Trinity’s requirement for undergraduate students to live their first three years on campus forces most of its students to live in dorms and, more recently, the City Vista apartment complex. This has made pet ownership not as easy compared to other universities. However, Trinity students have not been stopped. Multiple students have obtained various animals with different trials and rewards.
“While Finn is a lot of hard work, at the end of the day I think he’s one of the best things that’s ever happened to me,” said Maeve Davidson, junior.
Davidson takes care of an 80-pound, mixed-breed emotional support dog by the name of Finn. The duo started their adventure last school year while Davidson resided on the eighth floor of Thomas residence hall. Despite the lack of room for herself, Davidson couldn’t be happier as dog owner, and things were only made easier once she moved to City Vista. To keep Finn happy and healthy Davidson has to take him outside every five hours or so, and she often takes him on walks to the nearby dog park.
The only real issue Davidson has encountered with Finn was when he was blamed for peeing in the Thomas elevators when in reality it was belligerent Trinity students.
“Finn is more trained than most Trinity boys,” said Davidson. “But Finn wasn’t afraid of the elevator, luckily. He’s pretty comfortable with everything because he’s an emotional support dog.”
Mindy Tran also has had her emotional support cats reside with her in both on-campus dorms and in City Vista. Tran had a cat last year named Butler when she lived in South who now resides with Tran’s parents. To Tran, the cat was a godsend.
“If you ask anyone, cats are definitely my thing. I lived in a single last year, and coming home to a cat, not a person, was really nice because you don’t have to talk to them unless you want to,” Tran said.
Currently, Tran lives with her cat Juno in City Vista. Tran attends to her cat by providing her with a clean litter box as well as giving her ample toys and an unending source of affection from Tran and her roommates. Tran is unable to let Juno outside frequently, which is actually why she had to take Butler to live with her parents, where he has more room to run around.
Most cat owners have had minor difficulty in deciding where to place a litter box that is both convenient and out of the way of guests.
“There are struggles about where to keep the litter box, but it’s a lot easier, now that I live in City Vista and have my own bathroom,” Tran said.
There come a host of issues in keeping a cat or dog on campus, but most owners say it’s worth it, considering the bond they develop with their pet. Fish owners, on the other hand, have a whole different set of issues.
There are quite a few fish owners in the first and second-year dorms. They are sometimes owned by individual students, or often times by multiple people, such as friend groups or an entire hall. Fish, shockingly, require a lot less effort to take care of than dogs or cat.
“I fed [my fish] little fish pellets, like premium beta food, and then for the most part he just chilled,” said Josh Kim, first-year.
Kim bought his fish, Lil’ Papi, with a few other friends at the start of his first year. Lil’ Papi, however, tragically died at the start of the second semester due insufficient access to clean water.
Fish are a lot easier to take care of, but also apparently a lot easier to forget about, leading to neglect and eventual death.
“Recently, before winter break, my [fish] died, and we had a sad little funeral for him,” said Elena McInroe, first-year.
McInroe only obtained her fish at the start of the last semester.
“[My hall] collectively got a fish last year, and he lasted the entire year, but then died in the summer while [the students taking care of him] were staying on campus, so they buried him under a tree,” said Peyton Wionzek, sophomore.
It appears that different pets warrant different types of pet owners. If you live on Trinity campus, just pray you’re not a fish.