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Therapy dogs help Mont. students with test stress

BOZEMAN, Mont. (AP) — At Montana State University, final exams stress is going to the dogs.

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Montana State University students gather around Intermountain Therapy Animals volunteer Sandy Watson and her 4-year-old Maltese named Sophie Thursday during the Paws to de-Stress program at the Renne Library on campus of Montana State University. (AP Photo/Bozeman Daily Chronicle, Mike Greener)

The Bozeman Daily Chronicle reports (http://bit.ly/11pDoHV ) Intermountain Therapy Animals is bringing dogs to campus this week and next to help students take a break from the stress of studying for and taking semester exams.

Jacqueline Frank is the Renne Library commons assistant who started the "Paws to de-Stress" program this semester. She says research shows that animals can help reduce stress and lower blood pressure.

Frank says over a two-hour period on Thursday afternoon, 261 people stopped by to meet Ellie, a 6-year-old golden retriever and Sophie, a 4-year-old Maltese.

Sophomore Rebecca Johnson from Ferndale, Wash., said: "This is the best idea ever."

Butte sophomore Kaitlyn Okrush agreed, noting she has an organic chemistry final on Monday.

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