Paws 4 Stress gives students a needed break — and some face licks

Students can use a break from their hectic schedules to enjoy the cuddles from adorable dogs. Aditya Aditya, 19, is a student navigator in the computer system networking program who attended the Paws 4 Stress event in the Student Commons building on Tuesday. “They have good energy, they are calm,” said Aditya at the event. […]
Photo: Linda Verreault
Shadow and Daisy, two members of the Paws 4 Stress team.

Students can use a break from their hectic schedules to enjoy the cuddles from adorable dogs.

Aditya Aditya, 19, is a student navigator in the computer system networking program who attended the Paws 4 Stress event in the Student Commons building on Tuesday.

“They have good energy, they are calm,” said Aditya at the event.

This event is geared toward students registered with the Centre for Accessible Learning and is advertised directly to them.

“It’s a time for students to take a break from studying and hang out with some furry friends,” said Leah Grimes, a volunteer support specialist with the Student Commons Volunteer Centre.

Paws 4 Stress was created to help students and staff alleviate stress. They try to run the event once a month and there is no charge. The dogs are certified by St. John Ambulance and their ages range from two to 10 years old. This is a volunteer program, and the individuals choose to train their pets for events like this.

Larry King is the owner of Shadow, a 12-year-old golden retriever.

“Shadow failed the training program, got halfway. He is the gentlest, kindest dog I’ve ever had. He’s kinda special,” said King.

It was Katrin Nicholson’s first time participating in this event. Her dog, Fawn, is a five-year-old Labrador retriever. Nicholson knew Fawn would be a great therapy dog.

“Fawn was a guide dog for the blind and retired early because of allergies and she has just been certified as a therapy dog,” said Nicholson.

May Sizer, 26, is a business student who attended the event.

“I want my dog to be a therapy dog, so I wanted to see what it was all about. Dogs and puppies are known to ease stress and anxiety,” said Sizer.

Daisy, a nine-year-old Great Pyrenees, has a sweet puppy face. Her owner, Martin Davidson, said Daisy started as a therapy dog in November.

“Her temperament lends itself to this type of work. She is ideally suited for this and since I am retired it worked out for the two of us,” said Davidson.

Shelley Mineault, a student support services staff member, said she recently lost her dog in a tragic accident.

“This was the best part of my day,” said Mineault. “This event helped heal my heart.”

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