How animals can help with our anxiety … and loneliness … and empathy …

Every year, the Library brings in therapy dogs during finals week to help you de-stress. Students–and employees–can pop in, take a seat, and scratch some ears and and rub some bellies of good doggos.

All in the name of chilling out a little while you’re in the midst of your final exams.

Ruth Davis and her dog, Piper, which is also a therapy dog.

Ruth Davis, a Human Services assistant professor and owner of one such therapy dog, Piper, shared a presentation about the emotional supports therapy and service dogs provide. Here’s how they work:

  • Animal Assisted Therapy can help us humans with our physical, social, emotional, and cognitive functioning.
  • One way therapy animals can reduce stress is as a non-judging, listening ear, which can in turn increase verbal interactions.
  • Animals can help increase our attention skills (like staying focused) and self-esteem.
  • They can decrease our feelings of loneliness and anxiety.
  • They can even help us get better at leisure time.
  • And become more empathetic and nurturing.
  • Animals can be especially good for finals week because they can increase our vocabulary and aid in memory.

The pups will be in the library on Coliseum Campus from 10 a.m. to noon May 7 to 11, as well as possible afternoon times (check the schedule for details). Stop by for your fix of fluff.

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