Does your love for big dogs worry you when thinking of that tiny 1-bedroom apartment you rent?
- How will they exercise?
- Will there be enough room?
- What will your landlord say?
These are all valid questions, and while you could bring a small breed into your family, those giant, lumbering and cuddle-friendly bodies of large breeds are just too irresistible.
The good news? Not all big dogs feel cramped in small spaces. In fact, some of them live quite happily in apartments, despite their size. As long as you’re willing to give up half of your bed, there are a few large-breed dogs that just might fit perfectly in your apartment. Add in a bit of strategy, and your landlord won’t be able to resist them, either.
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If you’re on the lookout for a big dog to fit your apartment lifestyle, consider the following 3 breeds:
1. The Great Dane
Prepare to sacrifice your couch if you plan on having a Great Dane around. These dogs are huge, and they’re not always good at sharing seating space with their humans. At 130–200 pounds, Great Danes are essentially the equivalent of having another adult person in the home.
That doesn’t keep them from being great companions, though.
Not a fan of early morning walks or working out? Neither are Great Danes. In their minds, as long as there’s a spacious couch in the vicinity, all is right with the world. Of course, they still need exercise, but they’ll be happier with 1 or 2 half-hour walks per day.
Besides their overall love of lying around, Great Danes are pretty easy to train, their humans say, making puppyhood in a rented space more manageable.
Perhaps most important, while these dogs might have an intimidating look, they don’t usually bark — unless there’s good reason for it. This aspect alone can remove unnecessary stress from you and your neighbors.
2. The Greyhound
Yes, you read correctly. Greyhounds (you know, the ones known for racing at speeds of up to 43 miles per hour?) are some of the most laid-back large-breed dogs around. Sure, they’ll zip through the dog park on occasion, but a few good laps is more than enough to keep them happy.
Greyhounds typically grow to be 60–70 pounds. They’re incredibly easy to spot, with long, narrow bodies and a strong chest and torso. Surprisingly, they’ve acquired the nickname of “couch potato,” meaning small spaces won’t cramp their style.
Unfortunately, thousands of Greyhounds are bred to become racing dogs in the U.S. Once they’ve served their purpose on the track, they’re retired and usually given up to shelters. This sad practice makes adopting a Greyhound an excellent idea.
If you decide to bring one into the apartment, good news: Their grooming needs are minimal and their tendency to bark is low, making them perfect roommates.
3. The Bullmastiff
Bullmastiffs are huge, coming in at around 130 pounds, but these giants typically want nothing more than to nap peacefully with their humans. The biggest problem of having them in an apartment? Tripping over their large bodies while they nap.
Bullmastiffs are incredibly affectionate and love being near their family. Couple that with their passion for sprawling out and snoozing, and you might find them snoring (and sometimes drooling) the day away at your feet, so watch your step.
Bullmastiffs need regular 20- to 30-minute walks daily to stay healthy, but they’ll be just as happy lounging on the couch throughout an entire movie marathon, if that’s what the day has in store.
Watch this Great Dane just make himself right at home on his human — I mean, the couch:
Convincing Your Landlord
What’s the best way to convince your landlord to allow a large dog into the home? Make it a win for them, too.
Let them know how serious you are by promising:
- A long-term stay: Turning apartments over and filling vacancies is expensive and time-consuming. The longer tenants stay, the easier and cheaper it is for landlords. Agree to a multi-year stay to make the dog request more appealing.
- Renter’s insurance that covers dog-related damages: Show your landlord how seriously you take their needs by purchasing renter’s insurance to cover any damages related to your dog.
- A larger pet deposit: Offer an additional 25% on top of the normal pet deposit to reassure your landlord that they’ll be covered if any damages occur.
Finally, bring your well-behaved dog to meet your landlord. Show them how sweet, laid-back and quiet they are.
With some good manners and a solid plan of action, you and your dog will have a much better chance of a smooth homecoming together.
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