UKC BioSoc’s Canine Cuddles a ‘Pawing’ Success

Photo by Holly Welch

On Thursday 14th May, UKC BioSoc held a “Canine Cuddles” afternoon in conjunction with Dog’s Trust. This wonderful event gave students the opportunity to cuddle, stroke and spend some time with 2-year-old Maggie (pictured above). I popped along to see how the afternoon went – and to get a few cuddles myself!

The event, which saw Dog’s Trust employee Lara bring along Maggie to the Student Media Centre between 2pm and 4pm, was organised as a way to help distract from the worry of exams. Originally aimed just at members of UKC BioSoc, the invitation was then extended to the rest of the student community.

Photo by Sam Marshall

Maggie, a lurcher (a greyhound, whippet and saluki mix), was originally found as a stray in Ireland at roughly six months old. She had a broken leg when found and had to undergo treatment for it, but thankfully soon recovered. Maggie was taken to Dog’s Trust Canterbury where Lara adopted her, and Maggie now lives at home with Lara and her other dog, Smudge.

During the 10-minute time slots, Lara discussed Maggie’s history, as well as the centre at which she works. The centre can have up to 70 dogs at any one time – while there are some dogs that have been in residence for years, the majority are luckily adopted fairly quickly.

Maggie was a delight to spend time with and enjoyed the attention of the many students who came to visit her. She was incredibly curious and spent a lot of time investigating the Student Media Centre or new students! The two hour event certainly tired her out, though, as she curled up on the sofa and nearly fell asleep.

Photo by Holly Welch

Overall, I found the experience to be incredibly therapeutic and would love to see more events like this happen every year. I have a feeling many would agree with me, as I heard plenty of students remark that the event had helped to ease the stress of upcoming exams!

UKC BioSoc clearly felt the same way about the “Canine Cuddles” session, too. Sam Marshall, co-president of the society, said: “We feel that canine cuddles has been a resounding success, especially as a new society and the first event of its kind. We’re very grateful to Lara and Maggie from Dog’s Trust for coming and making so many people smile today! Hopefully next year we’ll be able to organise a bigger, more collaborative event.”

The event was incredibly popular and enjoyed by many (including me!), so here’s hoping UKC BioSoc put on another event like this again.

To find out more about Dog’s Trust Canterbury and what they do, click here.


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