Should I Leave Music or the TV on When I Go to Work? Many dogs and cats can be friendly, cuddly, and want companionship. When you spend time with your pets and are home often, they may get used to that and develop an anxious reaction when they are left home alone.

If a pet has separation anxiety and doesn’t like to be alone, there are many ways they might react when you leave them home alone. An anxious dog might howl, bark and claw on things they’re not supposed to, or even go to the bathroom indoors (even if they’re housetrained). A cat might tear up your belongings and do their business in places other than their litter box.


We at Presidential Pet Care® want your pet to be comfortable and happy at all times, just like you do. So we’re digging into common advice for pet owners: 

Should I leave the TV or radio on when I leave my pet at home?

The idea that noise from the TV or music can calm a dog or cat when they’re alone has been around for a long time. There’s even a television channel devoted to dogs – it’s called DogTV, and it provides dog-focused programming 24 hours a day.

But, the questions still linger – is that sort of noise really helpful?


Cats seem to like “cat music”

A study published in 2015 by Applied Animal Behavior Science and conducted by a team at the University of Wisconsin-Madison revealed that cats really aren’t interested in classical music, but they react more favorably (and obviously) to music created for cats, by University of Maryland composer David Teie. The basic evidence? Cats showed little to no interest in the human classical music, but approached the speakers and rubbed against them when Teie’s music played.

Another cute cat

As for dogs, if you want to leave the television on, there are a few things to think about:

  • Your dog may calm down and sleep while you’re away.
  • Older dogs may be more acclimated to being alone if you’ve started training early on.
  • There are things you can do to lessen the separation anxiety, whether you leave the TV or radio on or not.
  • If you have multiple pets, (two dogs, for example), they can keep each other company if they generally have a positive relationship when you’re there with them.
  • The TV or radio can mask unpleasant sounds, or even drown out your pet if you leave them on loud enough.


Audiobooks might be an option for dogs

A study has shown that dogs do react favorably when you turn on an audiobook before you leave them home alone.

This time it's a cute dog

In 2017, researchers at Hartpury College in the United Kingdom looked at how dogs reacted to a variety of sounds, including audiobooks played for dogs in rescue shelters. 

The three main takeaways of the study were this: 

  • Kenneled dogs rested more when audiobooks were played for them.
  • Dogs sat and stood less when audiobooks were played.
  • Audiobooks could be an enrichment option for kenneled dogs. 

We can’t provide the right answer to whether you should leave the television on for your dog or cat –  that’s really your call, but if your routine includes those actions when you leave, you can be sure that we’ll leave the television or radio on for your pet.


Presidential Pet Care is a force-free dog walking and pet sitting company located in Northern Virginia that facilitates harmonious relationships between people and their pets. To learn more about our dog walking, pet sitting, field trips or overnights, check out our services page, call us at 571-730-7730 or use our form on our contact page! You can also check out our online store that has a variety of pet products that your pet will love!

Lauren Heath
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