Apartment Dogs

  • Posted by a hidden member.
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    Dec 04, 2008 9:08 PM GMT
    Hey guys....

    I'm sure many of you live in apartments.... and many of you also have dogs. Was wondering what your experiences are in regard to having a dog in an apartment.... especially those of you with bigger dogs.... labs, etc.

    Is there any major issue or are your pets fine, as long as they get the proper amount of exercise/ a long walk?

    I ask because I am thinking of adopting a puppy and I'm thinking of getting a bigger dog that what I have always had (Dachshunds and Bichons).... but now I am living in the city, in a 850 sq ft apartment...whereas before I lived in the burbs with lots of room to run around....

    Thanks!!
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    Dec 04, 2008 9:13 PM GMT
    All I know is once I mention the size of my apartment (one bed/kitchen/livingroom) and the type of dog I want to adopt (a lab or something just as big) the shelters won't let me adopt em. I recommend going for a smaller dog unless you can fully meet the dog's need to be active and prosper psychologically.
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    Dec 04, 2008 9:19 PM GMT
    Trouble is that smaller dogs tend to be very yappy and that's not so good for your neighbors. (Though there are things you can do about the yappiness, some of which really do work.)

    It varies, but I think bigger dogs are often better apartment dogs. Many of them are calmer. Little dogs are often very hyper.
  • Nudista

    Posts: 158

    Dec 04, 2008 9:50 PM GMT
    Check out my profile, I have two dogs: A small Schipperke and a huge Black Lab and I live in a Condo...not the roomiest either. I've had the small one for 10 yrs and the lab for 1yr.

    Its a little cramped at times....ironically my Shipperke is the one who causes more commotion with his barking etc. The lab is very quiet. I do take them for their daily run and play outside. I think if you do this you should be just fine with a calm breed such as a lab or similar.
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    Dec 04, 2008 10:01 PM GMT
    I had a Great Dane for 6 years, most of her life in a 975sqft apt about 8 years ago. Her companion was a small Shih Tzu/Basenji mix, barkless due to the Basenji blood, and we got along well all that time. I made sure that she walk 2x's a day at least 30 minutes each and every third day I took her to the park/beach for a 1-2 hour run. So long as you fulfill the exercise need. I lived in a 4 story walk up and on the 2nd floor. There were times when the urge to poop won over and she went in the stair well. I always carried a supply of plastic bags and an emergency on folded nice and tight in my wallet. Still do to this day. Make sure that your neighbors know and that at least one of them has semi-constant contact with your little one should you have to call some one in case of emergency when you can't get home for what ever reason to let the dogs out etc. Contingency plans are the best friends too.

    I now have two English Cocker spaniels. They are great for apt living as well given that you do the same for the excercising requirement. They are not as noisey as the Jack Russells next door nor are they yappy rug rat ish. Fairly mellow and easy to p/up in times when you have to.
    Good luck on the search for the dog right for you. let us know what you decide on. Again good luck!!!!!!
  • EricLA

    Posts: 3461

    Dec 04, 2008 10:15 PM GMT
    I know you asked about big dogs, but I have a Jack Russell, which I've always described as a "big dog in a little dog package." She's feisty, playful, energetic. She loves to play ball. But, she's easy to clean up after, doesn't take up a lot of space, VERY easy to travel with (she flies in the cabin with me).

    Of course, living in NYC, I was amazed at the people who owned big dogs -- and I mean BIG dogs. I'm sure many of them lived in places smaller than 850 sq. ft., and they still managed. The one good thing is with hardwood floors, it's easy to sweep up all that dog fur.

    UPDATE: per GQ's post below, yes, terriers can be barkers, but it really depends on the dog. My dog barks maybe once a month. It always surprises me when she does bark, because it's rare. Whining is a different story. But I'll take that trade.

  • Dec 04, 2008 10:49 PM GMT
    i had a rotty in a two room apt and a one room with loft (with ladder access) apt, and she was quite happy with both living arrangements.
  • Posted by a hidden member.
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    Dec 04, 2008 10:57 PM GMT
    ZbmwM5 saidHey guys....

    I'm sure many of you live in apartments.... and many of you also have dogs. Was wondering what your experiences are in regard to having a dog in an apartment.... especially those of you with bigger dogs.... labs, etc.

    Is there any major issue or are your pets fine, as long as they get the proper amount of exercise/ a long walk?

    I ask because I am thinking of adopting a puppy and I'm thinking of getting a bigger dog that what I have always had (Dachshunds and Bichons).... but now I am living in the city, in a 850 sq ft apartment...whereas before I lived in the burbs with lots of room to run around....

    Thanks!!


