Even though Northwestern’s mascot is technically the Red Raider, everyone knows that the real heart and soul of our campus comes from our three dorm dogs: Ozzy, Oakley and Ivy. Although each dog was much too busy for an interview, we have gathered information based on their reputation, owners and dating profiles to fill you in on the local gossip about our campus canines.
Residing in Hospers Hall, Ivy Banks Simmelink is a nine-month-old Bernadoodle, and the newest member of the NW pet community. She was voted Most Likely To Attack Someone’s Knees in high school, and still lives up to this reputation today. Known for her large amounts of energy and friendly personality, she has brought a lot of joy to the residents of Hospers, as well as the rest of campus. Her greatest pet peeves are things with wheels and people chewing with their mouths open. While some may see her as a wild card, RD of Hospers, Michael Simmelink, confirms that “what you see is what you get. She’s super cute and a great dog.”
If you’re ever in Fern and hear barking, chances are that it is either the ancient vacuum cleaners or the local dorm dog, Oakley! Representing Fern Smith Hall, Oakley Fern Wheeler is a spunky one-and-a-half year-old Cockapoo (cocker spaniel and poodle) that has a knack for finding and eating dead birds, shoes and whatever she can access around Natalie Wheeler’s apartment. Oakley enjoys long walks on the beach and the simple things in life. A regular among the halls of Fern, Oakley enjoys going on rounds and attends as many dorm events as she can. She even had a starring role in Fern Fallout last spring. Wheeler dubs Oakley as the “pampered pooch of Fern.”
Finally, weighing in at 15 pounds, is the face of Colenbrander Hall: Ozzy Follett. A year and a half old Cavachon (mix between a Cavalier King Charles Spaniel and a Bichon Frise), Ozzy has spent his whole life in Coly, and as a result, has developed a love for people and attention. He takes any opportunity to hang out with the residents of his dorm and is known to be a pretty chill dog. According to Brian Follett, “he also sometimes perches on a couch by our back window, so if you walk behind Coly you may see a little white dog staring at you.” Ozzy’s birthday is coming up in May, so be sure to sing to him when the time comes.
Not only do the NW dogs provide energy and joy, but they also can provide mental health benefits as well. Animals can be helpful for homesickness, anxiety and depression, which is especially relevant at the beginning of the year when students are going through major life changes. Fern resident Amber Post says that “It’s really nice for me, since I have three dogs back home, and I miss them a lot, but seeing the dogs always makes me feel better.”
For those with dog allergies, never fear, because there are still plenty of options for animal contact on campus. Befriend a squirrel, convince Caylan DeLucia to get a snake for Stegenga, pet the snow ducks that have appeared on campus, or just stop being allergic!
With the stressful and fast-paced nature of college, we can all benefit from spending some time with Ozzy, Oakley or Ivy. Campus is lucky to have such dedicated, energetic and adorable dogs. Stay tuned for a “What Dorm Dog Are You?” quiz!