The 10 Pros & Cons of Owning a Dog in College

Owning any pet is a huge commitment that no one should take on lightly. Many times, people do not consider all of the costs and restrictions that come with owning a pet and I am no exception. I’ve owned dogs my whole life and decided my sophomore year of college to adopt my dog, Kano, from the parish shelter. First off, I was not ready for the adoption fee, which nearly wiped out my bank account, but what can I say, I was in love.

Life was great and filled with kisses and puppy breath. Until it was time for the first vet visit with a round of boosters, rabies shot, heart worm test, and heart worm prevention medicine, which once again made quite a financial dent for a college student. Once again, I was faced with the unexpected. My new puppy grew, and grew, and grew. I may be exaggerating a little, but a sixty-pound dog can definitely eat some food. Pretty soon, I was buying forty pounds of food every month.


10 Pros & Cons of Owning a Dog in College

Kano at 4 months – By Katherine Albares


10 Pros & Cons of Owning a Dog in College

Kano at 2 years – By Katherine Albares

Check out my biggest pros and cons to living with my dogs below!



1. They’re always happy to see you!

Unlike Jeff, ugh.

10 Pros & Cons of Owning a Dog in College

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2. You’ll Get More Excercise

Because, lets be real, since you stole your ex’s Netflix account you’ve just been binge watching episodes of Orange is the New Black from dusk til dawn (but who’s judging…)

10 Pros & Cons of Owning a Dog in College

“Did someone say walk?????” – Photo Courtesy of

3. Dogs Can Help You De-Stress

How can you be stressed with a fluffy wiggly cutie pie licking you when you get home from Brit Lit? I wasn’t and it was Brit Lit.

10 Pros & Cons of Owning a Dog in College

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4. It Can Help You Feel Less Lonely

Once again, fluffy wiggly butt is always there to listen to your problems with Jeff and how you aced your exam and ALWAYS happy to see you, even if that means a little less personal space. Could it get any better?

10 Pros & Cons of Owning a Dog in College

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5. The Funny Things They do That Make You Smile.

The way that not just their tail, but their whole body, wiggles when they’re excited, how they drool when you’re eating your 3 am Taco Bell, or when they come snuggle up next to you on the couch after a long day of chasing squirrels…

10 Pros & Cons of Owning a Dog in College

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6. Finding A Place To Live Gets Harder

Who made breed restrictions anyway??

10 Pros & Cons of Owning a Dog in College

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7. Your Social Life May Not Be As Active

Going out from 7 pm frinks (food and drinks) until after the 3 am drunchies (drunk munchies) run may not be in your future, you’ve got a puppy at home WAITING FOR YA!

8. The Possible Damage To Your Place

Chewed window sill here, claw marks on the door there…


10 Pros & Cons of Owning a Dog in College The Brief - GO COMMANDO

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9. Judgement From Others

“Why do you have a dog anyway?”

10. Spring Break May Not Be An Option

Unless your mother is as lovely as mine and loves her furry four legged grand children #blessed

I’m so glad they don’t get car sick.

10 Pros & Cons of Owning a Dog in College

Photo Courtesy of Katherine Albares


Choosing to adopt a dog while in college was one of the best decisions I made. I got out of my apartment more to walk my dog and bring him to the dog park, I’ve become more out going in that I’ve started to talk to people about their dogs and their experiences, my stress and anxiety have gotten better, and my grades improved! (Not sure if it was the dog or just studying more…probably just studying more, but anywayyyyy)

Here are a few more things to take into consideration before getting a pet:

– Your schedule

Pets should not be kept in a kennel for longer than four hours at a time (unless to sleep at night). What if you had to be confined to a small area for that amount of time with no way to expend your energy or go to the bathroom? It’s even more intense for an animal, so be prepared to plan out coming home to exercise your animal and take it outside to relieve itself.

10 Pros & Cons of Owning a Dog in College

Photo Courtesy of Katherine Albares

If your schedule looks something like this and you have a job, getting a pet may not be the best decision.

– Traveling

If you are unable to take your pet places with you, there are boarding facilities that can care for your pet while you are away, but it requires planning ahead and (sometimes) a pretty penny. But, you may be fortunate enough to have a friend that will pet sit for you!

– Housing

Finding an apartment or house to rent while in school is hard. When you add a pet into the equation, things get a little trickier. While many places welcome cats, birds, fish and other small animals, some places have weight limits and breed restrictions when it comes to dogs. Scoping out places to live before getting a pet will make the task much easier.

10 Pros & Cons of Owning a Dog in College

Photo Courtesy of Katherine Albares

But, when you finally find a pet friendly and affordable place, it’s really exciting!!

– Expenses

Pets come with recurring expenses such as food, medicine, accessories, training, and vet costs. While some things may be optional for your pet, many (and usually the more expensive) are not. Make sure before you decide to get a pet that you have the means to care for it. Nobody likes skipping dinner because you ran out of dog food and spent your last dollar on that.


What are your ideas on owning a pet in college?

If you own a pet, what is your favorite thing about having a pet?

Katie Albares - The Brief - Go Commando App
Katie Albares

I am a full time student, full time dog mom, and proud LSU Tiger. I choose to spend my time listening to my boyfriend scream at video games or watching my dogs play at the dog park. When I get enough sleep the night before, I occasionally dabble in the fine night life of LSU's very own Tigerland. I love all things reading and writing and can't wait to teach high school English. Add me on Snapchat: princesskatie33.

9 thoughts on “The 10 Pros & Cons of Owning a Dog in College

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  4. Thanks for the tip to set up my school schedule so I can come home and exercise with my dog. I want to get one so bad. But I don’t want to make the dog’s life sad.

  5. A short but good post. I always consider owning a pet is like a blessing. Again I bat for all the necessary requirements to be filled by the owner that include regular health checkups, a reliable pet door to be installed for its security, nourishments, etc.


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