Small dog for a student apartment - VeggieBoards
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#1 Old 03-26-2005, 08:46 AM
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So... I'm going to be moving out soon and getting an apartment, and I would really like to adopt a small dog to keep me company. The apartment complex I'm looking in to does allow animals (with a pet deposit). Does anyone have any ideas for breeds I should look into, or advice on whether this is a good move or not?
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#2 Old 03-26-2005, 08:55 AM
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I don't think that it's a good idea to have a dog in an apartment: both from the standpoint of the dog and of your neighbours because the dog would not have a lot of room to roam around and the dog's barking (and in my experience, small dogs seem to bark a lot) would disrupt all of your neighbours.





Also, if you are a student, please make sure that you have the time to devote to a dog (because as a student, I know that I would never have enough time to take care of a dog).
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#3 Old 03-26-2005, 09:02 AM
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Minature Pinschers rock.



http://www.dogbreedinfo.com/miniaturepinscher.htm



My cousin keeps this breed. They're so lovable and full of energy.
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#4 Old 03-26-2005, 09:04 AM
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The Miniature Pinscher's sleek black, blue, chocolate or red coat sheds minimally and requires little grooming. "Min Pins" are ideal for flat dwellers and may obtain sufficient exercise in a very small space. They have a low tolerance to cold therefor it is necessary to provide warm housing for this breed.



http://www.petnet.com.au/dogs/D198.html
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#5 Old 03-26-2005, 11:40 AM
 
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ME..are you (or anyone else) going to be in the apartment much? If not, you may consider a cat instead. Dogs are "people animals".

The ones I pity are the ones who never stick out their neck for something they believe, never know the taste of moral struggle, and never have the thrill of victory. - Jonathan Kozol
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#6 Old 03-26-2005, 12:15 PM
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I agree with MsBunnicula. I'd love to get a dog, but until I have a stable lifestyle and a house, I just don't feel good about it. (And I'm 30 with a full time job, bona fide adult.) Plus they are a lot of work. For example, to bathroom train a dog, a standard method is to take them out early each morning and just wait (however long it takes) for them to go so they can be praised. Most students don't have a steady life routine that this would work into.



Plus, if the dog barks and the landlord says it has to go, what will happen to the dog?
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#7 Old 03-26-2005, 01:04 PM
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I would advise choosing from what is available at your local animal shelters rather than picking a breed. Like others have said, barking would be a problem, but obviously with some patience and effort a dog can be trained not to bark. Small dogs need lots of exercise so make sure you are prepared to go on at least one walk per day and to play with the dog indoors every day.



I'm biased, as a cat person, but cats don't bark, can exercise entirely indoors (you still need to play with them every day) and are much easier with respect to bathroom issues, most of them come littered trained and those that have problems are easier to correct than paper training a dog from scratch.
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#8 Old 03-26-2005, 01:28 PM
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Originally Posted by FalafelsRule View Post

Minature Pinschers rock.



http://www.dogbreedinfo.com/miniaturepinscher.htm



My cousin keeps this breed. They're so lovable and full of energy.



That's a good suggestion, although they're hard to come by and I wouldn't want to see someone go to a breeder.



I'd go to your local animal shelter and ask them what dogs they think would do good in your situation.



Is there a reason you're looking for a small dog? (Does the apartment complex have size limits?) As larger low-energy dogs are sometimes more adept for apartment living.
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#9 Old 03-26-2005, 01:36 PM
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Yeah, of course adopt a dog, what ever one you decide on.
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#10 Old 03-26-2005, 02:48 PM
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Look to see what the breed(s) of dogs you're looking at were bred to do not just size. Many of the small dogs were bred to hunt, dig, and other high energy things while plenty of larger dogs were bred to be guard dogs and just generally chill out so they would be better for an apartment. For instance a mastiff is one of the biggest dogs there is but it was bred to be chained to a castle gate standing guard and most would be perfectly happy sleeping all day. I'm sure the shelter will help you decide what dog is for you if you choose to get one, just remember to think it through!
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#11 Old 03-26-2005, 03:29 PM
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Originally Posted by thebelovedtree View Post

Look to see what the breed(s) of dogs you're looking at were bred to do not just size. Many of the small dogs were bred to hunt, dig, and other high energy things while plenty of larger dogs were bred to be guard dogs and just generally chill out so they would be better for an apartment. For instance a mastiff is one of the biggest dogs there is but it was bred to be chained to a castle gate standing guard and most would be perfectly happy sleeping all day. I'm sure the shelter will help you decide what dog is for you if you choose to get one, just remember to think it through!





