So here’s the situation, and I apologize in advance for the long question but a best answer will be chosen, well worth your time! I have always loved dogs, and when I was 8 my family got my very first one. She was a very expensive little chihuahua puppy and I (admittedly) didn’t take the best care of her. I was 8, and didn’t understand anything about training a puppy yet, I mean I was even scared to let her meet another dog because I thought they would hurt her. Long story short we were left with a chihuahua without proper socialization or training, and my mom still puts it off as my fault. Which would make since if we had gotten the dog recently (I’m 17), but I was 8, for god’s sake give me a break. My dilemma is now that last year around Christmas I finally got my very own Christmas puppy! Boy was it the happiest day of my life, and the dog (Tessa), continues to be the happiest thing in my life. She was listed as a Border Collie/Lab at a local shelter, but it is apparent she is a Border Collie/Pit Bull now. The dog is my life, I have taken her to more obedience classes then I can count on both hands, she is an exceptional animal. CGC certified, quite the agility star, and a favorite of everyone that knows her. I can honestly say that she is the one of two (I have another dog, we’ll get to that later) of the best things in my life. I did Junior year online this year because I am a competitive equestrian and all the absences for shows got complicated, so she’s always there to make my days a little less lonely. About 6 months ago I adopted another puppy, Shiah, who is now a 1 year old border collie. She is also CGC certified, an agility competitor, and a registered therapy dog. Again, they are both completely my responsibility. I take all credit, along with all accidents, and all of their necessities as my daily job. Training them has been one of the most rewarding things in my life! I have a love for training animals, but being able to have them with me all the time has truly been an amazing experience. Yes I still have friends, a family (a rather crappy one sometimes), etc, but they are the two things I never wish to rid myself of for even a day. I cannot imagine life without them.
Now for the real dilemma – the first time I left my first dog, Tessa, I went to camp for two months. She remains to be different then when I left still to this day, with a new-found fear of people (something of which we are still working on to this day to build her confidence on). Not sure how this came to be, not sure I’ll ever understand, but I take responsibility for having left her for so long. The second time I left (I had Shiah now too), it was for 10 days over Christmas break. The second day after I was gone Shiah had gotten into chocolate and had an emergency visit to the vet to induce vomiting. The 5th day into my trip I got some worse news, Tessa had cut her front and back left paw on something in the back yard and was at the vet for surgery. Turns out on the front food she only cut tissue, but on the back she cut into a tendon, needing to be sedated and off her feet for the next couple of weeks. By the time I got back both dogs were in pretty poor shape, my mom having sedated not only Tessa (who had the prescription), but Shiah as well. Man was I furious! That she would drug my dog to make life easier on her, blah I can’t even get in to that at the moment. All I can say is the whole event seemed careless to me, and I am secretly a little mad at my Mom for not keeping a closer eye on them. Anyways I’m a Junior in high school, and as you may be putting together I leave for college at the end of next year. What in the world do I do with my dogs? The purpose of the long messages above was to get two points across, the dogs are my life and I don’t feel safe leaving them at home. Do I go to the extent of going to a community college for 2 years so I can opt out of the dorms? Do I suck it up and leave the dogs at home? Do I attend a college (I’ve found 2) that have a pet friendly dorm (note- I could only take one, sigh). Do I attempt to opt out of the dorms but attend the college I want to? What are your suggestions, and am I being ridiculous about now wanting to leave them home? Please help, I’m not sure what to do, and thank you so much for your time.