Avert your eyes if easily offended because today we tackle the subject of objectophilia. That's falling in love with things, rather than people, and apparently 'things' includes pets.
Volkmar Sigusch, a sex psychologist and researcher, sees this objectophilia as part of a trend he calls neo-sexuality which also takes in the newly 'asexual'. The story from Deutsche Welle describes people falling in love with their pets, and one woman who was 'enraptured' with a ferry.
When I first read this I thought - what a load of rubbish. Firstly it seems unfair to put dogs in the same category as ferries. Secondly there seems to be no earthly reason to have a photo of a blonde girl loading a washing machine (or is there?).
Then I thought about a few guys I know and their iPods, and a few girls and their shoes. Do they love their iPods and shoes in the same way they love their partners? Of course not.
What seems most likely is that people are just more lonely nowadays and are increasingly substituting objects for other people.
Deutsche Welle (complete with more cheesy photos)
Get technical with Sigusch's article from the Archives of Sexual Behaviour (honestly, not nearly as exciting as it sounds)