionally, the vest includes lavender and chamomile scents and comes with a speaker that plays calming and relaxing sounds. It’s designed to be easy to use and adjust for the right pressure. Plus, it’s machine washable for convenience.
This iCalmDog Canine Separation Anxiety product is a comprehensive solution for dogs suffering from separation anxiety. It includes a clinically tested music program, a training program by Victoria Stilwell, and a micro SD sound card. The music consists of 16 hours of simplified classical piano music, alternating with periods of silence to prevent habituation. This product has been recommended by veterinarians and dog trainers worldwide since 2008 and includes a training protocol specifically designed for dogs with separation anxiety. It’s compatible with iCalmDog speakers 2.0 – 5.0 and most micro SD-enabled devices.
The Pet Tunes Bluetooth Speaker is a portable speaker preloaded with calming canine music. It can be easily paired with digital devices through Bluetooth and comes with a 1GB Micro SD Card. The speaker lasts for 5-10 hours on a single charge and includes a built-in repeat mode for continuous play throughout the day.
The Yogasleep Pawzz White Noise Machine for Dogs is a product designed to effectively cancel out noise that may disturb or distract pets. It offers six soothing sound options, including specific tracks designed to reduce dog anxiety. The machine also features an integrated bark sensor that automatically plays selected music to help calm pets. It can be used to manage pet anxiety during various situations such as fireworks, thunderstorms, crate training, traveling, and being home alone. Additionally, the machine includes volume control and timer options for customizable use.
The Sound Oasis Pet Bluetooth Sound Machine is a device designed to help pets sleep better and reduce anxiety. It features 20 built-in, doctor-developed sounds that create a soothing environment for pets, making it useful for situations such as separation anxiety, thunderstorms, or neighborhood noise. The device can be used at home or while traveling, with a rechargeable battery providing up to 4-5 hours of use on one charge. Users can also add new sounds to the device’s library, providing greater variety for their furry friend.
The Doggie Shusher Portable Dog Calming Aid is a device that can help soothe anxiety in dogs. It emits calming frequencies and human voices that can help relax dogs and alleviate separation anxiety. With a durable design and a fast-charging USB-C cable, this product is a convenient and effective tool for canine anxiety relief in various situations.
The iCalmDog Through a Dog’s Ear: 3-CD Set is a music collection specifically created to provide comfort to elderly canines. The set includes 3 hours of calming classical piano music that caters to the hearing sensitivity of senior dogs. This therapeutic sound program aims to address various issues such as wandering behaviors, nervousness, sensitivity to common sounds, and sleeplessness, allowing older dogs to regain a sense of peace and calmness.
Other Ways to Help with Dog Anxiety
If a sound machine doesn’t relax your dog enough, you’ll need to explore other options. Sound machines often work best when paired with other training and remedies, such as the following.
Training and Socialization
Many dogs get anxious if things are unfamiliar to them. Practicing various types of training and taking them to new locations can help them get used to change. Part of that training should include leaving them alone for short periods of time and working your way up to longer periods of time so they can get used to being away from you.
Exercising your dog regularly, especially before they’ll be left alone, can help get their energy out and calm them down, making them less likely to bark or cause destruction. A long walk may be enough to tire some dogs out while others may need to go for a run or play fetch for a while.
In addition to exercise, mental stimulation can help calm down anxious dogs. Some dogs get stressed because they’re bored and don’t know what to do, so giving them a puzzle toy can keep them busy to take their mind off the thing stressing them out.
Ensure your dog has a safe space they can relax in when they feel anxious. Whenever you leave them alone, make sure you keep them in a spot that’s comfortable to them.
While visiting new places is a great way to get your dog used to change, you should keep somewhat of a routine for your dog. Feeding them and walking them around the same time everyday can help some dogs feel more at ease.
Other Anxiety-Reducing Products
Even if sound-related products don’t work for your dog’s anxiety, there are other stress-reducing products that might help. Look for anti-anxiety vests or beds that can make your dog feel swaddled and comforted. Some calming supplements may also do the trick.
Vet Appointments/Professional Training
If your dog has extreme anxiety that you can’t seem to find a solution for, the best option is to work with a vet or trainer. They can give you the most beneficial advice based on your dog’s specific needs.
Related: The 10 Best Anti-Anxiety Dog Beds
Frequently Asked Questions About Dog Anxiety Sound Machines
What types of sounds are most effective for calming anxious dogs?
Sounds like ocean waves, rainfall, and white noise are often effective in calming anxious dogs. Some companies also offer specially formulated music based on scientific research to soothe canines. It’s a good idea to try different sounds to see which one your dog responds to best.
Do dog anxiety sound machines actually work?
While results can vary from dog to dog, many pet owners and veterinarians have found sound machines to be effective in reducing signs of anxiety in dogs. They’re often used in conjunction with other treatments, such as medication or behavioral training.
Are there any side effects to using a sound machine for dogs?
Generally, sound machines are considered safe and non-invasive. However, excessive volume or the wrong type of sound could potentially irritate or further stress an anxious dog. Always monitor your dog’s reaction when introducing a new sound.
How long should I keep a dog sound machine on?
The duration can depend on the trigger for your dog’s anxiety. For short-term stressors like fireworks or thunderstorms, you may only need it on for a few hours. For chronic anxiety, consult your veterinarian for advice on long-term use.
Is it better to get a dog sound machine with a timer?
A timer can be useful for short-term usage or if you want to gradually train your dog to be alone without the machine. However, for overnight use or during longer periods of absence, a continuous loop might be more beneficial.
Can I use my smartphone to play calming music for my dog?
While smartphones can play calming music or sounds, they may not offer the sound quality or continuous looping options that specialized sound machines do. Additionally, a dedicated machine is generally more durable and designed specifically for this purpose.
Do I need a portable dog sound machine?
If your dog experiences anxiety in various settings, like car trips or vet visits, a portable sound machine could be very beneficial. Battery-operated or rechargeable models offer more flexibility in this regard.
What volume should the dog sound machine be set at?
The volume should be loud enough to mask the noises that are causing anxiety but not so loud as to startle or irritate your dog. It’s best to start at a lower volume and gradually adjust as needed, observing your dog’s reaction.
Is white noise the same as calming music for dogs?
While both white noise and calming music can be effective, they serve different purposes. White noise is usually used to mask other sounds while calming music is often composed with specific frequencies and tempos to help relax your dog.
Should I consult my veterinarian before using a dog sound machine?
If your dog’s anxiety is severe or chronic, it’s always best to consult your veterinarian for a comprehensive treatment plan, which may include the use of a sound machine along with other treatments.
Conclusion: Best Dog Anxiety Music or Sound Machines
Choosing the right sound or music device for your anxious dog is a vital step in creating a calming environment. From scientifically formulated music to soothing nature sounds, these specialized soundscapes can provide significant relief for canines struggling with stress or anxiety.
Though not a replacement for veterinary advice or other forms of medical treatment, a good sound machine or playlist can be an effective tool. So, the next time your furry friend shows signs of stress, consider one of these top-rated dog anxiety music or sound machines.