Best Pets and Dog Breeds for Apartment Living

Best Pets and Dog Breeds for Apartment Living
Francisco María García

Written and verified by the lawyer Francisco María García.

Last update: 27 December, 2022

Not all animals are great if you live in an apartment. They may make messes, violate your building rules, or start acting out because of the tight space. There are ideal dog breeds for apartment living, and there are others that you should simply never try to adapt to such a space.

The serious issue here is that a lot of people ignore this reality. They make the mistake of adopting an animal solely because they like it, not ever thinking about the animal’s and the community’s welfare.

That’s why we took the time to compile this list of the best dog breeds for apartment living, as well as those that are not so ideal for it.

Dog Breeds that Should Not Live in Apartments

In theory, man’s best friend is quite adaptable. However, there are certain dogs that are not compatible with reduced, controlled spaces due to their particular dynamics, size and behavior.

Large dogs tend to be a bit rougher and need larger living spaces. Additionally, a large dog’s behavior is mostly geared towards protection, territoriality and displays of dominance.

Therefore, dogs that are very large and not necessarily the best option for cohabitating with other dogs (depending on how they get along), for small children, or for having around neighbors in closed and crowded environments. Some countries have specific restrictions on certain dog breeds, and many owners end up using muzzles on their pets, which are very uncomfortable for dogs.


Yorkshire Terriers, Malteses and Other Dog Breeds for Apartment Living

Fortunately, there are quite a few dog breeds that adapt perfectly to the dynamics of apartment living. One breed that stands out in this category is the Miniature Pinscher—a rather active yet controllable dog that needs to live in manageable spaces.

Bulldog ingles sentado

The other best dog breeds for apartment living are the Maltese, the Yorkshire Terrier, the Poodle, the Pug and the Shih Tzu. All of these dog breeds have very docile personalities, aren’t particularly possessive, and get along great with children. One of the most important aspects of these dogs is that they all have shorter legs.

Even an English Bulldog can work quite well, because they take slow, small and heavy steps. A similar thing is true for Dachshunds. All of these breeds are ideal for people living in apartments.


Cats: The Ideal Pet for Apartment Dwellers 

Some dog breeds are perfectly happy in an apartment setting. However, house cats of any kind are the perfect option here. They’re careful, neat animals — plus, they do their business in a litter box.

Unlike dogs, cats do not have to be taken out on walks, and if you have a yard or a garden, they’ll be the ones to go out in search of adventure when they’re ready. Many people can easily have several cats in their home at once without any problem.

Why are Turtles, Hamsters, and Fish Also Good Options?

With these animals, all three need an ecosystem of their own in order to develop. The artificial space you can provide will be contained and controllable, just as these three pets are.

There’s almost no reason why a hamster or a rabbit getting out of its cage would be a disaster. Turtles, for example, can roam freely throughout your house, which they will not even be able to cover in a whole day because of how slow they are.

However, always be careful when walking around your home so you don’t accidentally step on them. The only other things you have to do are the obvious, daily tasks of feeding your pet, cleaning up after it, and enjoying its company.

Beware! These Dog Breeds Should Not Live in Apartments 

It’s not just a matter of size, but of nature. Breeds such as Pit Bulls and Dobermans can be aggressive. And if they do attack, the damage could be irreparable for all of the affected parties. The confinement of living in an apartment can make your dog’s personality take a turn for the worse.

 Doberman laying on the ground

This group also includes the Terrier and the American Staffordshire. These dogs then to be quite jealous of their owners. When they’re in enclosed spaces, they may unexpectedly turn against children, adults or other dogs.

In most Western countries, dog owners are responsible for violent acts committed by their pets. Fines, euthanization of the offending animal, and even short sentences of imprisonment may be the result.

Not all animals are wired to live in enclosed spaces, and each animal has its own personality and preferences.  Training your pet will help, but temperamental changes can occur in mere seconds. Hence the importance of choosing one of the best pets or dog breeds for apartment living.

Main image source: Torne


The contents of My Animals are written for informational purposes. They can't replace the diagnosis, advice, or treatment from a professional. In the case of any doubt, it's best to consult a trusted specialist.