Learn To Let Go: No matter how hard you try, sometimes the relationship between your mate and your pet won't work out.

If so, be prepared to let one of them go.

Pets aren't the only ones who may be strained by the new relationship. Maybe your partner is allergic to pets, or maybe (horror of horrors) she doesn't like animals. Allergies can be controlled with medication. But you have to prepare for and accept the worst-case scenario -- your pet falls in love with your new partner or vice-versa, but the love is unrequited.

If that happens, you're going to have to decide which one to keep. Surveys suggest that women think dogs are more loving and cuter than their boyfriends. Sorry, guys. This is one battle you may not win.

Relationships are never without challenges. Relationships with pets are no exception. But making the effort to help your pet and your partner get along is worth the effort. The payoff? You get to keep your two loves without jealousy or guilt getting in the way.