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MT

That nose, that fur, that hair
That sly won’t-catch-me stare
That draws me from my chair
It’s dogcraft

And I’ve got no defense for it
The urge is too intense for it
What good would common sense for it do?

’cause it’s dogcraft, doggone dogcraft
And although, I know, it’s strictly absurd

When you persuade me to agree
My heart says yes indeed in me
You're treating me as something to herd

There’s no real dialog
But this stick I won't hog
’cause I can’t keep this dog deferred

jdz

You can ABSOLUTELY have a dog in law school. We've had our dog for five months now (I'm a 2L) and I cannot IMAGINE not having her! Life is so much better with her around.

The most difficult thing for me has been figuring out how to deal with the summers, not school itself. I have an internship this summer that is about 45 minutes away, which means I will be gone for a huge chunk of the day. If you figure out how to handle these types of hurdles, how to deal with medical emergencies on a very limited income, etc, a dog in law school is no problem!

PG

Just to stop the italics.

mj

Go for it, Christina! I got my dog in early November of my 1L year and I can't imagine it any other way. Nice long dog-walks are the perfect way to distract myself from work or to digest a tricky piece of reading.

I also got married in October of that year. It really hadn't even occurred to me that law school was going to be much more demanding than a full-time job and it wasn't until a few people looked shocked when I told them that I was planning a wedding that would fall 6 weeks into the school year that I started to wonder if I was doing something really silly. I asked the woman who had encouraged me to go the law school route (who was also acting as the wedding officiant) if she thought I was nuts and she gave me a talk that was very similar to what Sherry just told you. If you buy into the whole concept that your time must be filled with law school thoughts all the time, you'll have a difficult three years. And I do think that we're indoctrinated into thinking that a lawyer's time is more important than anyone else's beginning in law school. That just makes it more important for me to have terrific pets, family & friends whose presence reminds me what a terrible concept that is.

It's important to have good "not law school stuff" in every day. I can think of nothing better that a cold dog nose. (Huh, I hope that doesn't refect poorly on the husband.)

Ima Fake

Law school is only hard to kids coming out of college and that is just because college is so easy. When you come to law school from work, it is a breeze. I had a stressful career which I worked at until the day law classes started. Instead of sixty hour work weeks, I pulled six hours a day, read cases until lunch Saturday and got the best school grades of my life. Studying law is easy; bite off little bits, read the cases out of the reporters instead of the edited snippets in the text book, and join an ultimate frisbee team to have a place to romp with the dog. Treat it like a job, do your work every day, and have fun.

Christina

Thanks Sherry and everyone else for your advice! I would really like to get a dog soon. I'll keep you posted! :)

eliina

I'm a 2L, and I've found that my dog Henry really helps me keep things in perspective. Yes, doing all of my reading in the library might be more efficient, but I'm a happier person when I do some of it at home with him next to me on the couch. And after a stressful day of reading, writing, interviews or exams, going home to a happy little being who just wants to play is really refreshing.

Molly

I know all these posts are really old now, but I just wanted to say how relieved I am to see them! I'm starting my 1L year this August and adopted a lab puppy a month ago. I firmly believe dogs make me a better and happier person and that I'll be able to manage both her care and the workload, and it's great to see that affirmed!

Nick G

Great post. I just received my LSAT score (171, woo hoo!) and my 6 month old lab gave me a big old smile. Can't imagine having to give him away, he's so sweet and amazingly well-behaved for his age and breed. I'm applying in Colorado, Vermont, and Oregon among other places (going for top environmental law programs) so he should have a blast these next few years. Thanks for the insight!

renee

Hi - we're getting a puppy in 2 weeks - i'm starting law school in 6.5 weeks and my fiance will be a 2L - we're both very excited to be sharing this responsibility together. Our families are very unsupportive of us adopting this animal - but he is truly a sweetheart and i'm hoping that as they see how much fun and happiness he brings us they too will love him.

Here's to hoping....

Lauren

Reading the above post was so refreshing. I'm in the process of adopting a dog while entering my second semester as a 1L. My family is not supportive with respect to this decision because of law school and reading this post affirmed my decision to adopt. Thank you very much, the eloquent way in which you described the importance of having "a life" outside of law school helps me to deal better with my family.

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