Can Dachshunds Live in Apartments?

A miniature dachshund living in an apartment

Are you and your dachshund moving into a new apartment? Or do you live in an apartment and are thinking of getting a dachshund? Will your dachshund mind living in a smaller space? Does he need a garden? We’re going to answer all your questions about living with dachshunds in apartments.

Can dachshunds live in apartments? Yes. Dachshunds are the perfect size for apartment dogs and will happily live in a flat. But, because there’s no garden, you need to make sure they get enough exercise and toilet breaks and don’t annoy your neighbours by barking loudly all the time!

Read on to find out whether dachshunds make good apartment dogs, the upside and downside of living with dachshunds, how to deal with toilet breaks, if it’s fair to get a puppy, what to do about your landlord, management company and neighbours and how to deal with complaints!

Do dachshunds make good apartment dogs?

Yes. Dachshunds that get plenty of exercise and aren’t left alone too long will make good apartment dogs. If you’re moving from a house to an apartment, they may need time to adjust but will soon get used to their new routine and surroundings.

Can Dachshunds Live in Apartments? Miniature dachshund playing in apartment
A dachshund playing in an apartment

Living with a dachshund in an apartment is going to be different to living in a house. Most flats don’t have gardens of their own (unless they’re ground floor with access to outside space). So you may have to go up and down stairs or use a lift to get in and out.

You’ll definitely have more neighbours to consider as people normally live above and below you, as well as either side. You can keep a dachshund in a space like this but may face more challenges than you would if you lived in a house.

Most of the irritating dachshund behaviours are the result of too much pent up energy and not enough activity. So as long as your dachshund gets enough exercise to tire him out (30 minutes for a miniature and 60 minutes for a standard), he’ll happily potter around the apartment with you and find a comfy blanket to snuggle under. Dachshunds love to play and do have their crazy moments but, like most dogs, they’ll also sleep a lot during the day.

Are dachshunds a good size for apartments?

Yes. Dachshunds are the perfect size for apartments because they’re small and don’t take up much space. They just need a compact area to eat, sleep and play. And you won’t feel like you’re packed into a tiny living area with the dog stealing most of the space!

Can Dachshunds Live in Apartments? Dachshund sat on floor in apartment
A dachshund sat on the floor of an apartment

How big are dachshunds?

Miniature dachshunds are approx. 13–18 cm (5–6 inches) in height (to the shoulder) and weigh no more than 11 pounds (5 kg). Standard dachshunds are approx 20–22 cm (8–9 inches) in height (to the shoulder) and weigh between 16 and 32 pounds (7–14 kg).

These are ‘breed standard’ weights and sizes but, of course, every dachshund is different. You may have a miniature dachshund who weighs more than 11 pounds (5kg) and that’s still normal! Whatever shape or size dachshund you have, they’re still considered small compared with other breeds. This makes them the perfect size for apartment living.

What is the downside of living with dachshunds?

Noise! Dachshunds are loud and barking is one of their traits! Living in an apartment with neighbours on every side of you could be a problem. If you leave your dachshund during the day and know he’s a barker, it’s not fair to move into an apartment.

Can Dachshunds Live in Apartments? Miniature dachshund sat on bed in apartment
Mischievous dachshund sat on the bed barking and speaking

A loud dachshund may drive your neighbours round the bend and they could complain to your landlord or management company. While you can’t do much about the odd barking frenzy, you need to work hard on training him before you move in.

Apartments can have lots going on around them – banging doors, children screaming, music playing and even other dogs barking. All these noises may make your dachshund bark and that’s going to be your biggest hurdle to overcome.

Dachshunds are territorial and protective of their pack (that’s you) so you’ll have to work on desensitising him to all the sounds around you. If you want to know how to stop your dachshund barking all the time, click here.

Do I need a garden for my dachshund?

No, you don’t need a garden but outside space does help. Your dachshund won’t get as much chance to run around, explore and let off steam. You can compensate for this by taking him out for longer walks and playing with him in the park.

Can Dachshunds Live in Apartments? Dachshund in the garden sat on the grass
Dachshund playing in the garden

It can be a hassle

If you live in an apartment you’ll have to take your dachshund out when he needs to pee (a hassle when potty training) and give him his daily exercise. This does take a bit more effort than being in a house. You can’t just open the door and let him run out into the garden. Every time he needs to go out, you’ll have to get yourself ready, put his lead on, get in the lift or carry him down the stairs, and take him outside.

Several trips outside a day

You’ll have to do this at least 5 times a day or more. Not so bad in warm summer months but can be more of a chore in winter. If you’re happy to pop in and out, that’s great, but it may take some time to get used to, especially if you’re used to a garden.

Garden alternatives

Some flats have balconies you can turn into mini gardens with artificial grass (if they’re safe and secure). The space doesn’t have to be huge, it just needs to be big enough to use as a potty. Or you could use a litter tray or puppy pads inside your apartment but this can mess up long-term potty training and will probably be a bit smelly. And once he’s started going to the loo inside, it’ll be a real struggle to get him to change his routine.

