NewYou can listen to Fox News stories now!

Should every pig have a playlist?

Scientists in Belgium are investigating a farmer’s claim that different types of music are affecting the behavior of his pigs.

Piet Paesmans first noticed this phenomenon when his son started singing a tune in the barn during a late pregnancy.

Cats are classified as ‘invasive alien species’ by the Polish Scientific Institute

His sows seemed better in tune – and started wagging their tails too.

“I thought it was very good— [that] We have to try it with other pigs as well,” Paesmans told Reuters.

His farm is halfway between Brussels and the Dutch border.

A pig in a field.  A farmer in Belgium created a music playlist for his pigs to use at different times of the day.

A pig in a field. A farmer in Belgium created a music playlist for his pigs to use at different times of the day.
(Anna Sweet/Sweet Farm)

Farmer has now created a playlist for different parts of the day.

When he wants the pigs to be active, he plays upbeat music.

He switched to lullabies at the end of the day, Reuters reported.

“Jolly dance songs are the biggest hits,” he says of his pigs’ likes.

“They start really wagging their tails and when it’s really dynamic, they start dancing around and even frolicking,” he said.

“Jolly dance songs are the biggest hits,” the farmer says of his pigs’ likes.

Ah, but rock music – that doesn’t work, he told Reuters.

“It’s too strong — they don’t like it,” he said.

Murder hornets have a new name in Washington state after an insect group created a ‘common name’

Reuters reported that the farmer tipped off a team of investigators who received $76,000 in financing from an EU fund and the Belgian region of Flanders to investigate the claims.

The farmer’s experience is consistent with existing knowledge about the effects of noise on animals in general.

Project coordinator Sander Palmans told Reuters that not much is known about the pigs’ reaction to music.

A piglet runs away in the grass. "The effect of certain sounds on animals is undoubted," A farmer in Belgium told of the pigs' reactions to the music he was playing.

A piglet runs away in the grass. “The effect of certain sounds on the animals is unmistakable,” said a farmer in Belgium about the pigs’ reactions to the music he was playing.
(Volodymyr Burdyak)

Yet Pacemans’ experience was consistent with existing knowledge about the effects of sounds in general on animals.

“There is no doubt that certain sounds have an effect on animals. So it’s possible that music has the same effect,” he says, adding that it can help reduce boredom associated with stress.

Veterinarians are struggling with today’s national pet blood shortage

The new findings may have practical implications for the industry, as stress in animals can affect meat quality, Paesmans said.

Pigs certainly aren’t the first animals to respond to music.

“A top athlete needs to be fully fit physically, but also mentally,” he told Reuters. “And it’s the same for pigs. When they’re slaughtered, you can see when they’re under a lot of stress … it’s very important for the quality of the meat.”

Research results are expected by the end of the year.

As more French bulldogs are being stolen, pet lovers want to know: What’s going on with the breed?

Pigs certainly aren’t the first animals to respond to music.

For example, a 2015 study at the University of Wisconsin at Madison found that cats are highly responsive to certain types of music.

They really like the music written for them.

Several-week-old pigs stand in a barn at Pastian Enterprises in Walcott, Iowa, in November 2014.  The results of the research on pigs in Belgium are expected by the end of this year.

Several-week-old pigs stand in a barn at Pastian Enterprises in Walcott, Iowa, in November 2014. The results of the research on pigs in Belgium are expected by the end of this year.
(Reuters)

Charles Snowden, lead author of the 2015 study and professor emeritus of psychology, said scientists are not trying to replicate cat sounds.

“We’re trying to create music with a pitch and tempo that appeals to cats,” Snowden said in a statement, citing The Badger Herald in an article about the study.

“To test the music, Snowden and former UW undergraduate student Megan Savage played music for 47 cats,” reports The Badger Herald.

Shark Quiz! How well do you know your sharks this summer?

“They played four samples, two classical music and two cat music selections.”

The study, which appeared in Applied Animal Behavior Science, found that positive responses from cats to music were “purring and walking toward the speaker” — while “the negative response was hissing and leaning back.”

Click here to get the Fox News app

“When cats heard cat music, the response was more positive than human music. Cats responded positively to cat music after 110 seconds, compared to 171 seconds to human music.”

Reuters contributed to the reporting of this story.