Balancing the perks of living in an apartment with the responsibilities of dog ownership can be tricky. There are many factors to consider when choosing to have a dog in an apartment or even a small house. Keep reading to see our tips for apartment living with dogs.
1. Check with your landlord.
Some landlords are carefree and don’t mind if you have dogs of any breed or size, but some are more picky. Find out what the landlord is okay with BEFORE you get the dog, or, if you already have the dog, before you sign the lease. This will ensure that your dog can go with you and is less likely be surrendered.
Tip: If your landlord is anti-Pit Bull or Rottweiler, anti-any dogs over 40 lbs, etc…make a pet resume! Be sure to include information about your pet and its history. Make the landlord feel like he can trust your dog. Add a cute photo. A pet resume may be the thing that persuades the landlord to decide in your favor.
This is a resume example for Sienna, one of The Humane Society of Southern Arizona (HSSA)’s adoptable dogs. Click here to learn more about Sienna.
2. Be sure that your apartment has access to outside space.
This doesn’t have to mean that you have your own, private yard. But it does mean that you’ll need an outside area within walking distance of your apartment, preferably fenced in, where your dog can play freely! Will you be able to walk your dog multiple times a day? Make sure to take into consideration whether you have the time and energy to commit to taking your pets outside multiple times a day.
3. If you live in an upstairs apartment, be aware of balconies.
Dogs can be clumsy and not understand when they are in danger. Make sure you always supervise pets on balconies and add barriers to protect your pets from injury. While you’re at it, secure all windows as well.
4. Dogs that live in apartments will need exercise and mental stimulation to keep them from being destructive.
If you are considering moving your dog into an apartment, plan to spend more time on your dog’s mental and physical health by scheduling walks, runs, dogs park dates, and play time with other dogs. You can do behavioral and obedience training with your dog as well to increase mental stimulation.
5. If you don’t already have a dog, consider breeds that do well with apartment living.
You can’t judge a dog on its breed alone, but you can take it into consideration when choosing your companion. You won’t want a breed that needs a ton of exercise or a breed that is known for barking excessively, unless you don’t like your neighbors (just kidding!). Our suggestions for top apartment breeds are Bulldogs, Shih Tzus, Great Danes, Chihuahuas, Bichon Frise, and Yorkshire Terriers.
I hope these tips are helpful for people looking to downsize with their doggies! Do you have ideas or tips for apartment living with dogs? Share your insight in the comments below!