The Mayhew Animal Home decided to give students a break from the revision with visits from the TheraPaws dogs.
The TheraPaws dogs are a part of The Mayhew’s animal therapy visiting programme, which recognises the mutual benefits of animals engaging with people, particularly older people with dementia, helping to improve the relationships between humans and dogs.
As well as enhancing people’s lives by helping to reduce social isolation, stress and unlocking memories and emotions, the initiative also helps animals by raising awareness of the positive effects dogs can have, including promoting respect and compassion towards animals.
Volunteers, Helen Liu and her dog Java and Deborah Taffler with her dog Noodle spent their free time meeting students from the University of Westminster and offering them a helping paw and time out to relax and unwind with a cuddle from a couple of the canine friends.
The Mayhew’s TheraPaws Project Manager, Luke Berman, said: “I’m delighted that our TheraPaws volunteers and their dogs were able to help students during this stressful period. It was a brilliant day and we met a variety of different people.”
“The main aim of the event was to help calm students’ nerves ahead of their exams and take their mind off studying by spending time interacting with our furry friends.”
“The students all wanted to come over and speak to our volunteers and their dogs. It’s clear to see that they bring a lot of joy and wellbeing to people.”
Viju Patel, head of counselling at the University of Westminster, added: “It has been proven that stroking a dog has a calming effect on people and helps to lower stress levels and blood pressure. That’s why we thought it would be a great idea to introduce this amazing initiative to some of our students taking exams at the moment.”
“We would like to thank all of The Mayhew’s volunteers and their dogs for visiting the university. It has been really nice to see the students interacting with the dogs and it looks as though everyone has really enjoyed themselves, especially the dogs!”
To find out more about TheraPaws, visit the website or call 020 8962 8004.