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Best dog breed for a flat?(16 Posts)
Any ideas? Will be at daycare in the day, so maybe a doggy that would enjoy that but will also be okay living in a flat.
Do you have direct access to a garden, and are you looking for a puppy or adult dog?
Dog or puppy? Puppies need letting out every 20 minutes or so for the toilet, and if he/she hasn't had their jabs you won't be able to go to the park - so you'll need a garden at the very least.
Housetraining a puppy is infinitely easier with quick access to a garden... other than that whether it’s a flat or not is pretty irrelevant.
Yes, here come the “it’s cruel to have a dog in a flat” pontificaters. Ignore. I have a dog in a flat, hand done for two two years, previously another dog who I had for fifteen years. Millions of families in cities all over the world have dogs in flats. It’s completely fine, especially as you’ll be using daycare so they won’t be there a lot of time anyway. I had a miniature schnauzer and now have a Scottie. Both fab breeds in smaller accommodation. My Scottie gets about four hours exercise a day as he goes everywhere with me and is rarely left alone. There’s a quiz you can do on the KC website that indicates suitable breeds. Hold on will try and link.
I don't think there's anything wrong with dogs in flats - just thinking of the practicalities of toilet training a young puppy!
There's a huge list of "it depends on" here.
Is it a small flat or big flat?
Do you have access to dog-friendly communal gardens for late night weewee wanders?
Is the flat complex dog friendly? Some are not.
Do you have nice neighbours/decent sound proofing to cope with excited dog borking?
What if the dog doesn't like doggy day care or the day care is closed, what would your back up plan be?
Will you still be able to do at least two walks a day plus more regular potters every few hours, especially when they're young, for them to do their business?
Many breeds can work in flats BUT it depends on you and how will you keep that dog-brain busy without access to your own garden.
Lots of dogs will cope with living in a flat, most dogs will. It's your strategy for providing the pee/poo breaks, exercise, emotional companionship and mental stimulation they need to be healthy.
Doggy daycare isn't the solution, it's just a small part of it. You'll need to describe your situation in more detail and explain what exercise you can offer daily in order to assess the average qualities of different breeds.
Daycare is only a solution if your dog likes it, and while it's there!
What about at weekends or in the evenings? Are you happy to take it for late night and early morning walks so it can toilet? And when you're ill, you can't just let it out in the garden to pee, you'll need to get up and dressed and take it out, no matter how ill you feel and how miserable the weather is.
We recently toilet trained our puppy and it was hard enough in the garden in the rain at 3am, I wouldn't have wanted to take him out for walks at that time! Of course you can use puppy pads but they a) smell and b) prolong toilet training by quite a long time.
He's now in a very small home daycare and absolutely loves it. But he's only there three days a week so the rest of the time his care (of course) falls to us. Luckily we have a garden and live next to several beaches and loads of fields where he can run and sniff and play to his hearts content!
check you're allowed one and the chances of the licence being revoked if anyone complains due to barking etc
I'm hardly one of these people who believes that having a dog in a flat is cruel. Good job too, as I'd be a massive hypocrite
What I will say, however, is that having direct access to a secure garden makes life a lot easier. I have direct access to an insecure communal garden - result being that any time DDog goes out he has to be on the lead - and that's a bit of a pain. There's nothing quite like being ambushed by one of 25 neighbours for a chat when you're tramping around the back garden in your dressing gown and wellies, waiting for your dog to do a shit. My next flat will have be ground floor and have a secure, private garden! I ought to add that this is a dog that came to me as an adult, already housetrained. I wouldn't fancy trying to toilet train a puppy without direct access to a back garden or other outside space.
Most dogs will be fine in a flat so long as they get sufficient exercise. Not sure I'd choose to have something massive in a small flat for reasons of practicality (I don't have enough space for a bed for a great dane!) but I wouldn't think that living in a flat would be your primary criteria for choosing a breed.
Instead, I'd be thinking about
- how much exercise does the breed need? Take what the KC says with a pinch of salt - they'll claim a Jack Russell only needs up to an hour a day. Say that to a JRT owner and they'll give a hollow laugh...
- how much grooming can you give
- do you want to take up a specific activity e.g. some breeds are better for agility, others for flyball or scurry
- do you have close neighbours (clearly you do, it's a flat) or thin walls? If so don't pick a breed that's prone to yappiness.
- are there any particular character traits that you'd like or couldn't cope with? To a certain extent you pick your poison e.g. dogs that tend to bond very closely to their owner can be more prone to separation anxiety; intelligence makes a dog easier to train but can mean you need to put extra effort into keeping them entertained to prevent boredom and resulting undesirable behaviours.
Of course you can have a puppy in a flat, but how easy it is depends on your access to outside. I brought up my first dog in a flat and wandering around in snow or rain just when you've got out of bed requires a certain amount of dedication. I was so pleased when I moved to a house with a garden and a back door so I could stay in the dry.
My partner and I have miniature dachshund puppiess (one each). I live in a house, he lives in a flat - so both our puppies are used to spending huge amounts of time at either property.
On paper, everyone told us that my house with garden was a much better bet for raising dogs than his top floor penthouse apartment with only balconies. In reality, the small rooms of my old house means that when my young kids are home and the puppies get the zoomies its absolutely chaotic, and feels like there's never any room to move without tripping over each other. In his big open plan apartment the puppies wear themselves out with the freedom to run around a space more vast than even my garden, and they are never in our way. They have coped absolutely fine with no access to a garden - from day one we taught them to ring bells hung on the handles of the patio doors leading to the balcony - and we use a small rectangle of astro turf in the corner which they know to go on. Its small enough that it can be regularly washed and replaced so it never gets smelly, and the dogs have both been absolutely fine with using that so the remainder of the balcony remains clean for us to use. Doing it that way also hasn't in any way confused them with going on 'real' grass when at my house or out on a walk, they just know that its different scenarios at different places and roll with it.
It does obviously entirely depend on your set-up, and the layout of your flat... but from my experience of raising puppies in both settings simultaneously, id say in our case the flat was by far the easier option actually. It helped being an open plan flat so dogs were always in sight (ideal for toilet training as we were never inconveniently in another room when they started circling to pee) The whole toilet training thing does seem daunting at first, but the reality of it is that stage only lasts anywhere between a few weeks to a few months at most - and then you have grown up dogs that can wait to go out for a walk, and at worst only need a bedtime wee or quick access if they are poorly. Its not worth deciding against doing something for a slightly inconvenient few weeks... cos having a puppy is hard work for those weeks anyway wherever you are!. You have to very much judge it on your own set-up and what you think can make work, not make a decision based on what looks ideal on paper.