People who live in apartments shouldn’t own dogs. Period.
Now, admittedly, there is a difference between overbred, atrophied purse-dogs and larger animals. I’m mostly referring to the latter. In my building, and around my very urban neighbourhood, I see plenty of dogs of medium and large-sized dogs who live in apartments. There’s one guy in my apartment who has two dobermans in what’s, at best, a one-bedroom plus den of about 750 square feet.
Dogs require space. These articles point out that only small, low-energy dogs should be kept in apartments. It’s important to note that these articles are from pet-related sites, so they’re going to offer the most liberal position possible.
Dogs are social animals. Leaving a dog at home for eight or more hours without stimulation is cruel. This applies to a house as well, obviously, but is more often the case in apartments. Speaking of cruel, dog owners have turned the narrow green strips in front of their apartments into doggie sewers. The dogs have been holding it in all day, and can’t stray more than a few yards from their apartment before doing their business.
To me, it’s only common sense. A dog deserves a yard to be in and social interaction. To exploit a dog by cooping it up in an apartment is deeply selfish.
If you opt to live in the city in an apartment, you gain certain benefits and give up certain privileges. One of those, as far as I’m concerned, is dog ownership. If you want to own a dog, move to the suburbs. Better yet, move to the country. I’m reminded of a Thoreau quote, which says “I am glad I shall never be young without wild country to be young in.” Shouldn’t that apply to dogs, too?