German Shepherds Forum banner

1 - 18 of 18 Posts

·
Registered
Joined
·
57 Posts
Discussion Starter #1
Hi guys, sorry this is a long one.

Have owned large dogs majority of my life in the UK - including a GS bitch, labradors and border collies (all KC registered) and numerous rescues.

Having moved to the States, I now live in a large apartment with SO and 2 cats. I currently work at home, and both I and SO run/exercise outdoors frequently, but I have held off getting a puppy or older dog (would prefer to train from young age, but am fully willing to adopt an older dog if the match is right) until we have a place with a yard.

I am however reconsidering. We currently live on the outskirts of a dog friendly regional park (20+ miles of sand/mud running trails) which is literally ten feet from our doorstep (we're on the ground floor). Plus the fact that I am working from home currently makes it ideal for puppy/new dog training. My schedule will change next year but dog is never likely to be home alone for more than 4 hours due to rotating shifts between the two of us. We would also be moving somewhere with a yard next year, but these next months will be the only time I'd be home 24-7 for training.

Has anyone had success/serious bad experiences with a GSD in an apartment? I have always done crate training with my previous pups (and would again), and always had success with cats and large dogs cohabiting also, when introduced correctly. But I have also always had a grass yard for late night emergencies and early morning toilet.

It's also a large-dog friendly complex, next step would be talking to landlord who is incredibly laid-back with animal issues but only if I can be sure dog would not go crazy.

Sorry for the long post! :blush:
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
19,157 Posts
Had two GSDs in an apartment successfully. Long as they got good exercise, they did fine. We only had one issue because the lead maintenance guy hated dogs period so he always complained about them but that was it. The dogs did great in the apartment.
 

·
Banned
Joined
·
15,195 Posts
an apartment or a house is a deluxe crate. your dog is going
to fine with the apartment life.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
1,735 Posts
Just make sure its GSD friendly community and you should be fine =)
 

·
Premium Member
Joined
·
14,021 Posts
I have 4 dogs...2 of them are GSD's and I'm in an apartment. Won't be for long, but for now they are very content and comfortable.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
57 Posts
Discussion Starter #6
Thanks for the quick replies guys, good to know. It wouldn't be for longer than a year, I've just never had any size dog without a yard before. Also concerned that rescue/shelters/breeders would all be unwilling to sell/adopt out a dog to someone without a yard. Contacted a few places to ask their policies on that, so we'll see. Thanks again!
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
175 Posts
I've had Jackson for about 9 months, and he turned 1 yesterday. We've been in apt the whole time, and it's been a breeze. Just be committed to giving him/her the exercise they need and it should not be a problem.
 

·
Premium Member
Joined
·
79 Posts
I was in the exact same position as you several months ago with numerous similarities. I am currently living in an apartment in the city. I will be moving out the apartment in a few months but made the decision to acquire a GSD while in the apartment. The main reason I am working from home and was able to spend 24/7 with the newest member of our family. I also live on the first floor of a large apartment complex. In addition there are numerous parks just a short drive away. Finally I also was a proud owner of a black lab that was truly an amazing dog with lots of drive.

So here is the good and ugly about GSDs and apartments:

1) Select a GSD from a reputable breeder. You definitely want a GSD with solid nerves and temperament for apartment living. A reactive dog in an apartment would be a NIGHTMARE! High energy and driven dogs can also do well in apartments. High energy doesn’t mean destructive just means they require frequent mental stimulation and outlets for physical activity. Lastly if you had a lab you will want a GSD that instinctively retrieves.

2) There are some significant traits about GSDs that you should be aware of that affect apartment living. For one they are very vocal. The second is their protective instincts can make them territorial. When living in an apartment it’s important to note that they really have no territory. That means the common areas and the apartment itself. Maintenance crews and etc may need access to the apartment. I would suggest investing in a large create early with a divider. Introduce the crate early to your puppy as this is really the only safe place for a dog when you leave the apartment unattended. As far as GSD’s being vocal I taught our puppy how to bark at an early age. I did this with sound triggers not visually seeing people or dogs. The reason why I taught him this I can correct his barking if he consistently barks at something that he shouldn’t. This prevents any issues with noise nuisance.

3) Living next to a rec park is awesome. Otherwise finding areas for exercise requires some creativity. I generally walk my dog at office building fields that have picnic areas that are adjacent to my apartment. During non-business hours is when I can work his drives.

4) Apartments offer great socialization and exposure for dogs. To see numerous different people and things I can just sit on our porch with our dog you will see it all. Also keen in mind GSD puppies grow up fast. There will be many people afraid of the dog who weren’t when it was a puppy. You will also meet people who hate or are fearful of dogs. Sometimes it will require a thick skin. I like to think of it as training helpers 
If I could do it again I wouldn’t hesitate to get a GSD just because I was in an apartment. Specially since I can spend all the time in the world with him!
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
766 Posts
I've lived this past year in an apartment with my previous GS before she died and now the puppy who we got at 14 weeks and is now 8 mo. Never any issues. A yard is convenient to have but as long as you get them plenty of exercise outside then not having a yard doesnt really matter much. You just have to walk them out to use the bathroom. Also on the plus side it forces you to walk the dog instead of relying on a yard.. keeps you healthy :)
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
3,325 Posts
We live in a townhome with a patio but no yard. This is our second dog here and they do fine. The humans and the dog are well exercised since we have to go out for good long walks. The dog is well socialized, we live in a dense housing area and always people out. And because we don't have a yard we must look for fun places for hikes and off leash time, so we end up discovering so many hidden gems in our county and surrounding areas. With no yard you don't have to worry about fence fighting with your neighbor's dog or your neighbor's kids trying to reach over the yard fence to pet your GSD as some people often write about. I try to look at the positive side of a situation.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
519 Posts
I have 2 gsds, a border collie mutt and an American pit bull terrier in a rather small apartment. It works. I wish I had a yard, and we hope to move soon but we've been saying that for years lol.
My dogs bark at the door but that is about it. They are not over territorial, do not bark at noises or people around our building. They do drive me insane sometimes if they haven't been exercised enough but that is my fault, not theirs. They are all wonderfully socialized from being raised so close to people and dogs. I live close to many parks, school yards and a lake so there is lots for us to do.
One thing I love about living in town with well trained dogs is all the neighboors watch us in awe as we go for walks. Has really done well for the people afraid of gsds and pit bulls, they are the best behaved dogs in our neighboorhood :)
Apartment living is totally do-able, so long as you get them out to exercise.
 

