City Life, Tips & Tricks

What are the Best Apartment Pets? Dogs, Cats, & More

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According to Statista, approximately 89.7 million dogs live in U.S. homes, and nearly 70% of all households in the U.S. own pets. We love our fur babies and can’t imagine life without them. But if you are living in or moving to an apartment, there are some challenges with holding onto a furry friend. Here are some good apartment pets to consider as an addition to your family.

Pet Friendly Apartments

First things first: check with your apartment to see if pets are even allowed. If they are a pet friendly apartment complex, they probably have certain specifications that you need to abide by. For example, Weidner Apartment Homes owns 46,000 apartment units in the U.S. and Canada. You can search which ones are cat and dog friendly from their home page (they even have dog and cat symbols for each complex to show which ones accept pets). Next, they list the costs and restrictions that apply to pets. In this specific case, you can have two pets that weigh less than 75 pounds and certain breed restrictions apply. Other renters will find that only small pets are allowed, or that nontraditional pets (like reptiles, fish, or rodents) are forbidden. At Weidner, your pet will have an interview with a member of the apartment staff to ensure that it will get along with the other residents before moving in. Finally, additional fees may be required. Weidner charges a $300 pet deposit, a $300 pet fee, and a $30/month pet rent fee, but some renters find their landlord has no additional cost per pet.

Best Pets for Apartments


People in the world are divided into two basic categories: cat people or dog people. Okay, that may be simplifying things a bit, but there are very strong opinions out there on which animal is better. Lucky for you, we’re going to make everyone happy and not talk about cats vs dogs, but instead which breeds of each, and which other small pets, are right for apartment life.

Best Dogs for Apartments

Source: Rent Tampa Bay

Are you a dog lover? Certain breeds are perfect for apartment living because of their mellow personalities, quiet nature, small size, and their ability to get along with others. Popular small dog breeds such as the Pug, Shih Tzu, Cavalier King Charles Spaniel, French Bulldog, Chihuahua, Bichon Frise, Toy Poodle and Boston and Yorkshire Terriers can adjust well to apartment living. But if your heart yearns for a larger dog, consider a brilliant basenji or surprisingly lazy greyhound – both are well-suited to apartment life.

If you’re set on getting a dog, look for an apartment that has common areas for your dog to play in or what local dog parks are nearby. After a long day at work, you may not want to walk around the block or drive to the dog park. And keep that leash handy! Most apartments require dogs to be on a leash when they are out of the apartment and exploring the property.

Best Cats for Apartments

Source: Todery

Cats are a great pet for an apartment. They don’t need the space to run around like a lot of dogs do and they don’t require the same amount of attention as a reptile or rodent. Some of the best apartment cat breeds include British Shorthairs, Persians (but beware, that long hair is high maintenance), Ragdoll, and Javanese.

If you do get a cat, make sure they have lots of toys and scratching posts to keep them busy. You want your security deposit back and you certainly don’t want the side of your sofa to end up in shreds. Cats also like vertical spaces so if your apartment is small, choose tall cat towers for them to perch from.

Other Pets for Apartment Living

Maybe you’re looking for a lower maintenance pet that doesn’t need to be walked daily like a dog or doesn’t shed like a cat. If that sounds like you, here are the best apartment pets for you to think about adopting:

Reptiles – Snakes, turtles, lizards, and frogs are quiet and don’t require a ton of attention. However, many times they do need fresh food (um, can those tasty crickets be considered as pets, too?) and you need to monitor the temperature of their habitat closely. You’ll need to ensure you have proper emergency planning if your apartment power ever goes out, especially if you choose a cold-blooded critter.

Fish – Freshwater fish can be beautiful, effortless pets to entertain you. You’ll hear the melodic splash of the water pump, get ambiance from the glow of the heat lamp, and fish can come in hundreds of colors, sizes, and shapes. If you want to get really wild, you can also add snails, ghost shrimp, and dwarf frogs to your underwater habitat. But do your research first: not all fish are alike, and not all of them get along.

Birds – If fur and scales aren’t really your thing, think about feathers! You can consider an inexpensive (but noisy) parakeet for $20 or choose an intelligent parrot that can cost hundreds or even thousands of dollars. Depending on the time and financial investment that you want to dedicate to your pet, you could get a fancy bird that can talk and learn tricks. Birds only require a change of food and water every few days, replacing the cage liner once a week, and just cover them up at night to keep them quiet.

Rodents – Okay, just the name “rodent” sounds like something you need a trap for, but these little guys can be really cute starter pets. From hamsters to guinea pigs to rats (and we’re talking about pets and not food for the above reptile category!), these furry friends can keep you company without a lot of effort. They’re fun to watch but some are nocturnal, so do your research if you’re a light sleeper.

If you’re moving with one of these pets, be sure to talk to the apartment manager first to make sure that they will be welcomed guests. Also, take the extra step to secure the new place so that your pet will be safe. For instance, if you’re moving with cats, create a closed off space for them in the new home (like in the bathroom) so they won’t run off. Fill this room with familiar toys and their bed to ease the transition. Finally, book a Dolly so that you can focus on your pet during the move instead of heavy lifting. We’ll transport your boxes and furniture so you can give your scared pet the attention they deserve… you’ll both feel better for it.

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