Single? Beware the curse of the cat. Or so says a recent survey out of the United Kingdom. Vetstreet‘s Dr. Patty Khuly has the story.

According to a Craigslist poll of British singles, owning a pet is perilous to your love life. That’s because, according to this survey, getting a date is tougher if you keep pets. What’s worse is that the survey suggests keeping certain types of pets can reduce the frequency of your romantic interludes.

Apparently, this sample of 513 Craigslist-posting unpaired Brits is very picky. Here are some of the poll’s findings.

Almost three times as many men (28 percent) would “feel less inclined to date” a dog owner, but only 10 percent would feel the same about a hamster or guinea pig keeper.

One in four men would feel similarly less disposed to date a cat owner.

Women pretty much mirrored men in their pet-related dating distastes, displaying only somewhat less aversion to those who keep cats and dogs and somewhat more to those who keep snakes, lizards, mice and spiders.

Speaking of spiders, both genders took issue with arachnids. In fact, almost half confessed a greater reluctance to date those who kept them. (For my part, I’d have to seriously question the fundamental drives of any adult who keeps spiders, but that’s got nothing to do with the spiders themselves.)

Interestingly, parrots came out ahead. Only 16 percent of all singles claimed to be less likely to date a parrot owner. (Which more than likely speaks to the fact that most people have never lived with one.)

Was I surprised? Well, kind of. I always thought pets were cool. If anything, they’re attractive, not an impediment.

In any case, this wasn’t welcome news to this newly single veterinarian. Think about it: If nearly a quarter of singles are less inclined to date a theoretical one-pet woman, what are they likely to conclude about the flesh-and-bone three-dog, four-cat, eleven-hen, one-goat me?

The only silver lining? Thirty-six percent of men felt the questions did not apply. It would seem they’ve concluded that pets are no impediment when it comes to matters of the heart. Shockingly, fewer women (29 percent) were so forgiving. Which probably means it’s a good thing I prefer men.

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