STAUNTON, Va. (WHSV) — Meet Murphy. The 10-month-old, 145 pound, gentle giant.
Murphy Deming College of Health Science welcomes a therapy dog for students.
Dr. Deborah Greubel, Vice President and dean of Murphy Deming College of Health Sciences, got Murphy the dog as a Christmas gift, later realizing he was a little different than most pups.
"Murphy had such a unique personality when I first met him that I knew he was destined to do something different. So, he started showing up here at work and the students started bonding with him immediately," said Greubel.
Named after the college, Murphy sniffs his way through the halls of the building, giving attention to those who want and need it. Greubel takes Murphy almost everywhere, using him not only as a companion, but also as a tool for her students.
"Students here, right before test time, will need some "Murphy Time". A lot of students will come in and say, 'Can we just sit here with Murphy for a while?' or Murphy may hang out with them in the lobby for a while," said Greubel.
Students say seeing Murphy is sometimes the best part of their day, even helping them through difficult times.
"He's definitely a cuddle bug and you can just feel the tension release from everybody once they're around Murphy," said Hannah Coffey, a second-year student.
Murphy is currently enrolled in formal training to become a certified therapy dog for the college.
"He greets every student that he comes across and he'll just put his head in their lap and you can just see them melt and start to pet him and start to really relax around him," said Greubel.