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6 Best Big Dogs for Apartments: Pictures, Facts & Size

Written by: Rachael Gerkensmeyer

Last Updated on April 3, 2024 by Dogster Team

greyhound standing on grass

6 Best Big Dogs for Apartments: Pictures, Facts & Size

Dogs are great animals to share our lives and homes with. They love to cuddle, they can be fun and spunky, they can go hiking and adventuring outdoors with us, and they tend to give us plenty of laughs. However, if you’re living in an apartment, you might be worried that you don’t have enough room or resources to care for a dog, especially one that’s considered a large breed.

A Chihuahua might do fine in an apartment setting, but what about a dog that’s several times larger? There happen to be a few big dog breeds that can do quite well living in an apartment!

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How Are Big Dogs for Apartments Classified?

There is no official classification for big dogs that do well in apartment settings. That said, there are a few traits that these types of dogs have in common:

  • Low to Medium Energy Levels — Big dogs that don’t have high energy levels can usually do fine in apartments if they get out for brisk walks at least once a day and have access to outdoor bathroom breaks regularly.
  • Minimal Barking — Barking is a problem for apartment dwellers who own dogs because the noise tends to annoy the neighbors. Therefore, big dog breeds that don’t bark much are best suited for apartment living.
  • Independence — Dogs that are independent don’t mind spending time at home alone. Unfortunately, not all dogs are independent enough to handle alone time and can develop stress, anxiety, and destructive behavior that affects household members and/or neighbors. So, big dogs with independent temperaments tend to do best when it comes to apartment life.

The 6 Big Dogs for Apartments

1. The Bullmastiff

bullmastiff dog standing in an open field
Image Credit: Michael J Magee, Shutterstock
Origin: Originating in the 1860s, the Bullmastiff was developed by English gamekeepers to create a fearless yet calm and loyal breed that could capture and hold poachers without seriously harming or killing them.
Lifespan: 8 to 10 years
Weight: 100–130 pounds

The Bullmastiff is a laidback, protective breed that tends to bond deeply with their human companions. They have an easy-going temperament and can get along well with people and other animals when socialized from a young age. These dogs don’t have excessive amounts of energy and are happy with a brisk 20- to 30-minute walk outdoors each day. The rest of the time, they’ll be happy hanging out inside the apartment and snoozing or engaging in interactive toys.

2. The Poodle

black standard poodle dog standing on grass
Image Credit: Danica Chang, Shutterstock
Origin: It’s thought that the Poodle was originally developed as a duck-hunting canine in medieval Germany (800–1500 C.E.).
Lifespan: 10 to 18 years
Weight: 40–70 pounds

Poodles are hardy, agile dogs that love exploring. However, they are not overly active and don’t tend to bark much. They are also independent enough to be fine at home alone while everyone is at work and school. They do love to get outside and play, so an apartment community with a park of some kind is optimal.

3. The Saint Bernard

saint bernard dog
Image Credit: Rita_Kochmarjova, Shutterstock
Origin: Initially bred for life-saving rescue work, this large working dog hails from the Western Alps of Switzerland and Italy.
Lifespan: 8 to 10 years
Weight: 120–180 pounds

Saint Bernards might be huge, but they are referred to as “gentle giants” due to their gentle nature and attitude. They do need daily exercise outdoors, but they are laidback and can get along well in an apartment atmosphere if they have a space of their own to sleep, play, and hang out. A corner of a room is suitable if bedding and quietness from household noises can be afforded.

4. The Great Dane

blue great dane running in the field
Image Credit: Katho Menden, Shutterstock
Origin: Believed to have derived from the Mastiff, the Great Dane may have originated in the 16th
Lifespan: 8 to 10 years
Weight: 100–200 pounds

Believe it or not, the Great Dane is a suitable breed for apartment living. They are capable of walking all day long if necessary, but they are happy to laze around the house instead if allowed to. A brisk morning walk is all that it takes to keep these huge dogs happy and healthy if they also have plenty of activities to engage in when indoors.

5. The Golden Retriever

Golden retriever peeing on the lawn
Image Credit: Chendongshan, Shutterstock
Origin: The first Golden Retriever was proudly developed by Dudley Coutts Marjoribanks in Scotland.
Lifespan: 10 to 12 years
Weight: 55–75 pounds

Golden Retrievers are known for being active and exuberant, but the truth is that they can handle a calm, regular routine if they can get out for daily walks. Therefore, they don’t need a fenced yard or any special outdoor space to stay happy and healthy throughout their lives. They aren’t big barkers and usually don’t mind spending time alone, so they are not likely to be annoying to neighbors.

6. The Greyhound

Italian Greyhound
Image Credit: Alexandra Morrison Photo, Shutterstock
Origin: The first Greyhounds that we know of were recorded thousands of years ago in Ancient Egypt, where they were revered as gods.
Lifespan: 10 to 14 years
Weight: 55–90 pounds

Standard Greyhounds might be tall and skinny, but their energy levels are not high, so they can get all the exercise that they need while living in an apartment. They do not mind chilling in the living room while human companions are doing their thing, and they are likely to snooze the day away while everyone is gone.

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With such a variety of large dog breeds to choose from, those who live in apartments don’t have to forego the opportunity to share their lives with a strong, passionate dog that will enhance their outdoor adventures.

Featured Image Credit: nonmisvegliate, Pixabay

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