When dogs get lonely, they sometimes keep themselves busy by wreaking havoc around the house, and that doesn’t really sit well with their owners. That’s why one German radio host, who also happens to be a dog owner, came up with the idea for a 24/7 program designed to relax canine listeners and make them feel like they are not alone.
When 30-year old Stephan “Stocki” Stock, a radio moderator at RadioTon, in Germany’s Baden-Württemberg region, announced the creation of a program aimed at dogs, everyone thought it was just a clever April Fools prank. Only it wasn’t. For the past three and a half months, “Hallo Hasso” has been pumping out music for lonely pooches both on the radio and online.
Stocki says he was inspired to create the special program by his pet dog, Layla, who would sometimes get so bored when left alone that she would keep herself busy by making a big mess and destroying things around the house. He and his colleagues at RadioTon started researching what kind of music usually appeals to dogs, and learned that it should have as little drum and electric guitar as possible, and should be very slow. They realized that stuff that doesn’t usually make mainstream radio playlists, like classic music, old hippie songs and even obscure YouTube clips fit the profile perfectly, so they compiled several playlists for broadcast on Hallo Hasso.
“It’s not about keeping dogs quiet,” Stocky said about Hallo Hasso. “It’s more about the dog feeling he’s not alone.” He adds that Layla is not as restless since listening to Hallo Hasso, and has become relatively quiet, even letting him take a nap to the soothing sound of the radio.
However, dog experts don’t believe that Hallo Hasso works as intended. Siegfried Schemp, a dog trainer in Schwaigern, said that the radio program is a poor distraction for dogs and recommends training and educating canines to behave when they are alone.
Hallo Hasso is only available in Baden-Württemberg, via radio, but if you’d like to see if it can calm your four-legged pet, the program can also be accessed online, here. Just press the “play” arrow at the top of the page and let the music work its magic. If this doesn’t work, there’s always Dog TV.