Our family recently moved from a quiet-and-green-suburb house to an apartment in an urban area of town. We thought the shift would be exciting for our dog Indy, who normally loves new adventures and meeting new people.
But we quickly realized that Indy was not a fan of the city, or at least not immediately. The constant noise, traffic, and commotion were too much for her. And she missed sniffing around and resting in the garden.
Many doggo lovers and owners find themselves in a similar position and wonder what low-maintenance apartment dogs would appreciate and enjoy city living. In this article, we will share the 11 best apartment dogs that will thrive in an urban environment.
We’ll also discuss some tips to help make your transition to city life easier for your pup.
By the end of this article, you’ll have some good ideas about what dog breeds work best for apartment living when you need a furry friend that will join your family in the city.
Table of contents
The 11 Best Dog Breeds for Apartment Living
If you live in the city or are thinking about making a move to an urban area, here are the best low-maintenance and absolutely adorable apartment dogs that will love city living as much as you do:
1. Cavalier King Charles Spaniel
The American Kennel Club classifies the Cavalier King Charles Spaniel as a tiny Spaniel. Its lineage began in the UK and this pup is one of the oldest European toy breeds. The breed has a silky, smooth coat and comes in a variety of colors and patterns.
This breed was bred as a companion dog and is known for its gentle, affectionate disposition. They make excellent apartment dogs because they are very low maintenance and don’t require a lot of exercise outside of routine walks. These dogs are also very friendly and love meeting new people, making them perfect for city living.
These puppers don’t shed as much as others, which is a bonus for those who are allergic to dog hair or just don’t want to deal with the mess in a small space.
2. Bichon Frise
The Bichon Frise is a small, fluffy dog that comes from the coastal regions of the Mediterranean. People love them for their friendly and playful disposition and make excellent apartment dogs. They are also hypoallergenic, which makes them perfect apartment dwellers for those with severe allergies.
This breed of dog is playful and excitable but doesn’t tend to be very anxious. This means that they won’t get too stressed out when left alone in an apartment, making them perfect for busy city-dwellers. Playing with them in the mornings and evenings while enlisting the help of a dog walker should be enough to keep this pupperino happy.
3. French Bulldog
The French Bulldog is a small breed of domestic dog. Originally bred in England to be companions for ladies during the Victorian era.
French Bulldogs are one of the most popular breeds of dogs and it’s easy to see why. They are loving, affectionate, and make great apartment dogs. They are happy with a few short walks a day and will otherwise prefer to relax on a comfy puppo bed.
This breed does snore quite loudly. So, if you’re looking for a dog that will sleep through the night quietly, this may not be the best breed for you. But if you can handle a little noise, then the French Bulldog is definitely worth considering as your new furry friend.
They are also prone to heat stroke, so it’s important to keep them cool in the summer months. Avoid crating them near bright windows or taking them on long hikes in hot weather.
4. Shih Tzu
The Shih Tzu is a small, toy-sized dog that was first bred in China. They have a long, silky fur and a friendly disposition. They were bred this way because they were meant to be companions of the Chinese nobility.
Shih Tzus make some of the best apartment dogs because they are very low-maintenance. They don’t require a lot of exercise and are content to lounge around the house all day. They also don’t shed very much, making them a good choice for those with allergies.
This breed does require regular grooming to keep their fur from getting matted, but this is a small price to pay for such a low-maintenance and adorable dog.
5. Boston Terrier
The Boston Terrier is a small, compact dog that is a common pet in the United States. They are famous for their playful personalities and their tuxedo-like markings.
Boston Terriers have a lot of energy, but because of their compact size, they can have plenty of fun in small spaces without needing a lot of room to run around. They are also very bright and take well to training, making them perfect for city living.
6. Chinese Crested
These uniquely beautiful dogs come in two varieties: the Powderpuff and the Hairless. Originally bred in China and have an affectionate nature.
These dogs make great apartment dogs because they prefer to cuddle up with their owners rather than run around and exercise. They are also very low-maintenance, as the hairless variety doesn’t require many grooming sessions.
