Results 1 to 6 of 6

Thread: Radio for dogs and cats?

  1. #1
    Hit By Ban Bus! pacific breeze's Avatar
    Join Date
    Oct 2005
    Location
    in the wild blue yonder
    Posts
    15,479

    Default Radio for dogs and cats?

    How many people leave their radio or TV on to keep their pets company while they're out of the house?

    Jumpy Enough to Chew a Chair? Try DogCatRadio

    By DINITIA SMITH
    Published: November 2, 2005 / The New York Times

    "Remember, be kind to your mailman," said Jane Harris, a disc jockey. Then she softened her voice until it was a little insinuating: "He only wants to deliver the mail."

    It is a message that many of her listeners need to hear. Ms. Harris is a D.J. on DogCatRadio.com, a new Internet radio station for pets. Now dogs, cats, hamsters and parrots can keep the anxiety, the loneliness, the restlessness at bay while their owners are out. It is radio just for them, live 17 hours a day, 4 a.m. to 9 p.m. Pacific time, and podcast for the rest of the 24 hours.

    Those who listen to DogCatRadio will find that there is generally an animal motif to the playlist, like "Hound Dog": "You ain't nothin' but a hound dogcryin' all the time."

    This Elvis song is a frequent request from listeners (presumably the owners), as are the Baha Men, singing: "Who let the dogs out (woof, woof, woof, woof)."

    And Dionne Warwick is also popular, especially her soothing song "That's What Friends Are For": "Keep smiling, keep shining,/Knowing you can always count on me."

    Since many pets are apparently bilingual, DogCatRadio also has a "Spanish Hour," 5 p.m. to 6 p.m. Pacific time daily, with Hispanic commentary and music, like Luis Miguel's "No Sé Tú": DogCatRadio.com was started last June by Adrian Martinez, who is also president of Marusa records, an independent record label in Los Angeles. He runs the station out of a customized RV parked in his office lot in the Eagle Rock section of Los Angeles.

    Mr. Martinez, 34, who owns six dogs and two cats, said he founded the station because "my cat, Snickers, asked me to do it." One day, Snickers was pacing the floor restlessly and meowing. "I said, 'What do you want?' " Mr. Martinez recalled in a telephone interview from Los Angeles. "I turned up the music, and she was fine." He discovered that Snickers likes 80's rock, particularly the Eddie Money version of the song "Take Me Home Tonight:" "I feel a hunger /It's a hunger that tries to keep a man awake at night."

    Mr. Martinez added, "I wanted to do something for the pet community."

    The first week that DogCatRadio was broadcast, the local CBS television station showed a feature about it. As a result, so many people tuned in, 130,000 in one day, that the server crashed, Mr. Martinez said. "We had to get a bigger server to accommodate more listeners." Now, he said, "We average close to 8,000 hits a week. We have a meter that tracks it."

    "People are just e-mailing us," calling from all over the world, Mr. Martinez said. "I love what you are doing, but please don't forget our equine friends," an e-mail message from Australia said.

    When Mr. Martinez gets requests, he springs into action. "We go to Tower Records within the hour," he said. "Since we're conquering the globe, we want to make sure we can accommodate these people."

    Sometimes Mr. Martinez broadcasts from the field. DogCatRadio showed a segment on people walking their dogs first thing in the morning outside the Rose Bowl in Pasadena - a very popular early morning route for dog walkers, bikers and joggers - with interviews (with the owners). It reports on animal charity events like "Walk for Paws," recently sponsored by the group "Nuts for Mutts."

    Internet radio, which claims about 20 million regular listeners, is still in the early stages of development and has a relatively small number of fans who use their laptops, desktops or hand-held computers to tune in.

    Mr. Martinez said he believed he had latched onto something unique with his little station: "With all the news you hear on Iraq, it's something to balance the bad news."

    Meanwhile, the broadcast has received some notice. Dr. Larry Family, who has a talk show program, the Pet Vet, on WROW-AM in Albany, recommends DogCatRadio to his patients' owners. "It's of interest to those people whose pets have certain phobias or anxiety issues," he said in a telephone interview from the outskirts of Schenectady, where he has his practice.

