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The Stylus

Thursday is for therapy dogs 

Photo Credit: Joseph Keyser

From petting to playing fetch, dogs can be therapeutic in many ways. Residence Life hosted a therapy dog event in partnership with RocDog in Mortimer Hall on Sept. 28. 

RocDog is a nonprofit organization located in Greece, NY whose goal is to get therapy dogs to as many people as possible from Buffalo to Syracuse. What started as a small project with only three therapy dogs now has 165 certified therapy dogs. 

McKayla Nolan, residence director of McLean, oversaw the event. 

“Therapy animals are very beneficial and everybody loves dogs,” Nolan said. “Not everybody, but the majority of people still love dogs and these dogs are great with students. They love being able to come and get pet and everything like that.” 

The dogs enjoyed the extra attention and loved the students petting them. Jonah, one of the therapy dogs, beamed at the students as he was pet. His relaxed attitude and smile made everyone’s stress melt away. 

Students smiled when they saw the dogs in the lobby, almost like they forgot about the stresses of college for a moment.  

For homesick students like Michael Richardson, a sophomore at SUNY Brockport, these dogs provide a sense of comfort. 

“It reminds me that there’s a piece of home here at school,” Richardson said. “If I can just reach out and come downstairs and be able to pet a couple of dogs? It’s always nice to know that I’ll be alright, you know? That I can have a little bit of relaxation at some point in time.” 

For students like SUNY Brockport freshman Lily Parker-Evans who miss their dogs, these therapy dogs help relieve their stress.  

“I love dogs,” Parker-Evans said. “It makes me miss back home. This makes me miss my dog. But it helps with the stress.” 

Every week, Residence Life hosts a therapy dog event from 3-4 p.m. at varying locations across campus.

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