The work day is over and you head home. You walk in the front door and there sits Fido or Garfield. They missed you...but do they make you happier?

Well of course they do.....do you need scientific proof or is it just obvious?

Well if you want science to back it up the researchers did it for you. They polled 2,000 people over the age of 55. Half of them had at least one cat or dog....the other didn't have either.

The ones who did have pets were twice as likely to consider themselves a success in life.

They were also more likely to be married...have kids....volunteer...have a college degree...and have a job that they like. They also made about $5,000 more per year on average.

The benefits don't end there...they also get almost twice as much exercise as those without. Almost all of them said they think having a pet is good for their health and well-being. About 30% said it added purpose to their life.

So where did the non pet owners excel? Well the survey found people who don't have pets were more likely to have their mortgage completely paid off and 10% were more likely to retire early.

So at the end of the day....when you see your pet and they greet you as you come home. Think of all the great benefits and love on them.