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Animals that make good apartment pets

We all want our pets to be content and healthy, and an apartment doesn’t always provide that. Many apartments don’t allow you to have a large animal.  But, don’t worry – you can find many wonderful pets, besides fish, that don’t mind living in an apartment.

You’re in luck – the types of pets that can live in an apartment are relaxed and low maintenance. We’re here to help you decide which apartment pet is perfect for your pet-ownership goals and lifestyle.

Cats

Cats are born for apartment living! Cats love the indoor-only lifestyle, and they don’t want daily walks like dogs. But if you decide to be a cat owner, you need to dedicate yourself to provide them with plenty of opportunities to exercise and play and exercise. 

Cats love small-enclosed spaces and enjoy using the vertical space (whether it’s shelving, windowsills, or furniture) rather than spreading out. Even if you have a small apartment, it would be exponentially large for your feline friend. The best thing is: they don’t mind being left alone. 

Ferrets

First, they have a long lifespan, so you can have them for a long time. They’re curious, energetic, and interested in playing when awake. The thing is they sleep for 16 hours. That and being small makes them ideal apartment pets. 

However, when awake, they are active, so you’ll need to release them from their cages. However, they’re so cuddly and loving that you’ll enjoy their company. And if you train your ferret properly, it’ll be the low-maintenance and loyal companion you desire.

Hamster 

Hamsters are low maintenance and they can entertain themselves. They’re fun to watch playing with tubes, toys, and hamster wheels. They just require a wire cage with a strong bottom padded with shavings.

Hamsters prefer to be alone, so you don’t have to worry about leaving them alone at your apartment. But, if you work long days and you’re home alone at night, a hamster will be perfect for you, since hamsters are a great company in the evening hours.

Parrots

Parrots are human-like, wonderful pets, as they’re intelligent, lively, and playful. However, like us, they have the potential to live for up to eighty years. For this reason, if you invest in a parrot, you should be ready to make that long-term commitment, particularly considering that your parrot will become attached to you over time.

The parrots live in a cage, and the living room is enough for them to fly around.

Rabbits 

Rabbits are social animals, but they don’t like you to hold them. But, they’re always happy to be around their owners. It may take some effort, but rabbits can be litter trained, and they can have time out of their cages. If you train them properly and rabbit-proof your apartment, you can give them a full free-range. 

However, if their time outside the cage is limited, you’ll need to get a large cage. That also will make you feel better when you leave them alone at the apartment. 

Dogs

If the only animal that comes to your mind when you think about having a pet is a dog – you don’t have to get discouraged if you live in an apartment. Yes, you read it correctly! You can keep a dog in an apartment. 

Many breeds, like Chihuahua, French bulldog, Greyhound poodle, pug, and Shih Tzu can thrive in small spaces and be perfectly happy in your apartment. These won’t destroy your things when you’re out, and they’re clean animals.  Just know that all dogs need proper exercise, so you need to give your puppy the freedom to run outside once per day.

Pets

5 signs showing your dog needs a professional dog trainer

Don’t be ashamed of that, it isn’t a bad thing at all. There are minor issues that can turn into big problems. These issues may not even seem like behavior problems to you now, but they can grow into major disturbances.

Most dog owners need to go to an obedience class or hire a professional dog trainer at some time, whether they’d like to admit it or not. 

Your best choice is to hire a professional dog trainer at the first sign rather than wait until someone is harmed. Even if your loving dog means well, bad behavior is frowned upon and it can lead to legal issues. It’s only our responsibility to ensure our dogs are good canine neighbors! So, if you notice any of the following signs, you’ll need to hire a dog trainer.

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Pulling on the leash

This may seem like a minor behavior, but it can grow into something more. First, if your dog constantly drags you around, it is uncomfortable and annoying. But most importantly, this means you’re not in control at all and the dog will take you wherever he wants to go. 

Heavy pulling can strain your muscles and it can even drag you to the ground. This is dangerous for everyone around, not only you, especially when your dog will notice a strange person or another dog. 

Jumping

When dogs jump, they show their affection and love, but it’s extremely inappropriate. Jumping may hurt. People around you don’t want to be knocked over and scratched. Also, this can lead to serious injuries. Even if your dog is friendly, make sure your dog knows that jumping on people is not an option. To be a responsible dog owner you need to show your dog ways to display love and affection that don’t hurt or scare anyone.

Nipping/Growling

Nipping and growling are the earliest signs of aggression in dogs. Dogs that started with light warning nips and growls escalated into full-blown attacks. So, the most serious bites come from those nips and growls. You need to teach your dog that behavior is unacceptable, no matter when or why the dog has nipped or growled at anyone. This is a warning sign indicating to hire a professional trainer immediately since this danger could pose if it escalates.  

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Guarding objects

Even if someone is trying to take your dog’s favorite bone, he should never bite or growl at anyone. Resource guarding is a serious problem and should be addressed by a trainer instantly. The dog might decide to resource guard anything from a treat, toy, bone, to bed, chair, couch, etc. This means the dog is claiming that a particular item is his or hers and will be aggressively defended if needed.

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Door bolting

Door bolting is a serious issue that many dog owners face. This is considered a serious problem since it poses a safety concern to both the public and your dog. When your dog escapes from your house, he could easily wind up in dangerous traffic or run far away. Whatever his or her reason is, the dog should know to stay inside your house unless you release him for a walk.

