Apartment Dogs
Dogs Suitable For Apartment Life

Apartment dogs generally should be relatively quiet, friendly animals that can have their exercise needs met within the apartment or with several outings for jogging or walks each day. Below are 53 of the better dog breeds for apartment life with a little information about each. Use the links to view full dog breed information for each selection.

Before getting a dog, it's VERY important that you talk directly with the apartment manager, owner (landlord) or main rental office and get approval IN WRITING stating that you will be allowed to house a dog on the premises of the apartment, flat or condo where you live.

NOTICE -- The DOG BOOK Isle is being revised and so far, 7 pages are now online for you.

Hundreds of thousands of dogs have ended up in rescue kennels because landlords decided tenets could no longer house their dogs on the rental property.

A Boston Terrier and a calm, peaceful mutt
enjoy a game of chess in their 4th floor apartment.

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The following three types of dogs can NOT live in an apartment:

  • Aggressive guard dogs

  • Extremely high energy dogs

  • Dogs that bark excessively.

Dogs for the Working, Herding and Sporting Groups are generally not well suited for apartments. Here's why:

  • Within these groups there are aggressive GUARD dogs. Yes, they can be wonderful house pets, good with kids and all, but APARTMENT DOGS must come and go either on narrow stairs or in small apartment elevators to get outdoors and back in. The dogs will be meeting other people and dogs in close quarters and aggression can break out en route on the stairs or elevator. Read the dog breed information for dogs that interest you and note their aggressive tendencies, if any.

  • Very high energy dogs, and especially larger ones, need to get outside and run. Dog breeds for Sporting and Herding Groups are bred for extensive running. Apartment dogs are better off when they are relaxed, calm and content with two or three daily outings and indoor naps between.

  • Worth a mention —- Many mixed breed and hybrid dogs such as the Cockapoo or Enga-Apso make excellent apartment dogs. (Cocker Spaniel + Poodle or English Toy Spaniel + Lhasa Apso) I’ve had many mixed breed dogs in apartments and they not only tend to live long, healthy lives, but seem to bark less and become favorite “buddies” with the other tenets.

Ahhh! It's nice to get out of the
apartment for some play in the ocean, isn't it?

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The dog breed information, or profile pages, will indicate dogs that should not live in apartments.

For example: You could never have a Mastiff or Bullmastiff in an apartment. The Mastiff is quiet, laid-back, low energy and just lies around all day, BUT, he is a superior guard dog, is wary of people and aggressive with many other dogs. Want to be in the middle when your Mastiff takes on a Doberman Pinscher in the apartment elevator on the way down to the outdoor potty call?

Beagles not only bark but often “howl” until the neighbors put you out in the street.

Aside from aggression in elevators and stairways and the need for excessive barking and exercise, any other type of dog should do okay. Dog breeds for racing such as the Greyhound are excellent apartment dogs. When racing, the Greyhounds live in small cages. They are non-aggressive and are used to a quiet, peaceful lifestyle with little exercise.

ALL dogs living in apartments, flats and condos need some form of exercise daily. Small “Toy” breeds can get by with chasing a toy around the apartment. Bigger dogs must get outdoors for walks, jogging, games of “fetch” or Frisbee and maybe a swim in a lake. The apartment is fine for sleeping and eating, but don’t leave them there all day.

Here are 53 picks for apartment dogs:
These links open windows

Sometimes called the “monkey terrier,” this friendly, outgoing little 8 pound fellow is a bit of a clown, full of life and active. He is pretty good with other dogs and people. These are fine little apartment dogs.

Australian Terrier
The “Aussie” Terrier is small and gets around on short legs. She’s always ready to chase a mouse or dig a hole or play a game. The dog does fairly well with other people, pets and strangers, and is well suited to apartment, flat, or condo living.

Bedlington Terrier
This is a quiet companion dog that lives a sensible, “moderate” life of sanity. They enjoy moderate exercise, moderate play and affection, and do moderately well with other pets and especially people. A gentle house pet and watchdog.

The Bloodhound
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The Bloodhound is a giant gentleman. This guy is calm and very easy-going. He’s a big “mush” around the house, a lovable friend with a sad face that likes tummy rubs, loves kids. This guy is just too sweet and gentle but even with his size, he's one of our nicest apartment dogs.

