Many people claim that college is the best four years of your life. From designing a schedule without any morning classes to living with your best friends, college can be fun but definitely stressful. Everyone knows that there are just some days when you would rather be home relaxing in your own bed, enjoying your mom’s food, and of course, cuddling with your dog. This is why, I brought my dog Colt to campus to see just how seeing a dog can positively affect everyones’ day! 

Colt resting up for his big day on campus. (Photo by Joey Toczylowski ’19)



Dogs are a treat to have on a college campus.There have been several studies linking dogs to stress relief. Need a productive study break? Head outside to play a game of fetch with someone who always has the energy. Feeling down and in need of hug? Dogs are an amazing source of stress and anxiety relief. I brought my dog, Colt, to campus and he instantly had a beneficial influence on people! Dozens of people asked to pet him and a smile instantly appeared on their faces when they saw how friendly he was. With all of negative effects that stress has on a person, even the smallest bit of relief helps. The possibilities for activities for you and your fluffy friend are as endless as your stress levels. 

Students say hello to Colt on their way to class. (Photo by Joey Toczylowski ’19)

The raise of emotional support animals (ESAs), used to aid those who suffer from anxiety, are rapidly growing. Getting your dog or other pet ESA certified is very easy. The only requirement is a permit that can be purchased online with verification from a licensed medical personnel justifying your need for such assistance. An ESA has no restrictions for animal type, breed, size, age, or level of training because the animal’s sole purpose is provide comfort. 

Colt taking a little break after exploring campus. (Photo by Joey Toczylowski ’19)

While there are some rules about what you can and cannot do with your pups on campus, the university is aware of all of the benefits of having animals on site. Getting to play with the dogs in the library during spring finals week is one of the most relaxing and popular events of the year. You won’t have to worry about public safety chasing you and the pooches away because the Saint Joseph’s University student handbook policy states that animals are allowed on campus as long as certain procedures are followed. Dogs are only allowed in residence halls if they are ESA certified so it is certainly worth checking out the certification process. 

Make everyday feel like spring finals week, minus the stress, panic, tears and anxiety, by bringing your dog to college! Go Hawks and Dogs! 

Colt posing next to his favorite school’s sign! (Photo by Joey Toczylowski ’19)

-Stephanie Affatato ’19


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