A Significant Need for Emotional Support


Elizabeth Cheadle, Staff Writer

In today’s world the idea of emotional support animals has become widely accepted.  It is common for people who suffer from mental illness to find comfort and support from an animal. These animals come in a variety of different forms, the most common being dogs and cats, and the less common (but more exciting) include frogs, snakes, ferrets, and birds.

In almost every work environment, having support available for those who suffer from mental illness is a necessity. However, one environment that still questions the use of emotional support animals is college campuses.

As the use of emotional support animals is on the rise, so has the controversy of their reliability. Currently in the United States, it is required that universities allow students to have emotional support animals if deemed necessary by a psychologist. While many people believe that animals can provide a sense of safety and comfort, others see the animals as a distraction.

Senior Mikayla Troung states, “As much as they provide support, it is a lot of stress to also take care of another being while trying to finish all the assignments that you get.”

Mikayla explains how, while students may find comfort from having an animal in their dorm, they could possibly lead to added stress, as they require constant care and attention.

Counselor Mrs. Lisa Doroff says, “I think they can be beneficial if the student genuinely needs the support.”

Doroff brings up the issue that while certain students may benefit from the use of emotional support animals, others may take advantage of the availability to bring their own pets to college campuses.

Overall, emotional support animals can have many benefits to those who suffer from mental illnesses. Unfortunately it is common for people to take advantage of the chance to have their pets in their dorms. This however should not be an oversight to the real advantages people can receive from the comfort of an animal.

One last remark from Doroff: “I think we need to have an emotional support animal at Holy Family…and I have just the dog in mind.”