Puppy rooms have become popular at universities across North America, but while they undoubtedly make you feel all warm and fuzzy, do they actually do anything to decrease student stress?
New research out of the University of British Columbia says yes.
The researchers interviewed over 200 students both before and after going into a session with some therapy puppies. During the sessions, students got to cuddle, pet, and play with anywhere from seven to 12 puppies.
The students also filled out a questionnaire roughly 10 hours after their puppy playdate.
What they found was that the students felt a lot happier, less stressed, and more supported when compared to students who didn’t get to pet puppies. Shocking, right?
But the actual surprise was that even 10 hours later, these students still felt a bit better. Also, although past research showed that the dogs had a greater impact on women, this study showed that the good vibes were pretty much gender-balanced.
Of course, the effects don’t last forever- life takes over, and your stress levels can go right back up pretty quickly. So the researchers suggested offering the sessions during more stressful times, like exam times, for example.
The results are almost good enough to make me want to go get another degree. Almost.