Therapy dogs help students de-stress during finals week

Printer-friendly version Posted Date: Monday, December 18, 2017 - 10:00

Studying for final exams can be pretty stressful. That’s why Hinkle Memorial Library brought in 10 therapy dogs during finals week, helping to take some of the pressure off and allowing students the chance to unwind with some furry friends.

male student laying on top of a dog on the floor
A Plott Hound mix named Emmett made a new friend this year while visiting students
in the Hinkle Memorial Library for the end-of-semester Therapy Dogs in the Library event.

For three nights, students were able to interact with the canines and their handlers while enjoying some refreshments as part of the library’s biannual Therapy Dogs in the Library event. The dogs were a variety of breeds, including a Plott Hound mix, a rescue mix, three Golden Retrievers, a Vizsla, and a Newfoundland, among others.

The dogs were registered through either the Pet Partners chapter out of Syracuse or through two chapters of Therapy Dogs International. Library Instructional Support Assistant Amie Acton said the program is invaluable to students during this time of year.

“The dogs are all well known to the students, and many of them take annual selfies with their favorite dog,” she said. “Some students, upon seeing their favorite dog, go directly to the dog and stay there the entire time, petting it and talking with the handler. So many of them tell us they look forward to the dogs all semester, that it’s the best part of the semester.”

The event is also one of the handlers’ favorites, too.

“They love our students and find great joy in interacting with them,” Acton said. “It’s the best possible arrangement I could’ve ever hoped for.”