Wags for Wellness

 

We’ll we’ve officially entered the most stressful time of the year. Classes are ending, exams are starting and stress is building. According to a study done by ABC News, 3 out of 4 college students reported having at least one stressful life event in the past year. These events could involve anything from social relationships, personal appearance, to problems with family.  Moreover, 20 percent said they experienced greater than five stressful life events within that same time frame.

In order to help combat some of the stress students feel during this time, the University of Maryland Health Center hosts therapy dog sessions, “Wags for Wellness.” During select time frames during the month students can walk in and pet their stress away.

University Health Center at the University of Maryland

 

“Wags for Wellness sessions feature registered therapy animal teams. Each team consists of at least one dog and one human. Each of the volunteer teams has been trained by People. Animals. Love. (PAL) to provide love, connection, companionship, and stress relief,” the Health Center’s Stress Management page says.

Not only do these furry friends allow students to relax from everything they may be dealing with, the therapy dog visits “also serve as a great outlet for emotional wellbeing while connecting with other loving pets for our students who may be missing their childhood or family pets.”

“A lot of students begin to freak out this time of year and aren’t exactly sure how to cope with what they’re feeling,” Annika Meyer, a peer counselor for the Help Center, said.

Attending events such as these allows students to engage in healthy coping mechanisms, ultimately improving their mood and functionality and allowing them to better succeed in their endeavors.

The last Wags for Wellness event will be held this Friday, May 17, from 1:00 p.m. to 3:00 p.m. on the second floor of McKeldin Library.