Having a Pet in College is Not Impossible

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Being a college student can be both exciting and stressful. On one hand, often for the first time in their lives, students have a lifestyle without work or family obligations; but on the other, you’re also burdened by endless exams and constant assignments.

One way to make this combination a bit more bearable (or at least a little more interesting) is to throw an animal into the mix. Caring for a pet while in college is no easy feat. In many cases, the budget and time required to give a pet what it needs may not be there.

However, if you think you’re able to handle it, here are just a few ways to make the process a little easier.

Be involved

Having a pet is great, but leaving it in your room to wallow is not. Pets are very much like humans: They are social creatures that need interaction and a bit of time outdoors to lead a healthy and happy life.

So one way that pet owners and pets can enjoy time together is to get involved in the pet community in the area. This enables both the pet owner and the critter to meet other students and their pets, trade advice, and enjoy a whole new circle of friends.

In addition, meeting others in the pet community can open doors to pet sitters that are able to help when your school or work obligations become too burdensome. It’s very much worth your while to seek them out.

Healthy behavior

According to an article in WebMD, two of the main reasons behind behavior problems in pets are boredom and excess energy. Pets are meant to lead active and fulfilling lives, so cooping them up in a dorm room or bedroom all day can be stressful and upsetting to them.

For proper care, bring toys to your pet, take him or her out for regular walks, arrange for the creature to hunt for hidden food around the house, bring items to chew on or toss, teach a dog to play fetch, play games with the cat, and take your pet for a hike or jog if that suits it. Each of these activities will help you good too, as well as helping your pet.

These are great ways to lower your stress levels and be healthier in college.


One of the main issues for college pet owners is that taking care of an animal can be costly. It’s estimated that owning a pet can involve anywhere from $250 to $1,300 in annual expenses.

For a college student, those kind of funds can be nearly impossible to come by. However, there are ways to budget well and still keep a pet healthy.

For example, according to Homes Alive Pet Care, feeding your animal the right food can ensure a healthy body and minimize health-care costs. In addition, if a pet needs veterinary care, special services can assist with that.

While caring for a pet in college may be difficult, it’s not impossible. Dozens of students undertake it every year, and statistics show they are all the happier for it.


The author Kathrina

Kathrina is an enthusiast of all-things college lifestyle. She's the expert!

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