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Moravian College Announces New Dog-friendly Policy

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(credit: CBS3)

(credit: CBS3)

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BETHLEHEM, Pa. (CBS) – Dog-friendly work places are gaining popularity, but what about a dog-friendly college campus?

Moravian College, in Bethlehem, has just announced it plans to adopt a new policy that will allow faculty and staff to bring their pups to work.

“Since Moravian College is home of the Greyhounds [mascot] where students are proud to be called ‘Hounds,’ it seems even more appropriate that we allow faculty and staff to bring their dogs to campus,” explained President Bryon Grigsby in a release. “A large number of research studies have demonstrated the physical, emotional, and social benefits of canine companionship. We believe the campus community will be enlivened by the presence of some friendly dogs on campus.”

“Friendly” being the operative word. The university says the plan involves strict regulations for those who choose to bring their pooch to campus. Dogs must be spayed or neutered, clean, well-behaved, non-aggressive, housebroken and up-to-date on vaccinations and flea treatments. Furthermore, aggressive behavior – whether towards humans or other animals – will not be tolerated. A bite of any kind is grounds for removal.

And while Moravian says dogs will be permitted in private offices, they are not allowed in administrative or faculty spaces during working hours, since those spots are considered public.

As for the classroom, the college will allow professors to bring their pets as long as students are told in advance and don’t object due to fear or allergies. And of course, dogs aren’t allowed in areas such as athletic facilities, cafeterias and student rooms.

“With [the privilege of bringing a dog], there is the responsibility to have a policy that is both balanced and sensible. It is the responsibility of the dog owner to value the rights of students, faculty, staff, and visitors as well as the physical beauty of the campus. The owner is ultimately responsible for the actions of his/her dog,” said Jon Conrad, the school’s chief human resources officer.

Moravian says a “Hound Council” is in the process of being created to adjudicate alleged violations of the new dog-friendly policy. That organization will consist of faculty, staff and students.

And while students are still not permitted to bring their own dogs (with the exception of service animals), many are probably looking forward to seeing some furry and friendly — albeit slobbery — faces around campus.

For more information, visit: www.moravian.edu

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