Boston Terrier
The little Boston Terrier is a frisky, well-mannered house-pet. He's a companion dog that loves to play ball and snooze by your feet. He enjoys quiet walks with stops in the park.. This is a real joy of a dog to own. One of the best apartment dogs.

Bichon Frise
Energetic, active, frisky, and full of fun, the Bichon loves to play, cuddle and generally loves life and family. This is a bouncy dog that will get out and jog with you if you go her pace.

A beautiful, 90 pound breed from Russia that is a fine, loyal house pet and loves to run outdoors. This is a sighthound that needs a LOT of exercise but doesn't bark. She can live in an apartment as long as she gets out two or three times a day for vigorous exercise, jogging, etc.

These dogs can be clowns and quite silly at times. The Boxer is laid-back, quiet an loves to play and romp with family and kids and wants to be part of whatever the family is doing. They are an affectionate and fun-loving breed and are good apartment dogs as long as they get plenty of exercise.

Cairn Terrier>
The little Cairn is a terrific house pet. She’s intelligent, playful, inquisitive, feisty and a tad rugged. She gets along with children and is tolerant with them as well as other dogs. She is a good watchdog.

The Cavachon is a mix between the Cavalier King Charles and the Bichon and shares their characteristics. This is NOT a breed. It's a designer or hybrid dog that is healthy, long lived, friendly, lively and lots of fun. Be sure to check this one out! Barks little and is among the ideal apartment dogs.

A Cavalier King Charles Spaniel entertains
himself with the computer in his apartment!

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Cavalier King Charles Spaniel
One of the best apartment dogs. The Cavalier is one of the most lovable of the toy breeds. She is quiet, affectionate, and gets along with everyone from other dogs to strangers and children. This is a perfect family pet.

Clumber Spaniel
This breed is sort of a laid-back, easy-going dog. His exercise needs are far less than the majority of sporting dogs. He makes a great house pet, family and apartment dog although he leans toward one-person to bond with.

The little Chihuahua loves green grass.
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Although not overly affectionate or playful, the Chihuahua remains one of the most popular toy breeds in the USA. They are a good watchdog and companion. They get along well with kids, other pets and dogs. A good indoor dog.

Chinese Crested
The Crested is a playful little 10 pound lapdog and companion that is friendly with other dogs, cats, people and children. She needs very little exercise. Her primary job is to keep your lap warm. She is one of the better apartment dogs.

Coton De Tulear
Coton de Tulear’s are outgoing, lively, friendly, fun-loving little 12 to 16 pound lap-dog and one of the best apartment dogs you can find. They do well with children, especially older kids and are a dog watchdog. The ‘Coton is playful, affectionate, loves people and sheds none to little. Not excessively barky.

The Dachshund has a lot of energy and is quick. They make good little house pets. and get along well with children. It’s reasonably affectionate and playful. It needs several walks daily and they doe well as apartment dogs.

How could you not love
this beautiful English Bulldog?

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English Bulldog
This is one terrific house pet. He’s funny, a clown in a small package, loves his family, is obedient, easy to train and can act just plain silly when he wants to. The Bulldog is pretty good with kids. This is a great package for a pet and a fine apartment dog!

Dandie Dinmont Terrier
She's a sweetheart around the house and is devoted to the family and children. Her little short legs need lots of exercise. She's frisky, fun-loving, affectionate and likes to play. She loves kids and loves to run and romp with them.

English Cocker Spaniel
This dog is a friendly family pet and excellent hunting dog. They have a lot of energy and need two good walks or games of fetch daily. English Cocker Spaniel’s are good in the apartment as long as they get outdoors for plenty of exercise.

This English Springer Spaniel thinks
he's a lapdog! They're very friendly.


English Springer Spaniel
Like the English Setter, the Springer Spaniel can be an affectionate, playful house pet, AFTER receiving adequate exercise outdoors. This dog does well in an apartment as long as he gets out for plenty of vigorous exercise to tire him out.

