Loving a Pet Brings More Joy Than Best Friends, Parents, Siblings, or Spouses Can, Says Survey

Well, of course, they're furry and don't hog the TV.

Long walks on the beach and gazing into each other’s eyes — ah, good times with your pet.

More than two in three families (68 percent) in the U.S. own a pet of some sort, and most love them more than other people, according to a new survey. So what would they do to keep them around forever?

Cats and dogs make up some of the most popular pets in the country. On average, dogs typically live between six and 14 years based on their breed, diet, and overall health, while the average cat life span ranges from 10 to 15 years.

Nearly two out of three people polled for Petsies said they’d cut coffee out of their lives forever if it meant they could have their furry friends back again. Sixty-four percent said they would be willing to give up social media to have their pet live forever. More than a quarter of those asked would turn down their dream job, and 40 percent said they’d pass on a free trip around the world if it meant being able to hold their pets again.

Most questioned compared losing a beloved pet to the feeling of a human death.

“Given a scale with one being the least amount of emotional pain and seven being extreme emotional pain, nearly a third of cat and dog owners rated their response to a pet’s death a heartbreaking seven,” says the study.

Over 50 percent of dog and cat owners said getting a new pet brought them extreme joy (a seven out of seven) and most said that furry friends outrank real friends (and even spouses) more often than not.

“Loving a pet gave as much joy as loving their significant other,” says the survey. “People also said loving a pet brought them more joy than their best friends, parents, siblings, and co-workers.”

And losing a pet? Those surveyed said the pain of losing a pet was akin to getting divorced, and the loss was worse than being separated from their children for an extended period or being let go from a job.

Unleashed is Bravo's celebration of pamper-worthy pets and how to spoil them. Want more? Then Like us on Facebook to stay connected to our daily updates.

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