Top 10 best pets to have in college

College life can get a little lonely, but a pet can keep you company

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Ashley Botkin is a Top 10 writer and assistant managing editor for The Cavalier Daily. 

Christina Anton | Cavalier Daily

1. Betta fish

You may think betta fish are just for little kids with parents who don’t want to take care of a real animal, but they are not to be overlooked. My first year, I had a beautiful betta named Cheeseburger, and I swear he could recognize my face. Sure, they don’t do much, but sometimes it’s nice to take care of something and have a companion that literally can’t leave you. RIP Cheeseburger. I hope you’re enjoying that big fish bowl in the sky. 

2. Mold 

Mold is wildly easy to grow, and you’d be lying if you said there wasn’t one spot in your apartment where it might be lurking right now. Maybe it’s not your fault there’s mold growing — perhaps your roommate is really unhygienic or some guy in your building broke a sprinkler that caused the entire floor to flood — but there’s no reason you shouldn’t take advantage of it. Download one of those baby photography apps and document your mold’s growth each day. Welcome to parenthood!

3. Dust bunnies

Do you have the need to cuddle something immediately? Do you want to hold something that feels vaguely like fur? Try a dust bunny! They’re everywhere — no matter how thoroughly you clean your apartment. You could even try forming your dust blob into something that looks sort of like a bunny — I recommend using the lint from your dryer to really hold the shape. On second thought, just keep an emergency stuffed animal for tough times like these. 

4. Pet rock

Pet rocks are great because you can personalize them, love them or even forget they exist. They require no leash training — just tie a rope around them — or potty training due to the fact that they’re completely insentient. In a way, this makes them the ideal pet. When you really need a companion after totally failing your last test or being ghosted by a really cute Tinder match, your rock will always be there for you. 

5. Empty school supplies

I can’t be the only one that hoards dry pens, empty mechanical pencils or dry printer cartridges. I keep telling myself I’ll get that cartridge refilled at Cavalier Computers, or I’ll pick up some pencil lead at the Bookstore, but we all know that’s never going to happen. If you’re like me and you feel bad throwing things away, show your tools some love and make them your pets. After all, they did a lot of work for you. 

6. Rubber ducky

Rubber duckies are great because they come in so many varieties, and they can accompany you just about anywhere — even the bathtub. They’re small enough to fit in your pocket or your backpack, so they can inconspicuously accompany you to class. Birds aren’t your style? Think again! There are even duckies shaped like dogs. 

7. Squirrel 

I think squirrels are underappreciated animals. Everyone thinks they’re creepy little rodents, but they’ve never done anything to hurt anyone. Also remember in middle school when everyone went crazy over sugar gliders? They were sold in malls and on the internet, and the coolest kids at school all had one. Squirrels are basically the bigger, wilder version! They’re everywhere on Grounds, so you should have no trouble picking out your next furry friend. Just make sure it doesn’t have rabies and your health insurance is up-to-date.

8. Boston Dynamics robot

Vine really helped Boston Dynamics — an American engineering and robotics company — gain popularity. There are so many videos of robots being pushed by sticks or slipping on banana peels which are similar to animal videos. Also, the human brain loves to make emotional connections with inanimate objects — just look at the recent Roomba fad — so why not introduce a robot to your home? A robot will be ready for you whenever you need it. Just give it a quick charge and a pat on the head, and it’s ready to go.

9. Flubber

I had forgotten about the movie “Flubber” until very recently, but somehow my brain accessed it from deep in the recesses of my mind. In the movie, Robin Williams plays a scientist that creates a substance with a mind of its own — flubber. It’s shaped like a little green blob man, and it’s very mischievous. It’s basically like having a new puppy with the added ability to multiply and change shape, so definitely only get this pet if you’re ready for a very hands-on approach.  

10. A cat — specifically my cat

I know we can’t all share my sweet kitty, but at least everyone can appreciate how special he is. He’s gigantic — a whopping 15 pounds — he likes to ride on my shoulders and he’s about to turn 2-years-old. Ancho is registered as an emotional support animal at the University, and there really isn’t another cat like him. I recognize that you won’t be able to recreate his perfection if you get your own cat, but there’s no reason you shouldn’t try. 

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