Flat-Coated Retriever
This guy is a really affectionate, loyal family dog that loves to retrieve, run, swim and romp. Give him his exercise and he’s a darling for the rest of the day. As apartment dogs go, he right up there as lung as he gets out for plenty of games and jogging.

French Bulldog
Frenchie’s are fun-loving little family dogs that will entertain you. They are goofy dogs that like to clown around. French Bulldog exercise needs are not extreme so one or two walks a day should do it.

Racing Greyhounds come in many colors and are
retired at around 3 years. They spend their lives in
cages so exercise is not a big major issue. They are truly sweet,
even-tempered, affectionate dogs that beg to be rescued and given a loving home.

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The breed is laid-back and quiet around the house. They are obedient and loyal to family. Greyhounds are raced for about 3 years, then retired. They do well in apartments, as they have lived their lives in small cages. Non aggressive, low exercise needs, seldom bark, loyal, smart and loving.

This little 10 pound wonder is a friend to just about everyone. She is a bit of a clown, silly in her own way and likes to be the center of attention. She is friendly with other dogs, pets, children and strangers.

Italian Greyhound
The Italian Greyhound is a gentle and affectionate breed that loves to run and race but has relatively low exercise needs. She is small and fragile. and absolutely one of the apartment dogs!

Japanese Chin
This little 7 pound miniature is an all round family dog that is good with responsible children, other dogs and loves people in general. It is a true lap and family dog at heart. It is playful, affectionate and a great watchdog all in one.

Keeshond - The almost perfect family dog.
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The Keeshond Comes from The Netherlands and is almost the perfect family dog off-the-rack. She goes well with children, is full of energy, needs only moderate exercise, is very affectionate, and is one of the best apartment dogs.

Lhasa Apso
Fairly energetic, playful and moderately affectionate, the Lhasa Apso is a common house pet in America. The Lhasa Apso is wary of strangers but has fairly low exercise needs and gets along well as an apartment dog.

The cute, friendly Maltese
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The Maltese is an energetic little dog that loves to run and romp but needs little exercise to keep her satisfied. At roughly 5 pounds, she certainly is a qualified member of the apartment dogs group. She is somewhat affectionate, and a definite lapdog.

Miniature Bull Terrier
This can be a kind, gentle clown, fun-loving and entertaining if obedience trained. The dog can be stubborn and independent, yet a great family pet and watchdog if trained properly and is suitable as an apartment dog..

Miniature Poodle
This, like the Toy version, is alert, active and a wonderful family pet. The Miniature Poodle is rugged enough to mix well with children and loves to play and romp. They need exercise in the form of walks and play time and make excellent apartment dogs.

Miniature Schnauzer - A great companion
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Miniature Schnauzer
The Mini Schnauzer is affectionate and playful beyond description, a lapdog, and devoted companion. This is one of the better apartment dogs. Two nice walks a day and some “fetch”: in the house will suffice for exercise.

Norwich Terrier
This dog is energetic, active, “full of himself” and a bit “clownish.” . The 10 to 12 pound Norwich is very affectionate, playful, and gets along with other dogs and people. Exercise needs are moderate, with two walks daily being enough for these dogs.

Papillon's, aka “Butterfly Dogs,” are 8 pound critters that love children but are easily injured so caution is needed. They get along with other dogs and people. The Papillon is playful gentle, affectionate and fairly easy to train. This makes for a near perfect house or apartment dog.

A Pekingese in the grass.
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Pekes are a stubborn breed and do not do well with children of any age. The Pekes need little exercise and can be an indoor dog. They are not very playful or affectionate but are good watchdogs.

Petit Basset Griffon Vendeen
This 30 pound pooch comes from France.. It is friendly, playful and happy as a family pet, gets along well with children, other dogs and strangers. This can only be an apartment dog if it gets lots of daily exercise—two good walks and some play time.

This 4 pound breed is high among the apartment dogs. While small, it has a lot of energy and is always busy investigating, following you or sticking her nose into things. She’s quite playful but not always an ideal lapdog. The dog needs little exercise!

Toy Poodle
Female Toy Poodles average around 6 pounds and are a lively breed, loving every bit of life. Very playful and affectionate, friendly with strangers, people in general and house pets—that’s a Poodle. They make good little watchdogs.

