True enjoyment comes from activity of the mind and exercise of the body; the two are ever united – Wilhelm von Humboldt
Having a dog and living in an apartment can be challenging. Notice I didn’t say impossible. I’ve never understood rescues that won’t adopt out to individuals who don’t live in a house with a fenced in yard. There are so many individuals who can provide a dog everything they need without those two requirements.
Porter has only lived in an apartment. There are challenges that come with it and different ways to do things, however, I do not feel as though he’s missing anything. Today, I’m going to share some tips on how to make living in an apartment with your dog successful when it comes to providing them activity.
I know, you’re not surprised. But this is so important. Walks are the key to holding everything together. This is a mental exercise as well as a physical exercise. You don’t always have the ability to let your dog out the backyard and run himself tired. So you need to get out there and give them some great physical activity by going on walks. Do what you can. If you only have time for a 15 minute walk, throw that backpack on your dog and get out there! The past few weeks, I’ve been trying to re-frame my outlook. If I’m about to turn on the television, do I have time to take Porter for another 15-20 minute walk? It’s healthier for him and for me. And will get your dog even more activity which is so key to having a balanced dog.
2. Dog Parks
Utilize the dog park as much as you can. If you are worried about it being crowded go early in the morning or on days where the weather isn’t so great. That will thin out the crowd a little. This is a great way to let your dog run lose, play with other dogs and get some pent up energy out. Nothing tires out a dog like another dog. Make it fun and try different dog parks around you so you’re not always going to the same one.
3. Phone a Friend
Dog people attract dog people. So, I’m sure you have a friend or a coworker or a neighbor who has a dog as well. Plan a walk together! That way someone else is relying on you and your dog gets to practice walking with another dog. A perfect way to working on your Piloting skills while still having fun and staying motivated.
4. Doggy Daycare
There are days where you can see that your dog just needs to run. They’re antsy and even on the walks they’re struggling to stay with you and pay attention to your corrections. You can tell in their body language they just need to get out! So, take them to doggy day care for a day! It can even be on a day that you’re normally around the house. It doesn’t only have to be when you’re away for the night or the day. Drop them off for the day, let them run around like crazy while you run errands, clean the house, take a day trip and then pick them up! You won’t feel guilty about leaving the house and your pup will be so excited that he got to run around and play with dogs all day. It’s a win win for everyone!
5. Use What You Have
Even though you may be residing in a smaller space, you still probably have, well, space. So use it! Play fetch with your dog, work on commands, play the find it game. Use the space you have to keep them stimulated. Get creative with it!
Living in an apartment doesn’t mean you can’t give your dog what they need. It merely means you have to use different tools in your belt. They’ll still have as much fun and love you all the same. Have fun and get out there! Your dog will be just as happy as the next dog.
Darwin Dogs, LLC
Dog Training in Cleveland, OH