TECHNOLOGY AND OUR PETS

By Monday, February 25, 2019 6 No tags Permalink

Is all this technology too much for our pets?

Technology – good for us, but is it good for our pets?

Have you ever given it much thought? 

Are the secret flickers and noises that home technology transmit affecting our beloved four legged family members?

Did you know 20 percent of dogs suffer from noise phobias?

I used to associate noise phobias to thunderstorms, fireworks, or something new and startling that hadn’t been introduced properly – like a vacuum cleaner.

That was until most recently.

CAN SOUNDS HURT OUR PETS – 

The reason this topic became of interest to me was because of a Grandfather Clock we purchased decades ago while stationed in Germany…

He has no issues with this clock as long as the pendulum is still.

During the first year of Jaxson’s life it was never used because – well who remembers – I just know it stood in a corner and we never swayed the pendulum. #humanlazyness

Fast forward to SC – after a several months in storage, it’s now in the house. However, the pendulum still doesn’t move because when the clock chimes on the hour – Jaxson cries. #likeanewborn

He’s not trying to howl with the sound of the chimes, he’s actually crying as if something is hurting him. Stupid me, I even changed the melody thinking he didn’t like my first choice.

He still cried.

I then became very interested in different sounds – especially high pitched sounds, and how they reacted.

LET’S TALK TELEVISIONS – 

My husband adores the television. Cable means more to him than me. #owningthisfact

To feed this obsession, he’s made provisions for the ginormous screen, complete with surround sound and way too many speakers…

Bigger doesn’t always make it better…

An action movie was his Saturday night movie choice and at one point the sound was deafening. This warranted a discussion using the Boys as an example. I asked him –

how do you think this sounds to them? 

NOISE SENSITIVITY – 

The researchers hypothesize that when a dog suffering from pain gets startled or tenses up from a loud or sudden noise, it aggravates their pain. This causes a learned association between loud sounds and pain to develop, which can easily generalize to all kinds of situations where the dog has experienced noise.

American Kennel Club

Independence Day or the cannon from the Citadel football games (that’s a whole other story #geez) I cannot control, but things in my home, perhaps I can.

The Boys sense of hearing is totally different from mine. Did you know that something as simple as a smoke detector emitting a constant high-pitched noise can torment our pets? #whoknew

What we call “ultrasound” is just sound, but our gadgets aren’t designed with that in mind. Meant to appeal to human buyers, consumer electronics eliminate only the high-pitched noise that we hear. Our household pets can be left with an unconsidered residual.

Cnet
There’s a substantial difference between humans and pets…

While experts are still trying to figure out exactly how these noises may affect them. One study has already proven that noise can alter the heart, sleep and endocrine cycles in animals.

SO WHAT CAN WE DO? – 

Since Jaxson nor Harley can tell me what may or may not be bothering them, it’s very difficult to determine the severity (if any) of the problem(s) with ultrasonic emissions on our electronic devices.

The worst offenders however, are the hardest to control –

  • LED bulbs in a table lamp
  • 42-inch LCD televisions on the wall

The unheard noise our pets may be dealing with all the time is the unseen light flicker from the LED light. They flicker on and off all the time (whether they are dimmed or bright). We probably don’t detect it, but to your pet it’s a disco ball that never stops.

But I did read about a few strategies to help reduce some of these sounds and flickers.

  • Unplug certain devices when not in use if possible.
  • Create a quiet room in the home with no electronics or LED lights.
  • Shop for LED lights with low flicker ratings.

DREAM SPACE – 

As the renovations continue – we are now working upstairs in the bedrooms. We decided a while ago NOT to use the master bedroom closet for its intended use (this too is another story!)

I plan to remove the doors and add shelves to house our books. We both love to read. The closet is already framed, and would require minimal creativity, time, and money.

After reading about the potential problems technology may be causing our pets, I was elated when I found this picture on Facebook and thought about my book shelf closet…

And YES – I certainly do plan on hanging a few family photos LOL

So, we will now split the closet in half – top with shelves for books, bottom for the Boys to have a quiet place. The length and depth of the closet is pawfect for their huge beds. This should work especially well during football season when the Citadel shoots off the cannon (don’t worry I will share this story soon) at their home games.

DO THE BEST WE CAN – 

Many items in our homes are necessities. As smart home technology continues to offer opportunities to enhance and advance our existence, let us be mindful to consider our pets as well. 

I for one am going to start thinking more and more about them, as I continue to DIY this house of mine. 

How about you? Any tips to share with the rest of us? Please do!

In a world where you can be anything – be kind ❤️




6 Comments
  • Cheryl
    February 25, 2019

    Thank you for this blog post. I had no idea that swapping out our incandescent light bulbs for energy saving bulbs would/could harm our granddoodle!
    I used to joke about our cats covering their ears when my husband played his music so loud the windows rattled, now I just learned I bet they wished they could have covered their ears!
    Your post has given me more ammunition to argue that the music needs to be turned down to save the granddogs ears! Thank you.

  • Madison
    February 26, 2019

    Mom isn’t into loud much, so we don’t have a lot of noisy things at our house. The lights have never seemed to bother us, but the LED ones are not on very often or very long. The ones that are on a lot are the old ceiling bulb kinds. In the car sometimes Mom will crank up a song and that does not sit well with us, but it is short lived. I think one has to read their dog to see what they are alright with, and what bothers them. Good post because especially with home theaters and surround sound, lots of dogs are subjected to noise that hurts the ears.

  • Debbie
    February 26, 2019

    Thank you for sharing. Great information and advice❣️

    • Cathy Bennett
      March 2, 2019

      Hello Debbie – thanks so much for stopping by, please come back again soon.

  • jan
    February 26, 2019

    Having a quiet retreat for our dogs and cats is such a great idea. I’ve been thinking about where to put one, A closet seems ideal.

  • Monika, Sam & Elsa
    February 28, 2019

    What a super clever solution you have decided upon. Love it. My housemate is plugged in 24/7 and it agitates me; can’t imagine what it does for the dogs. I’ll have to note how they behave when the TV is on. Luckily there’s no tech allowed in the bedroom so he pups and I can slumber in peace and quiet without any ‘blue screen noise’ to hamper peaceful

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