(Closed) Best Dog for a Smallish Yard?

posted 6 years ago in Pets
Post # 3
8215 posts
Bumble Beekeeper
  • Wedding: August 2012

Do you have dog parks nearby? How much time are you willing to devote to walks? That’s really going to dictate the type of dog you should probably get, based on energy level. A tiny dog will probably be happy with a 20 minute walk, a border collie not so much lol. With proper exercise I think most dogs can live with any size yard.

Post # 4
921 posts
Busy bee

I would recommend a shih tzu.  Ours is 11 lbs, doesn’t yap, likes walks and going to the park but doesn’t HAVE to be walked all the time and she gets pooped out if we go too far.  LOL. Pretty low maintenance little doggie. πŸ™‚ 

Post # 5
984 posts
Busy bee
  • Wedding: April 2010

I agree with @Westwood:, we have two herding breeds (Australian cattle and corgi) and have a smallish yard and they do just fine. We keep them well exercised by going to the dog park, on long walks, playing ball in the back yard. On rainy days we try to do food puzzles and hide and seek so they are still stimulated. You really can have any type of dog in any situation it just depends on how much time/energy you have and your lifestyle.

Post # 6
11172 posts
Sugar Beekeeper

I have two Pomeranians and a little yard and they are happy and healthy as can be. Heck I even take them to work sometimes and they sleep all day in my cubicle (work photo below).

I think smaller dogs (15 pounds or less?) might be the best way to go. Be careful of high energy small dogs like terriers that require a great deal of room. My friend had a Jack Russel in an apartment and it was pretty crazy, she had to give him to her mom with a house and full size yard.

In the end any dog can really be accomodated by a small yard as long as you walk them. Proper excercise doesn’t necessarily mean you need a huge yard.

Post # 7
768 posts
Busy bee
  • Wedding: June 2012

we have a bichon. We got her when we lived in a small apartment with a weight limit of 25 pounds for a dog. I was living alone (FI traveled 3 weeks out of month) so I wanted some company.

Here are some pros (as I see them) to the breed:

1. She can live in a smaller space (but to be honest we walk almost 2 miles per day as a tired puppy = good puppy)

2. She doesn’t shed (bigggg perk to someone like Fiance who is allergic to everything)

3. When she is bad, you can pick her up

4. She can be carried anywhere (my FI’s father takes her everywhere, I wonder how he gets away with it but no one has said word one to him)

5. She loves being with people (she is always close to us and is very loving) and is always happy to see people

6. Average lifetime is quite high (i’ve seen anywhere between 13 and 20 years, but much longer than some dogs)



1. she’s little (for me this isn’t a con, but people make fun of her haha)

2. she loves people (like she gets really sad when we leave her)

3. she does have some health issues (as do all breeds, so look into this when you are looking – she has had both pancreatitis (spelling?) and bladder stones. Bladder stones are common for the breed and did require surgery.


Here she is πŸ™‚


If you have any questions about the breed, feel free to PM me. πŸ™‚

Post # 9
9483 posts
Buzzing Beekeeper
  • Wedding: October 2012


Post # 11
248 posts
Helper bee
  • Wedding: March 2013

Smaller dogs aren’t necessarily less active dogs. Some people are very particular about the size of their dog, though. If you aren’t set on a small dog, big dogs tend to be less active. I’ve only heard wonderful things about great danes being lazy and loving.

I have an Australian Shepherd – do not get a herding dog! She can’t stay inside for too long or she starts getting anxious. We have to keep her mind working constantly – however, I will say that she is so rewarding because she has such a personality. Watching her learn is really fascinating. 

I’m sorry, I have a dog obsession. haha! Lucky for me my fiance is in Vet School!

Do lots of research, but don’t cut out big dogs completely if your small yard is your only concern. I hope you find a perfect puppy!!!

Post # 12
1766 posts
Buzzing bee
  • Wedding: April 2011

I know this is counter-intuitive, and I was surprised to learn this, but Greyhounds are actually extremely lazy dogs and don’t need much walking. I know someone whose wife is on the board of a Greyhound rescue organization and they have one of their own. He said he has to drag the dog for a walk three times a week and after two blocks, the dog wants to go back. Apparently, when they don’t run, they don’t want to move much at all. Doggie is perfectly fine with the yard.

Dh’s aunt has a chihuahua-mix and this dog seems to be on acid most of the time. So I agree with @nolabee39: If you want a laid-back, not very active dog, don’t let size fool you.

Post # 13
349 posts
Helper bee
  • Wedding: June 2013

My Great Dane is the laziest animal on the planet…she likes to run around for 5, maybe 10 minutes a day. The rest of the time you can find her like so:

I will never ever have another type of dog. πŸ™‚

Post # 14
813 posts
Busy bee
  • Wedding: December 1969

I have a pomeranian! SHe is amaaazing! 4 pounds of fun! She is the sweetest thing. We don’t have a fenced in yard yet since we just built our house, so we just let her out for quick trips to the bathroom. Short walks and she is tired.. she is really quite easy and super fun!

Post # 15
607 posts
Busy bee
  • Wedding: October 2010

I agree with what others said that small dogs are often more active than big ones. That said, I also agree with the person who suggested a shitzhu– my sister has one and  she is pretty much content with whatever you offer– walk? backyard? snuggle? All great! She does yap though, and it took forever to get her fully house broken (that may have been my sis thought!)

I would also suggest looking into a rescue mutt– in my limited experience, mutts often have a nice blend of traits without the potential health risks that purebreds tend to carry (like, golden retrievers and the hip displasia, what the other poster said about the bichon genetic tendencies). I know the flip side is you never know what you will get (my mom’s “small cocker spaniel mix” is now 45+ pounds and possibly insane), but our dog is a dream– some mix of corgi, border collie, and pit bull, and he is the sweetest, most relaxed, chill dog you will ever meet. All he wants is his people nearby and a comfy bed (preferally ours). Don’t rule out rescues!

Post # 16
1137 posts
Bumble bee
  • Wedding: September 2011

@foodnerd81:  The mutts and less potentional health problems is a total myth. They are just as likely (if not even more likely) to have health problems as purebreds. My 2.5yr old mutt has racked up over 5k in expenses for his hip dysplasia already, whereas my purebred has no issues.

I’d consider your lifestyle as well. We have a tiny yard, but have a purebred lab and a mutt (looks like lab/chow). They are allowed to run around the house when we are home and we play fetch inside all the time. We also take them outside in the grass island to play fetch off leash and for walks. I’m a big dog person though, and could never see myself with a lap dog.

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