This pupperino’s skin needs to be protected from the sun, so if you live in a hot climate, this may not be the best breed for you. But if you can keep them cool and give them lots of love, they make excellent apartment dogs.
7. Brussels Griffon
The Brussels Griffon is a small, sprightly dog favored in Belgium. They are known for their lively personalities.
Brussels Griffons make good apartment dogs because they are small enough to be comfortable and make their territory in close quarters. They are also very smart, curious dogs. They are also energetic and playful, which means they won’t get bored and will keep you entertained.
These doggerinos love activities such as playing fetch and going for walks, so if you can provide them with plenty of mental and physical stimulation, they will be happy in your apartment.
You should also make sure to leave them with engaging toys such as Kongs or puzzle toys so that they stay stimulated and don’t become anxious.
8. Yorkshire Terrier
The Yorkshire Terrier is a small, feisty dog originally bred in England. People love them for their long, silky fur and their spunky personalities.
Yorkshire Terriers are very small, sometimes they can even fit in the palm of your hand! This makes them absolutely adorable. On top of their size efficiency, they are very intelligent and easy to train. They also don’t bark very much, which is perfect for city living and your neighbors.
This breed requires regular grooming to keep their fur from getting matted, so make sure to budget finances and time for this. Some shorter haircuts can reduce the amount of upkeep required, but you should still be prepared to brush them daily.
The Maltese is a small, toy-sized dog that comes from Italy. They are known for their long, silky hair and their kind, playful temperament. Despite their dramatic full coats, this dog breed doesn’t shed much at all. This makes cleanup a breeze if you live in an apartment.
Maltese dogs love learning new tricks and playing games, so if you can provide them with plenty of mental stimulation, they will be happy living in your apartment. They also love going for walks and playing fetch, so if you have a small yard or balcony, they will be content.
Make sure to give them plenty of opportunities to socialize as well, as they love being around people.
10. Italian Greyhound
The Italian greyhound is a small, sighthound-type breed of dog originally bred in Italy. They are famous for their sleek build and their short, silky coats.
Italian greyhounds make great apartment dogs because of their size and attachment to humans. They tend to be very quiet and rarely bark, but some greyhounds will become hyper or even anxious if they don’t get enough attention.
Italian dog breeds are best for families living in urban areas or apartments because of their need for stimulation.
However, as they age, this dog breed tends to mellow out and will eventually simply prefer to lounge around and cuddle.
11. Basset Hound
The Basset Hound is a short-legged, long-bodied hound dog breed used for hunting in regions of France. You can easily recognize them thanks to their droopy ears and wrinkly skin.
Basset Hounds make some of the best apartment dogs because they are relatively low energy and don’t require a lot of space. They also have a calm and easygoing personality and enjoy the company of humans. Since they historically hunted in packs, they tend to like other dogs and are a great addition to your home if you have other pets.
Gentle Giants That Do Well in Small Apartments
If you like larger breed dogs, don’t fret. There are plenty of furry friends that are on the larger side but don’t require a lot of space. These apartment-friendly pups are perfect for those who want a big dog that can peacefully enjoy an urban space.
The Newfoundland is a large working dog breed originally from Canada. They are known for their giant size, their thick water-resistant coats, and their calm, patient temperament.
Newfoundland dogs make great apartment dogs because they are low energy and enjoy hanging around the house with their owners. They are also very gentle and loving, making them a great addition to any home.
2. Saint Bernard
The Saint Bernard is a large working dog breed that originates in Switzerland. People like them because of their droopy ears, and their calm, patient temperament. They are very loyal to their owners and have historically saved many people from catastrophes in inclement weather.
Saint Bernard dogs make great apartment dogs because they are low energy and don’t require a lot of space. However, they do appreciate having their own space, so make sure to provide them with a comfortable place to sleep.
They are rarely anxious and can even calm their owner’s nerves as well as the nerves of other pets in the apartment.
