At College and Miss Your Furfriend? You're Not Alone

 |  Sep 6th 2006  |   0 Contributions


Festivities at Susquehanna University

This is so true! I know there are a lot of college Dogsters who would agree. This article comes from Inside HigherEd.com.

Fido Goes to College

Theyve always said that dogs are mans best friend. But did they ever say that dogs are a great way to help students and professors become pals?

A growing number of institutions are hosting back-to-school events that encourage professors and staff members to bring in their beloved pets to help new students become more comfortable on campus. At the same time, health officials say its a good way to help freshman learn about health services available to them.


In essence, the people can chew the fat, while the doggies chew the bones.

Kathy Bradley, the director of the Health and Counseling Center at Gettysburg College, in Pennsylvania, is believed to be the first to think of the concept. But she gives all the credit to Nicky and Chloe, her two young dogs that she proudly refers to as all-American mutts."

A couple of years ago, when she worked for Susquehanna University, she recalls reading a newspaper article about psychologists using pets to help students de-stress during therapy sessions. She had just gotten her two new pups and was feeling some mental rewards of her own, she says. She also noted that the institution had been having some retention problems that she wanted to find new ways to address.

I thought, why not have a few days where the threatening professors and staff could bring in their dogs to help new students realize that were real people, too," remembers Bradley. My training as a psychologist led me to believe, though, that everyone would see this as too touchy feely."

However, it turns out that touchy feely" can sometimes be just the right prescription. Bradley says that many students who had expressed homesickness came to several sessions, which were planned during the first few weeks of school. Several professors and staff members brought in their pooches, and students were able to have conversations about classes and health concerns. And the president of the institution, L. Jay Lemons, even got involved helping scoop up some left-over accidents.

Follow this link to read the rest of the article.

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