Man’s best friend no longer has to put up with joining humans on the sofa for soaps or the latest binge-watch series – soon the nation’s dogs will have a range of specialist pooch-friendly content to enjoy.
DogTV is a new television network created specifically for our four-legged friends which is set to launch in the UK on Monday.
Created after three years of research, the channel will air scientifically tested programming aiming to alleviate symptoms of conditions such as separation anxiety, loneliness and stress, bosses say. It will also have shows to help owners better understand and look after their pets.
With the number of people getting dogs rising dramatically during the lockdowns, it could be a timely arrival – especially as many owners have now returned to work and animals are being left alone more.
The channel has been developed following studies into animals’ physiological and psychological needs, moods and responses, to help them feel more stimulated or relaxed when needed, producers said in a statement.
Colours, audio frequencies and camera alignment have all been adapted to cater to dog senses.
Professor Nicholas Dodman, chief scientist for DogTV, said: “DogTV is an excellent resource for dog owners to help alleviate some of the behavioural problems that can arise when dogs are left alone.
“With numbers of dog owners rising over the pandemic, and owners now returning to work, DogTV helps canines to feel relaxed and comforted until their owners return home.”
The channel, which is already available in other countries, will also feature programmes for dog owners, including shows by celebrity dog trainer Laura Nativo, who will provide tips on how to live better at home with a pet, as well as programmes that provide simple recipes for dogs.
According to Dog TV, one out of six dogs suffers from overt separation anxiety.
Symptoms that appear when owners are away can range from excessive barking and refusing to eat, to trying to escape and destructive behaviour.
British animal trainer Victoria Stilwell said: “People think that DogTV is a bit of a weird concept at first, but when I tell them the amount of research that has gone into this – that this TV channel can help their dogs while home alone, improve their lives considerably and help with different stresses and anxieties – they get it.”
The service will be available on a range of smart TVs, Android and Apple devices and online.