Pets. They’re our best friends, constant companions, and adventure partners. If you can’t picture your life without a good pet fix, you’re in good company. That’s why leaving them behind when you transition to college can make for a tough situation. For first-year/freshman students, college typically means living on campus. Campus housing isn’t equipped for pets, so you’ll likely be seeing less of your furry family members during your first year as a student. At CSU, we understand that pets are an important part of life. Because of this, we offer a few ways for you to spend time with pets as a Ram. Take a look at these on- and off-campus opportunities to see which may give you the pet fix you’re looking for.
#1. Pet Nights
Once a month during the fall and spring semesters our housing office coordinates Pet Night in a select residence hall on campus. Pet Nights are typically held in the evening and allow students living on campus to spend an hour with pets from the community.
#2. The dog days of finals
The week of finals and the week leading up to it can be hectic and stressful. Since pets can relieve stress and boost moods, we make it a point to give students easy access to them during this time. Each semester, CSU teams up with therapy dog organizations to host Dog Days. Dog Days gives you a chance to hang out with therapy dogs for a few hours and de-stress. The events take place the week before finals during both the fall and spring semester, and are typically located in the Morgan Library and Lory Student Center.
#3. Local nonprofit volunteer opportunities
There are several nonprofits in the Fort Collins area that would be thrilled to have help from students just like you. The Humane Society of Larimer County accepts volunteers for direct animal care as well as office work.
- The Humane Society is located 11 miles of the CSU campus and a volunteers are welcomed.
- Animal House Shelter is a local nonprofit that houses mostly stray or surrendered dogs and cats. Volunteers are always needed to take dogs on walks or runs, provide customer service, and maintain the facility. It’s located four miles of the CSU campus. A volunteer training session is held regularly.
#4. The Pets Forever online class
Pets Forever class helps CSU students make a difference in their communities for pets and “pet parents.” Learn how to demonstrate effective communication skills to build relationships with Pet Forever clients. Tasks include walking, grooming, feeding, and generally caring for pets of program clients. Learn more about the Pets Forever course. Note: there are prerequisites for the class.
Change can be ruff, but you have our support
If you’re concerned about the transition to your life in college, you’re not alone. It’s completely normal to have some guilt or loneliness regarding the separation from your loved ones. In addition to getting involved via the methods above, talk with your family before you move to set up a plan. Consider having weekly video chats to get a glimpse of your pet(s) and let them know you’re still around. Once you arrive to campus, you can also schedule an appointment with our counselors in the CSU Health Center. They’ll provide you with tools and tips to help ease the transition.