Now for a lot of kids around Australia exams are just around the corner. It can be an incredibly stressful time. So one school in Canberra has come up with a unique way to help its students relax. Kittens!
They’re cute, cuddly, and a little bit cheeky. But, these kittens have another skill too.
ELEANOR: They’re just so cute and lovely. They just make me feel very happy.
For these guys, it’s exam time. And things can get pretty stressful.
STUDENT: Very busy. A lot of revision, a lot of work, a lot of coming to school early in the morning.
So, to help them chill out, the school decided to bring in some furry friends. And it seems to be working!
DONNA LAMBERT, SCHOOL COUNSELLOR: They had their exam books, they had kittens in their laps, and they were able to just relax, bring the blood pressure down and spend time with each other in a better environment to get ready for their next exam.
ELEANOR: I had my religion exam this morning and then I just came in here and I’ve been with the cats ever since.
CHARLOTTE BATTY, REPORTER: But, it’s not just cats. Experts say that hanging out with dogs, like Spice here, and other animals, could have some real health benefits.
It’s called animal therapy and it’s been going on in nursing homes and hospitals for years. The idea is that animals can help people who are stressed feel calmer, or give people who are lonely some companionship.
Animal therapy can also help people with illnesses or disabilities. These dogs are being trained for people who have autism. It’s a condition that a lot of kids have and affects how people communicate and cope with changes. Some kids with autism can run off unexpectedly or get really anxious.
So, these dogs are trained to find them and keep them calm. Some studies show that spending time with animals can even improve the way our hearts work, and even make us live longer!
So, these cuddly cats could actually be helping these kids get through more than just their next exam. As for the kittens themselves, all of these guys are currently up for adoption.
And the shelter that brought them says hanging out with the students will help to get them ready for their new homes too.
Who knows, they might even find a brand new owner!
But, for now, they’re just loving their role as some of cutest study-buddies around