It’s not a secret that stress is a part of college life. Leaving home, your usual environment, your parents, friends, favorite cafes and department stores and, very often, loved pets is a hard task to overcome for many freshmen. Setting up a whole new life routine isn’t an easy thing to do, even without mentioning the challenges of studying.

Students are often not ready to meet all the professors’ expectations for their academic performance and extracurricular activities. Thus, problems of stress and anxiety appear and they can affect lots of spheres of students’ lives. Of course, no college or university aims to make the life of those young people harder than it is from the beginning. On the contrary, they aim to soften the adaptation period. One of the techniques that appeared in the 1990s and is becoming more and more popular nowadays is dog therapy. Actually, different animals can be used for the purpose of relaxation after studies, but dogs are probably the most prevalent for a number of reasons. For many, they are symbols of home as many kids had or wanted to have a dog as a pet.

As there’s quite a tiny possibility of getting a dog in college, lots of freshmen feel lonely and homesick which obviously doesn’t help to reduce stress in schools. Though it may be simple to get Essay Help online when the deadlines are coming, it’s not that easy to cope with feelings of anxiety and homesickness.

This is the reason for many colleges and universities to keep on-campus therapy pups. It was scientifically proven that playing with an animal brings numerous mental, emotional and even physical benefits to students. Sometimes, just petting a dog can increase the happiness level and help forget about problems. But let’s just enumerate the best effects of the therapy:

  • Lowering of anxiety and a decrease of loneliness – who can feel bad when a fluffy ball of fur is running around your feet?
  • Reduction of stress hormones – quite obvious as petting an animal brings only positive emotions.
  • Improved socializing skills – surprisingly, but it can be easier to make new friends and share common predicaments while focusing on playing with a friendly creature – it really unites people.
  • Normalized blood pressure and heart rate – which also results in better focus and concentration and adds to productivity in students’ academic life.

FitBark_student_laptop_stree-900x600 | How Therapy Dogs Can Help Reduce Student Stress and Anxiety

There’s no doubt in numerous benefits of having therapy dog in schools and hopefully, this practice will become more widespread and applied in much more educational institutions.


About the Author: Susan Wallace has a both-sided experience with therapy hounds. In times of her student life, she also had to cope with high stress levels and having even a temporary pet was a great relief. Now she’s into deeper research on how animal therapy influences students’ transition period in colleges and training the dogs to serve for the well-being of students. She dedicates her time to writing a blog on this topic where anybody is free to add comments, share knowledge and experience about having such “college buddies”.