Pet House

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The Pet House, also known as Monroe Hall, is a residence hall at Washington & Jefferson College that allows students to live with their family pets.[1][2] It has been identified as part of a growing trend of pet-friendly dormitories across the United States.[3][4][5]

Facilities[edit]

Monroe Hall is part of the Presidents' Row cluster of residence halls. It is one of several other "Theme Communities" developed by the college; others include "Leadership & Service Community" and the "International House."[6]

Origins and growth[edit]

Plans for the Pet House began shortly after animal lover Tori Haring-Smith took office as college president in January 2005.[7] She had been inspired by her own experience as a freshman at Swarthmore College, where she had a kitten.[7] After pitching the idea of a Pet House to the board of trustees and the student body, many of whom has visions of "animal feces everywhere and dogs barking and keeping people awake."[7] After persuading the rest of the administration that such a plan was feasible, college officials visited Eckerd College to see how their pet-friendly housing program operated.[7] The Pittsburgh Post-Gazette reported in 2010 that "A recent visit to Monroe Hall found it quiet and clean. A large lawn around the dorm is where the pets can romp and play, often drawing the attention of students passing by.[7] The pet owners are responsible for cleaning up after their pets."[7]

During the 2009-10 school year, 10 students lived in the Pet House; that number jumped to 34 in the 2010-11 school year.[8] Thanks to the Pet House, Washington & Jefferson College was named to the No. 3 spot on the "Top 10 Pet-Friendly Colleges of 2010" by the website www.petside.com.[7]

Impact on the college community[edit]

The college administration believes that the pet house provides a good on-campus experience and improves the college's competitiveness in recruiting potential students.[8]

Policies[edit]

The college only permits "family pets" that have been owned by the student's family for greater than one year.[9] Cats, dogs (except large breeds), small birds, hamsters, gerbils, guinea pigs, turtles, and fish are all approved for the Pet House.[9] All pets must have a clean bill of health from a veterinarian; all dogs and cats must be spayed or neutered.[9] Pets are not permitted in the classroom.[8]

References[edit]

  1. ^ Wilson, Holly; Amanda J. Gunther (September 9, 2011). "Pets - WJ Student Handbook". Handbook. Washington & Jefferson College. Archived from the original on February 4, 2012. Retrieved February 4, 2012. 
  2. ^ Miller, Barbara S. (September 4, 2007). "'Pet House' means students don't leave home without 'em". Observer-Reporter. p. B3. Retrieved February 4, 2012. 
  3. ^ Peters, Sharon (2008-09-23). "Pets take the bite out of dorm life". USA Today. Retrieved 2012-01-21. 
  4. ^ Steinberg, Jacques (June 5, 2010). "Colleges Extend the Welcome Mat to Students’ Pets". The New York Times. Archived from the original on February 4, 2012. Retrieved February 4, 2012. 
  5. ^ Lytle, Ryan (May 19, 2011). "Bring Your Pet to College". U.S. News & World Report. Archived from the original on 2012-02-05. Retrieved 2012-02-05. 
  6. ^ "Residential Learning Communities: Theme Communities". Washington & Jefferson College. Archived from the original on February 4, 2012. Retrieved February 4, 2012. 
  7. ^ a b c d e f g Niederberger, Mary (November 11, 2010). "Pet-friendly dorm makes life pleasant at W&J". Pittsburgh Post-Gazette. Retrieved 2012-01-19. 
  8. ^ a b c Mitchell, Ellen (June 20, 2010). "Washington & Jefferson designates dorm for students with pets". Pittsburgh Tribune Review. Retrieved 2012-01-21. 
  9. ^ a b c "Washington & Jefferson College Pet House Manual and Pet Registration Form". Washington & Jefferson College. Archived from the original on February 4, 2012. Retrieved February 4, 2012. 

Coordinates: 40°10′14.5″N 80°14′23.2″W / 40.170694°N 80.239778°W / 40.170694; -80.239778