Pre-Vet club encourages students to “Pause 4 Paws”

Elizabeth Floyd, Staff Writer

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The FMU Pre-Vet Club has joined up with Jayne Boswell at the Florence Area Humane Society to bring puppies and kittens from the shelter for students for its second annual “Pause 4 Paws” event from 12 – 3 p.m. on Nov. 25 on the lawn beside the Smith University Center.

Tamatha Barbeau, professor of biology and coordinator of the pre-veterinary program, has played a major role in getting the event off the ground after some students pitched the idea at a club meeting. Barbeau said the Pre-Vet Club had been trying to get this event on campus for many years.

“At this point in the semester, and every semester, everything’s happening at once; exams and assignments are due,” Barbeau said. “Everyone is stressed out; students and faculty alike, and it just makes a good occasion for people to stop what they’re doing for 30 minutes or an hour and come and cuddle with puppies and kittens.”

Barbeau said that while not everyone thinks they like puppies or kittens, the event is still a good way to relieve some stress and anxiety.”

“So many people love puppies and kittens,” Barbeau said. “Not everyone, but a lot of people do and you just automatically calm down and enjoy the moment and forget your troubles for that brief bit of time.”

The success of this event last year made it possible for this event to be offered again this year. The Pre-Vet club wanted to once again help students de-stress with animal loving relief.

Barbeau said the feedback from the last “Pause 4 Paws” was very positive.

“I say it was very successful and many people at the event said, ‘Are you going to do this again next semester? We should do this every semester,’” Barbeau said. “So, based on the feedback, and how many people showed up, it was a lot. I would guess it was 60 or 70 people in the timespan between 12 and 3 when we held it. Last semester was our inaugural run; it was the first time we held it so we didn’t know what to expect. It went great, and I hope the word spreads even more this semester so that more people come.”

While the event is good for students who need to de-stress, it is also an important time for kittens and puppies who need to socialize with people. The event will feature cuddling stations for these animals.

This event would not be possible without the cooperation of the Florence Area Human Society and Boswell who have worked closely with the FMU Pre-Vet club for years.

“The Pre-Vet club has a good relationship with Jayne Boswell and the shelter in general,”

Barbeau said. “We’ve known her since we started the club back in 2014. We’ve held fundraisers for them, supply drives for the shelter, gone to the shelter to volunteer; whatever we can do to help the shelter.”

Barbeau said the event is possible because of the good relationship that the Pre-Vet club has with Boswell and the shelter.

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