Wow. I can't picture a full grown mastiff in a small apartment. Before I moved, I was living in a 600sq ft. rental house (probably smaller than 600) with my lab/newfoundland mix that is 100lbs. He was always bumping into things and he'd knock stuff over when he wagged his tail. He wasn't happy. His body was just too large for a small space like that. And I know Mastiffs are bigger than he is.





But Mezzo, no matter what you get - a dog, cat, hamster, whatever - make sure you are going to have the required time daily for that pet plus add on a little extra time to each day, just in case.



You can check out http://www.akc.org if there are questions you have, things you should know, things you should anticipate, etc...such as:



* How big will the dog get?

* How old will he be before he acts like an adult dog?

* How protective will the dog be?

* How often will the dog need to be groomed?

* How does he get along with other animals?

* How long can he be left alone at home?

* How much exercise does the dog need?

* What are the best training methods for this dog?

* What possible health problems might this dog develop?



And also here http://www.akc.org/future_dog_owner/...ure_dog_owners
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#12 Old 03-26-2005, 03:44 PM
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Yes that was a poorly worded example, for a small apartment you probably shouldn't get a mastiff but they are big low energy dogs. My point was only that size doesn't dictate energy level, not that a giant dog would be good for an apartment only a few times larger than he/she is, lol.
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#13 Old 03-26-2005, 03:49 PM
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Also, you gotta remember- a dog isn't a temporary thing. you're still going to (hopefully) have that dog when you've moved out of your apartment and for many years to come.



If you really want a furry run-ariound-the-house animal and plan to keep it with you for years and years afterward, i'd also suggest a cat.



Of course, fish are fantastic, too. That's all we're allowed. I didn't realize until I got mine a week ago that they're so much fun
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#14 Old 03-26-2005, 03:59 PM
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Originally Posted by thebelovedtree View Post

Yes that was a poorly worded example, for a small apartment you probably shouldn't get a mastiff but they are big low energy dogs. My point was only that size doesn't dictate energy level, not that a giant dog would be good for an apartment only a few times larger than he/she is, lol.





Oh, I agree. The energy level of a dog is big thing to consider, as well. It was a good point!



Quote:
Originally Posted by AngelofDance View Post

Also, you gotta remember- a dog isn't a temporary thing. you're still going to (hopefully) have that dog when you've moved out of your apartment and for many years to come.



If you really want a furry run-ariound-the-house animal and plan to keep it with you for years and years afterward, i'd also suggest a cat.



Of course, fish are fantastic, too. That's all we're allowed. I didn't realize until I got mine a week ago that they're so much fun



It wasn't until I had started working at a pet supply store(don't work there anymore) that I realized how much personality fish have. It's also really calming just sitting there and watching them. I learned so much about them while I was working there.



And yeah....being a mega cat person, I would consider a cat, too. They're much more independent. But....I just puppies. I don't know if I'm weird or what, but I always loved the puppy breath And I liked training them and teaching them things.
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#15 Old 03-26-2005, 05:02 PM
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I've read good points in this thread but I also think you should think about if you want to, or are able to make a 10-15 year commitment at this stage in your live.



And what is your motivation for having a dog / pet ?



"to keep me company", that sounds a bit like battling loneliness to me.....if it's about loneliness....don't have a pet, but get a dsl connection.



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#16 Old 03-26-2005, 05:13 PM
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I got a pet (cat) when I was away at college, a decision I eventually came to regret somewhat. While it was fine as long I was living at school, my life took some unexpected turns and eventually I was no longer able to keep my cat with me. Fortunately, my parents were willing and able to take her in.



I'm not trying to rain on your parade, but please do consider carefully what others have posted here. Getting a pet of any kind is a big commitment of time as well as money and emotional energy.
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#17 Old 03-26-2005, 05:32 PM
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See, I see two sides to this issue:

On the one hand, getting a low energy dog (rather than a small dog) might be a good option for you. If you've got your heart set on a dog, get an adult from a shelter or rescue (I'd recommend a rescue more, they're more familiar with their particular breeds and tend to have more of a hands on approach). Keep in mind that as cute as a puppy is, housetraining in an apartment is a b*tch. Often times you have to get the puppy outside NOW, which is easier when outside is just out the back door.

