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15 Best Dogs for Apartment Life

pet owner with her chihuahua at home

While most pet lovers love dogs of all breeds, looks, and sizes, sometimes it’s just not possible to have a certain breed of dog in a small living space. If you live in an apartment that allows pets and want a dog, you should first know which breeds thrive in apartment living. Not every dog is going to be suitable or happy for living in the small space most apartments give you.

We’ll give you our top picks for the 15 best dogs for apartment life in this list. We’re sure you can find the right breed for you and be a happy pet parent for many years to come.

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Top 15 Best Dogs for Apartment Living:

1. Bulldog

female bulldog lying on grass
Image Credit: Piqsels
Height 14 to 16 inches
Weight 40 to 50 pounds
Life Expectancy 8 to 10 years

This breed is a medium-sized bulldog that has a moderate level of energy. He can live in any size house or apartment, and while exercise is necessary for him to be healthy, he can only stand a little activity. Full of personality, this is a dog that will have no problem laying on the couch and watching TV with its owner. However, bulldogs are prone to health problems, so make sure to keep an eye on your canine pal.

Pros
  • Full of personality
  • Can live in any size house or apartment
Cons
  • Prone to health problems

2. Chihuahua

chihuahua dog
Image Credit: HG-Fotografie, Pixabay
Height 5 to 8 inches
Weight Up to 6 pounds
Life Expectancy 12 to 20 years

Anyone who has ever owned a Chihuahua can tell you that they are highly intelligent dogs. These are tiny dogs with a whole lot of personality packed into their tiny bodies. They are easy to transport, which is why celebrities love them, and they’ve gotten the nickname purse dogs. Chihuahuas love to cuddle, but it’s essential to note that they don’t do well in colder climates. Living in an apartment is fine for this breed, as long as they can be walked every day.

Pros
  • Intelligent
  • Loves to cuddle
  • Easy to transport
Cons
  • Doesn’t do well in the cold

3. Maltese

maltichon- bichon frise maltese
Image Credit: lunamarina, Shutterstock
Height 7 to 9 inches
Weight Up to 7 pounds
Life Expectancy 12 to 15 years

The Maltese is an extremely affectionate breed that makes a great lap dog. They only need to be walked daily and given some interactive playtime to be happy. This dog sheds very little, but they do require constant grooming, so keep that in mind. This breed doesn’t do well in cold weather and can be stubborn and defensive at times, so it needs to be socialized and trained early in life so it can be the sweet, loving animal they’re meant to be.

Pros
  • Extremely affectionate
  • Makes a good lap dog
  • Sheds very little
Cons
  • Doesn’t tolerate cold weather
  • Requires constant grooming
  • Stubborn/Defensive

4. Shih Tzu

shih tzu puppy dog eyes
Image Credit: Angel Sallade, Shutterstock
Height 9 to 11 inches
Weight 9 to 16 pounds
Life Expectancy 10 to 16 years

The Shih Tzu is a loyal, affectionate pet that does great with children, making it an excellent choice for a family pet. While this breed does develop very close bonds with their families, they will also be fine when left alone for a while if you have to work or go somewhere. The Shih Tzu makes an excellent lap dog. However, be warned that they can be extremely hard to housebreak, so make sure you start their training as a puppy. In addition, some of the Shih Tzu breed has breathing issues, so make sure to keep an eye on your pet.

Pros
  • Loyal/Affectionate
  • Does great with children
  • Makes an excellent lap dog
Cons
  • Hard to housebreak
  • Some have breathing issues

 


5. Boston Terrier

Boston terrier
Image Credit: Eve Photography, Shutterstock
Height 15 to 17 inches
Weight 15 to 25 pounds
Life Expectancy 12 to 14 years

Not only are Boston Terriers super adorable, but they also don’t have very high exercise requirements, and they require very little grooming. This is a great dog for someone who’s never owned a dog before since he’s easy to get along with and good with other pets and children. However, this breed does easily become obese, so keep an eye on how much you feed them. They can be a little hard to train and tend to suffer from separation anxiety. Apartment and city living is perfectly fine for this perky breed as well.

