Dogs and College!

Elrohwen

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#21
I am jealous of those of you who say you had more free time in school than when working full time. I had more time when I was working 60hr work weeks than I do now. It's terrible!
Are you working and doing school? I think adding lots of work hours to school stuff could make having a dog very difficult. I worked a bit when I was in college, but for the most part I just attended classes and did class work. Senior year I was probably attending classes and doing school work for 10-12 hours a day, but things were a lot more flexible and I could do work at home, or take a break and go for a walk. Now I'm stuck in an office for 10 hours straight.
 

xpaeanx

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#22
Are you working and doing school? I think adding lots of work hours to school stuff could make having a dog very difficult. I worked a bit when I was in college, but for the most part I just attended classes and did class work. Senior year I was probably attending classes and doing school work for 10-12 hours a day, but things were a lot more flexible and I could do work at home, or take a break and go for a walk. Now I'm stuck in an office for 10 hours straight.
No, it's only school work. And I live an hour away so no going home between classes. I'm there 12 hours most days, plus homework and study after. We do "weekend warrior" lifestyle bc that's all the time I have.
 

JazzyTheSibe

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#23
Are you going to be living with your family? YOUR living situation is a much greater influence on you getting a dog than just simply having college classes. It doesn't sound like your family is too happy to have a dog in their house anyway.
This may sound horrible, but I'm not entirely sure yet. However, It is likely that I will be living with my family, for the first few years.

Obviously you can't have a dog if you're in a dorm room.
It doesn't sound like your family is too happy to have a dog in their house anyway.
Yes, this certainly is true. The probability of them allowing a dog in the house, even if it is my dog, it is still very unlikely. Unfortunately

I'll bring it up with them, hopefully. In this case, a dog *might* be possible, that is of course if I take n the responsibility of raising a dog [which I certainly would]. Still I can't see it happening



I'll try to reply to everyone as soon as possible, I'm in school right now, so I don't have the longest time to reply.
 
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#24
I work full time and go to school full time.

How much of you're extra time do you to taking care of your dogs?
All of my spare time is spent with my dogs. Hanging out with friends usually involves taking the dogs for a hike.
Are your dogs "coping" fine?
Yes they are spoiled turds
Are you in any sports?
Not at the moment. Gypsy is taking up all of my spare time and money because we are working on her reactivity.
Where do you currently live,& how's that working out?
I live in a house with a fenced yard with my SO. Fencing the yard has been a life saver since I started school I can just let them out to get their zoomies out if I don't have time to take them somewhere.
Anything else?SO and I have different work hours so the dogs are only home alone 3-4 days a week. Also, a lot of my classes can be taken online. This has saved me so much time. I don't think I would be able to do it if I had to go to classes every day. Having SO has also been a huge help.
 

Elrohwen

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#25
No, it's only school work. And I live an hour away so no going home between classes. I'm there 12 hours most days, plus homework and study after. We do "weekend warrior" lifestyle bc that's all the time I have.
Oh yeah, that would make it way harder. I was doing stuff for 12 hours, but I could have easily gone home to walk a dog for a bit or something. I worked a lot, but my time was so flexible compared to full time work. But that's definitely not the case if you're stuck on campus with a long commute!

I think it's impossible to pin down "the college life" these days because it's different for everyone.
 
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#26
I've been out of university for two years now, but I had Venice and fostered while I was still in school.

How much of you're extra time do you to taking care of your dogs?
Honestly I probably set aside more dog time then than I do now. I spent most of my spare time doing stuff with the dogs, even if that was just hanging out on the couch watching a movie. We'd do a couple walks a day, usually a big one (1 - 2 hours) on my lighter days or weekends. Sometimes a once weekly training class or short sessions at home. I was in a demanding program but I never felt like I didn't have enough time for the dogs, even with a part time job.

Are your dogs "coping" fine?
They did just great. Between my boyfriend's bartending schedule and me and my roommate with different class schedules, they were rarely alone for more than three or four hours at a time.

Are you in any sports?
Venice and I did flyball once a week and the fosters went to training classes once a week.

Where do you currently live, & how's that working out?
At the time, we lived on the bottom floor of a triplex. Which worked out great because we had sole access to the backyard. It wasn't fenced but it was still nice to be able to step outside and have somewhere for the dogs to do their business.

Anything else?
I had been fostering for a little while at this point and it was ideal for me - no financial commitment to the dog, everything was paid for. I was also of the mindset that it was not a good plan to get a dog until I was really financially secure, but hey, things happen. I never would have thought I'd end up with my OWN dog while still in university but it worked out well for me. Pet insurance may be a good idea if you don't have a nice cushion for surprise medical emergencies but other than that, I wouldn't worry too much about getting things 'perfect' - I don't think that ideal exists. :) In the long run, as long as the dog gets fed and cared for, has a warm place to sleep, and sees the outside of its own yard more than once or twice a week, you're doing way better than most dog owners anyway.
 

