Tails out, paws up and stress down

DMC Counseling Services provides pet therapy for students

If you’ve ever owned a dog, you know how the soft eyes and hyperactive energy of your fury companion could completely change your day for the better.

Because of their stress-relieving abilities, Del Mar recently brought two dogs from Paws Up Inc. to campus to help students overcome their anxiety at midterm time. The visit from Lola the Tibetan Spaniel and Frankie the Welch Corgi was organized by Del Mar’s Counseling Center.

“It’s something they have done on other campuses where stress and anxiety are present,” said Del Mar counselor Sarah Soto.

College life is riddled with obstacle and hardships and students can sometimes feel overwhelmed with their studies.

“People are smiling when they come in here,” Soto said.

Paws Up has always used the fury companions to aid in helping others cope with anxiety and the stress of everyday life.

“That’s the main thing, just to bring comfort to people,” said Paws Up member Sandra Heatherley.

The organization has ventured to other schools to aid students in their academic struggles with the help of their fury assistants.

“We take several dogs to the school, and the librarians work with us. They select books, and the students sit down next to the dog and read the book,” Heatherley said.

The event, which also included aromatherapy and anxiety screenings, helped students release stress and deal with the many anxieties that come with being a college student.

“I think it helps because I know midterms are coming up and I have a four-page essay due on Thursday, so I think it helps when you see dogs,” said psychology major Ladandria Taylor.

The event produced many smiling faces and gave students the necessary break they needed in between classes to relax and recharge.

“I wasn’t having a bad day but I’m kind of tired so when I saw the dogs it made me feel better,” Taylor said.

The event was also held the following day at West Campus.

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