We finally figured out why it smells like dog food

Is it the rumored puppy farm or a poultry factory?

James Madison University is no doubt the university of Virginia, however any fellow Duke will admit that rainy days here in the ‘Burg are the complete worst and not for the reason you think.

Sure, your clothes are drenched and campus gets flooded in the blink of an eye, but can we please talk about that dog food smell? We don’t know if we’d rather be nauseous from drinking too much the night before or because of that f-ing smell.

Can you imagine stepping onto campus on a warm, rainy afternoon and then suddenly a pungent, distinctly JMU smell invades the supposed clean mountain breeze and your nostrils?

Where the hell does it come from?

If someone told you it’s from the puppy farm, they lied to you. How can such precious creatures create such an awful smell?

There has been rumor that the smell actually comes from the factory by Shenandoah Hall located on East Campus. Some say that it’s from either a poultry or dog food factory.

Regardless of where it comes from, what we really want to know is why it produces such an odd smell that only gets wafted through campus when it rains.

Here’s what students had to say about the outrageous smell.

Sydney Thier, Sophomore, SMAD

“It makes me feel like I should be walking into a field of dogs and when I realize that I’m not I become very disappointed.”

Joellen Ceide, Sophomore, History and Psychology

“Well I’ve actually told a lot of people about this, but back home I love the smell after it rains, everything seems so fresh band calm. But the dog food smell here has ruined that after-rain smell for me.”

Katie Meisner, Junior, Health Science

“My parents came down two weekends ago and it just so happened that it had been raining. We had just finished Sunday mass and were meeting up with my two roommates for brunch and decided to walk to the restaurant.

We were walking by this factory downtown by the name of Cargill when the smell hit. No one really knows what the factory is for so my mom decided to Google it. It turns out that it’s actually a food product supplier. Maybe the smell comes from there?”

Torin Porter, Junior, Biology

“Some people dislike the smell, but I know it means I’m still in the best city ever at the best university ever.”

Skye Hagood, Junior, SMAD

“I had a parent ask if it had something to do with dead chickens…”

Denny Fuller, Freshman, IDLS

“I definitely think it smells like dog food! I’ve heard that it comes from a dog food factory, but I’m skeptical about that. Whenever I smell it, it makes me miss my dogs and family.”

Bekah Tolson, Junior, Communcation Studies and Rhukayat Giwa, Junior, Health Administrative Services

Bekah Tolson (Left) Rhukayat Giwa (Right)

Bekah: “It makes walking to class even more terrible.”

Rhukayat: “The first time I ever smelled the dog food smell, I was scarred for life.”

Casey Donnelly, Junior, Psychology and Justice Studies

“It stinks. Especially after it rains. It makes me feel gross. I’m not sure where it comes from and I’ve heard a lot of different things. Someone once told me it was actually from a turkey farm and someone else said it was from a factory where the make dog food out of horse meat.”

Will Miller, Freshman, Biology

“Yes I think it smells like dog food! I think it comes from the many livestock farms around JMU. It doesn’t bother me that much!”

After a little digging here and there, we finally have an answer.

Harrisonburg is in fact famous for its poultry production. The poultry’s feed, which is made up of a mix of molasses, corn and other organic materials, produces a dog food smell that is especially strong in wet weather.

We still love you, JMU. Dog food smell and all.

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