While living in a small house when you own a large dog is not ideal, when finances are not in your favor, you must make such decisions. So you do not have the perfect backyard for the pet. Instead, you live in a small apartment where your pet’s movement is restricted.
Though you can live with a large breed dog in a small apartment, they have a lot of pent-up energy, which can lead to destructive nature in the home, spoiling your furniture or home decor. Because they were bred to be working dog breeds and need enough exercise, ideally, living with them in an apartment with a backyard is better. But if you cannot afford one, a few tips will help your dog adjust to living in a small space without being destructive.
1. You Must Exercise Your Big Dog
Large dog breeds have a lot of energy that needs to be burned if you wish them to be calm inside the house. Simply letting large dogs stay inside a small apartment without enough exercise is the equation to disaster. It is not that the dog needs more extensive square footage to stay happily inside the house, but then you must be willing to give them enough exercise outdoors, such as taking them on long walks or letting them play in the dog park, to ensure that they burn all the energy they have.
So how much exercise does your dog need? It really depends upon the breed of your dog. Usually, large breed dogs need at least three walks a day. It also depends on the age of the dog. Young dogs are generally very active and need more exercise, but as your dog gets older, the amount of activity required for the dog becomes lesser. You can find a vast open space to let your dog go off-leash, where you can play with them with frisbees or throw balls. This will tire them off sooner.
Also Read: How To Choose An Easy To Maintain House Pet
2. Keep the Dog Clean:
Large dogs, in general, shed more than smaller dogs. This is because several large dog breeds are double-coated. Breeds like Labrador retrievers are pretty popular in US households and shed throughout the year. This means they must be brushed regularly to eliminate the loose hair that can mess up the house. Also, bathing them twice a month can help remove dander, dirt, and loose hair from their coat.
This is why many dog owners who love large dog breeds opt for doodles such as a Bernadoodle that takes in the personality of a Bernese Mountain dog but does not shed as much as it has a Poodle parent as well. Even if you own a Bernadoodle dog that is not double coated, brushing them with the best brush for bernedoodles is necessary for a fur-free and clean home.
3. Design the Interior Keeping the Dog in Mind:
You may take your dog for activities outside most of the time, but on a rainy day, you may have to play with your dog inside the house. If you are busy and cannot spare much time to take your dog outside, create a play area inside the home.
Yes, the home’s square footage is less, but still, you can use a long corridor to play with the dog. Carpet the corridor floor, so it is not slippery when your dog runs on it. Playing fetch inside the home becomes easier now, and you can engage your dog when it gets bored.
4. Give Your Big Dog His Own Small Space
If you do not wish for the dog to take up space on your couch, better give it its own space. Create a den-like space for the dog with a dog bed and some comfortable throw blankets where the dog feels safe. Place its toy box nearby to make it the dog’s corner. If your dog has the habit of winding up on the corner couch in the evenings when you watch television, then cover it with a furniture cover or protect it with a blanket. This will help protect the furniture and prevent dog hair from sticking to it.
5. Invest in Vacuum Cleaners:
When you live with a dog, the house can quickly get dirty due to the shedding of their fur. Getting a vacuum cleaner helps you keep the house clean. Go for a robot vacuum cleaner that can be programmed to clean the house every day at a particular time without your intervention. You can also invest in a good quality handheld vacuum cleaner that is handy and can be used to clean your pieces of furniture.
6. Follow a Minimalistic Approach:
When your house is already small in square footage, avoid getting oversized furniture which makes it appear even smaller. Your dog needs enough space to move freely in the house, or it will knock over a lamp or a flower vase. Hence, keeping the furniture minimal can help the space appear bigger than it is and lets your dog move around freely.
The Bottom Line- Be Realistic
Though the tips we have shared above can help you live snugly with a large dog in a small apartment. But honestly, it is not ideal for both you and the dog. You also need to be practical about the size of your family living with you in that small home. If you have kids, they also need additional space, which will again be an issue if you have a large dog.
If you are planning to get a dog and do not have one, you better avoid a large breed dog and go for a smaller dog that will fit better in your apartment. If you already own a large-sized dog, you better look for other living arrangements. Even if the home you choose to live in is small, if you can get one with a backyard, it will solve most of your issues and give every member of your family enough space to live comfortably.