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housing concerns

akitavet

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what do most vet students do for housing? My husband travels so I will have the dogs with me, and we will have by that time two akitas (one male one female). I am worried I am going to have difficulty finding housing that can accommodate me and my dogs given that many insurance companies dont allow akitas. My current akita is CGC/TDI certified, but not super wild about but decent with other dogs (she has her friends and her well...not friends, especially hyper ones), and my second akita is yet to be conceived (although by the end of the month, that should take place). I looked at renting a house near UIUC, and I found places for ~1k/month 3bed/2bath with a fenced yard, but I would probably need 2 roommates, and here's the kicker, roommates without cats or birds and probably without dogs too. Do you all think that's realistic?
 

Fairyblastt

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ouch.. that sounds like a problem. Usually ppl without pets are that way bc they don't want to live with them... but good luck maybe you'll find ppl that love pets but don't have the time. Now that I think of it, I bet quite a few vet students might fall into this realm...
 

anc84

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HI! I currently go to school at Illinois and am also going to the vet school there this fall. Are Akitas considered "vicious dogs" -like Rottweilers and Pitbulls? If so, I'm afraid I can't help you. If they are not, however, I may be able to help. My dad is looking to buy three of these little townhomes that we found (one bedroom, one bath) to rent. He has not yet been able to come down here to work out the details with his work schedule, so I'm not sure how much rent is going to be, but he is going to allow pets (I asked about the "vicious" dogs because the townhome association does not allow them, which is something we would not be able to change). Anyway, let me know if you're interested/if Akitas aren't "vicious" and I'll let you know when I have more details.
 
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kate_g

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All the schools I went to, current students said it wasn't a problem to find pet-friendly housing near the school, and that some landlords who were otherwise 'no pets' would rent to vet students with pets (I guess because they assume you're more responsible with animals than the average tenant). But I think the kicker in a lot of places would be the fenced yard. Could you get along without one? I know akitas are big, but not much about their exercise requirements. A bunch of the current students at Penn had dogs (even big ones) that lived in their apartments in Philly. The trick is to live near an off-leash dog park so you can let them run (though I guess with a sometimes-dog-aggressive dog, that would be less useful). Also if I'm remembering this correctly, I think it was Minnesota, had kennels the students could use so that you could bring your dog(s) to school with you and let them out over lunch or on other random little breaks during the day. Maybe other schools have similar accomodations?

I agree with Fairyblastt though, I also met quite a number of current students who would have loved to have pets but refused because they didn't think they could make the necessary time commitment, etc. So finding no-pets (but pet-friendly) roommates might not be too hard.
 

Wisco

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like kate_g said with Minn. at UW madison there are kennels in the vet hospital and you can bring your dogs with you to class, leave them there then let them out during breaks etc.
 

ri23

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like kate_g said with Minn. at UW madison there are kennels in the vet hospital and you can bring your dogs with you to class, leave them there then let them out during breaks etc.

Hmm, I've never heard about that, but it's a fantastic idea! I know I've seriously been thinking about getting a dog over the summer, but I do worry that I won't have enough time to properly take care of it.
 

kate_g

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Hmm, I've never heard about that, but it's a fantastic idea! I know I've seriously been thinking about getting a dog over the summer, but I do worry that I won't have enough time to properly take care of it.
Almost no matter where you go, it seems you will be inundated with irresistably adoptable dogs as soon as you get to school (for instance at Penn after the junior spay/neuter surgery lab, there is apparently massive pressure on the first years to adopt the newly altered dogs instead of sending them back to the shelter). So hold off until the semester starts!

Oh, and everywhere I've been so far has a blood donor program, where they take dogs from local shelters and rescues, keep them a while as blood donors, and then adopt them out. Generally they would live in the kennel at the hospital while they're in the program, but students can "adopt" them and take them home during the time they're in the program - and then either keep them permanently afterward or adopt them out to a family and take on a new incoming blood donor. (One place - maybe Davis? - they specifically get untrained/boisterous dogs from the shelter and the students train them up to be a nice family pet and then adopt them out when they're done in the blood donor program.) The big bonus to these arrangements is that if you go on vacation or can't keep "your" dog at home for any reason, it can stay in the hospital kennel and will be taken care of free of charge. Definitely frees you up in the "time to take care of it" department, and a pretty good way to test-drive dog ownership I would think!
 

ri23

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Almost no matter where you go, it seems you will be inundated with irresistably adoptable dogs as soon as you get to school (for instance at Penn after the junior spay/neuter surgery lab, there is apparently massive pressure on the first years to adopt the newly altered dogs instead of sending them back to the shelter). So hold off until the semester starts!

