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One in Five Pet Owners Prefer Their Pet to Their Partner

15 April 2016

UK - The study of 2,000 pet owners – commissioned by Panasonic Smart Home to celebrate National Pet Month – found not even our closest loved ones are a match for the bond we have with our animals.

Over a quarter of respondents claiming they are at their happiest when at home alone with their pet, while more than a third preferred quality time with their furry companion over time spent with most of their friends.

Perhaps it comes at a cost as one in six say their pet has cost them a relationship or friendship and a third say their animal has directly impacted their social life.

But that hasn’t halted pet owners. In fact, over half of those studied said they’d like to be able to talk to their pet while away from home if there was a way to do so.

The incredible insight into the strength of the bond and our dedication to Britain’s cats and dogs was commissioned by the Panasonic Smart Home monitoring system, which allows us to keep an eye on our beloved companions when we’re away from home.

Clearly our devotion is well reciprocated- the average pet owner gets 884 hours (37 solid days) of quality time with their pet each year.

And we might well forget the birthdays of our nearest and dearest but never our pet – 56 per cent of those studied actively celebrate their pet’s birthday results showed.

That may explain why three in four British pets are spoiled, according to results.

Yesterday a spokesman for Panasonic Smart Home said: “The results show the relationship we have with our pets is unshakeable and sometimes there’s nothing else, or no one else, that can compete.

“The unique bond between a pet and their owner is testament to just how much our pets bring to our daily lives and how they shape our social and working routines.

“And rather than regret or reconsider the decision to take on a pet, the results showed quite the opposite- respondents wanted more time with their pet and the ability to check in on them when they’re away from home.”

And much as we love them they can test our patience – stealing the neighbour’s Sunday dinner, flooding the kitchen and smashing an urn containing the ashes of a loved one were just some of the revealing insights into what our pets can get up to unsupervised.

One dog attempted a ‘great escape’ – managing to tunnel through the kitchen floorboards- spending two days under the house.

And one woman returned home to find her cats had somehow flicked the tap on and were sat marooned on top of the washing machine with the entire kitchen flooded.

While another greedy cat dragged a whole cooked chicken into the house through the cat flap – with the owners too embarrassed to find out which neighbour’s Sunday dinner had been stolen.

Remarkably, another couple returned home to greet their overweight tomcat, only to find he was in fact a ‘she’ and had given birth to kittens whilst they were away.

There was also a university student whose dog really did eat her homework, while a pair of glasses, designer handbag and even a set of false teeth also made the menu for Britain’s canine companions.

Other strange surprises awaiting pet owners included many a pet being curiously the wrong side of a supposedly locked door, while several clever animals learned just how to open the fridge – and demolish the contents.

Just under half of respondents said they were less stressed because of their pet, while boosts to avoiding loneliness and having more energy were common.

Many owners even rely on a pet psychologist- more than half ask their pets questions despite knowing they won’t get an answer, while one in four has spoken to their ‘relationship councillor’ about their partner, or commented on them while they are still in the room.

The Panasonic spokesman added: “Whether they give us unlimited affection, an attentive ear, help us de-stress or make us feel more secure in our homes, our pets play a very important part in our lives.

“Supporting such hardworking pets is just one of the benefits of the Panasonic Smart Home monitoring system. Designed with the needs of a regular person, family or our furry friends firmly in mind, the system enables you to check on your home while you’re out and about, giving you peace of mind however busy your lifestyle.

“To celebrate National Pet Month, Panasonic Smart Home is giving Very Important Pets and their owners the chance to win a host of VIP prizes to enjoy. Check out:

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