Do’s and Don’ts of Adopting a Dog in College

Dos and Donts of Adopting a Dog in College

Do’s and Don’ts of Adopting a Dog in College

By Samantha Manahan

College is a place where you can feel alone… like elbow-deep in a tub of cookie dough ice-cream on a Friday night alone. What better way to soak up your loneliness than getting a four-legged, tail-wagging and face-licking furry friend. However, when thinking about adopting a dog, there are certain do’s and dont’s you can follow to make sure adopting a dog is right decision. (And obviously, you shouldn’t get a dog just because you’re lonely)

Do your homework

Dogs have certain traits embedded into their personalities and lifestyles. Research and find out what qualities in a dog you want like temperament, energy levels and amount of maintenance. This process will help you narrow your search when deciding on the type of dog you want to bring into your family.

Do create a budget

Owning a pet is expensive as it is, but adopting a dog as a college student can cause immense strain on your budget. Make sure your paycheck can cover the necessities first such as rent, bills, gas and groceries. Once your essentials are covered, budget in dog food, grooming and emergencies (I promise you they do happen!)

Do check the rules of your living situation

Each apartment complex has different rules for pet owners. Rules can include height and weight requirements, breed requirements and monthly fees for your pet. If you do not abide by these rules, you and your new family member could be kicked out. If you’d rather be safe than sorry, check with your renters before spending the money on a furry friend.

Don’t adopt a dog straight from a picture ad online

I’m not saying you can’t adopt the cute puppy you saw in an ad online, but I advise you to schedule a meet n’ greet to ensure a connection with the dog is made. Dog are like people: they each hold their own personality. A connection is very important during the adoption process.

Don’t adopt the first dog you see  

Every dog is adorable in their own way. You will fall in love with more than one dog, but take your time and adopt the one that best fits your needs.

Don’t bite off more than you can chew

If your schedule is filled with work, class, clubs and Friday night outings, a dog may not be for you. Dogs take a lot of work and take up a lot of your time. They need to be fed, let out, walked, played with and loved daily, so if you don’t have the time for all of those things, maybe adopt a pet that requires less maintenance, like a gerbil or fish.