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Harmony in Pet Health: Integrating Sound Therapy

The world of wellness is growing, especially when it comes to our pets. Many holistic and alternative therapies for humans are starting to make the crossover to our four-legged friends. One of the newest trends in pet wellness is sound baths. But, what exactly are they and what do they do? Let’s explore the world of pet sound therapy and see what all the buzz is about.


What we’re sounding off on today:

Tuning in: sound therapy for pets

Research says: science-backed pet care advice

DIY: pet sound bath techniques at home


What is sound therapy for pets?

Sound therapy, also sometimes called sound healing, is a holistic therapy that harnesses the power of sound for therapeutic benefits. It typically involves the use of music, tones, vibrations, and other audible sounds and frequencies to promote relaxation. While sound therapy for humans has been used for thousands of years in Eastern medicine, it’s a relatively new practice for pets. One way sound therapy for dogs and cats is administered is through the use of sound baths.

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What are sound baths and how do they work?

The term sound bath essentially means to 'bathe' in sound. These sessions for humans are typically meant to be a deeply immersive and meditative experience. They involve lying in a dimly lit room and being led through a guided meditation while various vibrational instruments, such as singing bowls, gongs, and tuning forks, are played. Sometimes, yoga chants are also incorporated. Sound bath sessions for pets are slightly more scaled down and often just involve a comfortable space and some soothing sounds.

While our pets might not understand the concept of meditation, and they’re more likely to howl or yowl than 'om,' they can still reap some sound bath benefits. Sound baths have the potential to promote relaxation in pets (as they might in humans) and help our four-legged friends find their 'zen.'

Like all alternative therapies, sound baths have limits. They are meant to be a complementary or supportive treatment to promote relaxation and reduce stress. They are not a cure for any medical condition. Lastly, not all pets will benefit from sound baths, especially those with noise aversions.

The science of sound therapy for pets

While pet sound baths are a relatively new and somewhat unstudied practice, there’s plenty of scientific research to conclude that sound therapy overall can have benefits for pets.

According to several canine and feline behavioral studies compiled by Zoundz, sound therapy for pets can help:

  • Calm the nervous system
  • Lower stress and anxiety
  • Promote relaxation and sleep
  • Improve mood
  • Provide enrichment

Many of these studies were measured by observing body language, cortisol levels (the stress hormone), and heart rate variability to determine physiological responses to different sounds.

Does pet insurance cover sound therapy for canine anxiety?

Most pet insurance does not cover sound therapy. However, it’s essential to check your policy. Some pet insurance providers offer coverage for holistic treatments such as acupuncture or massage therapy, sometimes accompanied by sound therapy, depending on where it’s done.

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Where can I find sound therapy for pets?

Sound therapy, or sound baths for pets, might be found at holistic veterinary clinics, yoga, meditation, or reiki studios, or in animal wellness spas that are becoming increasingly popular. While the trend of animal sound therapy is growing, especially dog sound baths, it’s still considered a small niche in the wellness world and may not be easy to find everywhere. You can always try it at home if you cannot find sound therapy sessions for pets locally.

How to incorporate sound bath for pets at home

You can easily incorporate sound therapy for your pet in many ways at home. You can purchase singing bowls and tuning forks to try your sound bath session or utilize prerecorded options. You can find sound bath playlists on streaming services like YouTube, Spotify, and Pandora, or opt for science-backed sound therapy for pets through the Zoundz App.

The Zoundz App features playlists for feline and canine sound healing based on scientific studies and endorsed by veterinarians and animal behavior experts. Shelters and veterinary clinics have used the app to help calm dogs and cats in stressful environments.

When incorporating any type of sound therapy at home for your pet, it’s important to start low and pay attention to how your pet reacts. Dogs and cats have sensitive hearing and may not enjoy the same volume or tones that traditional human sound therapy may incorporate. If your pet seems stressed by the sound or tries to get away, it’s probably not the right tune for them. If they seem relaxed, you can keep going and try different sounds or other playlists.

The final verdict: to vibe with sound baths or not

If you’re wondering if sound baths offer real relaxation or are just another trendy treatment, the answer really depends on your individual pet. Between scientific studies and anecdotal evidence, it’s fair to assume that sound baths can be a good relaxation tool for your pet, but only if they enjoy it.

Just like humans, every pet has their own unique personality, activity level, and likes and dislikes. A sound bath session might not mellow out your Malinois, but it may help your Dachshund doze off or calm your anxious Chihuahua.

The most important thing to remember when trying any type of sound therapy with your pet is to let them set the tone, both figuratively and literally.

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Disclaimer: Apps or streaming services mentioned in the article do not reflect a direct endorsement the author or fact-checker.

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