Forget the Books, Pet the Pups

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Published December 12, 2018
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The Montclarion
Many students posed with the dogs for pictures in between the stress of upcoming finals. Olivia Kearns | The Montclarion

It’s not every day there’s an event with dogs on campus, but around the end of the semester, it’s guaranteed. Students formed a line around bookshelves in Harry A. Sprague Library, waiting for a chance to pet service dogs in lieu of upcoming finals.

Coordinator of Health Promotion Dr. Marie Cascarano said this event always draws hundreds of students.

“It reminds them of a pet back home,” Cascarano said. “It gives them a chance to step away from what they are doing this time of year and take a break.”

Therapy dog Charlie would lay on the floor while students pet him. He also performed tricks.
Olivia Kearns | The Montclarion

Every semester, Health Promotion sponsors an event where students can meet furry friends as a way to destress for finals.

Janet Adams, owner of therapy dog Lucy, said the Cavalier King Charles Spaniel has always loved people. She certified Lucy as a therapy dog after the positive response when she would bring the pup to her mother’s assisted living housing. Now they travel to places like nursing homes and schools to bring happiness.

“A lot of people tell me it makes their day,” Adams said. “They just smile and it raises their moods.”

Lucy the therapy dog was a fan favorite. Many students loved the fact that she would sit on their laps.
Olivia Kearns | The Montclarion

Freshman biology major Jasmine Rojas is part of Health Promotion but came as a guest to spend some time with the dogs.

“I think everyone likes dogs, and I think it’s a great way to relax,” Rojas said.

Some students are not in favor of the dogs being on campus. Montclair Animal Activists President Emily Klesitz said the organization does not support the event.

“Dogs are social animals naturally so this issue is not as exploitative as others, like the petting zoos on campus, but it is still wrong,” Klesitz said.

Students had the opportunity to pet and play with the therapy pups.
Olivia Kearns | The Montclarion

She believes the dogs are here for human benefit only and there isn’t a real relationship between the students and the dogs themselves.

“If for example, dogs up for adoption in need of a home were brought to campus to possibly find homes while also we enjoy seeing them, it would be a more equal exchange,” Klesitz said.

 

 

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