The HKU Libraries announced today, 13 January 2021, that its first Resident Therapy Dog, Jasper, has passed away at the age of 12.
Jasper joined the University as a therapy dog in 2017 as part of a pilot programme introduced by the HKU Libraries with the aim of reducing stress and anxiety and improving the overall wellbeing of its students, particularly during examination periods.
Jasper was an Old English Sheepdog adopted from Hong Kong Dog Rescue, and became a certified therapy dog after passing an internationally recognised test. His gentle demeanour and friendliness towards people made him a great favourite of students and staff alike, and he had over 8,000 followers on his social media accounts as well.
The HKU Libraries understands the importance of being a source of both intellectual knowledge and emotional nurturance, and that the mental wellbeing of students can make a positive impact on their academic performance. It is grateful to Jasper for all the support, affection and joy he brought to the HKU community.
The HKU Resident Therapy Dog programme was the first of its kind to be introduced in Hong Kong and is unique among local universities. It has been extremely well received by the HKU community and updates about the future of the programme will be announced in due course.