New research has found that half of dog owners believe their pet makes them feel less lonely.
The research carried out by Purina Petcare, also found that 72 percent of owners believed their dog cheered them up, while over half of those surveyed said they believed their dog could help “someone else in need”.
As many as 37 percent of dog owners went as far as to say that their dog eased their anxiety, with 23 percent saying they felt a dog helped boost confidence and self-esteem.
Purina is currently running a competition to award a new initiative with £75,000 of funding for the winner. Finalists include companies that train dogs to detect the early signs of disease in humans and to help with trauma.
The results come after dog food manufacturer Pedigree trialed its ‘Dog Dates’ scheme which saw elderly people paired up with dog owners to combat loneliness.