JacksonsMom

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#27
I've had Iz since october of my grade 12 year. So for 6 years now. She's been with me through 3 years of university and 2 years of college now.

How much of you're extra time do you to taking care of your dogs?
I don't even know if i can answer that, she's 6 and I've had her for so long it just is. She's with me as much as possible, we go for walks sometimes, play in the house, peanut ball stuff, tricks. Mostly cuddles and just hanging out though. She's just part of the life.

[/B]I imagine it depends on the dog. Iz is like an extra appendage for me. I've had her as a pup and we have been through a lot together. In fact i think having us just one on one together since april has done wonders for our bond (not that it was poor before, but Agility wise she has never been nearly as close to me or me to her).
This was worded perfectly. This is how Jax and I are too. It just kind of is what it is and he really is like an extra appendage for me. That's perfect wording.
 

xpaeanx

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#28
I think it's impossible to pin down "the college life" these days because it's different for everyone.
That's kind of why I was saying it's def do-able but you have to decide. And if you don't feel it's right, then wait. My life with apartments is definitely exponentially harder bc of the dogs too... So it may be a lot more responsibility than someone wants when they're not even sure of where exactly their future is going. Not that they can't do it... just that there is a lot that goes into getting a dog. You're taking on the responsibility of a fully dependent child basically.
 

Laurelin

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#29
I agree it depends more on your parents and where you are as far as supporting yourself goes. If you are living with parents or will be moving back in with them then their permission will be a big factor in things moreso than just being in college.

The thing I liked about college vs now is I could have breaks mid day vs now when I'm home at dark. It sucks for dog ownership. Back in college I'd go to morning classes, come home and grab lunch, hit the park a couple hours then be back at school late afternoon. I just like the dogs having their outing mid day too. Seems to wear them out better so they'll sleep in the afternoon better.
 

Dizzy

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#30
Many do. I wouldn't. Well... Not off the bat. My life has changed massively since I went to university (the first time round!).

I got bodhi when I was out of uni and working and earning my own money. Granted I went back to uni. Life can always change... But for me it wouldn't have been right to have got a dog so young and carefree (careless ;) ).

Consider how much things will change when you finish too. Going from lots of free time (usually) to full time career. Can you predict how that will go?
 

meepitsmeagan

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#31
I'm stealing my post from the venting thread and then adding on the extra questions.

I've had a dog my entire career in college. My first three semesters were Harlow alone, living alone. Took a break for a few years, have been back now for coming up on fourth semester. I've pretty consistently had three dogs now, all of whom are high exercise requirements.

With Harlow all by myself, I lived in a basement apartment. I took her to pet stores, hiking, ect. I was working 20 hours a week plus school full time. Financially it was not bad at all and it was not a stretch to keep her properly socialized and exercised. EDIT- I forgot that I lived with my parents until Harlow was about a year old, so my mom helped a bit when she was a puppy (mainly with potty stuff).

With the three (four?) we have now, pretty much the same deal except I have DH who helps out. I do all the training and stuff with Rider and Tulsa. He mainly handles Harlow and now Story as well. For me personally, mushing is the only way I can make multiple dogs work right now as far as physical exercise goes. I'm working 35 hours a week on top of 8 credit hours at school. I do have dog jobs, but normally my schedule allows not for me to take them to one and the other, because of the dogs I own, they do not often attend. But alas, we make it work.

I would say my dogs could definitely use more exercise, but they aren't living a bad life. Each get trained plenty and while they aren't as fit as I'd like they are still in shape. Also, we don't take nearly as many classes now as when I wasn't in school, but again.. we make it work. FB groups are good for that. Basically all of my extra time goes into them. Even when I'm studying, they are all hanging out chewing on a bone. If I'm taking a break, I'm doing a mini training session. We have our own house, but shitty neighbors and several dog aggressive dogs on our road, so I cannot walk them there. It's not ideal, but we make do. We rented with 4 dogs at once too.. you just need a flexible landlord. Financially, as long as you prepare and have a cushion, nbd. I currently show in conformation with Tulsa and she is in training for rally and/or competitive obedience. Rider will trial as well if we can get his confidence issues under control.
 

Ozfozz

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#32
How much of you're extra time do you to taking care of your dogs?
Probably about 2-3 hours per day

Are your dogs "coping" fine?
Better than they would be if I left them behind :p

Are you in any sports?
We do agility when we can, I would like to be able to trial more but with the season there's not a heck of a lot going on.
We also participate in our performance team a few times per year

Where do you currenetly live,& how's that working out?
Right now, I'm living with my parents. Someone is always home (save for 2 hours every now and then), there's a large yard, and my mother will typically take them out for a run. I did move out with my boyfriend for a year, and that worked out just fine as well. I felt the dogs were better behaved living away from my parents as I spent more time with them (taking them outside instead of letting them outside, etc.)

