Researchers measured the levels of “love hormone” oxytocin before and after pets saw their owners.
In the first part of the experiment, scientists took saliva swabs from dogs and cats that were alone.
They then reunited the pets with their owners and let them play and interact for 10 minutes before swabbing again.
The dogs were elated to see their owners, with oxytocin levels soaring by an average of 57.2 per cent, compared to an increase of just 12 per cent in cats.
In fact, dogs are more happy to see their owners than parents are to see their children! The average human shows a 40-60 per cent rise in oxytocin after seeing their child or spouse.
“It was also a nice surprise to discover that cats produce any at all,” said neuroscientist Dr Paul Zak, from BBC documentary Cats v Dogs: Which is Best? “At least some of the time, cats seem to bond with their owners.”