Unpopular message

Study finds pets don’t solve loneliness.

. . . the Carleton University researchers found that among single-dwellers with insufficient social ties, high attachment to a dog or cat increased the pet-owner’s likelihood of loneliness and depression.

The study’s authors, both of whom own dogs, say the message — unpopular though it may be — is that pets aren’t people and can’t compensate for a lack of human relationships.

“Pet ownership isn’t the panacea we think it is,” says co-author Timothy Pychyl, an associate professor of psychology at the Ottawa-based university.

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