Generally, it’s important to choose the right dog breed for your lifestyle, or else it can spell trouble. A big and active dog that’s spending too much time alone in an apartment will chew, bark, dig and use your carpet as a toilet. Save yourself the headache and heartache by setting yourself up for success with one of these breeds that are ranked top of the pack for small space living by the American Kennel Club.
1. French Bulldogs
French Bulldogs are highly adaptable, smart, and very playful. They only need a quick walk to stay fit and do their business. This makes them a great choice for someone without access to a backyard. They’ll quickly become your best buddy for tossing a ball around the apartment and then conking out on the couch while you get work done or watch a movie.
Yes, bulldogs in any form are great apartment dogs. The classic version is a medium-sized dog, but they’re slow-moving and fine with indoor life. They struggle with high temperatures, however, so make sure your place has air conditioning on when it’s hot outside.
At their tallest, Yorkshire Terriers are eight inches, and they don’t get bigger than seven pounds. They’re truly pint-sized pals that don’t need a lot of space. Additionally, their hypoallergenic fur makes them great dogs for apartment living. A potential drawback is their tendency to be vocal guard dogs — good training will be in order!
The sweet-hot dog-shaped Dachshund isn’t exactly known for its athleticism. They’re simply not built for things like distance running, swimming, or leaping. This does mean, however, that they’re great at living in small spaces where exercise is limited.
5. Miniature Schnauzers
Because of their size, Miniature Schnauzers are great apartment dogs. They are the smallest of the three Schnauzer breeds and carry all the same great traits — low shedding, easy demeanor, and extreme intelligence. They’re great watchdogs that will be protective of you and your home.
6. Cavalier King Charles Spaniels
This is an alert but even-tempered chum who is very flexible about living arrangements. Depending on their humans’ lifestyle, Cavs can adapt to a high-energy routine or one that involves a lot of downtimes. Regardless of the pace of their day-to-day living, you can always count on Cavs to be loyal companions.
7. Shih Tzus
The regal lineage of this breed is part of what makes them ideal apartment dwellers. Even though they were originally bred for Chinese palace living, Shih Tzus don’t need much space to roam. They much prefer lounging with their humans, with loads of cuddles. Shih Tzus are also very patient and affectionate with children.
8. Boston Terriers
Because of their compact size—no more than 25 pounds—, Boston Terriers make great apartment dogs and do well in urban areas. They have bounds of energy and love going for walks or a spin around the dog park. They move with a wiggle in their step and their curly tail makes them the pig of the dog world. Bostons are friendly, curious, and people-oriented.
Pomeranians are puffballs with personality. With their hilarious bravado and self-assured attitude, they tend to be unaware of their small stature. However, it is this small size that makes them great apartment dogs. Poms are high energy but don’t need a huge amount of space to get it all out. They’re great with indoor play or short walks, which makes them great for city living or suburban life.
This fancy-haired breed thrives in social settings, making them the bon vivant of the dog world. It’s part of what makes them good for apartment living, where shared spaces like elevators and lobbies are hard to ignore. They are happy just about anywhere, and with just about anyone, young or old, as long as they’re showered with attention.
Jessica Bee is a writer for Pawzy a site that connects modern pet parents to the best advice and services.