Mosaic / October 26, 2016

Knox’s comforting creatures

Teddy regally poses for a picture. (Theresa Murphy/TKS)

Teddy regally poses for a picture. (Theresa Murphy/TKS)

Kristina Mengis – Cat

Senior Kristina Mengis and her two roommates didn’t plan on adopting a cat, but one day at lunch, they said, “let’s go pet cats at the humane society!” The cats quickly turned into adopting one of them. “It just happened spontaneously,” Mengis said. They call their cat Theodore Meowsevelt, or Teddy for short. She eventually had to get special accommodations from the college to have the cat, but at first, the cat was a secret.

She says the hardest part of having a cat on campus is that Teddy wants to roam around, and people always want to come over and see him. “People get so excited, they want to come see the cat more than to see us,” said Mengis. “He’s great for destressing, and when we’re sick he brings us his toys.”

Prado-Ragan’s pet ball python slithers up her laptop screen. (Photo courtesy of Elana Prado-Ragan)

Prado-Ragan’s pet ball python slithers up her laptop screen. (Photo courtesy of Elana Prado-Ragan)

Elena Prado-Ragan – Snake

Junior Elena Prado-Ragan’s snake eats live mice. Prado-Ragan has to go to the pet store once a week for them, and when she puts the snake into it’s feeding basket with a mouse, it strangles its meal, and pulls it back into its mouth with the help of backward-facing fangs. Though it may seem like keeping a pet snake would be a lot of work, Prado-Ragan said her pet ball python is very low-maintenance. Ball pythons are the most common pet snakes, and they are the smallest breed of python. “I just have to keep the temperature stable, and the humidity constant,” said Prado-Ragan. She said that snakes don’t really seem to have personalities, and don’t care if you’re gone like a dog or cat would. Her 1-year-old, 3-foot ball python has never bitten her, and is also not venomous, dispelling that snakes are dangerous pets.

Bailey sits waiting for love outside of the quads. (Photo courtesy of Annie Carges)

Bailey sits waiting for love outside of the quads. (Photo courtesy of Annie Carges)

Annie Carges – Bailey

“Everyone knows him on campus, he helps a lot of people,” said sophomore Annie Carges. Bailerd, known affectionately as Bailey, is a small, gray poodle mix who is often seen around campus with his owner. She has had Bailey for two years, since before she came to Knox. She said it can be hard to go out and to figure out scheduling around taking care of Bailey, but it’s worth it to her.

Carges also never gets annoyed with people wanting to pet him, and he’s hypoallergenic, so he won’t trigger any allergies. “He can’t bite either, he’s literally a threat to nobody.”

Her advice to other students who may want a dog on campus is to not try to hide it. “It leads to so much anxiety. The people at Knox are really accommodating,” said Carges.

Elizabeth Clay

Tags:  cat Comforting creatures Dog Knox;s pets snake

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