” Domesticated animals really do love their owners, researchers have claimed. Experiments found that animals release the same ‘love hormone’ used in humans to create bonds with friends. Experts say they were ‘shocked’ by the levels of oxytocin released in animals.
Paul Zak, a Professor at Claremont Graduate University in California, conducted several experiments to measure the levels of oxytocin, the body’s ‘happy hormone’ released when pets interacted with other animals and humans.
‘The results were kind of shocking,’ he told MailOnline.
In a second experiment, 100 human participants came into the lab and gave blood samples to establish their baseline physiologic states. Then they went into a private room and played with a dog or cat for 15 minutes. Subjects then gave more blood, and their levels of oxycotin measured.
Researchers found the changes in humans differed from person to person – but could be predicted by asking people how many pets they had had before. He also found different animals produce different responses. ‘For dog people, they will admit to it, but cat people were in the minority and seem to have less of a bond.”