This medium-sized, short-haired dog breed was originally bred in England. They are instantly recognizable for their wrinkly skin, their short noses, and their calm, docile temperament.
Bulldogs make great apartment dogs because they don’t need too much exercise and are content to lounge around the house. They also get along well with other pets and children, making them a great addition to any home.
While they may not be the most active breed, Bulldogs still need plenty of attention and love. They are very affectionate towards their owners and will follow you around the house.
The Mastiff is a large working dog breed hailing from England. They are known for their massive size, and their powerful presence. But don’t let looks fool you, mastiffs are some of the most gentle and loving dogs around.
Mastiffs make great apartment dogs because they are low energy and don’t require a lot of space. These big boys are best for apartment complexes that have dog runs or other nearby areas available for pups, such as a dog park.
What Is the Quietest Dog For an Apartment?
Sometimes, the best dogs for apartment living are the ones that don’t make a lot of noise. If you live in close quarters with your neighbors, you’ll want to avoid breeds that bark excessively. Here are some of the quietest dogs for apartments:
Some of these dogs make alternative sounds such as howling or whining, so please keep that in mind when making your decision.
How Do I Make My Dog Comfortable In an Apartment?
If you worry about your dog being comfortable in your apartment, there are a few things you can do to help them adjust.
1. Find a Pup Friendly Apartment Unit
The first step is to find an apartment unit that is pupper-friendly. This means that the complex allows dogs and doesn’t have any breed or size restrictions. The location may also have amenities for your pupperino such as a dog run or a nearby dog park.
Some apartment units require a pet deposit, so be sure to factor that into your budget.
2. Make Sure Your Dog Gets Daily Walks
A brisk walk can do a long way when it comes to making sure your dog is comfortable in their new home. Not only will it help them burn off some energy, but it will also give them a chance to explore their new surroundings.
If you can’t walk your dog yourself, there are plenty of dog walking services that can do it for you. This investment will improve both the emotional and physical well-being of your pet.
3. Combat Shedding With Regular Grooming
If you have a dog that sheds, you’ll want to make sure you’re combatting the shedding with regular grooming. This means brushing their fur on a daily basis and giving them baths as needed.
Not only will this help reduce the amount of hair in your home, but it will also help your dog feel comfortable and relaxed. A good grooming session can be a bonding experience for you and your furry friend and improve on your apartment living experience.
4. Keep Toxins Out of Reach
One of the dangers of living in an apartment is that there are more opportunities for your dog to get into things they’re not supposed to. This is why it’s important to keep harmful toxins out of reach, such as cleaning supplies and medication.
You should also make sure that any food items that are poisonous to dogs, such as chocolate and grapes, are stored in a safe place. Make sure the garbage can is tightly sealed as well.
5. Create a Personal Space for Your Dog
Your dog should have a personal space in your apartment that is just for them. This could be a corner in your bedroom or a spot in the living room. Wherever it is, make sure it’s comfortable and has all of their favorite things.
This space will help your dog feel safe and secure in their new home. Territories are very important to dogs, so this will be a crucial part of their adjustment process.
6. Use White Noise When You’re Gone
If your dog is prone to separation anxiety, you may want to consider using white noise when you’re gone. This can help them feel like they’re not alone and can provide some much-needed comfort.
There are many different ways to create white noise, such as playing a radio or TV, running a fan, or using a white noise machine.
There are also special coats that help to calm down a dog by simulating the feeling of being hugged. These coats are helpful for dogs with anxiety.
The Bottom Line: Best Apartment Dogs
What is the best apartment dog for you? It depends on many factors such as your lifestyle, your budget, and your living situation. But no matter what, there’s sure to be a pup out there that’s perfect for you. The best apartment dogs tend to be the ones that bond with you the most and make you feel like part of their pack.
Do some research on different dog breeds and find the one that fits your lifestyle the best. And once you’ve found them, give them plenty of love and attention. They’ll be sure to return the favor tenfold.