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New research suggests that our feline friends calm down when listening to classical music

Need your cat to relax? Play him a tune!

Saturday, April 4, 2015, 5:15 AM - Turns out the sound of music does more than just making the hills come alive.

Music also relaxes cat undergoing surgery—but not any kind of music. According to the latest research, it's classical musical like George Handel that works most effectively on the felines.

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The research was published in the Journal of Feline Medicine and Surgery and came from a clinic in Portugal.

"In the surgical theatres at the faculty where I teach and at the private veterinary medical centre where I spend my time operating, environmental music is always present and is an important element in promoting a sense of well-being in the team, the animals and the owners," explained Miguel Carreira, lead author. "During consultations I have noticed that most cats like classical music[...]and become more calm, confident and tolerant throughout the clinical evaluation."

After noticing this unlikely patter, Carreira decided to test out the theory on his surgical patients.

Audiophile cat has excellent taste: HifiMan HE500 orthodynamic headphones.

A photo posted by Deepak (@chuckofalltrades) on

For the study, 12 female cats undergoing neutering surgery were exposed to two minutes of silences followed by two minute intervals of Barber's "Adagio for Strings (Opus 11)", Natalie Imbruglia's "Torn" and AC/DC's "Thunderstruck."

The results speaks volumes. By paying close attention to the respiratory rate and pupil diameter, scientists found that cats were in their most relaxed state by listening to classical music.

Carreira plans to continue his research by investigating how music could affect dogs and other animals, as well as taking a closer look at the physiological changes in the animals by using MRIs and electroencephalography.

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