Celebrities and their dogs: Why our pet pooches mean so much to us

Lauren Clark
·4-min read
Olivia Palermo walking her dog Mr Butler in New York. (Getty Images)
Olivia Palermo walking her dog Mr Butler in New York. (Getty Images)

Miranda Hart has made a public announcement that she will be taking time off work following the death of her dog, Peggy, who was the focus of her memoir Peggy and Me.

The star of Miranda and Call The Midwife, posted an emotional tribute to her beloved pet on Instagram on Monday 18 January.

“Fellow dog owners will know the excruciating sadness of losing your loyal, loving best friend,” she wrote.

“The pain mirrors the unique joy, connection, comfort and love they bring. And Peggy was my absolute rock and source of all those things.

“Their uncompromising, unconditional loving presence is such an incredible gift. Enjoy your dogs as much as you can. They are great teachers.”

Miley Cyrus also recently announced that her beloved dog Mary Jane had sadly passed away from cancer, and the singer shared a moving tribute to her on Instagram.

Read more: People are sharing hilarious photos of their pets in viral social media challenge

Watch: Miley Cyrus heartbroken as beloved pet dog dies

The 28-year-old star wrote: “MJ was a true queen. She wore her grace, dignity & kindness like a crown. She will never be forgotten and will forever be missed.

“To know her is to love her. It has been my honor being her mom and best friend.”

Also in recent months, TV presenter Ulrika Jonsson shared on Instagram her devastation at bidding farewell to her bulldog Nessie and Made In Chelsea star Lucy Watson posted about losing her “best friend” Digby.

Meanwhile, the Queen – famous for her love of corgis – said goodbye to her pooch Vulcan in December. A palace source is reported as describing the monarch as “upset”.

It’s clear dog owners form a very special bond with these lovely creatures. Read on to find out why...

Why do our pet dogs mean so much to us?

For starters, this sweet connection has been going on for a while – humans have welcomed dogs into their lives and homes for centuries, according to TIME the earliest proven remains of humans and dogs interred together date to 14,000 years ago.

There are multiple theories as to why humans and dogs have got on so well for so long.

Researchers have found that our canine buddies have three genes that make them hyper-sociable, and these resonate with similar genes found in humans.

Then there’s the fact that many people begin their companionships with their furry BFFs from when they’re pups.

A study found that dogs are influenced by their owner’s lifestyle and personality traits - creating a deep connection from the get-go.

Further research has discovered that dogs can understand what we say – or rather, they can decipher from our tone of voice whether what we’re saying features words of praise. Which makes them, as well as us, feel good.

Making eye contact with your dog generates the "love hormone", oxytocin, according to another study.

As will having a good snuggle. Scientists have found that when humans and pooches interact in a positive way – like when we stroke their fur – it releases a surge in oxytocin in both parties. N’awwww.

What’s more, there’s plenty of research to support why bringing a dog into your life is beneficial for your health.

Studies have found that furry BFFs not only boost happiness, but one study discovered that they also significantly up your physical activity thanks to necessary daily walks. Which is pretty much all lockdown allows.

Which other celebrities share a special bond with their pooches?

Selena Gomez and her dog Daisy

The singer fostered her adorable shaggy pup last year.

Victoria Beckham and her dog Fig

The English Cocker Spaniel was first welcomed into the famous Beckham family in 2018.

Olivia Palermo and her dog Mr Butler

The style queen’s snow-white Maltese is an impressive 15 years old!

Amanda Seyfried and her dog Finn

The Mean Girls’ star’s furry BFF has 82k followers on his own Instagram.

Priyanka Chopra and her dog Diana

The actress’ pooch also has her own Instagram account - but with 166k followers.

Laura Whitmore and her dog Mick

The fluffy white pooch regularly appears in the radio presenter’s social media snaps.

Elizabeth Hurley and her dog Ava

The model and actress adopted the black Labrador as an eight-week-old puppy in 2019.

Hailey Bieber and her dog Oscar

The Maltese Yorkie pup has been part of the Bieber family since 2018.

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