Home Opinions College students should pick their dog more carefully

College students should pick their dog more carefully

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dog adoption
Illustration by Valkyrie Mata.

Dog owners should be actively seeking a place that would accommodate both themselves and their dogs. Just as dogs can serve to give humans comfort, we should strive to do the same for them. Pick the right breed and pick the right apartment. Some dogs are too big, too loud or too hyper to be living in apartment-style housing. Certain breeds are cut out for the fast-paced college lifestyle, yet others could suffer from it.

College students should consider which breed is compatible with their lifestyle and prioritize their habits with the environment they choose to live in.

College students need to be aware of the amount of space they choose to give their dog and ensure that it’s enough to make it happy and comfortable. Not all canines can easily adapt to small, cramped spaces. Border Collies are used to being active and need open space to roam around, while a Shih Tzu could easily adapt to new environments and would work well in a small apartment.

Along with space, the environment is a big aspect to consider when deciding which breed to own. Dogs that have a reputation for excessive barking could cause problems with roommates and neighbors. Depending on whether the apartment will be filled with familiar faces or strangers, it’s also important to consider a dog that rarely sheds or is hypoallergenic to create a more comfortable environment for roommates and guests.

Getting a dog is a big commitment. They are living creatures that require time, money and attention. Although exercise routines depend on the dog’s age, size, breed and overall health, studies show that the average dog requires at least 30 minutes to 2 hours of activity each day.

College students have school, work, extracurricular activities and various other responsibilities that pile up and keep them busy. Owners should arrange and dedicate the time to caring and training their dogs, but the busyness of college students keeps them from adequately taking care of their canines. Scheduling walks and activities throughout the day should be a consistent routine. Insufficient attention and exercise can lead to a frustrated dog that starts behaving badly.

Although San Marcos is a decently sized college town, finding spacious living arrangements that fit a reasonable budget can be difficult. Some apartments like Park Hill, Parkway Grande and Castle Rock have specific amenities catered to the success and happiness of a dog. They provide a variety of things like pet waste stations, dog parks and free dog treats.

The City of San Marcos also has a local dog park located downtown across from the Bobcat Ballpark. The park foundation is a two-acre chunk of land that encourages dog owners to bring their pets and join the community. It has free entry and is open from 6 a.m. to 11 p.m. all week. The City of San Marcos tries to keep the hours reasonably flexible to fit a variety of schedules.

Dogs make great companions that can give support and comfort in times of stress and growth. Studies have shown that owning a dog can lower blood pressure and cholesterol, reduce the risk of asthma and allergies in kids, and lower stress levels. Students should feel encouraged to find companionship in a dog, while also considering the responsibilities that come with it.

College students need to conduct adequate research to find their appropriate canine companion and respective home. Dogs provide support and protection for their owners; they deserve that same respect.

Laura Nunez is an advertising sophomore

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