Puppy Love – Pros & Cons of Having a Dog to Relieve Stress

Maddy Long, Reporter

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Many people wonder why dogs show up on finals day or why therapy dogs are typically more common than therapy cats. Why do animals relax some people and not others? Are people less stressed when a furry animal is present in their lives? There are many questions related to animals and their effect on the human, just as there are many different answers. This article will focus on dogs more than other animals.

Pros having dogs around during stressful times: 

– Dogs typically need to be walked by their owners at least once a day. When you walk your dog you are getting exercise and releasing endorphins making you happy and less stressed.

– Dogs are amazing to talk to because you don’t have to worry about them going off and telling a massive secret you just shared. Sometimes just talking about your struggles, it helps relieve stress.

– Most dogs are patient, honest, devoted, affectionate, and dependable. These traits fill a person’s vital need to be loved and to feel valuable which can help them focus and have a less stressful life

– According to Erin E Schultz, researcher for University of Wisconsin-Stout, research shows that being in the presence of animals, specifically dogs, and interacting with them lowers blood pressure, reduces stress reactions, reduces heart rate, reduces levels of anxiety

Cons of having dogs around during stressful times: 

-Dogs can be very messy in that they need to use the bathrooms during the day, some can be messy eaters and splash water everywhere when drinking. This can make someone stressed if they cannot stand messes.

-Although dogs are super beneficial, they can be a massive distraction. They like to play and be energetic and sometimes it may be difficult to get school work or work around the house done.

-If a therapy dog would be present at schools, there is the population of students and staff that may be afraid of dogs no matter the size or what people say. This could cause anxiety and stress for the rest of the day.

-Having dogs at a school can be dangerous for both the dogs and a humans health. A student or staff could be allergic to dogs and have an allergic reaction. There could be diseases that spread to the dog and then the dog becomes sick.

Overall, there are many helpful and not so helpful reasons to have a dog on campus, or in general, as a therapy dog. It all comes down to personal preference. If you don’t even like dogs this article wouldn’t change your mind; however, hopefully after reading this you can start a petition to get a therapy animal, possibly a dog, to come to school.

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Puppy Love – Pros & Cons of Having a Dog to Relieve Stress