College and university can be a stressful experience for many students. There are many ways to blow off steam: working out, playing organized sports, joining some extra-curricular activities these are all viable options.
However, for students with a rather heavy workload, or are simply not interested in any of these diversions, taking care of a small pet is another choice.
Pets provide a level of companionship that both provide comfort and a level of focus for students; after all, nothing makes you more eager to get back to essay writing than cleaning out smelly cages.
Here are five pets that are suited to the life of a university student.*
*Note: Most college/university residences do not allow pets of any kind. Therefore, keep this in mind for when you get your own place in second year.
Pros: The hamster is a classic pet choice. Available at pretty much every pet store, hamsters are small, cheap and easy to care for.
Their diminutive size means they don’t take up a lot of space, and they can survive with minimal interaction from their owners as long as they are fed and have some form of exercise, like a racing wheel.
Cons: They like to be active at night, so buy a silent running wheel and be prepared to move them into the bathroom if you’re a light sleeper.
2) Guinea Pig
Pros: Guinea pigs are much more amenable to handling than hamsters. Over time, they can develop a bond with their owner and begin to whistle on their approach.
Cons: Guinea pigs are much larger than hamsters, and therefore require a significantly larger cage.
Pros: Hedgehogs are surprisingly cute, and make a great conversation piece. They are similar to hamster, requiring not much human interaction, and sleep during the day-so they’re usually awake by the time you get home from school.
Cons: Be prepared to get pricked if you get a hedgehog. Being naturally defensive animals, it may take a while for your hedgehog to warm up to you before they yield to your touch.
4) Crested Geckos
Pros: Crested geckos look cool, stay relatively small, and don’t require a consistent heat source (such as a heat lamp) to survive.
Cons: They eat insects and tend to be jumpy. If you’re looking for something that likes to be handled on a frequent basis, take a look at the previous pets.
Pros: They look cool and don’t require too much cleaning.
Cons: …They’re kind of boring.