Student Life Writer
Due to the ongoing COVID-19 pandemic and enforced CDC guidelines, it has been hard for resident dog lovers of East Stroudsburg University to meet new furry faces on campus.
Since the fall semester began on Aug. 30, at the university, the number of cases among the community has spiked. To reduce the spread of the highly contagious virus, the school strongly encourages social distancing and mask wearing even when outdoors. These policies make it difficult for students to walk up to dog owners to say, “Hi” to their four-legged friends like they once could.
This article introduces some of the local dogs seen walking around campus as a way for the East Stroudsburg University students, faculty, and staff to get to know them while keeping everyone at a safe distance from one another.
Meet Rocky. He is a rescue that often walks around campus with his owner, Jeff Huth.
They were seen taking an early morning walk by Koehler Fieldhouse, heading up towards Kemp Library and the Fine and Performing Arts Center.
“Rocky is about three or four years old,” said Huth. “He was originally with my mom, but now he is mine.”
Rocky is a very calm and sweet dog. He is loyal to his owner. It takes some time for him to warm up to other people, but only a few minutes.
He loves treats, his favorite being pork roll chews.
“He has not been out much because of COVID. He loves people, so he is happy he got to say hi to someone,” added Huth.
This lovely lady is Cassie. As seen on her harness in the picture, Cassie is a certified service dog.
She was seen sitting in front of the Science and Technology Center on Normal St in the afternoon. She sat and ate dinner next to her owner, Melody Wilhelm, and a friend.
“Cassie is about 11 years old,” said Wilhelm. “I’m not sure what kind [of dog] she is. She is a mix of a few different breeds.”
Cassie loves playing with toys. A couple of her favorite kinds include tug of war ropes and rubber pigs that squeak.
This is Shawntee. She was seen going for a morning run past Dansbury Commons alongside her owner, Theresa Vito.
“She is eight years old,” said Vito. “She is a Jack Russell mix. The markings on her coat are definitely Jack Russell.”
Shawntee is very friendly, but sometimes a bit standoffish.
“She wants to say hi, but she knows when people are hesitant to pet her. Then, she sometimes starts to growl and bark,” said Vito.
She is also a very energetic dog, full of energy and constantly jumping around.
“She could go run for 10 miles and then come back and run some more,” added Vito.
As the school year continues, these dogs will be seen around more often. New dogs might even become frequent visitors of East Stroudsburg University’s campus. It is important to continue following CDC guidelines and policies the school sets to ensure the safety of everyone in the community, including the dogs.
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