Should you adopt a pet during college?

There are both pros and cons to adopting a pet during college.

There are both pros and cons to adopting a pet during college.

Who doesn’t love furry companions? Pets are always there to brighten your day or give you a cuddle when you need a study break. If you are an animal lover (whether it be dogs or cats – we don’t discriminate), you’ve probably thought about adopting a pet of your own during college. Different types of pets require varying levels of responsibility and financial stability, and there’s no one-size-fits-all rule when it comes to adopting a pet while you’re still in college. However, there are a few pros and cons to consider:

PRO: Companionship

Pets, and dogs in particular, can provide much-needed loyal friendship during the tumultuous college years. There’s something truly wonderful about coming home to someone who’s always happy to see you! If you’re ever feeling lonely or homesick, or just want some good company, pets provide excellent companionship. If you adopt your pet at a young age, you will likely be together for years after graduation. Who better to help you navigate life’s transitions than a dog or cat?

CON: Extra expenses

Owning a pet does mean having extra monthly expenses. Aside from the initial cost of purchasing a pet, you will also need to pay for vet visits, grooming, food and numerous other items. Cats will need their litter boxes to be changed, and dogs need a crate to sleep in and toys to play with. Make sure you can afford to have a pet before you adopt one.

PRO: Exercise

Owning a dog means you have a built-in exercise buddy! Whether you need a break from studying or an excuse to go outside, dogs are great motivators to get you to go for a walk or run, because they need to exercise daily. After all, who gets more enthusiastic about running than a dog?

CON: Schedule change

Pets like cats and fish may not require you to change your schedule to ensure that they’re properly cared for, but dogs need to be taken outside and exercised regularly. You will need to plan on coming home in between classes or convince your roommates to agree to take your dog out during the day.

PRO: Saving a life

If you adopt your pet from an animal shelter, you could be saving a life. According to ASPCA, between three and four million dogs and cats are euthanized in U.S. shelters every year. You may be giving your furry friend more than a new home – you could be giving them a second chance.

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