Video: One in five pet owners prefer their pet to their partner, new research reveals.

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More than a quarter claim they are happiest when home alone with their pet and a third prefer quality time with their furry companion over time spent with most of their friends.

But the poll of 2,000 UK pet-owners, commissioned by Panasonic Smart Home to celebrate National Pet Month, showed that the nation’s love for animals comes at a cost. One in six admitted their pet has cost them a relationship or friendship and a third said their animal had “directly impacted” their social life. The research marks the launch of the Panasonic Smart Home monitoring system, which allows owners to keep an eye on their beloved companions when we’re away from home. The average pet owner gets 884 hours - or 74 working days - of quality time with their pet each year.

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