Pros
  • A great dog for beginners
  • Good with children and other pets
  • Requires little grooming
Cons
  • Can easily become obese
  • It can be hard to train

6. Poodle

poodle puppy standing
Image Credit: -Andretti, Pixabay
Height Over 15 inches for standard,
Weight 40 to 70 pounds for standard
Life Expectancy 10 to 18 years

Poodles, no matter the size, do great living in an apartment. Most of this breed is great with children, and they do have a long lifespan of between 10 to 18 years. Poodles are also hypoallergenic, which means they could be okay to have around people that have certain allergies. However, poodles do tend to develop bad habits easily, so they need to be socialized and trained as puppies. They also need to be groomed regularly to keep their fur from matting and becoming full of knots.

Pros
  • Great with children
  • Has a long lifespan
  • Hypoallergenic
Cons
  • Develops bad habits easily
  • Requires constant grooming

7. Greyhound

greyhound standing on sand
Image Credit: David Mark, Pixabay
Height 27 to 30 inches
Weight 60 to 70 pounds
Life Expectancy 10 to 13 years

 

For most people, when they think of the Greyhound breed, they think of racetracks. While that’s true, these dogs make great pets as well. In reality, these dogs are couch potatoes of the highest form, so while they enjoy running, they don’t need much more than a daily walk to be happy and healthy. They don’t require a whole lot of grooming and are quite docile creatures as well. It is essential to note that Greyhounds are fast runners, so keep a tight grip on their leash during walks. This breed isn’t bred to be a watchdog, so if that’s what you’re after, this isn’t the right choice for your needs.

Pros
  • Doesn’t require a lot of grooming
  • Docile
  • Doesn’t need a lot of exercise
Cons
  • Fast runners
  • Do not make good watchdogs

8. Basset Hound

Female Basset Hound
Image Credit: Ewa Studio, Shutterstock
Height Up to 15 inches
Weight 40 to 65 pounds
Life Expectancy 12 to 13 years

The Basset Hound is an absolutely adorable pet. This breed is mild-tempered, great with family, and loyal and devoted to its family. Most Basset Hounds like to take a daily walk but are happy just being laid-back pets as well. They do tend to be much less active as they age also. The breed can be quite stubborn and hard to train, so socialize and train your pup as a puppy for the best results.

Pros
  • Mild tempered
  • Great for families
  • Loyal/Devoted
Cons
  • Can be stubborn and hard to train

9. Cavalier King Charles Spaniel

female cavalier charles king spaniel
Image Credit: BJkenel, Shutterstock
Height 12 to 13 inches
Weight 13 to 18 pounds
Life Expectancy 12 to 14 years

 

The Cavalier King Charles Spaniel breed is a very friendly breed of dogs. They are usually upbeat, happy, and eager to please their families. This breed is also easy to train and is happy to just curl up on the couch with her family for companionship. However, it is best to watch what you feed this breed, as they are prone to obesity. A daily walk and some games with you are perfectly fine for exercise with this perky little dog as well.

Pros
  • Very friendly
  • Eager to please
  • Easy to train
Cons
  • Prone to obesity

10. Havanese

havanese on grass
Image Credit: Sandra Huber, Shutterstock
Height 8.5 to 11.5 inches
Weight 7 to 13 pounds
Life Expectancy 14 to 16 years

 

If you’re looking for a dog that doesn’t shed a whole lot, then the cheerful Havanese breed is what you’re looking for. This breed is happy in a small apartment or a huge house, and though they do need to be walked daily, they’re happy indoors laying on the couch as well. This breed gets along well with children and other dogs but does suffer from separation anxiety if left too long by the family it has bonded with.

