Small Breed Dogs
When it comes to having a pet like a dog in a dorm or college setting, there are many things to consider. While most everyone likes to play and snuggle with a dog, not quite as many like to take it for late night walks or clean up after accidents.
Coates tells this story about her days as an undergrad. “I adopted a small mixed-breed dog in my second year at college. There were many times when I had to change my plans to suit his needs. And I can’t say that I enjoyed our regular ‘study breaks’ during which I waited in a raging blizzard while he found the perfect place to poop. Still, he was my best friend, and I can’t imagine my college (and many subsequent!) years without him.”
On a dorm floor where everyone is pet friendly, a communal dog could work, but too often, everyone seems to think that someone else is taking care of its needs, resulting in neglect. It’s not enough to “have” a dog; you need to be responsible for all of its care.
Dogs don’t like to be left alone for long periods and dorm rooms can be very confining. Any animal, no matter how peaceful, might get stir-crazy, lash out and be destructive, and should there be any damage done to the room, it will be the owner (that’s you) who will be stuck with the bill.
Another factor to consider: All dogs have unique personalities and temperaments, and these traits often don’t translate into being good pets for college students. Whether a dog will be a barker, a howler, anxious, or fearful may be unknown until after you have taken him home. Your fellow students won’t appreciate a barking, whining, or howling dog when they are trying to sleep or study.
One of the biggest benefits to consider? A dog is your perfect go-to excuse for everything. Not in the mood for a party or don't want to admit that you don't have money to go out for a pint? "The dog needs me at home." Done. And dogs are also the best for breaking the ice and making new friends.