Pawing at a Students Heart Rough Draft

September 15th, 2016

Moving to college can be a “ruff” transition, especially when the student is leaving a beloved pet behind. Even though students’ furry friends are left behind the students agree it is for the best.

College students living on campus who are pet owners have to learn how to cope with the separation of their pets. Mainly it’s cats and dogs that are missed. Each student has their own unique way to cope. The  students who admit that they are obsessed, go the extra mile to keep in contact with their pets from the dorm room. However, these animal lovers, both male and female, admit that the physical separation is a good thing for their social lives with humans.

“They’re both my babies and I’m their Mom,” states junior Miranda Marks in reference to Oliver the dog and Socks the cat. Marks is now a commuter; however, for her first two years of school, she lived on campus and was separated from her favorite dog and cat. To cope with missing them, her parents would Snapchat her pictures, let her FaceTime with Oliver, and even put him on the phone when she called home.

Now that Marks has moved back home and commutes, she is a lot happier and so are Oliver and Socks. Marks described that when she goes to leave for class, Oliver will whine, cry, and sometimes even hide. Oliver has the closest connection with her, compared to any other member of the Marks family.

Marks is not the only student who idolizes her pets.

“I’m really obsessive about my cat,” admits senior Joelle Kruger. She is the proud owner of Bingley (Bing)  Charles. The pair have an undeniable connection. Kruger describes Bing as being very affectionate because he tries to stroke her face with his paw. Bing can’t meow so he purrs extra loudly when Kruger is petting him.

When Kruger first moved to college she saw Bing as her replacement. “My parents became empty nesters and I knew that he was helping keep my mom sane. It was helpful to remember his purpose,” said Kruger.

To make up for not seeing him on a daily basis,  Kruger had plenty of ways to remember her fat orange cat. One creative way to remind herself of Bing is by putting his name into song lyrics and then sing. Kruger also explained that her mom also sends her pictures and videos of when Bing is doing something cute.

Marks and Kruger are both from Iowa, but senior Braden Hall has a much larger gap between him and his dogs and cats in his home state of Alaska.

“I’m pretty close with my dogs and cats even though I’m allergic to them, but I take medicine so it’s fine,” Hall explained, his eye’s were fixed on one point and his tone got softer as he was visualizing them. He also explained that his dogs are show dogs, so his mom will send him pictures and videos with their awards. A lot of times he’ll just ask how they’re doing to.

All three students admitted that if pets were allowed on campus, then they would get less work done and have less friendships with people. Kruger mentioned that she would be calmer with her cat around, but would probably not invest as much time into friendships. Hall added that he would definitely spend more time with his pets because their not judgmental.

Around finals time throughout the school year, Morningside students can get their pet fix and destress when “Pet Therapy” visits campus. As for the time in-between, students are continuously trying to maintain their relationships with their pets from afar.




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