Mental health: How walking can help you and your dog

Updated 29 May 2024
Read time: 4 mins
article author
Written by Elle Padgham
Lead Copywriter

We’re sure you know by now, that us Pooch & Mutters are THE biggest advocates of supporting pooch health from the inside out. That goes for their physical health, and equally as important - their mental health.


Our Good Mood Food is bursting with ingredients to elevate a happy brain - as that happy brain controls all that your pooch is!


As their dependant (and of course those who aren’t pawrents too), it goes without saying that your own mental health should be a priority. And there’s no better way to work together to get mentally in shape, than to go for WALKIES!


Here are some of the amazing ways going on outdoor adventures with your furry sidekick, can keep you feeling like your best selves:


Keeping fit

People often associate keeping fit with losing weight - which can be an encouraging element, but there’s so much more to keeping fit than just that!

Being fit and healthy can help you and your pooch:


  • Sleep soundly, so that the magic 7 hours (for you) is attainable. Dogs will need much more than that depending on their age and breed
  • Keep blood pressure and cholesterol low, for a healthy heart and longer life expectancy
  • Keep in shape, which boosts confidence and self-esteem to help reduce feelings of depression (depression is a thing for dogs too)
  • Keep your minds sharp! The impact being fit has on your body helps focus your brain - so any challenges that come your way may feel easier to deal with


Boosting endorphins through play

We can learn a lot from our pooches. Especially with how much good play and fun times can take the pressure off those everyday stresses!


It’s the opportunity to let loose, put aside any worries in that moment, and get those endorphins (the brain chemicals that stimulate relaxation and improve our mood) released.


Fun pooch/pawrent playtime can also:


  • Strengthen your bond!
  • Help correct/support any behavioural issues your dog may suffer from
  • Give you both a much-needed energy release from boredom or that Groundhog Day feeling
  • Help you learn some new tricks together, which can feel very rewarding
  • Build their confidence, which can help relieve pressure and uncertainty for you both
  • Remind you you’re never too old to be silly - life’s too short!


A young male adult with blonde hair and a yellow hoody, cuddling a Beagle/Pug cross dog

Getting fresh air

Did you know that getting a daily bout of fresh air is scientifically proven to be good for your health? Yep, really.


Feeling the wind in your hair or fur comes with endless benefits, including:


  • Cleaning your lungs and improving your breathing
  • Strengthening your immune system, so you’re fighting fit against any nasties that come your way
  • Improving blood pressure and heart rate, reducing the risk of serious health issues
  • Aiding your digestive system to help keep everything functioning as it should
  • Increasing energy levels and keeping your mind feeling sharp
  • Giving you time and space to think, make decisions and remove yourself from stressors


The chance to meet other pawrents

You might be feeling lonely and craving interaction, or maybe you’re feeling super sociable and just want to meet new people and pooches! Whichever one it is, getting out and about is the perfect opportunity to get chatting, and making new friends in the process.


Having people to talk to can bring fun, fulfillment and motivation to your life - which we all need.


And if your pooch makes a new fur bestie in the process then win-win! We know that dogs are (usually) sociable beings and stimulating those senses with a new buddy will do them the world of good.


Creating a routine

Although spontaneity can give us those short-term thrills - we all need some sort of routine to keep us feeling focused and in control when life feels hectic.


Dogs especially love routine, and having a daily walk to look forward to helps provide structure, giving them the comfort they need to live a meaningful life.


Don’t underestimate the power that a good routine can have on your mental health.


Set specific times each day to aim to get out. It’ll give you something to look forward to, and set up the rest of your day nicely around it.


A woman with short blonde hair, wearing a bright blue t-shirt, cuddling her white dog

The opportunity to try something new

If there’s only so much ‘routine’ you can cope with, then seize the opportunity to try something new with it! Go on your daily walk for all of the above reasons - but add a cheeky twist to it.


Try a fresh route and take in the new sights, challenge yourself to step out of your comfort zone and go climbing, jump in the car and walk somewhere a little further from home - do whatever makes you feel good while you’re out exploring! You might end up discovering a new hobby while you’re at it.


Your dog will absolutely embrace this, as they’ll adore the new smells and scents they pick up. Did you know that 15 minutes of pooch sniffing is the equivalent of 30 minutes physical exercise?


So it doesn’t necessarily have to take more time - just trying something new will offer a huge amount of benefits for you both!



So go on, enjoy your outdoor adventures and see for yourself the positives that come with it.

Comments (1)

Great advice and very informative- I never knew dogs sniffing around on a walk for 15 minutes could be as beneficial as 30 minutes exercise!

Becky - Jan 16 2024

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