La Salle University opens 'dog-friendly' dorm

PHILADELPHIA (WPVI) -- Four-year-old Angus is the most "pup-ular" guy at La Salle University. He's the university's new pup-scot, as administration calls him.

"I can't tell you how many times I'm walking around campus and everyone just fawns over him," said senior Charlotte Splendido, who was hired to be Angus's handler. "I feel way more confident. Everyone smiles when they see him. It's been a really awesome experience for me."

They're also the first pair to live in the new dog-friendly St. George Hall dorm. The residence hall just became one of the first in the nation to allow pets in on-campus housing.

"There is a tremendous amount of research that shows having a pet is not only good for your health, reduces stress, but also teaches people how to be responsible," said Dr. Dawn Soufleris, the vice president of Student Affairs for the university who helped launch the program.

There are a few rules for dogs on campus: there can be only one per room, they can't be younger than one, and have to be under 40 pounds. The university also took steps to make the dorm dog-friendly. First, it partnered with Purina to see what the needs are for pets in housing. It also built a dog park next to the building and a shower stall on the first floor.

Splendido said Angus is loving his time living in St. George, and while he'll find a new roommate once she graduates in the spring, she says he's one of the best parts of her senior year.

"He just instantly makes people's days better and you never know who needs it at that moment," she said.

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