Scientists use purring sounds to make music specially designed for cats

Scientists in the United States have produced music specially created for cats mimicking the natural purring sounds of felines that can enrich the environments they live in and calm them down.

Psychologists at the University of Wisconsin-Madison and musicians from the University of Maryland say the species-appropriate music is a first for domestic cats, the Daily Mail Online reported.

Citing a paper published in the journal of Applied Animal Behaviour Science, the report said the scientists studied the tempos and melodies of the natural purrs and high pitched meows of felines.

They then used that as inspiration to create the species-appropriate music in the hope that the music would also be enjoyable to human ears.

Based on tests conducted by the scientists, the domestic cats responded more strongly to the species-appropriate music compared to the classical human music by famous composers such as Johann Sebastian Bach.

The cats, they said, showed their fondness for the feline music by approaching or rubbing themselves on the speakers more frequently than they did when listening to the human music.

According to the scientists, the benefits of the species-appropriate music - including enriching the felines' environments and calming the cats - could be useful in animal shelters.

"We think that cat music will be more interesting and calming for cats than random human music, which most of us use now.

"It could also be of value in animal shelters where more attention has been paid to helping dogs so far than to cats," Professor Charles Snowdon, a psychologist at the University of Wisconsin-Madison, told the Daily Mail Online.

One of the pieces created by Prof Snowdon along with Mr David Teie, a musician and composer at the University of Maryland, was called Cozmo's air.

The song had a pulsating rhythm that matched the sound of purring at 1380 beats per minute. Another, called Rusty's Ballad, imitated the rate of suckling by kittens at 250 beats per minute, according to the report.

And just like with humans, younger cats were more in tune with the species-appropriate music than older ones. Younger cats, the scientists said, were more excited about the music than middle-aged felines.