Who knew I had such a cool cat? And I mean that in the jazzy, hepcat sense of the phrase.

According to Spotify, my cat, Hazel, is a laid-back hipster connoisseur of the easy life who likes to take it smooth. And to be honest, that pretty much fits her personality. I just wonder how Spotify knew.

In case you haven't heard, the online music streaming app has created a way to use its algorithms for pet owners — be it dog, cat, iguana, hamster or bird — to generate a playlist for their pets. You simply choose from the options menu describing your pet, and the app creates a list of songs for them.

The playlist is really for them (not you), but Hazel's includes songs by Ravi Shankar, Charlie Haden, Keith Jarrett and Manu Katché, so I will likely listen to it as well. Plus there is the whole issue of actually turning it on, which she hasn't figured out yet, and the headphones just will not stay on her ears, so it's a mutual enjoyment thing.


Hear Hazel’s Pet Playlist at To create a playlist for your own pet, visit

Not to brag, but Hazel's playlist also includes "God Only Knows" by The Beach Boys — only one of the prettiest songs ever recorded — and "I Need You" by Marc Rebillet. Now if you know who Rebillet is, you know that he performs as Loop Daddy; and if you know that, you are crazy-cool like Hazel, because that's a good pull.

For the record, not that long ago, the idea of having a cat, much less talking about it as if it were a child, was not only foreign to me, but fairly repulsive. These days, however, Hazel and I have fairly lengthy conversations, very often initiated by her, though I'm always game to engage. They start around 5:30 every morning, and pretty much continue throughout the day unless she is sleeping, which is most of the time.

I'll often ask what she has planned for the day as I read the paper, and later, how her day went. She always has some quick response, usually thrown over her shoulder as she walks toward the kitchen in a follow-me sort of way. At least to my ears she answers. My guess is that every meow really means the food bowl is empty and it needs to be remedied ASAP, which explains the follow-me attitude.

Point is, the idea of making a playlist for her makes purrfect sense. (I apologize for that.) And of course Spotify didn't just come up with this idea out of nowhere. They did actual research, and surprise, surprise, found out that people all over the world like their pets. A lot.

According to the site's findings, 71% of pet owners have played music for their pets, and eight in 10 believe their pets like the music. Most pets like classical or soft rock, the researchers found.

I can say with authority that Hazel does like classical and has no opinion on soft rock because it doesn't get played much in our house. She is partial to The Beatles and doesn't care for Bassnectar, by the way, but it could be because when I play it, it's so loud that things fall off the shelves. How else does one play Bassnectar?

The survey also found that pet owners would choose their pet over a partner if forced to pick. I probably won't mention that to Hazel. Or my wife.