PAPILLION, Neb. - A Nebraska cellist's music is going to the dogs, and that's exactly how she wants it. The musician is helping a Nebraska animal shelter keep its puppies relaxed and ready for adoption.
Dressed in concert black, cello in hand, Cheryl Wallace arrived at her performance venue, which is not your typical music hall. "I'm a musician and I had heard that music can calm shelter dogs," Wallace told KETV.
Her rowdy audience at Papillion's Town and Country Shelter was eager for the show to start. Just a few minutes into the canine concerto, once-curious eyes started to close. "Now, if you were playing in a concert hall and your audience went to sleep, you might be insulted. But for me that is a high compliment," said Wallace. "I'm stroking 20 dogs at a time when I do this."
Veterinarians say there are some real benefits to having dogs listen to music. Dr. Mike Rukstalis says, "There are some studies that have shown that playing music and specifically classical music can actually calm down animals and lower that stress response to an environment like a shelter or a rescue."
Wallace says she has been playing to shelter dogs for the past six months. She has given about 16 shows at five different animal shelters and said the animals prefer their music "low and slow, like Italian cooking."