SNU: Meet your four-legged neighbors!

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Delany Burk

Penny the cat takes a walk up a tree.

Delany Burk, Editor

The number of pets on Sierra Nevada University’s campus this year has skyrocketed from years past. This may surprise some students, considering that the SNU website states that the school’s policy on pets in the dorms is, “Pets are not allowed. All pets on the property shall be presumed to be strays and will be transported to an appropriate agency.”
In very special circumstances however, that rule can be flexible, with proof of a plan to take care of and pay for the care of the animal, solid reasoning for having it, and a plan on what to do with the animal if it turns out that a student cannot properly care for the animal. Once a student has applied and been approved by the board, they must sign the pet contract, which is specific to their animal. This contract addresses fines, grounds for removal, and other issues.
Many more people have been approved to have pets this year compared to years past. Students may have seen them out and about already – if you haven’t, keep an eye out for these furry friends and say hi!
ONYX

Onyx the cattle dog enjoys the breeze on a car ride; (Courtesy photo)

Onyx is a 1-year-old cattle dog mix. His owner, Alexis Broderick, said that since he is a cattle dog, he requires some unusual training, and loves his herding ball the most out of all his toys. Broderick said that she got Onyx to be her travel buddy while she was living in a camper. Broderick said he adjusted well to living in the dorms. “He still doesn’t like being in the room, because he had a whole house and other dogs to play with but for the most part he’s pretty good,” Broderick said. Broderick takes Onyx outside often, “He likes to swim in the creek and do his own thing, and he goes to the dog park sometimes.”
COCO

Coco is a gray bunny.

Coco is a 4-year-old gray bunny. Her owner, Eve Sachs, says Coco is affectionate, sweet, and energetic. Sachs got Coco from a shelter four years ago. She originally got the rabbit as an FFA animal and was supposed to raise her for meat, but decided not to sell her. Sachs takes her bunny outside on a leash and harness, and she plays with the other animals around campus, especially getting along with the kittens who grew up with her this summer.
“She’s so much happier here because I went to boarding school before, so I wasn’t at home,” Sachs said. “She was just by herself in my old room.” Sachs said that the hardest part of having an animal on campus is that it makes her homesick for the animal. “I spent the night at [a friend’s] house and I was supposed to stay there two nights, but I just couldn’t. I took an Uber back; I needed to go take care of my bunny.” Sachs said that taking care of her is very easy, but leaving her alone is difficult.
LADY

Lady is a cocker spaniel. (Courtesy photo)

Lady is a cocker spaniel and is 12-and-a-half years old. Her owner, Benjamin Nelson, got Lady from his dad and sister who bought her from a pet store one day intending for her to be their dog, but Lady chose Ben. Nelson got approved to have Lady by proving that she responded to his commands. “She never had an accident; after a few days here, she was able to kind of figure out the schedule,” Nelson said. Lady was easy to train, and can do a variety of standard tricks, but she is so old now that she spends most of her time sleeping.
“She’s kind of her own woman. She’ll do her own thing whilst you’re in the room with her and then if she wants to talk to you she’ll be like ‘Hey, pet me for a little bit.’ And then she’ll go back to her nap.”
ATLAS

Atlas is a 4-month-old wolf cat. (Courtesy photo)

Atlas is a 4-month-old wolf cat. His owner, Nova Kime, got him from the Animal Protection League shelter in Cleveland, Ohio. They say that Atlas is “a mega sweetheart who loves to cuddle and just wants to play.” Kime said that Atlas got to ride all the way from Ohio to Nevada with them and their partner this fall, and was a trooper the whole way.
“Having animals has always been a comfort for me so I really wanted to have an animal here,” Kime said. “It has mentally helped me so much to be able to come back to my room after a long day and play with the little fluff ball.”
PENNY
Penny is a Manx. She doesn’t often let people pet her, so if she does, you know she likes you. She is snuggly and very vocal, and she loves any meat purée treats.
She gets lots of outside time and you might see her on a harness or leash out on the lawn, or playing in a common room every once in a while.