Apart from offering companionship and love, pets can also boost your sex appeal, researchers say.
According to new research, dogs and cats are seen a crucial member of a family and many men and women agree that caring for a dog can be attractive in a potential partner.
In collaboration with the pet store chain in the US, PetSmart, the researchers recruited 1,210 single pet owners through online dating service Match.com.
In the pool of participants, 60 percent were women and 40 percent were men. While 72 percent owned dogs, 42 percent were cat owners.
The subjects took a 21-question online survey about how pets entered into their dating lives and 35 percent of women and 26 percent of men said they were more attracted to someone because they owned a pet.
"The direction of these patterns in results was toward cats being exploited less often than dogs as "social tools" in the dating world," Peter Gray, the study author, said.
Cat owners may feel 'ruffly' treated by the results of the survey with dogs serving more commonly as social barometers in the dating arena than cats did, with dogs winning 500 of the 600 votes for the sexiest pet a guy could own.
The study was published by Taylor & Francis Group in the journal Anthrozoos.