Having a dog could increase your chances of finding a love match, according to research conducted by Dogs Trust, the UK’s largest dog welfare charity. Of 700 respondents to a recent survey, 60% said that owning a dog can make people more attractive, while 85% think people are more approachable with a hound at their heels. We all know it’s tough starting a conversation with someone new, but owning a dog can ease the awkwardness. In fact nearly all of those surveyed (over 95%) said they would feel more comfortable speaking to someone they didn’t know, if they had a dog. Of those who gave a reason for this, two thirds said dog owners seem friendlier; they are also perceived as more approachable and trustworthy. So even those owners who don’t find love through their furry friend, are still likely to widen their social circle and meet new people because of them. Clarissa Baldwin, CEO of Dogs Trust comments: “The results of this research come as no surprise to Dogs Trust, as we hear stories every day of people meeting new friends or a partner through their dog. Put simply, the world is a friendlier place when you have a dog. “This research shows that not only are dog owners perceived as more approachable and friendly, but that having a dog can make you more attractive. With canine companions making such great ice breakers too, they really are the 21st century cupid!” Unsurprisingly, the best canine conversation starter is cute puppy, but over a third of respondents are also attracted by scruffy mutts. Supposedly ‘cute’ handbag dogs are actually seen by many men as a deterrent. But whether you enlist the help of Rover to find romance or not, you can always rely on him to snuggle with you on the sofa.