Thursday, December 06, 2012

Puppy Love Break

This week at McGill (a trend started in other universities), there was an event where stressed students could take a break from exam-studying to play with dogs. Tragically, I missed the event, and instead spent the day reading my health psychology textbook, where coincidentally I read that
“...going through a stressful event in the presence of a pet can keep heart rate and blood pressure lower during that event and lead to faster physiological recovery. Dogs are somewhat better.. than are other pets. Even a short encounter with a friendly dog has been found to increase opioid functioning and other hormones associated with companionship and to decrease levels of stress-related hormones such as cortisol.”
Translation: dogs make you happier and less stressed. These universities are definitely onto something with this brilliant idea! This made me regretful of not attending, and even worse, I suddenly began longing for my own puppy (yes, I still refer to him as "puppy" after 15 years):


Now, being the die-hard dog-lover that I am, I figured it wouldn't be too difficult to fill my puppy quota. I decided to conduct a highly unscientific study, with a laughable sample size of me, testing out my hypothesis that simply watching videos of dogs will also decrease my stress. Or at the very least, provide a good study break during this very stressful time.

First up, this recent, hilarious Volkswagen spot:
Significant effects: moderate increase in laughter

 Next up, is their well-known teaser and game-day spots for this year's Super Bowl:

Significant effects: mild increase in humming

Significant effects: moderate increase in motivation

 With this change of pace, dog lovers beware! The following Purina spot will make you weep:

 Significant effects: dramatic increase in tears

Finally, this calming Pedigree ad will leave you in awe of the sheer beauty of our canine friends:
Significant effects: mild decrease in breathing and heart rate

The results: this collection of spots provided me with significant relief of stress, through laughter, catharsis, and a general mental break, free of procrastination guilt.

I share this puppy love break with all of you.

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