Small is In: Creative Solutions for a Pet Living in a Small Space

Red Cat Sitting On The WindowDoes the tiny house revolution hold a certain appeal, but you’re not sure if your pet could handle it? Do you want to adopt a pet, but you currently live in a fourth-floor walkup that’s less than 500 square feet?

Unless you’re the proud owner of a working breed, you’re in luck! Most pets can handle less square footage, but special considerations are necessary for a pet living in a small space. Whatever your circumstances, we’re here to help you manage the following creative solutions for a happy, healthy pet.

Oh, So Adaptable!

One of the biggest concerns for a pet living in a small space is whether or not the environment is adequate for optimal wellness.

Urban areas in which apartment buildings seem to be stacked on top of each other may not be the first choice for owners of large or highly active breeds. However, many cities boast pet-friendly amenities that are wonderful for pets and owners alike. It’s not cruel to keep a pet living in a small space, but you must consider all of your pet’s needs beforehand.

Home is Where the Heart Is

Considering your pet’s breed, size, age, personality, and lifestyle is a great place to start. Many people with space restrictions opt for a house cat, pocket pet, fish, or toy breed dog. Adding any of these pets to your small space would certainly make your place more homey.

Please make sure your apartment building and/or landlord accepts pets. If so, find out if a pet deposit is necessary and how much it would cost.

Making it All Worth It

So, how do you manage a pet living in a small space, especially one that requires daily exercise?  

  • Commit to 2-3 walks every day to allow your pet to burn off excess energy, prevent weight gain, and stimulate his or her senses. If you’re not available, schedule a dog walker or invest in doggie daycare.
  • Schedule play dates for your puppy or dog to work on socialization and training.
  • Visit your local dog park.
  • Offer a variety of toys to keep your pet entertained at home (e.g., a Kong, cat tree, or scratching post).
  • Since floor space may be limited, use your apartment’s vertical space to entice your cat to explore new vantage points.

Bathroom Breaks

Where do you keep your cat’s litter box in such a small space? Check out these clever hacks or this concealed litter box bench for possible solutions. Remember to clean it each time your cat uses it.

If you have a dog, make sure you’re home and available to provide him or her with bathroom breaks (and bundle up during the colder months here in Michigan!). You could also provide your pup with a patch of grass or puppy training pads to use when you’re not home.

Safety Considerations

Because apartment buildings are full of other people and their pets, always keep your pet on a leash when outside. Also:

  • Never allow your pet access to open windows or balconies if you live above the ground floor.
  • Many complexes have pools. If it’s not enclosed, make sure your pet doesn’t go near the perimeter and risk falling in.
  • Your apartment building and surrounding area may use lawn chemicals or pesticides to keep landscaping or potted plants looking fresh. Do not allow your pet to consume any landscaped plants.

A Pet Living in a Small Space can be Happy

The bottom line is that your pet can be happy living in an apartment, but you must be aware of his or her needs in order to get the best results. If you notice your pet showing any signs of depression or separation anxiety, please give us a call. Good luck!