So even though you don’t necessarily need a garden, you’ll need a park or place nearby to walk your dachshund. Having to put him in the car if he’s desperate to go to the loo may be a step too far – for you and for him!

Can I train my dachshund to potty indoors?

Yes. You can train your dachshund to ‘go potty’ in one spot in your apartment using puppy pads or a dog litter tray. But, dachshunds are notoriously hard to toilet train and, if you allow them to potty indoors, it’ll be a very difficult habit to break.

Can Dachshunds Live in Apartments? Dachshund being potty trained in the home
Dachshund being trained to potty indoors

Should I train my dachshund to potty indoors?

No. Dachshunds are stubborn and allowing them to potty indoors should be a last resort. If you try to change the routine in the future and want him to start peeing outside, it may not work. Your apartment will smell too and you’ll need to keep it clean.

Can my dachshund walk up and down the stairs?

No, don’t let your dachshund walk up and down the stairs to and from your apartment. If you decide to take the stairs rather than use the lift, you’ll need to carry your dachshund to protect his back. Also, if you carry him, he’s less likely to pee or poo on the way down.

Can a dachshund puppy live in an apartment?

Yes, a dachshund puppy can live in an apartment. It can be harder when potty training because you need to get outside fast when he needs to go. Puppies can also cry at night and may bark too. And training can take time so you need to bear all this in mind.

Can a dachshund puppy live in an apartment? Dachshund puppy laying on a grey blanket in an apartment
Dachshund puppy making himself at home in an apartment

Having a puppy is a big responsibility and you’ll be up and down the stairs or lift every hour or so. You have to be prepared for that. If you have to dash out suddenly with your dachshund, you need to have everything ready to go.

Pack an emergency bag

A good plan is to have an emergency bag packed and sat by the door. Throw in his treats (for peeing outdoors), poo bags and some tissues or wipes just in case he doesn’t make it out in time. Keep his lead and your keys by the door too so you can quickly hurry out in no time at all.

Get into a routine

Getting into a routine early on with regular toilet breaks is the best way to train. Dachshunds need to wee when they wake and poo within about 20 minutes of eating. If your dachshund gets to know what time he goes out, it’ll make things a whole lot easier.

Can I leave my dachshund alone all day in an apartment?

No! Dachshunds love being with people and don’t cope well if left alone too long. They’ll bark if bored or anxious and this could cause real issues in an apartment. Arrange for someone to call in during the day or look after him while you’re at work.

Can Dachshunds Live in Apartments? Dachshund alone in an apartment staring out the window
Nervous dachshund alone in an apartment staring out of the window

Should I ask my landlord’s permission to have a dachshund?

Yes, you must ask your landlord first! No-pet policies are strict and, if you get caught, you may be asked to move out for breaching your contract. Small dogs are generally more acceptable than larger breeds, so that’s a big tick in the box!

Should I tell my neighbours about my dachshund?

Yes. If you’re moving into a new apartment with your dachshund let your neighbours know. Tell them you’ll be training him and will try to keep the noise down. Work on his barking before you move in and give your neighbours your phone number!

Wire-haired dachshund puppy asleep on a blanket
Wire-haired dachshund puppy asleep in an apartment

Getting your neighbours on side is so important. Introduce your dachshund to them and let them fall in love with him too. Tell them to call or text you if your dachshund is disturbing them and be really open with them from day one. You want to come across as friendly and approachable so they come to you with any issues and don’t go straight to your landlord or management committee.

What if someone complains about my dachshund?

If someone does complain about your dachshund, face it head on. Be honest and accommodating about the situation and work harder on training. Make sure he isn’t left alone for any length of time and video him while you’re out so you can monitor the situation.

Can Dachshunds Live in Apartments? Dachshund puppy being held and cuddled by a woman
Dachshund puppy getting attention and cuddles from his owner

Having video evidence can also be helpful if the complaint escalates. Your neighbour may get irritated and exaggerate things, so it’s good to know the truth of a situation, however difficult it is to hear.

You can also speak to your vet and be referred to a dog behaviourist to see if anything can be done to calm him down. Some dachshunds suffer with separation anxiety and this may be something you’re able to work on with him. Some just want attention and need to learn barking won’t get them what they want.

But, at the end the day, you can only do you best. A dog is a dog just like a baby is a baby, and people do have to make some allowances. If you know he’s a noisy little one before you move in, it may not be the right move for you. Dachshunds are notorious barkers and this is something to be taken seriously before any move, especially if you’re not with him during the day.

Should I shout at my dachshund for barking in my apartment?

No! Don’t ever shout at your dachshund for barking. He’s just doing what comes naturally to him. Teach him the ‘speak’ command followed by the ‘quiet’ command to take control of the situation. Reward good behaviour and ignore bad behaviour.


So there you have it. Dachshunds who get plenty of exercise make great apartment dogs because they’re small and don’t take up much space. You don’t need a garden but will need access to outside space. Barking will be your biggest challenge and you wont be able to leave your dachshund for long periods of time. If you put in the time and effort to train him you can work on noise levels but, if you’re out at work all day, you may have to rethink your next move.

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