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How to train your hyperactive dog

High-energy dogs are charming for their happy temperaments and big personalities, but shelters are full of former pets deemed “too much to handle.”

If you go on two walks daily and spend many hours playing fetch, but your dog is still running around you, then welcome to the club of owners raising a hyperactive dog. 

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These seemingly tireless canines are a joy to have them, but admit it, training that wriggly mass of fur was very hard. If you are an owner of a hyperactive dog, don’t give up on training. Instead, try the following tips to focus your dog’s energy on learning new skills.

Exercise before training 

Imagine a six-year-old forced to sit in school all day without taking any breaks for recess. They’ll flounder in their seat and do anything except what you want them to do. That’s exactly how your dog will behave if you try to train him without first releasing some of his energy. The training sessions need to be structured times when the dog has a full focus on you. Your chances are higher at keeping his attention if you schedule your sessions for right after he gets back from his walk or after a rousing game of fetch.

Make training fun for your hyperactive dog

If your dog is not interested in what you want him to do, you’ll never be able to force him to do anything. The dogs must have the desire to train with their owners. The best way to do that is to make the training fun.  If the dog expects to be yelled at or if you’re going to end up frustrated or mad, he will not be willing to participate in the training. Make it a positive atmosphere by being enthusiastic and upbeat. 

Plan your training “Curriculum” for your hyperactive dog

The first commands you teach him should be ones that will make future training. One of the biggest problems with training hyperactive dogs is they get too excited during the training, and they can’t concentrate on what you’re saying. If you experience this, you need to focus on skills that improve impulse control. “Leave it,” “go to your mat,” and “calm,” are all obedience tricks that will definitely come in handy when teaching other skills.

Take advantage of learning opportunities

When they want something, no matter what that is, you need to make them work to get it. If they want to eat, make them sit and “leave it” before allowing them to dig in. If they want your attention, just start scratching when they’ve shown you how well they’ve mastered the “calm” command. Making them earn things daily will keep their bodies and brains working to spend more energy.

How to Calm a Hyperactive Dog

Learn the power of redirection

When your dog is barking, running, and jumping, you as a frustrated pet owner probably try to stifle that energy just to earn a second of calmness. However, punishing the dog isn’t going to help. You should redirect the activity instead of trying to stop it. Hyperactivity is usually connected with an eagerness to please and a keen intellect. So, if you give your hyperactive dog a task at which he can use his never-ending energy, it is a win-win! Your dog will be still excited and active, but he will be doing something productive. 

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Training a hyperactive dog will take commitment and patience. It won’t always be fun and easy, but it’ll be definitely worth it. Don’t let small backsets disappoint you. Don’t give up on your dog.

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Why your dog isn’t listening to your commands?

Although most dogs want to engage with their owners and are willing to please them, don’t forget that the dogs are opportunists. There are times when no matter what you do, something else is more interesting to them.

Your dog would rather take the steak right off your plate than lie on their bed. But, there are no bad dogs – there are dogs that lack training.

If you think your dog is not interested in listening to you, you might want to question yourself what is the reason for that. Usually, your dog isn’t being strong-willed or stubborn – it can be a training or communication issue.

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Weak rewards

You’ve likely met the dog that performs obedience commands and tricks simply because it loves his owner. But most dogs are not going to do something just because they love you. They are likely to do what provides them with the highest reward. If you tell your canine friend to be calm and offer a delicious treat, your dog is going to oblige, just because they’re getting something out of it. But, if you tell your dog to sit and offer nothing, they may just ignore you. 

Shaping behavior with treats, toys, and food is important in the foundations of obedience training. You need to make obeying commands fun for your friend to make them find joy in working with you. 

Lacking consistency

Every trainer, regardless of their experiences and methods, will tell you that consistency is probably the key aspect of training. The more consistent you are, the more useful the training will be. Consistency provides clear rules for the dog to follow with every specific behavior they learn. 

That means it’s easier for them to understand what you want and follow through with it. And we must be extremely clear in our training since this is the only possible communication with our dogs.

Too much training

You can get a little carried away when you are teaching your furry friend something new and exciting. It’s important to remember, especially when it comes to young dogs, that patience is a virtue. You can easily overwhelm your dog with many commands that are too complex. 

Asking too much of your dogs too soon results in burnout for both owner and dog! Take a step back if your dog isn’t listening and ensure you aren’t asking too much. Sometimes the dogs don’t understand a command, so take a moment to revisit older behaviors.

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Many distractions

A park full of other dogs and people is different from the inside of your living room. Your dog is in your home daily, but he doesn’t see many other things daily. What you don’t consider as a big deal, might be a big distraction for the dog. If your dog behaves well at the park unless there is a baseball game going on, then you know that a baseball game is a distraction for your pet and you’ll need to work up to that level of disturbance.

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No consequences

Dogs need consequences just like people do. Sometimes the dog will choose to disobey regardless of the reward, no matter how well-trained they are. Besides withholding the toy or treat, giving a correction is your dog’s consequence. The correction is needed to teach your dog that good behavior comes with rewards, while bad behavior comes with negative consequences. Many trainers believe this makes training clear to dogs and gives an easy way to communicate and teach them.

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