Pets in College

Don’t do it.

Not only do the pets worth having require a lot of attention, but I can almost guarantee that the pets that don’t require you to pet them every day are not going to exactly be your roommate’s cup of tea.

In college, there was a friend that I visited who lived two buildings away from me, and the narrows were slightly narrower. I walked in, and climbed up the stairs to find the typical brown walls with club announcements and sex health pamphlets pinned up to the corkboard, but as I searched for the room number, I heard an unfamiliar-or rather unexpected-noise. It was high-pitched, squeaky, defined, and annoying. As I walked around the corner, I noticed there was a girl walking out of her room and stole a peek inside her room to see the bird in its cage that was proudly sitting on its perch. Why?! I was later told that it was the hallway mascot, and I guess people agreed to it at the beginning but were regretting the decision on nights when they wanted to study, mornings when they wanted to sleep in, and afternoons when they just weren’t in the mood to lose their hearing to an animal whose main goal was to sing and squawk all day.

Furthermore, you will not have the time to give your pet the time it deserves, and even if you are not in a dorm and you happen to be a person that can balance many things at once, what will you do with the pet once you leave college? You may have a boyfriend by the time you reach your junior year, and perhaps he doesn’t want to have to be a joint owner of your cat or gerbil if you two move in together the following year. There are other people to consider and the future has many possibilities for you, including one where you may move away to another state.

I think, even people that want dogs because they are good company and good therapy are not allowed to have them or other animals in their dorms for many reasons. The university puts these rules in place for safety (in case the animal has rabies?), health (people with allergies, and maybe rabies again?), convenience (they take up space?), academic (people need to study, and most pets make noise and move around?), and cleanliness reasons. And you should abide by them. So don’t sneak a rabbit into your room, like one of my friends did. It may be cool for awhile, but eventually you’ll get caught and possibly in trouble. Then, you’ll have to part with your bunny friend and have to take on any responsibility for damages or complaints from others.

And last, but not least, if you get bored, the poor thing will have to go back to a shelter and find a new mommy. College girls, just like high school girls, are not ready to be moms-to a baby or to a pet. We have other priorities like school, jobs, boyfriends, family, planning for social events, our futures, and developing our skills and engaging more in our hobbies. Our time is precious, and until you’re ready to settle down, don’t make a furry (or feathery, scaly, or slimy) creature settle in with you.

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