Anything else?
Living with a dog in college/university would be difficult if you intend on having the "full university experience" - living on campus, parties, the sports, the major social aspects.
But if you're living off-campus, and not really into the whole "divulge your entire life into school" thing it's not too bad.

I found that living with a dog helped me get out of the house and exercise. Sometimes you need a break from staring at notes or a computer screen. Getting out and walking helps keeps that "freshman 15" down as well as stress.

I wouldn't have been able to make it to school at all without Cobain, so there's that.
 

Locke

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#33
I had a dog through university and college. I wouldn't have had it any other way, but my social life is pretty dull so I never felt as though I was sacrificing or missing out on anything.

Do you work now?
If not, I would recommend finding a job, and experience what it is like to go to school and work full time. You will know if the added responsibility of a dog is something you can commit to.
Your parents might be more open to the idea that way as well.
 

Dex

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#34
How much of you're extra time do you to taking care of your dogs?
Are your dogs "coping" fine?
Are you in any sports?
Where do you currenetly live,& how's that working out?
Anything else?
These answers are from years ago when I adopted Dodger as a sophomore in college.

Extra time - Almost all of it went to Dodger. He had severe SA though so I didn't have much choice but to work on that or do things he could be included in. Which is fine by me.. that's why I'm so involved in doing "dog things" today. I also think it contributed to great dating life.. since Dodge and I were a complete package I was able to weed out anyone that wasn't cool with dogs, doing dog things and including Dodge. Pretty sure half the guys I dated were only in it to hang out with Dodger anyway. Also, I worked at a dog daycare throughout college so he was able to come with me to work every day.

Coping - Aside from the SA, he loved it. I lived with 5 other roommates and he LOVES people (the constant stream of guests visiting was awesome for him). He loved parties (stealing food from anyone he could, unlimited pets and lots of stuff going on? PERFECT!)

Sports - That's when we started dock jumping, and slowly began to branch out into other sports too.

Living Situation - Started in a house with 5 other roommates for awhile, then for a year I lived alone in a studio apartment (I did NOT like that) so after that I went back to a house with roommates (and their dogs).

Overall, nobody thought it was a good idea for me to adopt him. My parents told me not too, I had to go back and forth with the rescue for over a week to get approved.. but at least my landlord took the $200 cash bribe to allow me to have my dog. Fast-forward several years and my parents are so happy that I have Dodger, and the rescue reevaluated their adoption policy. Previously they did now allow anyone under 25 to adopt from them (weird right??) but after seeing my success with Dodge they decided to start looking at applicants as individuals and not just automatically DQ'ing them based on age, etc. That's a win-win right there for the people and the dogs that need homes!

Happy to answer any other questions you have about dogs/college. :)
 

JessLough

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#35
It's been a few years since I've been in school, and I no longer have a dog currently, but I'll answer for when I was/did! My answers are a little skewed, since I had ferrets as well as the dog to take care of.

How much of you're extra time do you to taking care of your dogs?
Every free moment, basically. We were outside actually burning energy about 5-6 hours a day, most days. Lazy days, it was 3-4. The only time I wasn't focused on her was when the ferrets were out and I was providing them with their needs.

Are your dogs "coping" fine?
She coped as well as any other time. Though, she grew with all of us in school.

Are you in any sports?
Nope

Where do you currently live, & how's that working out?
At home. It worked out as well as ever? lol

Anything else?
Honestly, having a dog was exhausting. It made school difficult, getting homework done near impossible, and meant I was leaving the house to be able to study for exams.

Keep in mind, I was also working as well as going to school full time. Often times, I was working two jobs. For a good stint, I was ensuring my dying grandmother got to appointments, and then staying by her side in hospice care.

Other than that, I had no social life, though that was fine by me. I live a 15 minute walk from the college, so I was going to the school right before my first class, and coming home right after. The days were *long* -- even living close, there was just not enough time for it to be worth coming home between classes. There were also days that I had to be at the college at 6am, and then again at 7pm, to take care of the animals there.

I totally have more time now, whilst just working.

I don't regret having the pets during college, but I also like chaos. You're not working right now, right? You should probably get used to a routine of college and working (if you will be) for a while first, because it's a huge change.
 

monkeys23

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#36
I got Lily the winter after I graduated at aprx 1 year old, but I know it would have helped me a LOT if I'd had her that whole first year of her life. I spent a lot of that year taking care of my ex's pit bull and getting my own dog was the big step that ultimately got me out of a very bad situation. Also miss loves everyone alerted hardcore the first time she met that ex if that tells you anything.

