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Puppies in College: Everything I’ve Learned So Far

This article is written by a student writer from the Her Campus at MSU chapter.

It is no easy feat—let me start off by making that very clear. I brought my 8-week old tri-color Pembroke Welsh Corgi, Eevee, home on August 6, 2023, which marks a month with her. Eevee is now three months old, and this is everything I’ve learned raising a puppy as a college student at MSU.

  1. You become the coolest kid on the block. All I’ve heard when I go anywhere ranges from “can I pet your dog?!” to “oh my gosh, your dog is so cute!” to which turns into a 20 minute conversation about her. At first, it was fun. I got to talk about my brand new puppy with total strangers, and it was almost nice to meet some new people and to let Eevee socialize. Then it turned into I have a paper due in 20 minutes and you’re telling me how cute she is and asking if you can hold her.
  2. Sleep is for the weak. I don’t think I’ve ever had a better sleep schedule than I do now, simply because Eevee decided that we wake up at 8:00 a.m. sharp every morning. Now I will say I’m quite lucky in that she usually doesn’t, if at all, wake me up throughout the night. Just like me, Eevee enjoys her sleep, so if she’s in her crate at 11:00 p.m., she’s out until 8 a.m. This was not the case two weeks ago, when I was up every 2-3 hours with her having to pee in the frigid night air.
  3. All of your free time is now gone. Any free time you had (which is limited as a college student) is now reserved for your puppy. Eevee is a very high-energy dog. Corgis are herding dogs, so I kind of saw that one coming, but it still throws me for a loop when she’s running laps around my apartment at 1:00 AM as I write this article. This part has been the hardest for me to come to terms with, as now I don’t have time to go out, or really hang out with my friends, or just go shopping at Target. Any chance I had to do things outside of my apartment is now gone, or at least limited to two hours at a time before Eevee decides she’s done laying dormant in her crate. Luckily for me, this will slowly become easier with time as she gets older and can stand to be home for longer periods of time alone.
  4. I thought I was poor before. Boy was I wrong. I don’t know what part of me thought getting a dog was a good idea financially, but I promise you it wasn’t and it isn’t. I won’t lie and say I didn’t know what I was getting myself into, but I don’t think anyone can fully grasp everything that can go wrong. The first week—not even two days after I brought Eevee home—she became really sick, and I had to book an emergency vet appointment back at home to make sure she wasn’t going to die. Go figure, she had Giardia (a dog disease involving poop) and was fine after a couple of days of antibiotics, but that vet visit was a $350 decline I did not expect to hit after two days of having her. This wasn’t including the cost to get her or the vet visit I had already planned the following week to get her next puppy shots, or even the thousands of dollars I’d already spent on stuff for her. Yet, at the end of the day, this dog will eat before I do.
  5. “Adopt, don’t shop!!!!!” This gets old. Really quickly. Quicker than the “can I pet your dog?” I get it, I do, but let me lay my hand really quickly. I have pet insurance for Eevee, which I would not have been able to obtain with a shelter dog, or at least would’ve had to pay an insane amount of money for due to the prior conditions that every pet insurance company throws your way. Secondly, I knew what the health risks were when I got Eevee, and there’s never a guarantee with shelter dogs. Lastly, I know Eevee’s history in general—that is, how she was raised, who she was raised with, and the environment she had growing up. You don’t (usually) know that with shelter dogs, and my roommate has a cat, so it was another risk. I won’t lie and say that I chose to buy a puppy for those reasons, because it was mostly just because I wanted a Corgi puppy. Maybe one day when I’m in another situation, I’ll look into shelter dogs, but as for now, I’m glad I bought one.
  6. Calm before the shedding storm. I already can’t see my living room floor as it’s covered in dog toys and garbage bag shrapnel, but boy am I glad that Eevee hasn’t started shedding yet. Trying to clip her nails is a total nightmare, and trying to give her Flea & Tick is almost worse. In a few weeks, I’ll start to see clumps of fur laying on the ground, and that will be a learning curve in itself. Don’t think I’ll even know what to do if she gets a tick on her—I can’t even deal with that.

At the end of the day, raising a puppy is hard, college student aside. It’s exhausting and quite lonely, but I wouldn’t change it for the world. Would I recommend it if you have a life you enjoy living? No, I most definitely wouldn’t. But it’s one of the best decisions I’ve ever made.

P.S. Yes, her name is Eevee based on the Pokémon. Yes, my boyfriend and I are going to be Team Rocket for Halloween. Yes, she will be dressed up as Eevee.

Morgan is a junior at MSU and currently studies Political Science-PreLaw as well as Human Capital & Society. She’s a Libra—October baby—and a true ambivert. In her free time she loves to watch Shameless and The Witcher (PRE-Hemsworth of course), as well as play games like Stardew Valley, Animal Crossing, and Destiny 2, and to that jump in genre she accredits her boyfriend. Morgan also enjoys reading, and to this day her favorite book is To Kill a Mockingbird, but A Court of Thorns and Roses takes a close second. Yet, most of Morgan’s free time is taken up by her new Corgi puppy, Eevee. During her time at MSU she’s interned at the Ingham County Prosecuting Attorney’s office, gone to (many) football games, and learned what it means to be a Spartan.