The world's first ever Christmas song for dogs

The first Christmas song for dogs has been released, to a howl of appreciation.

UK animal behaviourist Carolyn Menteith and Tails.com's head vet Sean McCormack created the "waggae" track for dogs to raise funds for men's mental health charity Dudes and Dogs.

'Raise the Woof' is a tail-thumping mix of chilled reggae beats, high pitched squeaks, bells, and human voices offering treats and walkies.

A YouTube video shows dogs responding with wagging tails, joyful leaps and barking to the beat.

"It sounds a little bit crazy, doesn't it, to have a holiday record for dogs, but it's been the kind of year this year that none of us could have imagined - and through all the craziness, our dogs have been there.

"They've helped us get through it, they've given us routine, they've given us normality, they've given us love and we just needed to give them something back - and what better than a Christmas record purely for dogs," said Menteith.

Although the track is "a bit of fun", there is also science behind it.

Photo: Getty Images
Photo: Getty Images
The selection of music was informed by research showing dogs in rescue centres have lower heart rates when played reggae, soft rock or classical music, Menteith said.

A focus group of 25 dogs of different breeds, shapes and sizes was used to identify sounds that make dogs tilt their head, prick up their ears and maybe even dance around the room.

The song was recorded at the famous Abbey Road Studios in London where, ironically, Al Stewart laid down 'Year of the Cat' in 1975.

Menteith, who is the official trainer for the Crufts dog show on television, said filming the video for the song was a bark a minute.

"That was all non-trained dogs in a studio environment with cameras and people and every single one of them had a great time.

"I don't think I've ever seen dogs enjoy a video shoot so much and it was just a celebration of dogs - which I think 'Raise the Woof' is about."

The proceeds from the track will go to Dudes and Dogs, a UK charity that organises walks for men and dogs.

"Quite a lot of men have problems talking about mental health, because strength has been prioritised so much.

"Exercise helps people with anxiety and depression.

"Dudes and Dogs has found out getting men out walking, they are more likely to talk, and they are more likely to walk if they are with a dog."

Menteith said dogs had become part of people's families more than at any other time - "and Christmas has to be about all family members".

"Get dancing around the Christmas tree with your dog," she said.

"We have dogs to make the good days better and the bad days bearable and to have fun with them.

"So I would say, put on 'Raise the Woof' and get into it as much as your dog does."

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