Yes - You Can Have A Dog If You Live In A Townhouse Or Apartment

Published: 07th July 2010
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There are several things you need to check on if you're planning to get a dog and you live in a townhouse, apartment, etc. Obviously you should be allowed to have a dog regardless of where you live, but... I'm a 9 year old Labrador Retriever so I have to believe that.

These are the things you need to be aware of before bringing a dog home to your apartment or townhouse:

Can you have dogs?

Is there a pound limit?

Are there restrictions on how you handle your dog's poop? What is your plan?

Dogs need exercise; are you willing to put in the effort to make sure this happens?

Are Dogs Legal?

I don't really get it, but I hear that there are some places where they don't want you to have dogs. Ensure that it's legal for you to have dogs before you decide to bring one home.

Pound Regulations

Something else you need to keep in mind is whether there are rules about the size of the dog. Many townhouse and apartment complexes will now let you have dogs, but most of them have rules about the size of the dog. Figuring out how large your dog is going to be can sometimes be perplexing. All dog breeds have average sizes, but it's good to remember that each dog is different. We have two female Labradors in our townhouse but we're both little guys. Instead of the average size of 65 pounds we weigh 50 pounds and 45 pounds. Based on our puppy size we didn't expect to get over 40 and 30 pounds but we luckily stopped growing just before we went over the 50 pound restriction of our townhouse association.

Handling Your Dog's Poop

Dealing with your dog's poop is one of the main issues for dog owners who live in an apartment or townhouse. It is critical that you have a plan for how you're going to handle your dog's poop before you get the dog home and realize you don't know what you're doing. Some of the options are collecting it and tossing it in the trash, dropping it in your toilet or putting fake grass on your patio. This topic doesn't need to stop you from having dogs anymore, but you just need to make sure you're willing to follow through with dealing with this problem. Even if your townhouse or apartment does not have requirements about pet waste disposal it's important to be respectful of your neighbors who live so very close to you.

Exercise For Your Dogs

If you don't commit to letting your dog have a chance to exercise, the dog will have behavioral issues you don't like. There are many different ideas: underground fences/shock collars, letting them wander/run on a rope or letting them go to parks and public places. There are a lot of different ways to get exercise for your dogs, you just have to be committed to making it happen.


It is possible to have dogs in an apartment, a townhouse or a house without a yard, it just takes a little planning and willingness to put forth the effort.

Gail Ramberg has been successfully living with dogs in a townhouse, and writing about the troubles and solutions. Additional info is available about living with living with dogs in an apartment, dealing with your dog's poop and getting exercise for your dogs.

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