Oh, and everywhere I've been so far has a blood donor program, where they take dogs from local shelters and rescues, keep them a while as blood donors, and then adopt them out. Generally they would live in the kennel at the hospital while they're in the program, but students can "adopt" them and take them home during the time they're in the program - and then either keep them permanently afterward or adopt them out to a family and take on a new incoming blood donor. (One place - maybe Davis? - they specifically get untrained/boisterous dogs from the shelter and the students train them up to be a nice family pet and then adopt them out when they're done in the blood donor program.) The big bonus to these arrangements is that if you go on vacation or can't keep "your" dog at home for any reason, it can stay in the hospital kennel and will be taken care of free of charge. Definitely frees you up in the "time to take care of it" department, and a pretty good way to test-drive dog ownership I would think!


Thanks a lot for the information, I had never thought of that and it was extremely helpful. Originally I had planned on getting a puppy over the summer (that way I would have time to potty train it), but your idea makes a lot more sense. That way I'll know exactly uwhat I'll be getting into as far as school time committment goes.

I actually used to work at a zoo, and over the summer we would adopt a dog from the local shelter (untrained) and then do training demonstrations with that dog and an already trained agility dog to teach visitors how to train their dogs. The goal was always to have a visitor adopt the newly trained dog at the end of the summer. The problem was that after about a week of the dog being at the zoo there were already several zoo staff that wanted it :laugh:
 

akitavet

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will have? how about not getting another dog?

Well 1.) I am already committed to him. I was supposed to get his brother this winter, but he was monorchid, so for a conformation dog, that wasn't going to cut it. 2.) The difference between caring for one dog and two is not huge. In the grand scheme of things, its not really that big of a difference. 3.) As far as housing goes, it really makes very little difference if I have one or two.
 

thesonofdarwin

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3.) As far as housing goes, it really makes very little difference if I have one or two.

Not really, unless you find a place without a pet policy. All of the places I've looked at fell into these categories:
1) No dogs, small animals fine.
2) X number of animals (many complexes seem to limit to 1 dog max)
3) X combined adult weight of all animals (again, could be an issue if the limit is small)

Finding a place with no pet policy is going to be a miracle, so you may wish to check into all the possible pet policies you might be faced with. Those 3 above are the most common for the places around here and around the cities I've looked at. Unfortunately, I've got a dog and two cats that must go with me wherever I find. Otherwise they'd have to be given up to adoption, and I'd give up my chance at vet school before I'd ever think of doing that.

Out of the pet policies I've read, I've never seen Akitas on the banned breed list. Good luck on finding a place.
 

PAThbrd

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I know the OP is UIUC, but if anyone is coming to Penn and needs large dog friendly housing, I can give you the contact info for my landlord. All pets are welcome in their buildings, no breed, weight, or number of animals restrictions and there is no pet rent of pet deposit. A true blessing! I had similar problems as I have a German Shepherd and was always worrying about either shepherds not being allowed or her being over the weight limit.
 

kate_g

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Finding a place with no pet policy is going to be a miracle
A possible remedy is to focus your search on individual landlords (some guy who rents out his old house after buying a new one; a couple that rents an in-law unit on their property; even someone who has bought a small apartment building as an investment and manages it personally) rather than apartment complexes owned by a corporation and run by a management company. In the latter case, policy tends to be spelled out explicitly like you mentioned and there are no exceptions (though I've found that even in a "no pets" complex you can sometimes wheedle your way into bringing something small that lives in a cage). In the former case, you might find that some gentle negotiation based on the fact that you're a vet student and therefore the epitome of responsible pet ownership (and possibly offering to pay a larger deposit) can get you past whatever their stated pet policy might be (letting your cat into their "no pets" building, for instance, or allowing your shepherd when they said "small dogs only" - or in my case allowing 3 cats when the stated limit is often 2).
 

JumptheMoon

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I know the OP is UIUC, but if anyone is coming to Penn and needs large dog friendly housing, I can give you the contact info for my landlord. All pets are welcome in their buildings, no breed, weight, or number of animals restrictions and there is no pet rent of pet deposit. A true blessing! I had similar problems as I have a German Shepherd and was always worrying about either shepherds not being allowed or her being over the weight limit.

Oh PAThbrd you just said the magic words! Haven't decided if I'm coming to Penn or not, but I don't know Philly at all, I already have a cat and a rabbit, and I'm thinking about getting a dog either this summer or after starting school...I would LOVE to hear your experience with pet-friendly housing in Philly if you've got a chance!
 

hopefulinPA

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I second JumptheMoon - PAThbrd if you could share some pet-friendly housing places around the university that would be wonderful. I have a large lab who will be living with me :) I found a few houses to look at so far, but I don't know about apartments or the more pet-friendly bigger name landlords in the area. Thanks so much!
 
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