Sunday, March 31, 2013

Looking for Love? Get a Dog!

If you're a handsome young man, and you approach strange women on the street, you're way more likely to get their phone numbers if you have a dog with you.
Even being photographed with a dog makes you more attractive!
The experiment supporting this assertion was done by Dr. Nicholas Gueguen, from the University of South Brittany in July of 2007.

They had a panel of 3 young women choose the best-looking of their male volunteers.

His mission was to approach 240 randomly chosen young women about his own age with the following proposition: "...I think you're really pretty...If you'll give me your phone number, I'll call you later and we can have a drink together..."

Half the time, he was alone. Half the time, he had a dog with him, a medium-sized black mutt.

After approaching each woman, he would gaze at her, smiling, for 10 seconds. If she refused, he'd say, "I guess it's not my day." If she gave her phone number, he told her about the experiment (except in one case, where he called her back and actually ended up marrying her*.)

When he didn't have the dog, he was successful only about 9% of the time. All but 11 women turned him down. When he had the dog, 34 women (28.3% of them) gave him their number.

Other experiments have shown (and the Gueguen team tend to agree) that a light colored dog, especially a puppy, would have brought even better results.

In other experiments with the black mutt, when male and female volunteers approached strangers for bus money, they were more likely to get money, and got more money, if they had the dog with them. If they dropped money at the bus shelter, people were more likely to help them pick it up when they had the dog.

Even if you're not young and handsome, a dog is probably an asset to romance, and a golden retriever puppy will make it a slam-dunk.
*The Genius of Dogs, Brian Hare and Vanessa Wood, Dutton, N.Y., 2013, p. 270