    Dogs good for apartment life

    http://www.dogbreedinfo.com/apartment.htm

  • GQjock

    Posts: 11649

    Dec 04, 2008 11:00 PM GMT
    I love dogs and haven't had one for a few years because I'm rarely home
    but thankfully things have changed and I have more reg hours and will be picking one up pretty soon

    But you have to really think this through before you bring a dog into an apartment esp one with not so much room
    most of the larger breeds like labs and german shepherds need to be run and exercised or they are gonna get nutsy on you and do things like biting their tails
    or worse make a mess of the apt
    I knew this guy who had a really nice Brooklyn apt in NY
    and this was when everybody was getting golden retrievers ...
    he brought one home and this dog went bananas ... you couldn't be around the poor dog without being jumped on mauled
    and the guy was doing nothing but fighting with the dog and apologizing for it's bad behavior

    Apartment dogs need to be smaller
    apartment dogs need to be less yappy ... think of your neighbors please
    Toy dogs are good ... Shih tzus Pugs
    Terriers tend to be barkers
    dachshunds are great little dogs but their back problems are a heartach later on
    talk toy some people who have the dogs you like get the real story
    and check online there's loads of info out there
  • Posted by a hidden member.
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    Dec 04, 2008 11:18 PM GMT
    I can't imagine keeping a dog in town... much less in an apartment.

    But under no circumstances should anyone with less than five acres have a border collie. They need room to run and they need a job to do. Left alone all day, they'll go nuts.
  • Posted by a hidden member.
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    Dec 04, 2008 11:48 PM GMT
    I have two Toy Fox Terriers and you would think that they would make great apartment dogs - except they bark at everything (it's the breed). I agree with several of the posters - make sure you get a breed that doesn't a bark!
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    Dec 05, 2008 12:27 AM GMT
    As an animal trainer, one of the services I offer to private clients is advice on choosing a suitable breed of dog and then hunting down a good rescue or puppy.

    Bear in mind that there is no reliable link between a breed's size and its suitability (or lack of suitability) for apartment living. Some small dogs (e.g. several breeds of terriers are too high energy for small spaces and some of the less active terriers bark too much and too loudly). On the other hand, I know of people who keep Newfoundlands very happily in 800 square foot apartments with a couple of walks a day.

    Good small breeds that come to mind right away would be Boston Terriers, Pugs, King Charles Spaniels (just choose a great breeder as they can have awful health issues), and miniature or toy poodles.

    One large dog choice that does not occur to many people, but works out really well in apartments is greyhounds. They love to lounge around all day; require only two short walks a day and bond beautifully with people. They are also usually easy to find from rescue organizations that take them from race tracks. I have worked with many and fallen in love with every one of them.

    Feel free to email me if you would like any more ideas.

    Good luck.

    David
  • EricLA

    Posts: 3461

    Dec 05, 2008 12:36 AM GMT
    David,

    Good suggestion on Greyhounds. There's one in my neighborhood that isn't very socialized, so barks at all the other dogs as it's walked. But there were a couple I knew in NYC that were great with people and dogs. One in particular was very sweet and loved attention, but was so low key.
  • Posted by a hidden member.
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    Dec 05, 2008 1:37 AM GMT
    A friend breeds Miniature Long-hair Daschunds - they are so cute!

    http://www.porthkennels.com/pups.html
  • Posted by a hidden member.
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    Dec 05, 2008 1:53 AM GMT
    well being someone that has worked with dogs a very long time I can tell you that labs are not the type to live in an apartment. Unless your lab has a personality that's of a fat lazy pig, good luck.


    There are big dogs that are calmer, newfies are very independant and can be apartment dogs as well as saint bernards. Bulldogs which are my favorite are the perfect apartment dog.
  • luvs2travel

    Posts: 94

    Dec 05, 2008 2:14 AM GMT
    I have a 20 lb. cocker Spaniel/Dachsund rescue mutt and he's the perfect apartment dog. Very quiet and relaxed, but he is also 11 years old.

    Look into Greyhounds! They are obviously big dogs and fast, but require very little exercise and sleep 18 hours a day. Dogs resuced from racetracks are used to being caged for long periods and generally require little more than a blanket and some affection. Plus they need to be adopted or they are executed.