    "I have recommended it to those whose dogs are having certain problems behaviorwise in the home environment," he said.

    "It might be helpful with dogs with separation anxiety issues," Dr. Family went on. "Dogs, especially, are interested in watching TV with their owners and listening to music."

    Mr. Martinez said that at the moment, the station has no advertising and is making no money. But, he said, "I'm not in it for the money." He added, "Eventually, I'm sure, people will advertise."

    That is not such a leap, since it is estimated that American pet owners will spend $35.9 billion this year on everything from electric toothbrushes for dogs to bird pedicures to self-flushing litter boxes for cats, according to the American Pet Products Manufacturers Association.

    So far, the six people associated with the station, four of whom act as D.J.'s, are paid only a small stipend to cover expenses. "I'm so involved with the pet community," said Ms. Harris, the D.J. and an owner of five dogs. "I'm looking to this as an avenue to open something up." When Ms. Harris isn't broadcasting on DogCatRadio.com, she works as a market researcher.

    "How are all my furry friends doing out there?" Ms. Harris asked her listeners recently. "We hope you're doing great and not chewing on anything but your toys."

  2. #2
    Elite Member muchlove's Avatar
    Join Date
    Oct 2005
    Posts
    6,241

    Default

    That's, um... I guess it's cute, but also dumb.

    You can turn on any station and it will have the same effect. So... yeah.

  3. #3
    Elite Member Glasgow53's Avatar
    Join Date
    Oct 2005
    Location
    Connecticut, US
    Posts
    1,572

    Default

    I heard about this on NPR last night. I guess it makes sense for animals who belong to one person who has to go out and leave them alone for long periods of time, like work. Some animals benefit from hearing a radio while they are alone. As to whether they like certain songs better than others? That I don't know, I will have to check with my cats.
    Keep passing the open windows.

  4. #4
    Elite Member miss_perfect's Avatar
    Join Date
    Oct 2005
    Location
    F-Hell-A
    Posts
    3,364

    Default

    Yeah, I never really asked my cats if they prefer System of a Down or German techno. I wonder how my fish feel about Green Day...

  5. #5
    Hit By Ban Bus! WickedHo's Avatar
    Join Date
    Oct 2005
    Location
    NYC, baby!
    Posts
    9,249

    Default

    Quote Originally Posted by Glasgow53 View Post
    I heard about this on NPR last night. I guess it makes sense for animals who belong to one person who has to go out and leave them alone for long periods of time, like work. Some animals benefit from hearing a radio while they are alone. As to whether they like certain songs better than others? That I don't know, I will have to check with my cats.
    I have discovered that my cat likes: Bjork, jazz, Squirrel Nut Zippers. Actually, from my experience, all cats like Bjork. At least, the ones that have been exposed to Bjork. I dunno what that says about Bjork, but it sure says something.

  6. #6
    Hit By Ban Bus! pacific breeze's Avatar
    Join Date
    Oct 2005
    Location
    in the wild blue yonder
    Posts
    15,479

    Default

    Hee hee. I know someone who runs tapes of Wild Kingdom all day to keep her pets company. No word on what the critters think.

Thread Information

Users Browsing this Thread

There are currently 1 users browsing this thread. (0 members and 1 guests)

Similar Threads

  1. Sedating my cats
    By teforde23 in forum Pets and Animals
    Replies: 19
    Last Post: November 26th, 2006, 12:18 PM
  2. Cats that look like Hitler
    By twitchy in forum Laughs and Oddities
    Replies: 6
    Last Post: August 8th, 2006, 07:35 PM
  3. Panting dogs are laughing dogs
    By buttmunch in forum Pets and Animals
    Replies: 5
    Last Post: December 13th, 2005, 03:48 PM
  4. Cats to cause schizophrenia?
    By MaryJane in forum News
    Replies: 9
    Last Post: November 16th, 2005, 05:25 PM

Posting Permissions

  • You may not post new threads
  • You may not post replies
  • You may not post attachments
  • You may not edit your posts
  •