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Living in a studio apartment will not necessarily preclude you from raising a puppy. Here are some pointers about living with a dog in a small space and these tips will make your life and the life of your pup much more fun.


Check your Budget


Puppies are so cute and almost impossible to resist. Those big eyes and soft bodies make the hearts of even the most adamantly non-pet-lover melt. 

Remember that a puppy should not be an impulse purchase. There is a lot more to consider than that cute puppy face. 

Aside from the cost of the actual pup there will be food bills, disposable items to buy like poop bags, vet bills and of course, chewy toys. Check your budget ahead of time because once you get a puppy it is your responsibility to love and care for it. Unlike an impulse buy at the grocery store check-out; a puppy is not a candy bar. Though many would argue they are just as sweet.


What Kind of a Puppy is It?


It is not always possible to determine the puppy’s breed by looking at their cute face. If you are adopting from a shelter, make sure to ask the vet or vet tech for their opinion. 

These are people who have seen thousands of puppies and they base their guesses using a knowledge of different breeds. Although your love and affection will play a huge role in how well your puppy acclimates to life in a studio apartment sometimes nature trumps nurture. Jack Russell Terriers are small but the amount of energy they have can be compared to living in the middle of a tornado. 

Conversely, many people think a large dog will not adapt well to a small home, however, a Newfoundland has the most laid-back personality of almost any breed and is perfectly content to nap on your lap all afternoon. 


Personality Check


Whether you’re in a small Chicago apartment or a place in a warmer climate like San Francisco, the rules remain the same — pay attention to how a puppy presents itself. If it does not make eye contact, seems overly skittish, aggressive, or frightened it may take more than love to become a carefree, lovable pup. 

Measure the pup’s attitude and your lifestyle to find the perfect furry friend. If you love to hike in the woods for hours make sure you get a puppy who can keep up with you when it is full-grown. A tiny dog may not be up for rigorous physical challenges.


And the Vet Said What?


Puppies are Like That, a children’s book by Jan Pfloog, written in 1983, gives a pretty accurate account of the mischief a puppy can get into. 

Only it can be much worse. Besides shots, neutering/spaying, de-worming, and vaccinations, puppies are well known for eating items not currently listed as edible, jumping from spots normally reserved for Superman, and other miscellaneous deeds.

Make sure you find a vet you can trust and ask what happens if your pup needs medical attention after hours. Your puppy should be seen by a vet shortly after adoption to ensure they are healthy. 

Puppies pick up intestinal worms from their mother via the placenta, so they are born with these parasites. Worming is essential from two weeks of age and remember, some types of worms can infect humans. Unchecked intestinal worms can cause blockages in the pup’s intestinal system and prevent the absorption of nutrients. 

Puppies should be wormed every two weeks from 2 weeks of age until 12 weeks of age, and then every month until the puppy is 6 months of age when they can be treated as adults (wormed every 3 months).


Now We are Home


Before you bring a puppy home, make sure your apartment is puppy-proofed. Use a heavy, sealable garbage container to prevent smelly and sometimes dangerous explorations, close doors to closets to protect shoes from being used as chewy toys and pay attention to things you leave lying around. If you smoke, keep all paraphernalia out of reach, and keep small treasures, like jewelry, in drawers. 

Your puppy will love you so much it will even love your dirty clothes, which can be embarrassing if you have company. Having a puppy in your home should make you a much tidier person. 


Potty Training and Crate Training


Depending on where your apartment is located–first floor or 25th–there are many methods for potty training and crate training. 

A good reference is the AKC website. The site discusses all types of training and includes information on socializing and teaching your puppy to spend some time alone. Teaching your puppy good manners will only make it a better friend.

These helpful hints are merely a few of many things you will need to know about life with a puppy. The snuggles are worth the time and effort.