Me and My Dorm Hedgehog
Growing up, I never had any pets. I mean, I've always been a dog person and I have dogsat before, but I never really had a pet myself.
I never thought that junior year of college would be when I had my first pet.
I don't know how exactly this idea came into my mind, but at the end of sophomore summer I decided that I wanted a hedgehog. Something to keep me company during long nights of organic chemistry. I didn't want a hamster, because I wanted something that I could hold and hang out with. But, at the same time, I didn't want to raise a dog because, as nice as Dartmouth dorms are, it's not exactly the most enriching environment for an outdoor creature. So, somehow I ended up settling for Porkbun.
That's her name, by the way.
I got her when she was about 6 weeks old in September, and ever since then she's been living with me in my dorm. Her hobbies include running on her wheel, accompanying me on my UGA walkthroughs, and walking over my keyboard as I'm studying for my classes.
At this point she and I are inseparable. I'm a junior now taking upper level pre-med classes, which means a lot of my time nowadays is spent studying my course material as I gear up for the MCAT. Whenever I'm too lazy to make the trek over to Baker-Berry I'll just plop Porkbun in my lap, and she'll take a nap as I scribble away at organic chemistry practice problems or type out whatever coding project I'm working on.
I had a lot of plans coming into college. Admittedly, none of them included a hedgehog.
But that's what you learn being at Dartmouth for as long as I have is that plans often change, usually for the better. The only reason I was able to bring Porkbun was because of how oddly accommodating Dartmouth's housing policy is. The process for getting her was almost suspiciously easy. Yes, there were forms involved, but I was connected with someone working for the college who guided me through each step of the process. Rather than trying to hinder me, all they were concerned about was that the animal was well taken care of, and that someone was around to take care of her when I was on break or off campus. And yes, in case you're wondering, she is. Porkbun has two very loving godparents who bought her little hedgehog treats for Christmas. They didn't get me anything though. Whatever. It's not like I'm bitter or anything.