Exeter Uni launches dog-walking project for members of the local community

Dog walks might be the solution to the end of term blues!

The University of Exeter has launched a dog-walking project where students at the university can walk dogs for people within the local community who are unable to walk their own dogs.

With more than 100 volunteers already, the project is already proving to be popular amongst anxious students in deadline season. The university are keen for owners to come forward and offer their dogs to be walked.

The project has been set up by Lewis Hartley, a student at Exeter. He hopes that the scheme combats the feelings of homesickness present for many uni students whilst connecting to a local crowd of people too!

The Exeter Student Guild have said students are welcome to volunteer on their own or in a pair, and will be paired up with fellow dog lovers to explore more of Exeter.

Students are welcome to choose when they’d like to walk the dogs, how often they’d meet with the owners and even choose which dogs they’d like to walk. The guild has stated they have “a variety of different dogs – some are shy, small or slow whilst others are bouncy and energetic.”

Kate Angus, a student here at Exeter, has been walking a dog called Bertie on a weekly basis and she told BBC Radio Devon: “I miss my dog a lot so he brings me a lot of joy”.

Another student, Edie, spoke of the benefits of being around animals, ans said: “students can get really lonely being at uni, so having a dog and a reason to leave the house is such a good idea. Also, it forms bonds between students and more isolated members of the community so works for both parties”.

The scheme is a win for both the students walking the dogs and the owners who are able to go about their day, whether that be working or at home. The scheme is beneficial to everyone involved, encouraging students to get outdoors and combat loneliness and solidifying a link between the students at Exeter and the local community.

If you are interested in walking dogs at Exeter Uni or want to volunteer your dog to be walked you can contact the ESV’s Dog Walking project at [email protected]

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