A national non-profit organization is hoping to take the bite out of stressful exams.

Therapeutic Paws of Canada sends dogs -- and cats -- to such places as universities, schools, seniors' homes and hospitals to help people unwind.

On Monday, some cuddly canines and their handlers showed up at Dalhousie University in Halifax -- just days before end-of-term exams begin.

First-year student Hailey Stewart was grateful for the few minutes of respite from studying.

"The timing of this week is perfect," she told CTV Atlantic."It's a stressful week here at (Dalhousie).

"You come here, and you forget about all that other work."

These aren't your average backyard dogs; each pooch is handpicked by Therapeutic Paws based on their temperament.

"None of these dogs are barking or going at each other," said Mark Grant, team leader at Nova Scotia's Therapeutic Paws branch. "They're all relaxed."

Grant used to show dogs at competitions but now helps to train the dogs.

"I just enjoy the dogs and what they have to offer," he said. "I have a tool I can volunteer with and it's just a pleasure to give back to the community."

After the wagging tails are gone and the students head back to hit the books, Grant hopes people leave feeling a little bit better about their day.

"Our goal in general is to help people relax, and put a smile on their face using our dogs."