It's official: looking at pictures of cute animals is good for you - and your work.

According to the Wall Street Journal, researchers at Hiroshima University in Japan have found that photos of kittens, puppies and the like don't just make us feel better - they also help us to concentrate.

Their paper, called the 'Power of Kawaii' ('kawaii' being the Japanese word for 'cute'), reports that, through three separate experiments, people showed higher levels of concentration after looking at pictures of puppies or kittens.

The subjects were divided into three groups for the study. Each group was assigned a different task to perform twice - and during the break between their tasks, were given either pictures of puppies and kittens or cats and dogs to look at. Those who were shown images of the baby animals performed their tasks better than those who looked at the adult ones, with performance scores up by 44%. Those who performed numerical tasks before and after looking at cute pictures also saw their results improve by 16%.

“This finding suggests that viewing cute images makes participants behave more deliberately and perform tasks with greater time and care,” said the researchers.

So there you go: proof that it's not only perfectly fine for you to click through the gallery below while you're at work but actually necessary for your job, too. Hurrah!

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(All images: Press Association)