·
Banned
Joined
·
15,195 Posts
1a >>>>> some maybe more vocal than others but with
training you shouldn't have a problem.

2b >>>>> you can exercise anywhere.

I was in the exact same position as you several months ago with numerous similarities. I am currently living in an apartment in the city. I will be moving out the apartment in a few months but made the decision to acquire a GSD while in the apartment. The main reason I am working from home and was able to spend 24/7 with the newest member of our family. I also live on the first floor of a large apartment complex. In addition there are numerous parks just a short drive away. Finally I also was a proud owner of a black lab that was truly an amazing dog with lots of drive.

So here is the good and ugly about GSDs and apartments:

1) Select a GSD from a reputable breeder. You definitely want a GSD with solid nerves and temperament for apartment living. A reactive dog in an apartment would be a NIGHTMARE! High energy and driven dogs can also do well in apartments. High energy doesn’t mean destructive just means they require frequent mental stimulation and outlets for physical activity. Lastly if you had a lab you will want a GSD that instinctively retrieves.

2) There are some significant traits about GSDs that you should be aware of that affect apartment living.

1a. >>>>> For one they are very vocal. <<<<<

The second is their protective instincts can make them territorial. When living in an apartment it’s important to note that they really have no territory. That means the common areas and the apartment itself. Maintenance crews and etc may need access to the apartment. I would suggest investing in a large create early with a divider. Introduce the crate early to your puppy as this is really the only safe place for a dog when you leave the apartment unattended. As far as GSD’s being vocal I taught our puppy how to bark at an early age. I did this with sound triggers not visually seeing people or dogs. The reason why I taught him this I can correct his barking if he consistently barks at something that he shouldn’t. This prevents any issues with noise nuisance.

3) Living next to a rec park is awesome.

2b >>>>> Otherwise finding areas for exercise requires some creativity.<<<<<

I generally walk my dog at office building fields that have picnic areas that are adjacent to my apartment. During non-business hours is when I can work his drives.

4) Apartments offer great socialization and exposure for dogs. To see numerous different people and things I can just sit on our porch with our dog you will see it all. Also keen in mind GSD puppies grow up fast. There will be many people afraid of the dog who weren’t when it was a puppy. You will also meet people who hate or are fearful of dogs. Sometimes it will require a thick skin. I like to think of it as training helpers 
If I could do it again I wouldn’t hesitate to get a GSD just because I was in an apartment. Specially since I can spend all the time in the world with him!
 

·
Premium Member
Joined
·
14,021 Posts
1a >>>>> some maybe more vocal than others but with
training you shouldn't have a problem.

2b >>>>> you can exercise anywhere.
Vocal doesn't necessarily mean barking at things in the area. My dog is vocal in play and she talks to whoever will listen. It is a part of her and I couldn't imagine training that out of her.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
1,373 Posts
2nd floor apartmenter here! Raised her from 9 weeks, potty training was a pain because I had to run down all the stairs, but no, she loves it, she likes being in the same room. Just lots of walks and exercise
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
57 Posts
Discussion Starter #16
Thanks so much for all the replies guys! Sorry for the late feedback. We have recently adopted an eight week old GSD and she's doing great. Potty training during the day is a bit of a trial! but at night she's good about letting us know she needs out of the crate and we take her outside straight away, she does her business and back inside. We're crate training so it makes things easier! Again much thanks for all the feedback!


Sent from Petguide.com Free App
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
120 Posts
My husband and I live in a one bedroom apartment, and for the longest time we held off on getting a puppy/dog too.
But we fianlly drcided the timing is great, we are both fortunate enoigh to be home all day.
We've had Durzo for 3 and a half weeks, and so far everything is great.
Its definitely a lot more work than having house with a yard, but its worth it.
The only issue we are having is the fact that our puppy barks like crazy in thr early am.

Sent from Petguide.com Free App
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
57 Posts
Discussion Starter #18
I've been really lucky with our girl at night so far, she goes in her crate, fusses for a second or so, then curls up and goes to sleep. Her crate is kept by my side of the bed and if she fusses, I drop a hand over the side for her to smell (no petting and no reassurance). Since she knows we're close, she sleeps until she needs to go outside, wakes me up by a quick whine and we're out the door as soon as I throw a jacket on.
So far both nights she has had no accidents in her crate. I'm quick to take her out in the morning at 7 before her breakfast.
I've always crate trained but never had a dogcrate in the bedroom before - gotta say it certainly makes the first nights less painful for us, her and the neighbours! Plus she will sleep by the bed once she's housetrained (but never in it!) so it made sense to have her there now.

Hope the early am barking sorts out! :)
 
1 - 18 of 18 Posts
Top