New research released ahead of Valentine’s Day by The Kennel Club reveals that nearly half of dog owners (48 per cent) would choose to forego any potential romance in favour of cuddling up on the couch with their canine friend, admitting that they would rather have a night in their dog than go on a date.
And it’s not only love interests that face rejection, as more than two in five (41 per cent) confess they’d rather spend Valentine’s Day with their dog more than anyone else, meaning any ‘Galentines’ plans this month could also be off the cards. Dog owners who are coupled-up are no different in showing a preference for their pets, with 42 per cent revealing they spend more time with their dog than their partner, and nearly three-quarters (71 per cent) of owners say that their dog is their ideal ‘go to’ for a cuddle and affection, with half (50 per cent) choosing their partner, and only a fifth (20 per cent) picking a friend.
Nearly two-thirds of owners (60 per cent) also claim that not only does their dog understand them better than most people, but equally that they find more comfort in their canine counterpart than humans, underlining the strong, unbreakable bond between dogs and their owners. With potential suitors already at a disadvantage in coming second best, it could also be curtains for any budding relationship if they aren’t compatible with the top dog, as half of owners (49 per cent) state they wouldn’t date someone their dog didn’t like, and more than half (59 per cent) admit they wouldn’t be in a relationship with someone who didn’t like dogs.
Bill Lambert, spokesperson for The Kennel Club, said: "It's well-known that dogs provide unconditional love and unwavering companionship so perhaps it is no surprise we prefer to spend quality time with our reliable best friends, compared with the uncertainty of meeting a potential partner.
“However, just like any successful relationship, a dog requires long-term commitment and compromise and, with over 200 different dog breeds in the UK with varying needs, traits and personalities, the search for ‘the one’ requires plenty of dedication and patience.
“A good first step to help you find your paw-tential partner is meeting prospective matches at Crufts, taking place at the NEC in Birmingham in March. The Discover Dogs area, with hundreds of breeds under one roof, and experts on hand to help you decide if you are ready for a dog, and which breed could be your perfect fit.”
More information on finding the dog of your dreams, can be found at thekennelclub.org.uk/getting-a-dog, and tickets for Crufts, where you can meet all 222 breeds from 9-12 March at the NEC Birmingham, are available at crufts.org.uk.