Pros
  • Low shedder
  • Cheerful
  • Gets on well with children and other dogs
Cons
  • Suffers from separation anxiety

11. Pug

pug in a harness
Image Credit: maniablack18, Pixabay
Height 10 to 13 inches
Weight 14 to 18 pounds
Life Expectancy 13 to 15 years

 

A Pug is a joy to have around. These little dogs are great for apartment life, rare bark, and do really well with children. This breed is fun, adorable, and small, yet really sturdy as well. Content to just stay at home and cuddle with the family they love, this little dog has a big personality in a compact body. Pugs do tend to snort, and you’ll need to give extra attention to the folds in his face when you’re giving him a bath. Make sure not to work your Pug too hard as this breed does tend to overheat easily.

Pros
  • Rarely barks
  • Family-friendly/Good with children
  • Sturdy, yet small
Cons
  • Snorts
  • Needs extra cleaning in the folds of his face
  • Overheats easily

12. French Bulldog

French Bulldog
Image Credit: Christel SAGNIEZ, Pixabay
Height 11 to 13 inches
Weight 19 to 28 pounds
Life Expectancy 10 to 12 years

The French Bulldog is a great family pet, loving to a fault, and doesn’t bark very often. It’s a well-loved breed in America but loved even more in France. All it takes is a brisk walk once a day to keep this breed healthy and happy. However, be careful when taking this dog out in the heat, as they tend to overheat very easily. Also, while they can run, they aren’t capable of a whole lot of exercise and physical activity.

Pros
  • Great family pet
  • Doesn’t bark often
  • Loving
Cons
  • Overheats easily
  • Can run or exercise a lot

13. Italian Greyhound

Italian Greyhound
Image Credit: Alexandra Morrison Photo, Shutterstock
Height 13 to 15 inches
Weight 7 to 14 pounds
Life Expectancy 14 to 15 years

The Italian Greyhound is an adorable, affectionate mini version of the Greyhound that is also on our list. They weigh around 12 to 18 pounds instead of 60 and have the same characteristics as their larger counterparts. They are affectionate and great for families, but they tend to shed quite a bit and can be hard to train. Socialization and training early in their lives are key to this being a great family pet and loyal companion.

Pros
  • Affectionate
  • Great for families
Cons
  • Sheds a lot
  • It can be hard to train

14. Bichon Frise

bichon frise on thee grass
Image Credit: Ieva Tvaronavicute, Shutterstock
Height 10 to 12 inches
Weight 12 to 18 pounds
Life Expectancy 14 to 15 years

 

The Bichon Frise is a hypoallergenic breed, which means this dog is suitable for some people who suffer from allergies. They are adorable, loyal, and happy most of the time. This is an active breed who doesn’t bark very often. However, they do need constant grooming to keep their fur free of tangles and mats. You also need to make sure someone will be with your pet most of the time, as this breed suffers from separation anxiety if left alone.

Pros
  • Active
  • Hypoallergenic
  • Not an avid barker
Cons
  • Suffers from separation anxiety
  • Needs constant grooming

15. Chinese Crested

chinese-crested_Veronika Andrews_Pixabay
Image Credit: Veronika Andrews, Pixabay
Height 11 to 13 inches
Weight 8 to 12 pounds
Life Expectancy 13 to 18 years

The Chinese Crested breed is an athletic, easy-to-train dog with a unique look. This is an intelligent, alert breed that does require quite a bit of exercise to be healthy and happy. They aren’t suited for families with young children, so it’s best that they are around older children instead. This breed does require special grooming, so you might want to take your pet to a professional groomer to ensure he’s groomed properly.

Pros
  • Athletic
  • Easy to train/Intelligent
  • Unique look
Cons
  • Needs special grooming
  • Not for families with young children

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Final Thoughts

This concludes the list of our picks for the 15 best dogs suited for apartment life. However, it’s important to note that no matter what size your dog is, it is easy for them to get bored in a small space. Avoid this by making sure they are exercised regularly and have plenty of games and toys to keep them happy and healthy for the best results.


Featured Image Credit: zEdward_Indy, Shutterstock

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