Teesside University therapy dog receives honorary 'dogtorate' for mental health support

Brengle the golden retriever has been helping students with their mental health on campus. Credit: Teesside University

A therapy dog will receive an honorary 'dogtorate' at Teesside University to recognise the positive impact he has had on campus.

Brengle the golden retriever is being recognised for his work on University Mental Health Day - marked on Thursday 9 March - for improving student wellbeing on his regular visits to see them.

The university said the canine's friendly demeanour provides reassurance in difficult and stressful situations.

He has also been supporting a cohort of students who have suffered a bereavement and has been on hand to support students when they come out of exams.

Brengle has been praised for his positive impact on student mental health. Credit: Teesside University

Sarah Bishop, assistant director of student and library services at Teesside University, said: "Often students are away from home for the first time, sometimes in a foreign country, and could be dealing with things like exam pressures, money issues or relationship breakdown."

"It is vital, therefore, that students know that the university is there to help them and can offer support.

"Brengle does a fantastic job, encouraging people to engage with our support services and providing them with love and reassurance.

The canine will receive an honorary 'dogtorate' on University Mental Health Day. Credit: Teesside University

"When you see him walking around campus, you see people point and smile, they enjoy him being here.

"We’re delighted to create this special honour for him, he’s a worthy recipient."

University Mental Health Day is organised by UK mental health charity Student Minds and aims to raise awareness of the challenges faced by scholars in higher education.

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