This breed selector is kinda fun, even if you're just dreaming http://www.dogbreedinfo.com/search.htm

I'd recommend doing research into any breed you're interested in. It's often a bad idea to go down to the local pound and pick up the first dog that tugs at your heart strings. Each breed (and this includes mixes) requires different things when it comes to excercise, feeding, attention, etc...it's good to know ahead of time what you're getting into.



On the otherhand: Life as a student tends to be ever changing. Do you know where you're going to be 2 years from now? How about after you graduate? What if you can't take the dog with you?

Dogs can be expensive. What happens when your dog is sick and needs a vet (and medication)? Would you be able to afford to get it treated? What about food? I know when I was a student, there were weeks when I barely had enough money to feed myself.



Getting a cat may be a better option. Although you should still ask those questions and more about getting a cat as well.



If you do get a dog, can we see the pictures?
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#18 Old 03-26-2005, 05:47 PM
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Awwww..... I so want a puppy too! But I'm not getting one, for all the reasons people have outlined above. I really don't have much more to add to this conversation, everything I had to say has already been covered.

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#19 Old 03-26-2005, 06:10 PM
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maybe a rat?



I asked almost the same question as you before I went to college. I didn't realize that there were rules stating that the only kind of animal you were allowed to have was a fish, so I was thinking about getting a hamster or a little tweety kind of bird (as opposed to a sqwawky kind like a parrot)



I was basically told it was a bad idea- some animals are loud, some are hard to take care of and require a lot of time and attention, and I know at least one person (though it may have been my mom) said that even fish were a bad idea because college kids are stupid and could hurt my animals.



Also, maybe a reptile? a snake or lizard? or a tarantula? I don't know much about reptile care, but they seem pretty quiet and live in terrariums and such, so you don't have to walk them or anything.
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#20 Old 03-26-2005, 06:22 PM
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https://www.veggieboards.com/boards/s...ad.php?t=16886



there ya go. I have no idea why I said cage/tank pets were allowed in that thread. I suppose I was misinformed, but I don't honestly remember being informed about that at all.



huh.
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#21 Old 03-27-2005, 05:35 AM
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Wow, what a bunch of naysayers.



I, for one, am really happy that I got my cat when I was in college...she saved my sanity many times.



And what, dogs shouldn't live in apartments now? Um, hello--entire city of New York? Lots of dogs. Pretty much apartments only. Yes, there are certain dogs that need tons of space and are active constantly that need yards, but many dogs can and do live happily in apartments. I think kpickell's suggestion is best--talk to the shelter about what might be right for your situation.



1vegan, pray tell, what IS the correct reason to want a pet? I keep two cats because I love them and enjoy their company. Seems like the best reason to get a pet to me.
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#22 Old 03-27-2005, 07:14 AM
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Originally Posted by msbunnicula View Post

I don't think that it's a good idea to have a dog in an apartment: both from the standpoint of the dog and of your neighbours because the dog would not have a lot of room to roam around and the dog's barking (and in my experience, small dogs seem to bark a lot) would disrupt all of your neighbours.





Also, if you are a student, please make sure that you have the time to devote to a dog (because as a student, I know that I would never have enough time to take care of a dog).



I have to agree.
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#23 Old 03-27-2005, 07:39 AM
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What you decide to get depends as much on your own lifestyle as it does where you are living. If you like to go out and run every morning and would like a dog to go with you, let the shelter know that too. If you're lazy like me, you might look for the perfect couch potato dog. Are you gone a lot? Some dogs are more prone to anxiety. Do you have time and money to devote to obedience classes? Some dogs needed that kind of stimulation. The good thing about a no-kill shelter is that they're going to know what situation would be best for what dog. I don't think there's anything wrong with getting a dog in an apartment, just find one that matches you lifestyle too.
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#24 Old 03-27-2005, 08:13 AM
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Originally Posted by FalafelsRule View Post

Minature Pinschers rock.



http://www.dogbreedinfo.com/miniaturepinscher.htm



My cousin keeps this breed. They're so lovable and full of energy.



