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Having a dog in medical school

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Yay or nay


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chloeevangeline

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Hi,

I know lots of people have posted about this before but I am really hoping to only have the opinions of people who have had dogs while in medical school/residency.

I am starting school in August and have found a goldendoodle puppy that I really want! I grew up raising dogs and find a lot of enjoyment and stress relief from being around them! I am married so will have someone to help with caring for the dog. We plan on living close to campus.

Is it worth it? Should I get two dogs so they can have a pack? Is it too difficult?

I would really only prefer opinions from people who either have dogs in medical school or are in medical school and chose against the pup life.
 

GoCubsGo20

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Literally just got a puppy. IMO, so worth it. She's everything to us. Should be noted, I have a SO to help shoulder the care.
 
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mistafab

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Not about you - do you really have the time for the dog? Sure, year 1 and 2 you have many hours that you can care for a dog. What about years 3-4? Residency? Isn’t fair for the dog unless you have a plan for 12 hours a day that the dog is awake and active and you have to be at work.
 
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Microbug

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I would never get a dog until I’m retired. Feels bad leaving them at home. Unless you can afford doggie daycare.
 
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GoCubsGo20

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People have kids in medical school. It's all about time management and choosing what's important to spend your time on. Efficiency is key.
 
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Drez06

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Haven’t started med school yet, but start in July - have a three year old husky and a ten year old fox hound; they’re my entire world and they kept me sane while working full time, studying for the MCAT, etc... we don’t have a choice, we’re going to find a way to make it work, because I wouldn’t give them up for anything. people have made it work in the past, hell people have made it work with kids AND dogs, there’s no reason you wouldn’t be able to as well, as long as you’re willing to make sacrifices!

Edit: just wanted to add something, just saw your comment about two dogs... getting a second dog was one of the best decisions my husband and I made. It actually made our lives easier, they keep each other company and double the walks keep us healthier and give us a chance to step away and clear our heads when we need it. But to each their own!
 
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GoCubsGo20

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Haven’t started med school yet, but start in July - have a three year old husky and a ten year old fox hound; they’re my entire world and they kept me sane while working full time, studying for the MCAT, etc... we don’t have a choice, we’re going to find a way to make it work, because I wouldn’t give them up for anything. people have made it work in the past, hell people have made it work with kids AND dogs, there’s no reason you wouldn’t be able to as well, as long as you’re willing to make sacrifices!
Sacrifices are key. For example, don't sit at school and "study" with friends for hours on end. Get your stuff done and go home and be a good dog parent. I think that's a theme for all of med school, efficiency. Be efficient and deliberate with everything you do, otherwise you waste so much time.
 
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Drez06

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Sacrifices are key. For example, don't sit at school and "study" with friends for hours on end. Get your stuff done and go home and be a good dog parent. I think that's a theme for all of med school, efficiency. Be efficient and deliberate with everything you do, otherwise you waste so much time.

Absolutely agree! Sure you’re waking up an hour earlier to feed and walk them, coming home on lunch when you can, and are forced to study at home more often, but the sacrifices are well worth it - taking a brief mental break to go for a jog around the block or just throw a tennis a ball a few times did wonders for my mental health through undergrad and studying for the MCAT!
 
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GoCubsGo20

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Absolutely agree! Sure you’re waking up an hour earlier to feed and walk them, coming home on lunch when you can, and are forced to study at home more often, but the sacrifices are well worth it - taking a brief mental break to go for a jog around the block or just throw a tennis a ball a few times did wonders for my mental health through undergrad and studying for the MCAT!
You hit the nail on the head my friend. It's so worth it.
 
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691622

rescue a puppo. whole argument of "isn't fair to the doggo" is invalid if its a rescue. what do you think the alternative is for the lil pup?
 
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sumtimesuwonder

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I have a 5 month old puppy now and I am a first year. I also have a significant other who works from home which helps a lot. If your SO is on board I would say its worth it. It does limit how much you can do stuff like travel and go out (not that you'll be doing too much of that anyway). Nothing better than coming home to a puppy who is excited to see you though.
 

Pagan FutureDoc

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My wife and I are holding off on getting dogs until she finished residency and I finish med school. But for us it’s more of an issue of space. We both like big active dogs (the kind that need a yard to run in) and right now we live in a small apartment close to the hospital so it’s not ideal for us right now. We do have a cat and bunny though
 

tiramisucheese

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As long as you have support of someone who is not in medical school, I think it's totally doable. Otherwise you'll be looking at major $$$ for doggy daycare or dog-walkers.
 

naway

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I'm really worried about what I'm going to do with my senior dog while in med school. I don't have anyone who will be around to help care for her. I can't imagine re-homing her when she is at such an advanced age and has had such a tough life in shelters already. Doggy daycare is way too expensive to fund on the small amount of loan money I will get for living expenses. Then if she's still around come rotation time, that's a whole 'nother set of complications.

Will heading home in between classes to take her on a quick walk even be a thing that is possible in med school?
 

lpp06

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I'm really worried about what I'm going to do with my senior dog while in med school. I don't have anyone who will be around to help care for her. I can't imagine re-homing her when she is at such an advanced age and has had such a tough life in shelters already. Doggy daycare is way too expensive to fund on the small amount of loan money I will get for living expenses. Then if she's still around come rotation time, that's a whole 'nother set of complications.

Will heading home in between classes to take her on a quick walk even be a thing that is possible in med school?

Depends on the school's attendance policy, but most are shifting towards non-mandatory lectures. You'll have more windows to go home during the preclinical years than you expect. As for the clinical years, you hit the head on the nail as this could get a bit shaky since some of your clerkships will have longer hours than others.

Services like Wag/Rover offer pretty decent rates for one-off dog walks and check ins for your more desperate days.
 
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SirCourageWolf

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As far as I see it, giving up my dog is not an option and I'll do whatever it takes to make it work. She's my only family.
 
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Asacrusader

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I love having my dog lay up next to me while I study (especially since I'm away from my girlfriend).
 

naway

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Depends on the school's attendance policy, but most are shifting towards non-mandatory lectures. You'll have more windows to go home during the preclinical years than you expect. As for the clinical years, you hit the head on the nail as this could get a bit shaky since some of your clerkships will have longer hours than others.

Services like Wag/Rover offer pretty decent rates for one-off dog walks and check ins for your more desperate days.
I had no idea about those dog-walking apps. Will definitely have to check those out, thanks!!
 

GoCubsGo20

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I'm really worried about what I'm going to do with my senior dog while in med school. I don't have anyone who will be around to help care for her. I can't imagine re-homing her when she is at such an advanced age and has had such a tough life in shelters already. Doggy daycare is way too expensive to fund on the small amount of loan money I will get for living expenses. Then if she's still around come rotation time, that's a whole 'nother set of complications.

Will heading home in between classes to take her on a quick walk even be a thing that is possible in med school?
You're going to have to make it possible if that's what you want. If that means sacrifice in other areas than so be it. Is it manageable? Yes, 100%.
 
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