In case you’ve missed the brightly colored Pug posters, the “Stall Stories” or our tweets and Facebook posts, therapy dogs are coming to the UGL next week—for real!
Research shows that interaction with dogs reduces stress by decreasing the level of cortisol and increases happiness by releasing endorphins. The Undergraduate Library, partnering with the International and Area Studies Library, will be hosting registered therapy dogs for students to walk, pet and play with as part of our ongoing stress reduction initiatives during midterms and finals. (If you think we’re crazy for letting pooches in with the patrons, read about Yale Law Library’s therapy dog!)
Dogs from the CU Registered Therapy Dog Group will be available in the UGL on Monday, Oct. 29 from 2-5pm and on Tuesday, Oct. 30 from 2-5pm and 7-9pm. We encourage you to come, de-stress, and make a new furry friend. If you’re on Twitter, feel free to tweet about your experience—we’ve even got a hashtag: #UGLBFF. (And while you’re at it, follow us @askundergrad.)
In the mean time, here’s a sneak peek at three of the dogs you can meet:
Raven is a 6-and-a-half-year-old Standard Poodle. She loves people of all ages, but prefers adults since they are the best petters. She does most of her therapy work at libraries (so she’ll fit right in at the UGL!) and at the Urbana Crisis Nursery. When she’s not working, she enjoys fetching frisbees and tennis balls.
Hunny is a 6-year-old Australian Cattle Dog mix adopted from Good Shepherd Humane Society near Eureka Springs, Arkansas. In addition to therapy visits, Hunny trains and competes in Dock Dog and APDT Rally Obedience venues earning a Junior Dock Dog and APDT Rally Championship titles. Hunny is also a canine star of the theater, most recently appearing in S.T.A.G.E. productions of “The Miracle Worker” and “Cranford.” Hunny shares her People and Paw Print Pond with five Chesapeake Bay Retrievers, two Labrador Retrievers, and five rescue cats.
Sam is a 7-year-old Alaskan Malamute. He’s a very calm, large, furry, wolfy-looking dog who is quite content being petted. He has a Three Stooges sort of sense of humor, is very curious, and very typical of the Malamute attitude that anything that happens, he can take care of, so why worry. He also subscribes to the belief that you can never know when you might have to pull a sled, so nap whenever possible. Energetic isn’t an adjective one would use to describe this guy. He is casually obedient, selectively deaf, but utterly charming and sweet. He’s a conformation champion (so he’s quite stunning), loves agility obstacles though he hates to jump, and he isn’t too crazy about do-overs. He suffers from severe test anxiety, so understands what mid-terms can do.
If these dogs look like good cuddle BFFs to you, stop by the UGL on Monday or Tuesday to say hello. Interested in learning more about therapy dogs? Check out Pet Partners (formerly the Delta Society) to learn more about the work that therapy dogs do.