Why Having Guide Dogs on Campus Help Students with Their Mental Health

Dogs are amazing animals, they cheer us up when we are down, and keep us company through hard times. However, when living away from home you become separated from your four-legged friend. Luckily, Edge Hill have teamed up with a local guide dog charity to allow students to sit and pet their dogs, which surprisingly can help people who suffer from mental health issues. That is why in today’s blog post I will be telling you why you should visit the guide dogs on campus and highlighting the importance of having them around. Enjoy!


The number one benefit of having these dogs on campus that everyone notices is the reduction of anxiety and stress they provide. As you sit with the dogs they provide comfort just by being there. Additionally, from stroking the dog, “oxytocin, the hormone related to stress and anxiety relief, is released, helping to reduce blood pressure and lower cortisol levels.” (helpguide.org) This is incredibly beneficial if you find yourself regularly stressed out by uni coursework as they provide a way for you to relax and destress.


Having the guide dogs available on campus also allows you to meet new people, whether that is the staff members who look after the dogs or fellow stressed-out students who attend the events. Meeting and talking to new people can help with feelings such as homesickness and loneliness.  


Another reason you could benefit from visiting the guide dogs is the fact that they are great listeners.  You could sit and talk about anything that is worrying you and they will sit and listen to you without judging or interrupting you. And just from that act of talking to the dog, it can validate your feelings and instantly make you feel happier as you know someone cares and is listening to how you feel.


And finally, the guide dogs love you unconditionally and can cheer you up if you are sad. Dogs are enthusiastic creatures who love to be treated and rewarded, as they seek praise. So no matter how you’re feeling, these dogs can be an instant mood boost. Just playing and petting the dogs could make you smile, which would make the session worth it just for that.


Thank you for reading this post, I hope you found it somewhat useful, if you wish to find out more about the guide dogs, or wish to enquire when they’ll be visiting the campus again, please contact the student union using this emailsuadvice@edgehill.ac.uk
Until next time!

Film/Show of the day: Hidden Figures (2016)

 

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