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Colleges go to the dogs for stress busters

May 2, 2012: In this photo, law students Josh Richey, 22, right, and Lindsay Stewart, 26, play with Hooch, a 19-month-old golden retriever, right, and Stanley, a 4-month-old golden retriever, in between final exams at Emory University in Atlanta.

May 2, 2012: In this photo, law students Josh Richey, 22, right, and Lindsay Stewart, 26, play with Hooch, a 19-month-old golden retriever, right, and Stanley, a 4-month-old golden retriever, in between final exams at Emory University in Atlanta.

Emory University in Atlanta has become the latest college to bring dogs on campus during exams to help stressed-out students.

Schools are placing pups in counseling centers for students to visit regularly or allowing faculty and staff to bring their pets to campus to play with students.

Some colleges have created pet-friendly dorms where students can bring their dogs or cats from home.

Research shows that interaction with pets decreases the level of cortisol -- or stress hormone -- in people and increases endorphins, known as the happiness hormone. But there is scant research on the how pet programs on college campuses help students cope with stress.