Dog as Uni Student?? - German Shepherd Dog Forums
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post #1 of 13 (permalink) Old 07-29-2017, 09:43 PM Thread Starter
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Dog as Uni Student??

Just wondering what the opinions are for having a dog in uni?? anyone who did it??? I understand many of the pros and cons (loss of social activity/cost/etc) but is there anyone who experienced it who can maybe share how it was??
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post #2 of 13 (permalink) Old 07-30-2017, 12:11 AM
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It depends on you and what kind of dog you have. Generally a low energy, happy, easily pleased pet is far easier than a large dog who has medium to high energy needs or the need to work.

It can be done, but it's not easy. And you generally can't do it alone, so if you have family willing to help, then that's good. But if it's just you and the dog, I recommend looking into a small breed with lower energy and training requirements. Or at least being very honest and upfront with the breeder about the bare minimum you can provide, not the maximum. Because it's the minimum that counts.

The world would be a nicer place if everyone had the ability to love as unconditionally as a dog.

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post #3 of 13 (permalink) Old 08-01-2017, 08:06 PM
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I have had GSDs since my childhood and up. Going to college = some rough times! This breed tends to be clingy and time-consuming. They are not for the faint of heart, or "object" owning of dog owners. The majority want to be with you as much as possible, as MAY tolerate work hours alone - but that is about it. You will sacrifice to have this breed of dog in college. My social life took a hit b/c my dogs just deserved for me to be there after eight hours of class. It takes extra thought and planning. I was at the emergency vet all night once right before finals. I have had to skip classes for my dogs sometimes, and it can affect your grades.

My dog has been to many parties, but it doesn't always work that way! College students are generally open, but not everyone wants a dog around. BTW, Plenty of extra hours go into their care...think about how much time you use on yourself. Hygeine/Food/Cleaning/Transport/Classes/Social life/etc/etc/etc. and then add theirs. It gets crazy pretty quickly.

Be realistic how much of your time this dog is going to take up. Subtract it from all the stupid stuff you may want to do as a uni student - party, go out on adventures, study lol, etc. All that is fine, btw.

Seriously. Be realistic/objective.

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post #4 of 13 (permalink) Old 08-01-2017, 09:12 PM
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post #5 of 13 (permalink) Old 08-01-2017, 11:38 PM
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I would wait... uni is not the time to be tied down to something as dependent on you as a dog.
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post #6 of 13 (permalink) Old 08-02-2017, 12:56 AM
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In our town most college kids with dogs, have Pits and their mixes. Most are pretty resilient. The ones I have seen were bomb proof and fun due to the fact that they grew up in chaos(parties, noise, changes, etc). I think a GSD is way too sensitive and easy to ruin in a college environment. I have seen Pits pulling kids on skate boards through town, mingling in parties, hanging out on couches in crowded apartments etc. I have also seen problem dogs in that environment: mainly herding dogs like Heelers and Aussies.
I had Guinea pigs in college and that worked pretty good. Easy keepers and they talk to you and don't require walks or training. I could have never had a dog that would have worked out between college classes, travel, internships, friends etc. GPs were easy to board with my folks.

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post #7 of 13 (permalink) Old 08-02-2017, 01:57 AM
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Currently have a cattle dog and a GSD while attending college. I will not leave them alone for more than 4 hours. Gsd is low energy and is perfectly happy being alone and doesn't take much to please. Unless you have a dog like that it's not worth it. College is stressful enough
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post #8 of 13 (permalink) Old 08-03-2017, 07:24 PM
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I'm about to head to graduate school in a couple weeks and I adopted a 1 year old german shepherd/lab mix about a month ago. I've been working full time for the past month that I've had him, but my mom has been home with him during the day. She says that majority of the time while I'm gone, he just sleeps anyway. On the weekends, he is sleeping from the hours of 11 am - 3 pm too. I also live in Phoenix, Arizona, so it's way too hot to be taking him out during the day anyway - he'll burn his paws, so I usually have to wake up around 5 am to take him on a walk, which is hard, but a sacrifice I'm willing to make! Since I have to be at work at 8, I wake up in time to make sure I am able to take him on a walk...it really all juts depends on how dedicated you're willing to be to your dog. I'm living alone in an apartment during the school year so I wanted to have a dog and I have really bad anxiety so it's pretty much essential for me to have a dog to help with that. It's nice having the responsibility and a routine and its worth it to have a good companion I got my class and work schedule and he won't be home alone for more than 4 or 5 hours a day, which would be spent sleeping anyway. I'd recommend to get a dog who is slightly older if you can, that way they won't be as time demanding as a puppy!
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post #9 of 13 (permalink) Old 08-03-2017, 10:08 PM
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Wait, focus on school and social life. Once you're out and in a more stable and predictable environment then get one. It's really not worth it, you'll have dogs for the rest of your life. You won't get another undergrad education that helps determines the rest of your life and you won't ever live the same carefree existence again.

Study your bum off and then go make bad decisions with your friends that you'll never forget. Get a dog when you'd rather go play fetch in the park than deal with anymore people today LOL
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post #10 of 13 (permalink) Old 08-03-2017, 10:46 PM
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I agree to wait.

I adopted a dog my freshman year, and he was a wonderful dog, really special, but it limited my social life and restricted my travel. I missed some chances for research abroad because of my dog. It's fine to sacrifice for a dog, and I am so glad I had him, but looking back, I would have set myself up for better professional and probably personal success if I'd been dog free as an undergrad.

Also, I traveled domestically very often for NCAA sports, and I was only able to do so because I had good friends willing to take care of him at no cost. Many people don't have that support and would be even more limited. If I hadn't been able to find free care for him, I would have been forced to either give up sports and lose my scholarship or give up the dog... so, yeah, I'd highly recommend waiting.

Volunteer at the shelter if you need a dog fix.... oh, wait, that's how I ended up with my boy. Again, I loved him dearly and have no regrets in having him, but being purely pragmatic it would have been ideal to have spent undergrad dog free.


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