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The Best Dog Breeds for Apartment Living

A senior woman and a dog on a couch

When it comes to unconditional love and daily joy, no pet fits the bill quite like a dog. What’s more, dogs make ideal companions for both senior couples and senior singles. A furry friend encourages you to get outside for a little exercise and gives you something to think about and care for besides yourself.

Before you load up on dog toys and other fun stuff, you’ll need to pick out the ideal pooch that fits your senior lifestyle and, most important, explore the best dog breeds for apartments.

Today’s senior living communities are typically pet-friendly, and many even provide special amenities for dog owners. Meadow Lakes in East Windsor, New Jersey, is a great example of a pet-friendly senior living community focused on welcoming four-legged residents.


It’s Never Too Late to Become a Dog Owner

If your health and your lifestyle can accommodate the needs of a dog, you should definitely consider having a furry friend––there’s a dog out there for everyone, regardless of age! As a senior, you’ll be interested to know that caring for a dog has many well-documented health benefits, both physical and emotional.

Pet owners are less likely to suffer from depression, and they cope better with stress. Just stroking a pup has been shown to lower blood pressure. It’s even been found that pet owners over age 65 make 30% fewer visits to their doctors than those without pets.

A dog encourages more exercise and gets you out in the fresh air, plus a loyal pup provides companionship that helps fend off feelings of isolation and loneliness. And who doesn’t need something else to care about besides yourself? Having a dog gives your life healthy structure and more purpose, not to mention giving you a happier outlook.


Before You Buy That Leash …

As you explore breeds, keep in mind that some dog types need more attention and, especially more exercise, than others. There are numerous online resources to browse that can tell you all about the various personalities of different dog breeds, such as the American Kennel Club, The Spruce online, and

To find wonderful adoptable dogs by breed, check out These sites can help clarify the ideal characteristics of each one. You can even drill down your search to look for best dog breeds for apartments, as well as best dog breeds for seniors. 

Some of the basic responsibilities of dog ownership include feeding, walking, grooming, vet visits, and knowing who can care for your dog if you go out of town or come down with a cold, for example. These days, it’s relatively easy to find a dog walker if you need one simply by asking friends for referrals. That’s also the best way to find a reliable kennel should you want to take a trip or have other reasons to be away from home.


Dog Breeds for Independent Living Residents

There are best dog breeds for senior apartments of every kind, and while a dog’s size and weight are certainly important, they’re not the only factors to consider.


AgeWhile they’re cute as can be, keep in mind that puppies and kittens need a lot of extra care in the early years, which is why older dogs and cats are worth a look. Shelters and breed rescues often have older pets available, and they can make wonderful companions. 


Breed healthIf you decide to get a purebred dog, be sure to browse breed sites to investigate potential known health issues. These shouldn’t necessarily turn you off a breed, but it’s important to be aware that some breeds are prone to conditions like hip dysplasia or ear infections, for example, which could spell vet bills down the road.


Energy levelBreed sites can also tell you how much exercise a dog will require daily, whether it’s walks or playtime. Some dogs are quite content napping in your lap all day, while others need more activity or they can become destructive out of boredom.


Grooming needsSome dog breeds only need a simple nail clipping now and then; others need a full-on grooming from head to tail every six weeks. Again, this is simply a time and financial consideration to keep in mind.


Breed instinctsSome dogs have a desire to “herd” just about anythingincluding you. This might mean they get underfoot and could cause you to fall. Other dogs are known barkers and will yap at every noise or activity outside the window. Read the breed sites and be informed. 

Better yet, ask friends, family, and even your local shelter for advice.


Below are a few tried-and-true small and medium-size breeds to consider that make the best dog breeds for senior apartments:

Small Dogs for Seniors: Easygoing, affectionate, adaptable pups weighing approximately 7 – 14 lbs. include: 

  • Maltese
  • Yorkshire Terrier
  • Toy Poodle
  • Chihuahua
  • Bolognese
  • Brussels Griffon
  • Miniature Dachshund
  • Havanese
  • Lhasa Apso
  • Shih Tzu


Medium Dogs for Seniors: Fun-loving, smart, relatively low-maintenance pups weighing approximately 10-19 lbs. including: 

  • Cavalier King Charles Spaniel
  • Westie
  • Miniature Poodle
  • Bichon Frise
  • Boston Terrier
  • Italian Greyhound
  • French Bulldog 


Meadow Lakes Loves Dog Lovers.

We’re all about our residents enjoying the companionship of dogs (and cats, too!) in our pet-friendly independent living community and comfortable apartments. You and your pup will adore our 103-acre accredited arboretum for serene morning walks or tossing a ball with plenty of room to run.  

Our community is also located near pet-friendly attractions like Mercer County Park and Working Dog Winery. If you’d like more information about how your furry friend will fit right into the relaxed, friendly lifestyle here, we’d love to talk more and arrange a tour. To get all the details, contact us today. We look forward to meeting you!

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