And Finally Business News Digital

Spotify launches playlists and podcasts for pets

By | Published on Wednesday 15 January 2020

Spotify for dogs

Streaming is booming, but people still aren’t signing up at a rate that translates into full-on profitability. Despite nods in the direction of actually making some money last year, not all investors are as yet convinced that Spotify can make big returns any time soon. But maybe the issue is that streaming companies are focussing too much on humans. Perhaps that’s why Spotify’s latest innovation is aimed at dogs.

This morning, Spotify has launched personalised playlists aimed at pets, as well as a new podcast just for dogs, called ‘My Dog’s Favourite Podcast’. The show is designed to keep your dog calm when you leave it on its own at home. And if you thought podcasts for humans were getting ever longer, each episode of this one for dogs is five hours long. Think of the advertising opportunities!

Alright, the move into audio for pets isn’t actually that big an innovation. There is already more than one radio station aimed at dogs, and back in 2011 it was claimed that Adele was the artist dogs most liked listening to in the car. In 2013, Kerrang Radio even gave a presenter slot to a dog (although the show was temporarily fronted by a horse, while Rockdog went on a training course).

Spotify’s own research shows that 74% of pet owners play music for their pets to calm them down a bit, and 80% believe that the animals who live with them enjoy listening to music. Also, 53% of dog owners admit leaving them at home alone for between one and five hours a day. So, however stupid this might all sound, there clearly is a market for animal-focussed streaming audio.

“Dogs are extremely social animals but, in order to fit in with our busy lives, may spend some time by themselves during the day”, says pet psychologist Alex Benjamin, who worked on the podcast project.

‘My Dog’s Favourite Podcast’ is, he says, “a bespoke podcast that is designed to encourage your dog to relax through calming gentle praise and story-like speech accompanied by original music and gentle ambient sounds designed to help mask startling sounds of the outside world such as traffic, car doors slamming or the bins being emptied, for example. I hope that the podcast becomes a fun and useful resource for owners to explore with their dogs while they are at home together as well as when their dog is alone for short periods”.

‘My Dog’s Favourite Podcast’ is voiced by actors Ralph Ineson and Jessica Raine, with music composed by Daniel Knight. Those personalised playlists, meanwhile, will offer up 30 tracks algorithmically curated based on the musical tastes of the animals. Or the musical tastes that their owners imagine they have.

So, listen to the dog podcast here, and play your cat their favourite gabber tracks and let them discover more in their personalised playlist here.