Among the busyness that comes along with finals week, students made sure to take a break to stop by the retirement party in honor of Baxter, the therapy dog that has been helping to relieve stress for UD students the last several years.
Baxter, a 13-year old flat-coated retriever, has been serving as a therapy dog for the Miami Valley Pet Therapy Association for five years. He has been visiting UD’s campus to serve as a destressor for students during finals week since 2013.
On Dec. 11, members of UD’s community gathered on the first floor of Roesch Library to celebrate Baxter’s retirement with cake, cookies and lots of love for through pats on the head and hugs.
Community counseling graduate Tina Donovan ’08 told the crowd many stories about her dog, including when she recognized his calling. She recalled one of their first outings together was at a dog park. Although there were other dogs running around and wanting to play, Baxter was more interested in interacting with humans. Baxter soon became known as the “Walmart greeter” of the park and Donovan decided to enroll him in therapy classes.
“We called Miami Therapy on the spot for classes and I’ve been following his lead ever since,” said Donovan.
At the party, Baxter’s only focus was on his newfound friends — UD students who wanted to take a little break from their studies during finals week. It was clear Baxter would be missed.
Maureen Schlangen, Roesch Library’s e-scholarship and communications manager, is one of many who will be missing the puppy-dog eyes and wagging tail next semester.
“Baxter is such a good dog, the library is his favorite place to be,” she said.