Wee paws for a break to relieve stress
Wednesday was Paw Therapy Day at PTC. Students and faculty took a break from the challenges of the day to interact with several four-legged friends from Animal Friends, a local animal resource center. The event was organized by PTC Student Services and is part of a growing national movement to use animals at work to provide stress release and a moment of joy during the busy day.
Three dogs from Animal Friends were petted and fussed over by a parade of dog lovers who stopped by to enjoy a moment of scratching an appreciative ear.
“The comfort these dogs provide, help me feel relaxed and not alone,” said Beth Wengerd as she knelt to spend some time with one of the canine visitors. “Even on my worst days, they put a smile on my face.”
“The benefits of pet therapy are numerous and well-documented in the scientific literature,” according to an article published in Monday Life on animal therapy. “Researchers have evaluated the effectiveness of pet therapy in a number of settings and have found a wide range of advantages from improved overall mental, social, and physiological health status.” According to Wikipedia, “Animals can be used in a variety of settings such as prisons, nursing homes, mental institutions, hospitals and in the home.”
At PTC, pets have appeared more often on campus. Recently, a Bring Your Pet to Work Day was a big success as many faculty and staff brought in their pets to meet their co-workers.
The source of the pets for Paw Therapy Day was Animal Friends, a non-profit companion animal resource center that has provided animal services in the area for 70+ years. Its programs have been nationally recognized and include humane rescue, shelter and adoption services for homeless pets, humane education and more.
As the event ended the dogs headed home, hopefully with the knowledge they had made some people’s days a little happier and the campus a little brighter.