Or, in Shiva’s case, only unhappy when it rains. I’ve had the old Garbage song in my head for several days and couldn’t resist a using the title here, as melancholic as it may be.
A friend of mine shared an image on Facebook that has got me Google searching things I don’t think I’ve ever typed before. Things revolving around “refraction” and “wave relationships”. It’s all a little too sciencey for my humanties-loving brain. After finishing high school physics, I never thought I’d see the day I’d spend hours reading articles on physicsclassroom.com just for my own personal interest.
Dogs, they change your life in mysterious ways.
Here is the image that caused my sudden plunge into geekdom:
Unfortunately, I haven’t been able to find any specific scientific data proving this concept. It seems no one has actually done an experiment to see if rain really does amplify sound in a way that bothers dogs. At least, not that I could ferret out. But from what I have learned about reflection, refraction, and the more interesting diffraction, it is certainly possible.
Not to get too dorky but the reflection of sound waves can cause a number of interesting effects on our heating. When sound waves reflect off of curved surfaces with a parabolic shape, like water, they frequently focus to a point. These waves then concentrate their energy toward that single point in space. At that point, the sound is amplified. Also, sound waves travel faster in a denser medium, such as rain. A change in wave speed causes a change in wavelength. The higher the compression of the wave, the louder the sound.
Thus, I think there is the potential for sound-sensitive dogs to be bothered by the rain. Or, I could have misinterpreted everything and be completely wrong. There is a pretty good chance of that.
Regardless of everything, I still don’t think this excuse works for Shiva. She regularly sleeps through fireworks displays and has never shown a sign of distress at the sound of thunder. My nerves freak out at loud banging sounds but Shiva barely acknowledges them.
However, I would love to know what you think? Do your dogs run away screaming from the rain like mine does? Do you think the sound could be the cause? Are you as amazed I passed physics as I am?