Pets, Not Pests

Pets are a big part of the lives of OHS students.

Pets are a huge part of many people’s lives, as seen within some Oxnard High School students, and have proven to reduce stress and exhibit happiness for a lot of pet owners.


One of these students, junior Katie Medina, has had her Maltese dog named Bella for about a year. “My favorite part about taking care of her is that she’s really playful. It’s fun to have her around and be active with her, or just hang around and take a nap,” said Medina.  


Another pet owner, junior Maria Galicia, has a Roborovski Dwarf hamster named Potassium. Since Galicia is the main person taking care of him, she stated that she has learned to be more responsible because of him. “I’m the one who’s cleaning his cage, feeding him, and making sure he has clean water,” she said.


Galicia also mentioned that her hamster has comforted her in many ways throughout her time with him. She stated, “Just watching him play around in his little house is a stress reliever.”


OHS junior Destiny Barnhill, on the other hand, has a full house with four cats and two dogs. Barnhill said, “The hardest part about taking care of them is giving them all attention and cleaning up after them.” She, too, said that she has learned what it’s like to take up a lot of responsibility. Barnhill also said that she recommends that other people become pet owners because “[pets] don’t judge you, and it’s just a good relationship.”


Unfortunately, some OHS seniors will be moving away for college which means leaving their pets behind. Senior Paola Gonzales has had her Shih Tzu and Yorkshire Terrier mixed dog, Yogi, for only a few months and is sad to be leaving him to go to the University of California, Irvine. “I’m going to miss him so much, more than my own family,” said Gonzales. She stated that her favorite things about Yogi is that he comforts her when she’s stressed out and makes her happy. “He’s like my emotional support,” she said.


Senior Eric Padilla will be attending San Jose State University in the fall and is sad that he has to leave his English Bulldog, Bella, with his family. “I’m going to be sad, and I know she’s going to be sad, too,” he said. Padilla has had a close relationship with his dog throughout high school and added, “She means a lot [to me] because she’s like another friend that I have.”


Overall, the relationships that students have with their pets are just as strong and emotionally connected as any other relationship that they have.