Having a pet in your dorm room is a great way to make your home away from home feel a bit more comfortable. They can cure any feelings of loneliness or warm your heart after a tough day of classes. When it comes to animal companionship at UNC, fish (nope, not squirrels) are the closest it gets to anything cute and cuddly.
But before you go out and buy a fancy-looking betta, you should be aware of the pros and cons of adding a new member to your dorm family.
Pro: Yay for grown-up responsibilities!
Having a dorm fish just might teach you a lesson in responsibility (which might get finally get your mom and dad off your back about being more responsible). For perhaps the first time, you will be taking care of another living creature on your own or with the help of your roommate. Owning a fish, and successfully caring for it – including feeding it and cleaning it’s tank – could prove that one day you can handle bigger things (i.e. cats, dogs, horses, _children_…).
Pro: BFF’s 4LYFE
Your little fishy friend can provide endless entertainment and happiness on some of your worst days. If you’re still having trouble getting into the swing of things at a big university, having a dorm pet can comfort you if you are experiencing any loneliness, a reminder that you are not alone. I mean, just imagine coming home to this face everyday.
Con: High maintenance
Fish are dirty, and in order to care for your fish, you have to clean the tank. A lot. That means changing the water AND cleaning the actual tank. Some fish are more sensitive to their water, and you might even have to buy bottled water or pH drops in order to keep water fresh and livable. You also probably need to remember to feed your fish everyday or else you may have to hold a small, toilet-side funeral.