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Apartment Living with a Furry Friend

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Being the proud owner of a beloved pet shouldn’t prevent you from seeking residence in an apartment. Pets can make the perfect apartment companions, especially if you take the time to do a little research about your breed and the community you’re moving into.

With a little foresight and planning, introducing your cat or dog into a new apartment can be a fun, easy transition. Here are some things to consider beforehand that will keep you, your new companion, and your landlord happy.

  1. Keep an updated pet portfolio with all of your pet’s records, including vaccinations, shot information, and adoption papers. Having an up-to-date folder on-hand is convenient and also an efficient way to relay pertinent information about your pet to your future apartment community. A full list of portfolio items can be found here
  2. Do your pet research. Some dog breeds have temperaments that are really just not suited for apartment life. For example, the energetic Labrador or German Shepard may really struggle being confined to a smaller environment. Or Chihuahua’s, while much smaller, tend to fall into excited barking fits and also have the propensity to do their business indoors.
  3. Be courteous to your neighbors. After moving into your apartment, we recommend reaching out to neighbors who share walls with you to introduce yourself and your pet. The last thing you’ll need is a disgruntled neighbor losing patience too quickly after they hear a couple of minutes of barking. Neighbors can also be used as effective resources to gauge how your pet is doing when you’re not home. Consult with a veterinarian regarding behavioral training if your dog is an anxious, incessant barker.
  4. Consider hiring a dog walker.  If you find you’re leaving your pet alone for more than 8 hours a day, hire a dog walker to come by mid-day to take your little one for a quick bathroom break. Consistent walks can improve not only your dog’s health but also his or her behavior. If you’re noticing incessant chewing habits or general bad behavior, it could simply be due to your dog being bored.
  5. Devote time to your pet. Being cooped up in a smaller space can be stressful for your companion in the beginning. Make sure you devote daily leash time and play time to your cat or dog, and recognize that by doing this, you’re being a responsible pet owner. Remember that they have become a part of your life, but you are their whole life. Many apartment communities have dog parks either within the community or nearby, so get acquainted with what’s around you.

Moving into an apartment with a pet definitely takes commitment and responsibility, but the pay off is priceless. Once their needs are met, our four-legged roommates can bring smiles and love to any apartment dweller. It’ll just take a little patience!