awww! that's cute!
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#25 Old 03-27-2005, 08:22 AM
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I like Giant Schnauzers. They are like Scotty dogs only huge. They are so cool! (But not for a small appartment.)



http://www.schnauzerworld.com/giant/

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#26 Old 03-27-2005, 10:29 AM
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also consider what genetic diseases certain breeds get. my mini schnauzer had horrible skin problems and a thyroid condition (very common for schnauzers). my family spent a butt-load on medication throughout his life.



do a search on the internet for breed genetic problems if you end up wanting a breed dog.



pretty good site http://www.dog-play.com/health.html
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#27 Old 03-27-2005, 10:44 AM
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I adopted Addie during my last 6 weeks of college. Addie



It was definately a challenge, but well worth it. I'd do it over again in a heartbeat. I found that my college schedule actually made it easier to train her. I lived by campus and was able to walk home between classes. This would not have been an option had I been working full time. The fact that college provided plenty of nearby friends to help me out was an added benefit. If I was going to be stuck in a crit, there was always someone I knew that had a break in class that could walk her. I have to say the biggest sacrifice was waking up in the middle of the night to let her out. Granted, I was happy she wanted to go out to go to the bathroom, but sleep is more fun when it comes uninterrupted. Whatever you do, make sure you are ready to take on a decade or more of responsibilty. I'd also suggest checking out the shelters and rescue groups first. You'll get to check out the personalities of all the dogs there and save a life while your at it
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#28 Old 03-30-2005, 04:58 AM
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While it can be hard for a college student to make a proper, lifetime committment to a dog, and care for it, I think there are students out there who can do that, often better than many older owners.



I was severely depressed (and undiagnosed) in high school and college, and by sophomore year was going through periodic suicidal episodes. Right or Wrong, my then BF, now husband and I got a guinea pig, Arnold. Worse yet, he wasn't really supposed to be in the dorm, but the RA said it was okay, and we had a double backup plan as to who would take him.



That little piggie saved my life, he helped me hang in there until I was able to get a diagnosis, and treatment. 3 years later, when he needed really expensive surgery, and money was very tight, he got it, because how could I not take care of him when he had taken care of me. He lived a full, happy life, and I still miss him, although I've honored his memory, I think, by the three piggies I've subsequently adopted.



Were we irresponsible in getting Arnold--I think so, but he made a huge difference in my life, and overall, he had a wonderful life for a little piggie. He didn't get the best of everything (he lived in a rented appartment, now I own a home) and while he was with me I was still learning so much about taking care of guinea pigs. But he always got the best I had to offer, and if one of us went without, it was me.



Wow, this is long and bit O/T, sorry. I guess I needed to get this out.
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#29 Old 03-30-2005, 05:13 AM
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Back on topic:



I adopted my greyhound while living in an apartment, and it went quite well. I had started searching for area shelters, with the intent of adopting an older mutt, but then I ran into this greyhound website where I learned that much of what I though I knew about greyhounds was wrong. For example, they are sprinters, they do need exercise, but not more than other active dogs. Patrick usually got about 4 or 5 potty trips during the day, then a good walk in the morning and evening. Every two weeks I took him to a place where I could safely led him run offlead.



In the house, greyhound people call them "45 mph couch potatoes" because they are very lazy, cuddly dogs, who somehow manage to both fit themselves into the tiniest of places, and take up an entire king sized bed.



Greyhounds rarely bark, making them also well suited to communal living environments.



The upshot is, we did just fine for that year, the only problem being that the apartment Complex changed managers half way through our lease, and while Patrick was specifically okayed, the new manager hated all dogs and harrassed those of us who had them. But that can happen anywhere, not just to a college student.



Whatever breed you decide you like, there is probably a breed rescue out there for it, so please don't feel like you need to go to a breeder. And often, if you've picked up a breed from a local shelter, the rescue will still be willing to give more specialized information and support--or at least greyhound groups will.



Enough, if you have any questions about greyhounds, feel free to PM.
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#30 Old 03-30-2005, 05:17 AM
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Whether it's a good idea to have an animal in college or not...



I think it's best to wait until after your first semseter. Imagine trying to deal with college, trying to deal with being away from home, and on top of it, you have to housebreak and train a dog... and take care of it without your parents to help or anything... and deal with the vet bills...
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