(Closed) Dogs in Apartments

posted 10 years ago in Pets
Post # 3
5262 posts
Bee Keeper
  • Wedding: June 2012

We’re going through the same thing right now. We’re looking at rescue dogs that are a little older, and asking about the individual dog’s energy level, etc. We want a dog that will have the energy to run with us, etc, but won’t hate being in a 1 bedroom apartment. 

Don’t write off bigger breeds, a lot of them are actually calmer! 

ETA: This is the thread, there was some great advice you might find helpful.

Dog In the City?

Post # 4
5822 posts
Bee Keeper

I second lilyfaith’s idea.  Asking the shelter about the dogs will give you a much better insight.  Viszlas are a notoriously hyperactive breed, but we had a Viszla that was calmer than Buddha (so we named him Buddha).  Every dog has tendencies in the breed, but yet that dog can be different.  I would just visit the shelter to see what they have and ask if they have any medium sized, calmer dogs.  Explain your situation, I’m sure they’ll be able to direct you to some great candidates!

If you’re looking to purchase a dog, I would advise against pet shop dogs.  Even dogs sold from classified ads are usually puppy mill dogs.  They’re not great for apartment living no matter what breed because they are always taken away from the mother too early, are undersocialized, and have destructive tendencies.

Post # 5
2468 posts
Buzzing bee
  • Wedding: August 2010

agree with the other posters that individual dogs are different, but if you’re asking about particular breeds…we have a sheltie in an apartment. he’s really small–14 lbs, which is on the smaller size for the breed. he has a lot of energy, but with enough walks and play time with us and other neighborhood dogs, he’s been a great dog for us and has done really, really well! he’s still kind of a puppy–just about 2–so he’ll calm down more as he gets older. he barks when he hears someone in the hall, but none of our neighbors have ever complained.

Post # 6
1110 posts
Bumble bee
  • Wedding: March 2009

My husband and I have a pretty high energy puppy in a 750 square foot apartment. We make sure to walk her every day, spend about 10-15 minutes training her with a clicker (sit, down, watch for now) & just correct her at all times when she gets into wires and other things which hasnt been much of a problem.


We sort of adopted her on impulse and didnt think to look for a low energy dog. If I were to do this again we def would look for all of that however we have to work with what we chose & it hasnt been much of a problem yet. She even stays home alone a lot & has been pretty good about it!


Having a dog in an apartment is def. do-able!

Post # 7
2612 posts
Sugar bee
  • Wedding: December 2009

I did a google search once for good apartment dogs and came up with great danes, which was fabulous because I’ve always wanted one!  They have the perfect personality to live in a small area even though they are massive dogs.  They are really sweet and gentle and not too hyper.  They tend to be a lazy type of dog, hence the reason they do well in an apartment.  A dane is my dream dog, but I don’t plan on getting one until I have a house. 

Post # 8
440 posts
Helper bee
  • Wedding: September 2011

If it were me I would stay away from most of your wire hair terrier breeds (Fox Terriers, Cairn Terriers, etc) because while in the medium range they are notorious for being hyperexcitable.

Stay away from labs/goldens/etc – these guys need more room to run!

A few of the giant breeds do really well in apartments with regular exercise but you need to be super careful with their nutrition. In an apartment they will not be exercising a ton so their muscles will not develop as quickly as their skeletal conformation and because they are on a high plane of nutrition they will gain weight easily which is a HUGE cause for hip dysplasia, cruciate ruptures etc.

Post # 9
4765 posts
Honey bee
  • Wedding: January 2011 - Vintage Villas

My fiance and I have two dogs in our apartment – one is a cocker spaniel/chihuahua mix. He’s smaller, about 15 pounds and is SUPER hyper and barks more than we’d like. However, our neighbors have never complained.

We also have a german shepherd/lab puppy and he’s doing very well in such a small apartment. He is, however, a puppy and by the time he gets bigger we’ll be moving into a duplex with a backyard (we’ll move when he’s about 7 months old). I think a lot of it depends on how you raise the dog – we have found that even if you get a dog that is “more likely” to be hyper and yappy, they will adapt to the environment they’re in and adapt to how you and your fiance live your life. 