    Labs are hard to control in large homes with yards. My neighbor has a golden retriever who makes everyone crazy b/c he doesn't get outside enough.
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    Dec 05, 2008 5:11 AM GMT
    Go for a smaller breed of hound. I have a Beagle. He's perfect for an 8 hour a day job in an apartment. Any smaller and they would piss all over, any bigger and they would probably not be taken care of well. You should look in the 18 to 28 pound range. I too want a larger dog when I decide to get another one day, but I've lived with a boyfriend that had a large and somewhat older dog in a condo. She had to have a walker and I also was there to walk her when the ex wasn't home - it wasn't enough. Her coat was weakening and large areas of hair were coming out, her bones were weakening and would disjoint easily, and she would have double the bowel movements as the average dog in her age group and breed. While they can become sedentary over time, it really hurts their bodies - i.e. coat insufficiency, organ failure, and limited muscle protecting their already tender bones.

    It's just not fair to make them wait for activity and large dogs need more than a long walk, they need a number of long walks and plenty of exercise. It's really best to have a large dog if you have someone to be attentive, a family attending to it, or if you have a large backyard. Smaller hounds are very similar in loyalty and play as larger dog breeds, so you should consider that until you have a private yard, funds for a dog walker, or a partner and/or kids that will be able to keep the dog active at various points in the day.
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    Dec 05, 2008 6:02 AM GMT
    My place is just under 1100 square feet -- I went with a medium sized dog... she's a pitbull. Got her at eight weeks about 10 1/2 years ago and she fits very nicely in the place.

    I have friends in similar places that ha.ve bigger breeds and they seem to do fine -- the key is making sure the dog gets out and gets exercise during the day. I have a dog walker who takes mine out once a day, five days a week. She gets out for about 40 minutes with a couple of pals and gets her mid-day exercise which is important. The cost is very reasonable and worth the expense (for the dog's sake and mine)...
  • Hunter9

    Posts: 1039

    Dec 05, 2008 6:32 AM GMT
    i live in a small to medium sized STUDIO. is there any dog i could realistically have that would be fair to the dog (and not make a mess out of my place)?
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    Dec 05, 2008 6:37 AM GMT
    I use to have a Pug called Zoya, she was the perfect house dog. They love to go out for walks... well she didn't after the age of five... I use to have to carry her after a block.. but they don't need a lot of room.
  • Posted by a hidden member.
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    Dec 05, 2008 7:28 AM GMT
    I have a keeshond that is slightly overweight. I mean he looks intimidating to neighbors. The condo complex seems to be alright with him but there have been occassions where over-sensitive neighbors freaked out because my dog was coming down the stairs with me. He kinda gets scarred and protective living in a new building with several tenants for the first time (always lived in a big house before with lots of parks).

    The important thing to keep in mind is that you have to be in close proximity to a park, bike path, or somewhere where your dog can be happy and run around.

    Id suggest at least 30-40 minute walks each day. 850 sq ft should be fine as long as you don't mind taking your dog out 2-3 times a day to go to do its business and become socialised. a patio or deck is preferred as well.

    my condo is roughly 1100 sq ft, but my dog only goes in the kitchen living room and my bedroom.
  • CuriousJockAZ

    Posts: 19136

    Dec 05, 2008 7:31 AM GMT
    Just my opinion, but I've had many dogs and I can't imagine having a dog in an apartment. It's not fair to the dog (especially a big one) and it can start to smell up the place once the dander starts getting into places you don't necessarily see or clean regularly. My advice would be to wait until you have the kind of place conducive for a dog, unless you can settle for a small dog that can work in an apartment. Still, it's a lot more responsibility than people realize when owning a dog. It can cramp your lifestyle in an apartment far greater than it would in a condo or house where a yard and, preferrably, a doggy door is available for the dog,
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    Dec 05, 2008 7:37 AM GMT
    When I'm in NY or SF, I get a kick out of seeing the prof. dog walkers with a whole group of dogs - all sizes and kinds.........stopping at each co-op building and having the doormen hand over another dog to add to the group! The dogs always seem so happy - as if they're all friends - and are headed to a park. I guess apartment dogs in cities get walked a couple of times a day by their owners or dog walkers, so they're getting fresh air and playing with other dogs. The dogs I see look happy, well groomed, loved and exercised!
  • MikemikeMike

    Posts: 6932

    Dec 05, 2008 7:45 AM GMT
    Get a retired Greyhound- they do great in apartments and sleep most of the day. They require alot less exercise than you might think. They can get along with cats but usually don't. this would be a great dog, especially if you want a larger dog and they are not yappy. They are like a cat's personality, in an apartment Check it out. They do require good walks and an occational run, but they are loving gentle dogs.

    I have a Neapolitan Mastiff too big for an apartment they need a big house and big yard!! He's 125 pounds. Great watch dog. Very loyal, and I love him.
  • vindog

    Posts: 1440

    Dec 05, 2008 8:17 AM GMT
    If you are good about walks and dog parks (like daily), I think any dog could be ok.