Animals have therapeutic benefits

Everyone needs companionship. The need for contact with other life is one of the most important variables in deciding whether or not a person is happy. A person who has more contact with others on a personal level will be more prone to happiness.

People most commonly think of other people when it is said that humans need contact with other life to maintain a happy existence. The unsung heroes here are pets.

Pets can serve as a form of companionship. The type of unconditional affection that a person needs when they have had a bad day. Simply returning to your apartment to a life that is affectionate to you no matter what horrible thing may have happened is beneficial on many levels.

According to veterinarian Dr. Marty Becker, as humans pet their animals, blood pressure drops, heart rates lower and mood altering neurochemicals are released in their bloodstream. These chemicals can “stimulate feelings of elation, safety, tranquility, happiness, satisfaction, nurturing and even love.” In fact, the National Institute of Health sometimes prescribes animal assisted therapy teams to help patients cope with depression.

The benefits of animal and human interaction are becoming more apparent. However, one of the most depressed groups, college students, may find it hard to keep a pet.

The University only allows fish in residence halls, as do most apartment complexes. Their reasoning is understandable. They want to prevent complaints of odors and noise. Nonetheless, when a student moves into an apartment they should have the choice of whether or not to have a pet.

We understand that these are rented living spaces. The landlord has the right to say what goes into the apartment and what doesn’t to a certain extent. A security deposit is paid at the beginning of a lease. This security deposit will be returned in full at the end of the lease upon successfully passing an inspection of the apartment. Students should be allowed to have pets in the apartment with the understanding that they are at high risk of losing their security deposit due to possible damages caused by the animal.

If this solution is not plausible, then maybe the University should sponsor animal assisted therapy sessions.

College students encounter stress every day for many reasons.

Whereas most students find comfort in their friends and family, we cannot deny the therapeutic effect of interaction with animals.