10 Best Tips for Living with Dogs Indoors
Living with dogs indoors can be a rewarding and enjoyable experience for both you and your furry friends. However, it also comes with some challenges and responsibilities that you need to be aware of and prepared for. Here are 10 tips to help you make the most of living with dogs indoors.
1. Choose the right breed and size for your space
Not all dogs are suitable for indoor living. Some breeds are more energetic, vocal, or territorial than others, and may not adapt well to a small or confined space. Similarly, some dogs are too large or clumsy for an apartment or a house with limited room. Before you adopt a dog, do some research on its breed characteristics, temperament, and exercise needs, and make sure they match your lifestyle and living situation.
2. Train your dog to behave indoors
Training your dog is essential for a harmonious and safe indoor living. You need to teach your dog basic commands like sit, stay, come, and leave it, as well as house rules like where to sleep, where to eat, where to go potty, and what not to chew or scratch. You also need to socialize your dog with other people and animals, so they don't become fearful or aggressive when they encounter them.
3. Provide enough exercise and mental stimulation
Dogs need physical and mental stimulation to stay healthy and happy. Without enough exercise, they can become bored, restless, destructive, or overweight. Without enough mental stimulation, they can become depressed, anxious, or frustrated. To prevent these problems, you need to provide your dog with daily walks, play sessions, toys, puzzles, and training activities that suit their energy level and personality.
4. Keep your dog groomed and clean
Keeping your dog groomed and clean is not only good for their health and appearance, but also for your indoor environment. Regular brushing can help reduce shedding and matting, which can cause skin problems and allergies. Regular bathing can help remove dirt and odor from your dog's coat and skin. Regular nail trimming can prevent injuries and damage to your furniture and floors. Regular ear cleaning can prevent infections and ear mites. Regular dental care can prevent bad breath and dental diseases.
5. Create a comfortable and safe space for your dog
Your dog needs a space of their own where they can relax and feel secure. This can be a crate, a bed, a mat, or a corner of a room. Make sure the space is comfortable, cozy, and well-ventilated. Provide your dog with blankets, pillows, toys, water, and treats to make them feel at home. Also make sure the space is safe from potential hazards like wires, cords, plants, chemicals, or sharp objects that your dog could chew on or swallow.
6. Monitor your dog's health and wellness
Living indoors can expose your dog to different health risks than living outdoors. For instance, indoor dogs may be more prone to obesity, joint problems, allergies, or respiratory issues due to lack of exercise or air quality. To keep your dog healthy and happy indoors, you need to monitor their weight, diet, activity level, mood, behavior, and appearance regularly. You also need to visit your vet for routine check-ups, vaccinations, parasite prevention, and any health concerns.
7. Respect your neighbors and guests
Living with dogs indoors can sometimes cause inconvenience or annoyance to your neighbors or guests. For instance, your dog may bark excessively at noises or strangers outside your door or window. Your dog may also jump on or sniff your visitors when they enter your home. To avoid these issues, you need to respect your neighbors' and guests' comfort and privacy. You can do this by training your dog not to bark unnecessarily or excessively; keeping your dog on a leash when you walk them outside; picking up after your dog when they go potty; introducing your dog to your visitors calmly; asking permission before letting your dog interact with other people or pets; and apologizing if your dog causes any trouble.
8. Have fun with your dog indoors
Living with dogs indoors doesn't have to be boring or dull. There are many ways you can have fun with your dog indoors without compromising their well-being or yours. For instance, you can play games like hide-and-seek; tug-of-war; fetch; or find the treat with your dog inside your home. You can also teach your dog new tricks or skills like rolling over; shaking hands; or fetching your slippers. You can also cuddle with your dog on the couch; watch a movie together; or read a book to them.
9. Consider having another dog for company
Some dogs may feel lonely or bored when they are left alone indoors for long periods of time. This can lead to separation anxiety, depression, or destructive behaviors. To prevent this, you may want to consider having another dog for company, especially if you have a busy schedule or travel frequently. Having another dog can provide your dog with social interaction, companionship, and entertainment. However, before you adopt another dog, make sure you have enough space, time, money, and energy to care for two dogs. You also need to make sure your existing dog gets along well with the new one.
10. Enjoy the benefits of living with dogs indoors
Living with dogs indoors can be challenging at times, but it can also be very rewarding and beneficial for both you and your dog. Dogs can provide you with unconditional love, loyalty, and support. They can also improve your physical and mental health by reducing stress, anxiety, depression, blood pressure, and cholesterol levels. They can also increase your happiness, confidence, and social skills by making you smile, laugh, and interact with others. Living with dogs indoors can also benefit your dog by providing them with a warm, comfortable, and safe environment. They can also enjoy more attention, affection, and stimulation from you and your family.