Schools with the Most Pet Love

Your dog has been by your side since you were in diapers. He's listened to and loved you on countless occasions, and you can't bear the thought of saying goodbye for college—even if it's only temporary. Luckily, you're not alone, and you may not have to say goodbye after all! Nowadays, colleges and universities nationwide are recognizing the fact that tons of collegiettes are absolutely dreading going pet-free and have come up with a multitude of solutions to heal both homesickness and pet-sickness. Whether they allow pets in dorm rooms or simply boast dog-filled quads on a regular basis, these colleges share your love of animals and guarantee opportunities to interact with some four-legged friends.

10. LEHIGH UNIVERSITY (Bethlehem, PA)


Lehigh boasts an extensive Greek life program, and we have a hunch as to why! Apparently, there's some extra incentive to rushing come fall—each sorority and fraternity has the option of allowing either one dog or cat to pledge! So if you're all about a fur-filled life, and have been considering going Greek, Lehigh may be your animal-friendly haven.

Best of all, that cat or dog could be yours! The rules? If you come to find that your house has a pet vacancy, simply discuss the prospect of adopting one and follow specific identification, vaccination and insurance policies to apply. As the legal owner of the house's pet you'll take on some additional responsibilities, but the prospect of bringing Fluffy from back home is well worth the commitment!

9. CASE WESTERN RESERVE UNIVERSITY (Cleveland, OH)


At Case Western, pet approval is not uncommon—so long as your companion is cageable, non-poisonous (no poison dart frogs, ladies) and on the small side. So while dogs, cats and ferrets are a campus no-no, you can definitely make a case for bunnies, guinea pigs, harmless lizards and fish.

And like Lehigh, going Greek comes with added benefits. Greek houses have the right to appeal the normal pet policy to bring some fur into their living space. Under the label of "mascots," these pets are given special permission to experience college life alongside their two-legged friends—how cute is that?

8. SWEET BRIAR COLLEGE (Sweet Briar, VA)


While you may not get away with bringing man's best friend to this Virginia college, you have the option of bringing your horse. Yes, you read that right!

If you belong to Sweet Briar's riding program, your horse from home can attend college alongside you, so stock up on those carrots! Your horse will be given the best of care, with veterinarians, equine chiropractors and equine dentists available. And with spacious fields and gorgeous stables abound, you might just like his or her living quarters better than your dorm room!

7.  WASHINGTON & JEFFERSON COLLEGE (Washington, PA)


Washington and Jefferson's Monroe Hall, appropriately deemed the "Pet House," allows all of your usual pets: cats, dogs under 40 pounds, hamsters, gerbils, guinea pigs, small birds, turtles and fish. Sounds like a live-in pet store to us—score! Worried about allergies? Pass up on Monroe Hall and live in any other dorm on campus—every residence hall allows aquariums! But what if you're worried about the commitment altogether? Fear, not, as there's a solution for that too—Monroe Hall also allows daytime visits from at-home pets.

Just remember to consult your roomie before bringing Fido along—Washington and Jefferson caps occupancy at one dog or cat (or two small animals) per room. Of course, stay in the Pet House for multiple years and you'll have the option of scoring a double-as-a-single—so yes, you really can have a dog as a roommate.

6. STETSON UNIVERSITY (DeLand, FL)


Stetson is a pet-lover's dream, offering four different animal-friendly residencies at their DeLand campus. Qualifying pets include cats, dogs (not exceeding 50 pounds), gerbils, chinchillas, fish and more. And if you're worried about your dog adapting to college life, never fear. He'll make as many friends as you do, thanks to the on-campus dog park!

Additionally, students at Stetson also have the option of participating in a dog-training program, as Stetson partners with various service dog organizations. We're all for a good cause—and especially one that involves adorable animals.

5. STEPHENS COLLEGE (Columbia, MO)


Cats and dogs are regular tenants at Stephens' "Pet Central" Searcy Hall and the entirely pet-friendly Tower Hall, as well as on specific floors in some of the other residencies. What's more, lizards, birds and fish are also allowed (among other pets), and unlike other colleges, Stephens has no pet weight restrictions.

Worried about what your pup will be up to while you're in class? Just send her over to Stephen's Doggie Daycare. And if that's not enough to make you and your pet feel at home, the president's office offers doggy treats, the bookstore offers dog toys and there's an annual Halloween pet costume parade (How adorable is that?!). Best of all, Stephens College partners with no-kill shelters to offer students the option of being a pet foster parent—charitable and dog-loving? Sign us up.

4.  UNIVERSITY OF NORTHERN COLORADO (Greeley, CO)


Catching on to the pet-friendly craze that's sweeping college campuses, the University of Northern Colorado started their pet program just last year! One hall on campus allows cats and dogs to reside on three of the dormitory's floors, aiming to help students acclimate to college life while also teaching new levels of responsibility (because trust us, caring for a pet isn't a walk in the park). One goal of the new program is to make campus housing more homey and comfortable in attempts to keep students living on-campus longer. Apparently, it's working, because students are thrilled at the news!

3. UNIVERSITY OF CONNECTICUT (Storrs, CT)


UCONN has an on-campus farm complete with cows, horses, chicken and sheep! The barns are open to the public and often house newborn animals which is a fact that's almost too cute to handle.

But why does UCONN house animals, anyway? UCONN's College of Agriculture, Health and Natural Resources offers 18 different degrees and has an incredible partnership with Iowa State University's College of Veterinary Medicine, allowing five students to attend vet school for in-state tuition costs every single year. UCONN is rightfully ranked as a top 10 pre-vet college, making it the perfect place for animal lovers who want to make their pet passion a career.

There are also 11 animal-related clubs on campus—seriously impressive!—and the school mascot is coincidentally a beloved husky.

2. VASSAR COLLEGE (Poughkeepsie, NY)


Vassar College may not allow anything other than small caged or tanked animals in their residence halls, but that's no problem considering the amplitude of pets constantly visible on campus! Students have been granted permission to house everything from lizards to bunnies, and at one point the on-campus co-op Ferry House was home to—wait for it—chickens! As long as your roommates or housemates consent to housing an approved pet, you're golden.

And if you're not about rodents, amphibians or reptiles, Vassar will give you a daily dose of dog exposure, guaranteed. It's not uncommon for professors to walk their dogs around campus (or bring them to class!) and they often hire students as dog walkers. Additionally, the House Advisors and House Fellows that live in residence halls alongside students are likely to own furry companions as well. This means that even if you can't host a furball in your room, you'll still constantly find pets roaming the halls and relaxing in the lounges just waiting to make friends!

1. KENT STATE UNIVERSITY (Kent, OH)


Dr. Kathy Adamle, an Assistant Professor at the College of Nursing at Kent State, founded the Dogs on Campus Pet Therapy Program after realizing just how many students considered pets as family members and experienced true separation anxiety from their furry friends when entering college.  

Dogs on Campus began by bringing canine companions to Kent State, but has since expanded so that students at other colleges can request visits to their own campuses. The program has inspired pet therapy and stress-busting initiatives at colleges and universities across the nation, but nothing beats the original game-changing program housed at Kent State. The dogs provide support for students, faculty and staff alike, and you can find the four-legged participants sharing doggy kisses and barks of joy in residence halls, classrooms and even the library during finals week. If that's not enough, the dogs also make emergency visits for special circumstances, so that students never have to be alone during hard times.

So if you just know you're going to have a tough time saying goodbye to your best friend, Kent State is here to help. Promising to "bridge the gap between home and the heart," Dogs on Campus at Kent State will ensure you feel welcome and comfortable with your new college family.



Comments