Dogs and babies are the only creatures that vomit more than college freshmen do. Allowing dogs in dorms, then, is dangerous, but it's happening anyway. Come, witness a terrible world where week-old pizza in the common room contains dog turds.
The New York Times reports that canine companionship is the newest luxury extended to the undergraduate masses. Stephens College recently renovated a dorm and named it Pet Central. Just like at home with mom and dad, kids there can punt dog care responsibilities to some other responsible adult:
Pet Central, will have a makeshift kennel on the first floor, staffed by work-study students who will offer temporary boarding and perhaps a bath.
With these efforts, Stephens is hoping to smooth the transition of some students who may be so anxious about leaving home or adjusting to college life that a stuffed animal will not be of sufficient comfort. They want the real thing.
MIT and a few other schools are pet-friendly, too. While you could formulate pet dorms as a method for preventing the infantilization of college students (let young adults live like actual adults, freely) pet dorm planners admit it's actually about infantilizing them further:
"I recognize this as being a trend that is tied directly to the whole notion of helicopter parenting," said Dianne Lynch, who became president of Stephens last year and who is herself the owner of two dogs and two cats. "It's harder and harder for students to leave home. Bringing this particular piece of home with them may make that separation easier."
Dorm life is disgusting and vulgar, so it's understandable that those who live in dorms seek solace. I recall wishing I had a puppy to pet when I was in college, too. But this—
While Ms. Christian was in class, the dog scampered out and gorged on a nearby stash of beef jerky and chocolate. Her owner skipped her next class to rush Annabelle to the veterinarian, who administered Ipecac.
—is the frightful reality of pets in dorms. I shudder to imagine a dystopic future in which beer-guzzling frat house dogs exist in every dorm room, baleful creatures whimpering and peeing under the bed while their owners imbibe carbonated beverages in handstand positions, and nurse painful hangovers for days on end. Forcing humans to live in dorms is bad enough. Putting pets there is straight-up cruelty. [NYT, image of a dog drinking specially formulated dog beer in Japan via Getty]