Paws Program

Paws Fall 2016

The Paws Program connects students to therapeutic animals to reduce stress and improve overall wellbeing.  Peer Health Education, located in Recreation & Wellbeing (RecWell), usually offers two Paws Program events each semester in collaboration with Bright Spot Therapy Dogs, Inc. and UMass Amherst Libraries.

Looking to lower your stress, learn about resources on campus related to stress reduction, and/or discover new ways to boost your wellbeing? Come to one or more of the events listed below!

Paws program events for the 2024–2025 academic year:

Wednesday, October 30
Wednesday, December 4
Tuesday, March 4
Wednesday, April 16

PAWS Fall 2016

Frequently Asked Questions

paw How many times will the dogs visit?
Campus-wide events are scheduled twice a semester – at midterms and finals. Weekly therapy dog sessions take place at the Center for Counseling and Psychological Health (CCPH) and the Stonewall Center offers therapy dog events as well. 

paw Can the dogs stay longer?
The dogs can go 2-3 hours before they need to rest. Sleep is important for everyone!

paw Can the dogs visit my residence hall or department?
Unfortunately, no. We want as many people as possible to get to relax with the dogs. If you would like a dog to visit your program or residence hall, UMPD K9 officers Alec and Parker are available throughout the year as scheduling allows.

paw Will you bring cats for petting?
Right now, the Paws Program is able to work with dogs only. We will let you know if this changes!

paw How about small dogs?
In general, therapy dogs tend to be bigger, but small dogs become certified too. Learn what it takes to be a Bright Spot Therapy Dog at