Post # 10
271 posts
Helper bee

I have a condo that’s about 600 sq feet. I have a tweenie dachshund (~17lbs).  It’s actually one of the most popular breeds in cities because of its size.  He does great.  He only barks if he hears someone on the hall.  I should tell you that some are “yappy” so I was hyper-vigilant when he was a pup to control his barking.  Sometimes all it takes is a little effort.

Dachshunds come in mini up to 10lbs, tweenie 11-17 lbs, and standard 17lbs+.  They come in a variety of colors and coat types.  Check them out!  There’s gotta be one ya like!

And because it’s required, here’s a pic Tongue out

Post # 11
67 posts
Worker bee
  • Wedding: April 2010

Your ebst bet is to go to a shelter and ask the folks that work there for assitance.  Explain your lifestyle and your expectations for the dog, and they will definitely be able to guide you to one who suits your needs!  A slightly older dog (over a year or so) would be a good choice as well.  When people get puppies they tend to look for specific breed characteristics, because the best you can do with a young, unknown dog is to generalize about what most dogs of that type are like.  With an adult dog, you know what you’re getting, even if the personality doesn’t match what you expect for the breed!  You can get a slow Jack Russell or a super hyper Lhasa Apso, but if the dog has time to grow up, you’ll know it before you choose!

Good luck!

Post # 12
159 posts
Blushing bee
  • Wedding: May 2012

I know this is going to sound a bit backwards, but I find big dogs are more suitable for apartment living.

I live in 700 sq feet with two big dogs (J, 10 years, is 120 lbs and T, 3 years, is 75).  I wouldn’t have it any other way, they are very relaxed and clam and oddly enough, don’t take up a lot of room.  I raised them both from 8 week old pups so they know the rules and are simply great dogs.  When we go to the dog park or on walks, they are full of energy–they simply know the difference between home time and play time.

I agree with checking at the shelter, if you aren’t dying for a puppy, dogs in the 1-3 year range have enough puppy in them that they want to play and rough house, but don’t care if it never happens…

Good Luck!

Post # 14
1392 posts
Bumble bee
  • Wedding: September 2010 - Heron Hill Winery

we’ve got two pups in our apartment….a 60lb olde english bulldogg and a 6 lb minpin…they are doing fine with apartment life, but we do make sure to take them out as often as we can either on hikes or to the dog park.  Our little girl does bark sometimes, but we’ve never had any complaints (it’s usually just when a car pulls in the driveway or the neighbors are making a lot of noise)

I need to share my babies’ faces too, so here’s a gratuitous puppy shot:

Post # 15
2006 posts
Buzzing bee

I have a 75+ pound lab/chow mix living in a 2400 sq. ft. townhouse with no yard (just a small patio). The actual house is big, but having no yard tends to be a no-no for big dogs. When he was ~10 months (I adopted him at 8 mo) we moved into an 850 sq. ft. condo with a small yard. It was miserable because he was still a puppy and needed so much room to run. I was a student living with only one roomie and thus he was home alone a lot, meaning he got bored. When I had time to take him out it became difficult because I was living in AZ and it was too hot to take him out during the day, and not safe at night.

I moved back home when he was a little over a year (back to townhouse) and things were so much better. He was a little older and got a lot more attention, and even though there was no yard for him he got more exercise. We never had a problem now because he is 2.5 years old and sleeps most of the day. He goes to the dog park once a day and has a 30 minute walk at night. AND HE SLEEPS MOST OF THE DAY!!

My best advice is to get a slightly older, larger dog (the shelter lied about his real age). Larger dogs over 2 years tend to be really calm and sleep most of the day. I knew I could never own a small dog, so even living in a small space wasn’t going to stop me from having my large dog.

Post # 16
651 posts
Busy bee
  • Wedding: May 2012

I have a chihuahua/min pin mix in my 630 sq. foot apartment.  She’s the perfect size for my place and has room to run around and we can play fetch in the apartment.  Typically chihuahuas and min pins do bark alot (as do lots of the smaller breeds) but my particular dog never barks! 

I would say to go to a local shelter and get to know some of the dogs.  You will be able to tell when you are there what would be a good fit.  I knew my dog was the right dog because she came right up to the front of the cage and was excited to see me, but she didn’t bark when I came to her cage.  You can also ask questions about the dog and if they think it would be a good fit for your lifestyle.

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