The first four years of college I was full on into the college experience, I swam varsity, did a study abroad, and did a lot of long hours in studio classes as well as research intensive stuff. Really though, Lily is the kind of dog that it would've been fine if I'd had her then. I somehow picked the perfect first dog.

I actually work at the library of my alma matter and they both spend lots of time on campus and love getting attention from kids who miss their dogs at home. When I still art modeled they went with me to class and were a great ice breaker for nervous students to relax and get drawing. Once in a blue moon you run across a student that is "off" for whatever reason and really freaks Scout out. It okay, we have plenty of experience explaining why she needs space and not to be creeper stared at. We have only run across one student in our entire time that wasn't kind and willing to respect her rights as a living creature. Most people are fantastic and it is a great educational opportunity.

Heh, recently between dead week and finals we had "reading days" on campus and I worked 5pm to 2am those two nights. The first night we had the drumline in the library at midnight and the second we did a 'yote howl (mascot is coyote) at midnight. I took Lily with me the second night. She had a blast schmoozing and she and a prof's schnauzer humored us with some good howls at midnight. It was fun! :)

Honestly most of the kids on campus are way better dog owners than JQ Public who use campus. They actually work with teaching their dogs recall usually or keep them leashed, which is MUCH more than can be said for most of JQ Public. Lots of prof and staff dogs around too. :)
The one kid who is a problem because of how he doesn't manage his dogs now only walks them between 10:30-11:30 at night because his dogs have gotten themselves in so much trouble. So that means us people who care can reliably avoid him and his not nice off leash dogs.

Dogs are so flexible and they really improve quality of life for so many people... I think its well worth it if you are willing to put in the work. It can make housing options tougher, but eh that will happen once you graduate anyway so whatever. :)
 

Laurelin

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#37
Actually answering questions:

I got Summer my junior year and Mia my first senior year (I did 5 years in college due to switching majors).

I did NOT have an easy major, I was studying math most my dog time. Lots of homework and lab hours. Worked part time as well.

I moved back home once after I got Summer for 6 months and once after I got Mia for about 3 months. That was important to take into consideration. I could not have kept my dogs very easily without my parents ok.

How much of you're extra time do you to taking care of your dogs?


Bout the same as now? They take up a lot of my non working and non school hours. A lot is just 'owning a dog' though vs direct interaction. Like we all cuddle and chill on the couch watching tv or something.

Mia was a very high energy pup and we were out 2 hours most days for walking and hiking. Took them wherever I could and played with them a lot but it wasn't a chore, it's just fun.

Are your dogs "coping" fine?

I don't think dogs know any different about college vs not. My schedule was flexible and they got more attention back then really. Summer was the only one living with room mates, but she loved it. Both handled apartments just fine.

Are you in any sports?

I did light agility with both once Mia was a year old. I would not have been able to really do sports at the involvement level I have now because of money. Dog sports are EXPENSIVE hobbies. Even now I don't have the salary to really pursue it as far as I'd like. My friends that are super competitive with multiple dogs trial majority of weekends and may spend $500/weekend. Hard to do on college budget. Plus the classes I went to in the college town were far inferior to what I have access to here but that's just a location issue.


Where do you currently live,& how's that working out?

In college: first two years in dorm so no pets.
third year and a half was with apartment and 2 roomies. Had Summer
took a break while mom was sick and lived at home for 6 months caretaking for her.
moved to my own apartment and got mia. Lived there 1 1/2 years
moved home with my dad for 3 months.
moved to a rental duplex and lived there 3 years
moved to my house this year finally.

My main point is you move a lot in that part of your life. It was fine but the dogs present some extra issues.

Anything else?

I don't find college dog owning much different than owning a dog now. Schedule was better for owning a dog honestly. I enjoyed having dogs in college. But I enjoy dogs in general. I did not find it tiresome at all despite my work load being high. The dogs were my outlet and break. It was something I looked forward to every day- taking them out to the nice parks for a few hours and get away from my textbooks.

I think you need to have backup plans for moving. Parental support is very helpful and I wouldn't have been able to do it without them.

I think doing your first 1-2 years of college before getting a dog is also good because it'll let you figure out how much time your major is taking and how much free time you have. Also, some people in college really don't have the lifestyle for a dog. It's good to know beforehand if you want to be tied down or want to be more free to pick up and go do whatever you want. I got my more transient and going to parties years done my first two years. That was enough for me. Having a dog those years where I was out often till 5 am and bunking at other places would have been tough.

My sister also has her dog in college and she is not as dog centered as I am. But he was a middle aged papillon she's had since high school. (He's almost 7 years now) He came to live with her her sophomore year and she graduates this May. He's been a great college dog for her and has lived with many room mates and room mate pets too. Now she lives by herself with Bernard and he's fine too. Again lots of moving and she had one apartment stop allowing pets so it does depend on putting the pet as a priority at times.
 

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