Adoptions increase after shelter starts playing classical music

Published: May. 9, 2016 at 11:13 AM EDT|Updated: May. 13, 2016 at 2:40 PM EDT
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COLUMBUS COUNTY, NC (WECT) - Many of you like to listen to calming music on your way home from work, or at night to help you unwind from your day.

Now, some shelters in our area are taking note on the impact it has on you and are using it in their shelters, but it's not for employees.

According to the Rescue Animal MP3 project, New Hanover County Animal Shelter and Columbus County Animal Shelter are two of 43 shelters, humane societies and rescues across our state that are playing its music.

"The dog in the kennel is not the best way to present a dog, it's actually one of the worst," explained Joey Prince, director of the Columbus County Animal Shelter. "However, when the family walks up and the dog is calm and friendly then that dog has a real chance to go home with that family."

WECT asked Prince where he got the idea. It turns out it was a simple Google search.

"I actually typed in a search in Google and it said 'animal shelter conditions,'" he said.

Prince said the music has helped cut the adjustment period down for the dogs since they started playing it in December.

He said before, it would take three to four days for dogs to adjust and many of them would cower to the back of their kennel.

He said now, the adjustment period is only about one to two days and the dogs are much calmer when families come to the shelter.

"You are only getting one chance to make a first impression, and the dog needs that as well," Prince said. "So it is really important for him or her to be calm and friendly looking."

The Columbus County Animal Shelter got the grant for the MP3 player and music in December.

So, WECT asked for the number of adoptions they had for January, February and March of this year compared to last year with no music.

It turns out the number of adoptions have nearly quadrupled.

In Jan. 2015 the animal shelter had six adoptions, whereas in Jan. 2016 they had 25. Likewise, Feb. 2015 only saw two adoptions, but Feb. 2016 saw an increase to 31 adoptions. Lastly, March 2015 had 10 adoptions and March 2016 had 17.

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