Contrary to popular belief, a pet’s size is not everything when it comes to finding the perfect pal for you. Many factors actually come into play, such as bark level, temperament, and even energy level. All of these must be kept in mind when you are looking for the most suitable dog companion, and there are breeds that are inclined to display these specific traits more than others. If these are met, living in an apartment does not have to mean you cannot live with a dog that can add to your happiness! Apartment living with pets can get tough, as a few hurdles are to be expected, but as mentioned, finding the right dog breed makes all the difference.
What Makes the Best Dog for Your Apartment?
With effort, any breed can be a suitable companion, but there are a few basic qualifications possessed by the best apartment dogs. Living in a dorm or apartment comes with a few restrictions, such as the size of your space, lack of green area for potty, and the noise level from barking. To help you and your to-be companion live comfortably with peace of mind, a good apartment dog should meet at least one of the qualities listed below.
The Size and Weight
It is vital to remember that apartments are much smaller than the average detached home, so a dog will have less space to move and romp around. The larger the dog, the less room they will have, and it is likely for them to feel trapped. Larger dog breeds are also prone to leaving mess around in a small space, and an enthusiastic jump or a slight tail-wag is enough to do damage – items can be easily knocked off a low table, which may include lamps and vases. Moreover, choosing a larger breed to live in an apartment with limited space can affect its health. They are prone to joint and hip problems, so going up and down the stairs can eventually be tricky in the long run. When it comes to sheer size, a smaller dog for your apartment is more feasible. While there are a few exceptions to the rule, in general, smaller is better for your apartment life.
Its Exercise Needs
All dogs require daily exercise, and living in an apartment makes this factor a bit challenging. Without a backyard, your dog must get its exercise from frequent walks in the neighborhood and some amount of playing in the apartment. Trips to outdoor spaces like a park is essential. Some breeds require plenty of exercise and playtime to be happy, while other breeds are more appreciative of a laid back environment. With dedication, though, you can exercise most dog breeds enough to settle down in an apartment, but that will take huge commitment and time. Considering the pace of 21st century life, the possibility of you being able to do that on a regular basis are remote.
As most people have neither much spare time nor energy, the best dogs for your apartment, naturally, should need only very little exercise. They are content with daily 20 to 30 minute walks or trips to the park, and will mostly spend their days playing games indoors, chewing, or dozing off.
Even when fully grown, small dog breeds and toy breeds cannot hold their bladders as long as larger breeds can. Living in an apartment can make it hard for you to take your dog outside for potty time, but there are other options you can do for their potty needs. One is, of course, choosing a dog breed that can hold its bladder for a long time, or a dog that can grow comfortable using a wee mat. If you do not want any dog waste in your home but your area has a balcony, set up a bathroom area there with mats. You can also use a corner of your bathroom, or other areas of your home accessible to your dog if you do not mind them taking a potty indoors. With these in mind, you can deduce that the best dogs for your apartment are those that are trainable enough to go cleanly and comfortably around your apartment area.
The Noise Level
Living in an apartment means sharing walls and noise with your neighbors. For the sake of keeping peace and quiet, choosing a dog breed that is less inclined to bark is the best move. Some breeds naturally act as watchdogs and they remain alert to noise or any perceived threat, while other breeds will habitually remain calm. With a little time and patience though, it is highly possible to train a watchdog to be less reactive, but it is much easier to go with a breed that is relatively calm. Do keep in mind that some dog breeds do not like being left alone, and will tend to bark and howl. The best dogs for your apartment are less inclined to this level of separation anxiety.
The Best Apartment Dogs
Below is a curated list of dog breeds to consider as you look for your new best friend. Whether you are living in a cramped condo or a tiny bungalow, these laidback breeds will fit right in:
These dogs are naturally affectionate and sprightly. They are small in size but hold big personalities, and these Yorkies are often regarded as the “perfect match”. They have been trusty companions since the Victorian era, and their popularity remains to be on the steady rise. Their daily energy requirements only call for daily walks, and are considered low-maintenance. Their furs rarely shed, so you do not have to constantly worry about cleaning out dog hair.
The American Kennel Club claims that English Bulldogs are known for being protective of their humans, along with their qualities of being calmness and bravery. They do not require much exercise apart from regular walks and well-deserved play dates, making them the best dogs for your apartment.
Greyhounds are actually considered mellow house dogs, and is a European breed adored by dog lovers around the world. Their tall and lanky build may seem intimidating, but they do not require much exercise. Regular sprints in the park are enough to expend their energy, plus they are clever and easy to train. They have a solitary nature, however, so they best function as sole pets.
French Bulldogs, also known as “Frenchies”, are an overall friendly and jolly breed. They make for the best apartment dogs, as they don not bark as much and require less exercise. Their playful dispositions help them get along well with strangers and they enjoy playing with children. These furry friends don’t fare well with extreme temperatures, however, especially the heat. If you wish to take one home with you, ensure that you have air-conditioning to help it cope.
Great Danes may come a bit of a surprise, but these giants are so gentle that they would make amazing pets for your tiny space! These dogs are patient and friendly, belying their imposing physical attributes of lean muscles and stature. They require minimal exercise, and are very much content to spend their day on the couch. Great Danes make for perfect Netflix series binge companions, so this might be the perfect match for you!
The Dachshund was originally bred in Germany for hunting, but more than 300 years later, these little dogs are now the top choice for smaller homes. Energetic and intelligent though, they can easily get bored. If you need to leave them on their own for long periods of time, especially if you are concentrating on a research paper, ensure that there is plenty of them to sniff around and explore.
The Cavalier King Charles Spaniel is a sensitive breed, mostly known for their good manners. They adore being around people, and are affectionate with humans and other animals. Their faces are hard to resist, which is a bonus if you wish to keep one in your apartment. They are a legitimate toy dog breed, the mere sight of them is enough to induce joy. They have minimal shedding and only require a weekly brush-down. Like with all dogs, daily exercise is needed, so prepare for a ton of play dates.
Torn between choosing a cat or dog as a pet? Perhaps the Basenji is the answer to your prayers! The Basenji is a hound dog native to Africa, and have cat-like tendencies. They are well capable of grooming themselves, and they are fiercely loyal and protective – they do not bark, though, they yodel! They are naturally curious, so they may have urges to escape, but as long as they feel secure in your home, you will be fine. Daily exercise is needed to avoid boredom and helps keep their exploratory instincts balanced.
Now you know
As you choose the perfect breed for you, remember that your dog will be more than just a pet – it will become your best friend. More than taking into consideration what will be best for you and your apartment life, you have to consider how they are going to be living in your space. They can get lonely, too, so ensure that they will be able to get plenty of attention and belly rubs for being good boys and girls.
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