(Camosun College)

With exam season fast approaching at Camosun College in Victoria, students are turning to ‘puppy love’ to help relieve some stress.

On Monday, the St. John Ambulance Therapy Dog Program returned to campus—after a two-year hiatus due to the COVID-19 pandemic, according to the college.

Another therapy dog visit is set for next Monday, April 4th, as four volunteer teams, consisting of handlers and dogs, gather at the Interurban Library at 1:30 p.m.

Camosun library technician Jennifer Stenberg, who also helps organize the visits, finds they’re “very popular” each fall and winter semester.

That’s because, amid the busyness, students and staff love spending time with the dogs and petting them while also chatting with their handlers, Stenberg says.

“It’s a great way for the students to relieve some stress and take a break from studying for exams and preparing term papers,” she said.

Meanwhile, Camosun student counsellor Liisa Robinson says the therapy dog program is just one of many support services available to students.

“It’s normal for students to feel overwhelmed or unsure of how to deal with life’s challenges,” added Robinson, pointing to her colleagues who she says look to support students and help them stay healthy.

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