Dogs can boost your mental health – We celebrate our fur baby with a photo shoot

by | Jul 13, 2020 | Pet Hub, Teen hub | 3 comments

Dogs aren’t called man’s best friend for nothing. Studies prove that dogs can boost your mental health. This was the very reason that I eventually gave in and got a puppy for Ashton.

Dogs are loyal, devoted, loving, dependable and typically cuddly. All the perfect attributes that one would want in a friend right? So, on the 5th January 2019 Nugget joined this crazy family and its been one of the best decisions I have ever made.

A photo shoot with pet photographer Andre Koekemoer

To celebrate our fur baby and the positive impact he has on our lives, we recently did a photo shoot with super talented Andre Koekemoer who specialises in pet photography.

Let me just say that the photo shoot was an absolute workout for me. Nugget was incredibly hyperactive and uncooperative. I literally built up a sweat trying to get him to pose and left Andre’s studio thinking we didn’t get one usable image. But, that’s why Andre is amazing at what he does and captured the cutest photos of our crazy. Read until the end to stand a chance to win prizes from Andre Koekemoer photography.

The pros of having a dog

Evidence proving that the physical benefits of living with a canine companion has been well documented. It varies from improved cardiovascular health and increased physical activity to lower cholesterol  and decreased blood pressure. Physical exercise aside, dogs add much more to our daily lives.

Research shows a variety of ways in which dogs can provide support and a sense of calm for our daily emotional and psychological stresses, as well as traumatic events. Dogs are amazing because they:-

  • Teach us mindfulness.
  • Lead us to nature.
  • Dogs offer empathy.
  • They bring comfort.
  • Dogs provide a sense of purpose.
  • They promote socialization.
  • Dogs love us unconditionally

Here’s how dogs can boost your mental health

Dogs relieve stress and can decrease loneliness and depression. The current global situation in the recent pandemic has us less connected than ever before. Physical disconnection and loneliness is becoming a health epidemic, but we have to credit our Nugget for continuously boosting our moods with his endless cuddles and kisses. Among the benefits of dog ownership is a sense of companionship and social support that can lead to less loneliness. The bond between a dog and his human family makes a positive difference in their mental health.

dog 14
“A dog is the only thing on earth that loves you more than he loves himself.” – Josh Billings

Pet owners have a lower rate of depression, and studies also show that they suffer less symptoms of depression when there is a pet in the home. Animals give something to focus on instead of the negative thoughts a depressed person is prone to have. When a pet pays attention to you, they’re giving you unconditional love and acceptance.

Pet Accessories

tora grace
Fur Baby Mama Set

Tora Grace is my absolute favourite customised and personalises online jewellery in South Africa. Seeing as nothing is too good for our cutie, Nugget’s dog tag is also from Tora Grace.

Their new and super special set for a special Fur Mama and her baby, inspired by the quote “I didn’t know there were empty spaces in my heart, until you filled them up” is now live on their online shop. The good news is that Tora Grace will be giving away some awesome prizes so read until the end.

The health benefits for children

Not only do children who grow up with pets have less risk of allergies and asthma, many also learn responsibility, compassion, and empathy from having a dog.

  • Dogs are never critical and don’t bark out orders. (See what I did there?)
  • They are always loving and overly affectionate.
  • Dogs provide a sense of security in children.
  • They can help ease separation anxiety in children when mom and dad aren’t around.
  • Having the love and companionship of a dog can make a child feel important and help them develop a positive self-image.
  • Children who are emotionally attached to their pets are better able to build relationships with others.
  • Studies have also shown that pets can help calm hyperactive or overly aggressive kids.

Children and adults alike can benefit from playing with pets, which can provide a source of calmness and relaxation, as well as a source of stimulation for the brain and body. Playing with a pet can even be a doorway to learning for a child. It can stimulate a child’s imagination and curiosity. The rewards of training a dog to perform a new trick, for example, can teach kids the importance of perseverance. Caring for a furry friend can also offer another benefit to a child: immense joy.

A mood boosting giveaway for your furry friend

Stand a chance to win awesome prizes from Andre Koekemoer and Tora Grace for your fur baby. Follow the rules on the Instagram and Facebook posts and good luck.

Leave us a comment letting us know how you feel about your dog, share a photo on social media and tag us because we would love to see your gorgeous canines who lift your moods on a daily basis. Also let us know if you believe that dogs can boost your mental health.

Disclaimer: The giveaway is sponsored, however the information shared is our honest and unbiased opinion.


  1. Too adorable for words!!!! Could not agree with you more regarding the positive effects that pets can have on our wellbeing, especially to the elderly and during lockdown. 😻

  2. I agree so much! Getting our little Harvey has been incredible during this time that has left us feeling quite emotional and uncertain.

    Wish we got him sooner to soothe our blues during lockdown

  3. Everything in this post is so true. I honestly don’t know how we would have survived lockdown without our little girl.
    Oh, I love every single picture of Nugget


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Living to inspire has become my life’s purpose, so much so that what started out as just a personal blog has transformed into an inclusive community that supports women and children.  Fit Like Mummy aims to inspire fellow South Africans to find the fit in all areas of their lives.

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