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Pets in graduate school?

rbouwensrbouwens 3 replies4 discussions New Member
In 3 years I plan on going to grad school. I have a 6-year-old Yorkie and I'm wondering if I'd be able to take her with me, assuming she's in good health. Does graduate housing usually let students keep small pets? If so, are dogs OK? Are cats better?

I can't deal with shedding, so cats probably are out unless there are breeds that don't shed (besides hairless breeds.)

Or, is keeping a pet in grad school a bad idea altogether? I've heard some crazy things about grad school.....
edited May 2013 in Graduate School
9 replies
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Replies to: Pets in graduate school?

  • cosmicfishcosmicfish 25 replies0 discussions Junior Member
    It depends on what you are looking for in graduate housing. Most graduate students I know live in apartments, and some of them have pets (some cats, some dogs). Graduate housing as offered by the university is generally a poor option, mostly taken by international students who are unable to locate an apartment or do not want the hassle, but generally does NOT allow pets of any kind.

    That having been said, grad school can be very tough - for some people a pet would be the extra work that would break them, for others it would be the one touch of sanity in their world.
    edited May 2013
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  • rbouwensrbouwens 3 replies4 discussions New Member
    hm interesting take on this.....^
    edited May 2013
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  • rabbitstewrabbitstew 5 replies0 discussions
    Almost no university-owned graduate housing options will allow pets - you'll have to look up the specific rules for your school, but it's unlikely. That said, the vast majority of graduate students live in off-campus housing where pet policies could go either way. You're more likely to be allowed a pet in a more suburban or rural setting, and less likely to be allowed a pet (especially a dog, even if it's small) in an urban, high density building.

    I have two rabbits that are pretty happy when left to their own devices, so I don't have to worry about being away for very long days so long as they're fed in the morning and evening. If your dog needs a lot of attention or needs to go outside multiple times a day, it is unlikely that you'll be able to provide consistent time and support for her and it would probably be best for him to stay home. Ultimately you want to do what's best for your pet, and even if you really love her, if those random 16 hour days are going to be really stressful for her, that's not good.
    edited May 2013
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  • b@r!um[email protected]!um 13 replies0 discussions Junior Member
    rabbitstew wrote:
    That said, the vast majority of graduate students live in off-campus housing where pet policies could go either way.
    cosmicfish wrote:
    Graduate housing as offered by the university is generally a poor option, mostly taken by international students who are unable to locate an apartment or do not want the hassle
    This might be true for many universities but definitely not all.

    At Stanford, the majority of graduate students live in university-owned housing. It's nicer and cheaper than other student-budget options in Sillicon Valley. University housing, unfortunately, doesn't allow pets except to accommodate registered disabilities.

    My second choice after Stanford was Columbia - where most graduate students live in university housing too.
    edited May 2013
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  • cosmicfishcosmicfish 25 replies0 discussions Junior Member
    I think it comes down to how expensive the surrounding area is - Stanford and Columbia are both located in such expensive areas that if there was not subsidized housing no one would be able to afford grad school! Most places this is not the issue and grad students can find more affordable and permissive options off campus.
    edited May 2013
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  • b@r!um[email protected]!um 13 replies0 discussions Junior Member
    My point was that it doesn't make sense to talk about housing arrangements in generalities because it depends so much on the actual university. What might be true for Michigan would be irrelevant for Columbia, and vice versa.
    edited May 2013
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  • RacinReaverRacinReaver 30 replies1 discussions Junior Member
    Here at Caltech most students live in graduate housing their first year or two, then move off because there's not enough room for everyone. Pricing is below market for the area, and it's about an eight minute walk from the farthest office on campus. You used to be able to have cats, but I think they've revised the policy in the last year or two. Some of my friends still sneak small dogs into their apartments (one has an adorable pug).
    edited May 2013
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  • juilletjuillet 27 replies0 discussions Junior Member
    Agree that it depends on the graduate housing. My graduate housing technically doesn't allow animals, but there are a lot of pets (dogs, including large ones, and cats) in this building and most of the university owned buildings. It's not enforced at all; you don't even have to sneak or hide them. Some graduate housing is stricter on this ban and some graduate housing doesn't have a ban at all. Also, depending on where you move you may be able to find comparable housing on the open market that allows pets.

    I really, really wanted a dog but I didn't get one my first two years. I was VERY busy; I was still younger and wanted to be able to spontaneously go out to drinks with folks and also, I was gone every other weekend to visit my boyfriend. Now we're married; I don't go out spontaneously much anymore - a lot more planning involved - and I'm not in classwork. I could definitely have a dog now, but my husband and I decided to wait because we live in a small place and I don't necessarily think a dog would be happy here.

    I also want to chime here and say that graduate student housing is not always a poor option. It really depends on the unviersity. Here at Columbia, graduate student housing is a less expensive option if one wants to live in the immediate neighborhood, aka walking distance, surrounding the university (although still more expensive than moving uptown a little). It also looks pretty much exactly like regular apartments, and in many cases is actually nicer than what's out there on the market. Most graduate students here live in university-owned housing.
    edited May 2013
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  • molliebatmitmolliebatmit Super Moderator 10 replies0 discussions Junior Member
    My graduate housing technically doesn't allow animals, but there are a lot of pets (dogs, including large ones, and cats) in this building and most of the university owned buildings.
    This was also my experience during the year I lived in graduate housing. (rabbitstew, I have a bunny! She's a mini-Rex.)
    edited May 2013
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