Can Dogs Hear Bass?

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Introduction

Dogs are known for their excellent senses, namely, smell and hearing. Although dogs are born deaf, they begin to develop their hearing skills at around three weeks old. There are 18 muscles that control the movement of their ears - compared to just six for humans. This not only explains why their hearing is so good, but also how sensitive their ears are. 

Our four-legged friends can detect sounds between 40-60,000 Hz, while humans hear in the range of 20-20,000 Hz. Of course, this may vary depending on the breed, but let's assume most dogs hear in this range for today's purposes. This gives us a better idea of what kinds of sounds and noises dogs can hear. 

When it comes to music, dogs are quite receptive, even if they don't know exactly what these sounds are! Low bass, for one, dogs can hear, and they can also detect much higher pitches than the human ear. 

Signs Your Dog Can Hear Bass

We've established that your dog can hear much better than you can, which is why they often perk up at something before you ever know it's there. When it comes to music - bass, in particular - dogs are quite receptive, sometimes to their detriment. Sound is measured in different ways, perhaps most commonly in loudness and pitch. Pitch, for one, is measured by the frequency of wavelengths that are transmitted. 

Many experts believe that dogs with large, erect ears can hear upwards of 75,000 Hz, which is why they often react to noises that are well beyond our range. As you can see from the comparison between dog's hearing and ours, they have a far greater ability to hear sounds of a higher pitch over those that are low. They can also pick up on many different sounds we can't in everyday life, such as certain noises on the TV and noises from common household appliances. 

Each dog is different, but there are a few common behaviors your dog will display when they hear a sound like low bass. You may notice their ears moving independently of one another, twitching back and forth, or even lying down on their head if the noise is just too much. 

Bass, for one, often carries deep vibrations that we can feel in our bodies, and the same goes for your furry best friend. This is something to consider when you are cranking up the sound system and jamming out to your favorite tunes! 

Body Language

Here are signs your dog can hear bass:
  • Listening
  • Raise ears
  • Back hair on edge
  • Ears up

Other Signs

These are a few other signs your pawsome partner can hear that low bass:
  • Looking around for the noise
  • Dropped ears
  • Leaving the room (it's just too much!)

History of Dogs Hearing Bass

We have learned a lot about dogs' hearing over the years, which is wonderful because it helps us understand man's best friend even better! We know they have excellent hearing and can detect noises that are well beyond our range, but understanding what, exactly, they are hearing is a whole different story. 

Humans love music, there's no question about that, but how do dogs feel? While it would be a lot easier if we could just ask them what they thought about our favorite song, it simply doesn't work that way. Researchers and scientists alike have spent countless hours studying how dogs hear and what noises they can detect. We know that their hearing range is impressive, to say the least, and we also know they can hear things we cannot. 

However, we don't know exactly what common sounds in our world - like our favorite Bob Dylan song - sounds like to our furry friends. Because of this, it is also a good idea to play it safe and not expose our dogs to too loud of music. The last thing you want is to damage your ears just because you wanted to feel that bass! 

Science Behind Dog Hearing Bass

When we are around loud noises, for example, we have the option to leave the room or even plug our ears to protect them. Unfortunately, dogs do not have this same luxury. So, how much do loud noises such as a low bass harm a dog's hearing? Before we go any further, it's important to note that the audio spectrum range spans from 20 Hz to 20,000 Hz. This is in a human's range, as you can see. 

Dogs can hear a much broader range than we can, especially on the higher end. However, they may not be able to hear sub bass, which usually ranges from 20 to 60 Hz. Sub bass is the first usable low frequencies in most musical recordings, and it is often felt more than it is heard. The next step up is the most broad spectrum of bass and these signals typically lie around 90 to 200 Hz, which is well within your dog's range of hearing. 

Training Your Dog to Hear Bass

Dogs want to please their owners, which is just one reason why they are so trainable. There are many different things you can teach your dog to do, such as hunt, perform tricks, and even pick up on certain noises. If you are considering training your dog how to respond to certain noises like bass, it is first and foremost important you never do anything that could harm their ears. Always discuss your concerns or intentions with your vet first, as they will be able to advise you on what is appropriate and what could be harmful. 

As discussed, bass can range in frequency, from as low as 20 Hz to 20 kHz for 'brilliance bass'. Most dogs cannot hear the low, low bass, but they can hear pitches way higher than we could imagine hearing. If you want to train your pooch to respond to a certain sound or song, make sure it isn't in a range that could cause damage. Once you've done this, you are in the clear. Training your dog to respond to music won't be easy, but it can be done with a lot of hard work, repetition, and treats!

Safety Tips for When Your Dog Hears Bass:

  • Make sure it's not too loud.
  • Consider doggy ear muffs or earplugs.
  • Don't expose your dog to loud noises on a regular basis.
  • Watch their behavior.

We Want to Hear About Your Dog Hearing Bass!