Therapy pets visit Marywood


Photo credit/ Jessica Bonacci

Students gather around one of the therapy dogs in the Loughran Hall terrace floor lounge on Oct. 22.


Jessica Bonacci, Asst. Opinion Editor

On Oct. 22, Loughran Hall housed both two and four-legged friends.

Students had the opportunity to interact with therapy dogs, brought to campus by the local Therapy Dogs International chapter, and it seemed the dogs enjoyed the event as much as the students.

The event took place in the dorm’s lounge from 3 p.m. to 5 p.m. Dogs, both large and small, dressed up for Halloween and came to visit the students to relieve the stress that midterms left behind.

Barb Halloran, one of the volunteers at the event and member of Therapy Dogs International, said, “They’re all hams. They’ll do anything for food.”

Before they could make visits, these therapy dogs had to go through various levels of training, including passing certification tests and training classes. Now they travel to various locations, including local schools and nursing homes.

“The people eat it up [at the nursing homes]. It’s lots of fun for me and the dogs,” Halloran said.

Students took selfies, laughed, and played with their new furry pals.

Michael Nigro, dog lover and junior nursing student at Marywood, said he enjoyed spending time with the dogs.

“It’s a nice way to relieve stress. There’s a nice vibe,” said Nigro. 

After meeting the students, the dogs put on a show. Some barked along with the excitement while others showed off their best tricks.

Melly, a 6-year old Shih Tzu Terrier mix in a glittery pumpkin tutu, showed off her dance moves in front of the crowd. Other dogs clad in fairy wings and t-shirts ran in figure eights and even posed for pictures.

The therapy pets provided the students with a tail-wagging good time, one that signaled the end of a “ruff” week.

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