We go from mom’s home cooking back to whatever half-empty box of pasta and jar of sauce we have stashed away in our apartment pantries. We go from free, endless access to washing machines back to scrounging up quarters in our purses and praying we have enough. But perhaps the worst part about leaving home and returning to Dear Old State, for many of us at least, is saying goodbye to our beloved pets.
Whether you are an avid dog lover or plan to own ten cats once you’re out of school, saying goodbye to our pets is hard – impossible, even. For most of us, they grew up with us and were there when we needed them most. Our pets are easily some of our best friends.
So, how can saying our goodbye get a little easier? Here are some tips to making the farewell a little less painful.
Pictures and Videos
Most of us have smart phones, so let’s use them! There is no such thing as “too many pictures,” despite what your family says. Whenever your dog is playing in a pile of leaves or your cat is napping on the window sill, right there is a prime photo or video opportunity. By the time you have to go back to school, you can take comfort in knowing you have so many reminders of your pet literally in the palm of your hand. Plus, finals week is quickly approaching so when you’re trapped in the stacks desperately seeking motivation, you can pull out the hundreds of pictures you took over Thanksgiving break to keep you going.
Phone and Laptop Backgrounds
Expanding off of the whole “take a zillion pictures” thing, there is no shame in having your pet as your lock screen background. Or your home screen background. Or your laptop background. Or all three. Hell, set them as your cover photo on Facebook if that helps. Making your pets the backgrounds of things you look at daily (usually many, many times a day) can make saying goodbye to them so much easier. You know that even when you are back at school, you will get to see their face simply when tweeting or checking your email.
Bring Them for the Ride
This last tip is for those of us whose journey back to school is a few hours in a car with our parents. If you are from say, Philly or Pittsburgh or somewhere else not too far, ask your parents if your pet can ride in the car with you. This will buy you a few more precious hours with your pet before you enter back into the tundra that is State College. It’s a good time to say your last goodbye (until Christmas break) and get in one last snuggle. If your parents (and pet!) are okay with being in the car for the drive, it’s definitely worth it to ask.
Saying goodbye to our pets will always be sad, but hopefully trying these tricks before heading back to school this weekend will make it a little easier on both of you.