This is a little comedy act, always showing off and acting silly. She's quiet and laid-back, but stubborn and self-confident too. She will settle on anyone’s lap she can find. She’s a good watchdog, and needs little exercise. The Pug can almost be an indoor dog and is certainly one of the apartment dogs.

Scottish Deerhound
This deer hunting, stag coursing guy is a quiet, laid-back family-loving indoor pet. His exercise requirements are average and must be met. Around the house, he’s well-mannered but not a watch dog or guardian as he’s just too peaceful for that. The Deerhound gets along with other dogs, children and adults.

Shetland Sheepdog on the run
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Shetland Sheepdog
The “Sheltie” is gentle, friendly, affectionate, playful and a wonderful 19 pound all around family pet. The Sheltie is good with children and a great watchdog with lots of energy in that small frame. Give this dog several daily walks and some play time and he’ll make a fine apartment dog.

Shih Tzu
This breed weighs in around 15 pounds and is a favorite in senior citizen centers and one of the best for apartment life. The Shih Tzu is foremost an affectionate companion and lapdog that loves to play. She needs little exercise beyond a brief walk.

Smooth Fox Terrier
The energetic, affectionate 18 pound Fox Terrier is a great choice for the family. She is very playful, devoted and enjoys any family activity. She needs more than average exercise so while included with apartment dogs, be warned she will need plenty of walks and maybe some jogging.

Soft Coated Wheaten Terrier
Of all the terrier breeds, this is one of the most gentle of all. The Wheaten needs lots of exercise but calms down and is a sweet, gentle house pet. She is an affectionate, well balanced 35 pound dog that loves kids, other dogs, people and family.

Spinoni Italiani
This breed is a hunter and pointer but is not as active as most of the ones we’ve covered. He gets along well with other dogs, pets and most people. He is basically a calm dog but in no way a guard dog or aggressive. This is a good family and apartment dog.

Swedish Vallhund
This is a playful, affectionate family dog that loves human attention and is a good watchdog. He’s a good apartment dog as long as he gets out for several good walks or some jogging and play time each day.

Tibetan Spaniel
Tibetan Spaniels have quite a bit of energy but don't need much exercise. They tend to be independent and stubborn little house dogs but are quite affectionate and get along fine with other pets as well as other dogs. They can be good apartment dogs.

The Tibetan Terrier, with a "down" command.
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Tibetan Terrier
This breed is an all around dog. He has plenty of energy and needs lots of exercise to work it off. The breed is good with other dogs and kids and is quite affectionate with family members. This is a very active dog.

Toy Fox Terrier
This 6 pound wonder is full of life and will check out your closets, cabinets and all corners of the garage before setting out to entertain you with her antics. Then she’ll find a lap to settle in on. She’s full of play and affection for her family.

Toy Poodle
Alert and active little “Teacup Poodles” are basic lapdogs, need little exercise, are smart and easy to train. They are playful and love family but are not so good for children as they are quite delicate. The Toy Poodles are excellent apartment dogs.

A very talented bird hunter/pointer, the Vizsla is constantly searching for the scent. He can run all day and love it. He is playful, affectionate,. friendly with strangers and a great companion. He needs jogging and vigorous play daily—2 miles is good, to be an apartment dog. Given his exercise, he’s a quiet family apartment dog afterward.

West Highland White Terrier “Westie”
The adorable little Westie comes from Scotland. The busy Westie is the lapdog of the terriers and “affection” should be her middle name. This 18 pound pooch will go jogging with you or fetch a ball in the yard. She likes people and most other dogs. She’ll bark at intruders and give kisses till you run for a towel.

This Whip[pet seems to be flying
with no paws touching the ground!


The Whippet needs plenty of exercise and play time. The Whippet is a wonderful family pet that gets along well with children, is patient, quiet and quite affectionate. She’s a fairly good watchdog. She does very well with other pets and dogs. Just be sure she gets out for jogging and other exercise.

Yorkshire Terrier
The energetic little Yorkie requires a lot of combing and brushing. She’s a feisty, playful lapdog that is moderately affectionate. She’s the best of apartment dogs but does tend to bark a lot which you'll have to work to control. Exercise needs are minimal.

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