University Adds “Puppy Room” to Fight Finals Jitters
It’s December, and that means one thing for college students: the end of the quarter, and all the finals, project deadlines, and truckloads of anxiety to go with it all. As finals week looms closer and the stress begins to pile, most college students see self-destructive habits rise considerably, in the form of eating worse, sleeping less, and more often than not, drinking too much. But one Canadian university has found a new, novel, and undoubtedly popular way to help combat stress in a safer, and altogether fuzzier way: a room full of puppies.
That’s right. Puppies.
Dalhousie University in Nova Scotia, Canada has made what could be the most popular addition to any university in history in the form of a room filled with puppies, solely to help students relax and drive away the finals week stress. The Puppy Room will be open to students of Dalhousie University from December 4th – 6th thanks to Therapeutic Paws Of Canada, a non-profit organization that brings dogs and cats to schools, residences and hospitals in order to promote happiness and relaxation.
“It’s a great idea,” said student Michael Kean, who suggested the puppy room to the school. ”There’s no downfall about therapy dogs. Students, we’re stressed out, don’t know what to do, and they’re fluffy. It comes down to that.”
While this is the first time that a specific puppy room has been added to a university campus in Canada, Therapeutic Paws of Canada has been making quite a few trips to other colleges in the country in the last year. In December 2011, McGill University were treated to a visit from the organization with a group of dogs, and University of Ottawa students got a visit from border collie Tundra this May.
“Just petting a dog will decrease your blood pressure and relieve anxiety. You can be affectionate with them and they’ll be affectionate back. They love attention,” said Audrey Giles, Tundra’s owner.
Giles, who is also a professor at the University of Ottawa, had succesfully lobbied to make Tundra the school’s first official therapy dog. Now, every two weeks, students may stop by Giles’ office to play with and pet Tundra, with Giles reporting that she’ll have students stop by urgently needing to see the dog before an exam or a presentation.
Unfortunately, since the Puppy Room won’t be set up until the 4th, we won’t get to see the Puppy Room in action. But in the mean time, here’s a video taken at McGill University during Therapeutic Paw’s trip: