Why Apartments Have Weight Limits on Dogs

Why Apartments Have Weight Limits On Dogs

You’re excited to discover that the apartment building you’re moving into is pet-friendly.

But then you learn that there’s a weight limit on dogs.

What’s the reason for dog weight limits in apartments?

It boils down to what’s best for the dog. Many pet-friendly apartment buildings have this rule in place so that large dogs won’t be unhealthy and unhappy by being crammed into a small space.

There are many other reasons why this rule is in place, though, and it’s not just because Fido wants a more active lifestyle. Let’s take a deeper look into the reasons for apartment dog restrictions.

Why Your Dog Has To Meet Weight Restrictions

Big Dog not allowed in apartments

Moving into an apartment building with a large dog can be a problem – and not just for Fido who wants to have more space in which to run around and play.

Owners of the building will worry about damage that your big dog could cause.

An area of concern that tends to come up is the entryways of the building. When you take Fido in and out of the building, this could pose a danger to other people.

Your dog can also pose risks to your apartment. Logically, the bigger the dog, the more damage it could cause to it. Think of how a large dog that runs across the floors can scratch and scuff it, and the same goes for the furniture and walls.

In addition, there’s the noise factor to consider.

Living in close proximity to other apartment dwellers means that you have to avoid making a lot of noise.

While your dog might be a large breed known for not barking a lot, that doesn’t mean it still can’t produce noise. When it runs around on the floors, for example, and it makes a big thumping sound because of its weight, this could irritate other people who are living nearby.

What’s The Weight Limit For Apartment Dogs?

Dog Weights

When it comes to how big your dog is allowed to be in order to be allowed access to your apartment, different landlords will obviously have different requirements.

However, most apartments that restrict your dog according to its weight won’t allow dogs that are heavier than 25 pounds.

What Are The Breeds To Avoid In Apartments?

Corgi Fats

Since some dog breeds are perfect for apartments because they don’t weigh a lot, your best bet is to avoid certain breeds that grow into big dogs and can cause you a problem.

Sadly, many dog breeds that are perfect for apartment living, such as because they don’t make a lot of noise and like living indoors, tend to grow larger than 25 pounds.

Sometimes their height is misleading in this regard. While the dog in question might not grow taller than 10 or 11 inches, it’s weight is another story.

It might end up weighing more than 25 pounds, which immediately makes it problematic for apartment dwelling.

Some dog breeds that tend to get bigger than 25 pounds include the German Spitz, Boston Terrier, Corgi, American Eskimo Dog, and Labradoodle.

Apartment Dog Restrictions: It’s About More Than Weight


You might own a dog that doesn’t exceed the weight limit set out by your landlord and feel really happy about that.

However, it’s good to bear in mind that not all dog breeds are allowed in apartments – even if their weight is not an issue.

This is largely due to the dog breed’s reputation as being aggressive. Landlords will avoid letting tenants bring these dogs into the apartment building because they are seen as violent and dangerous.

Some dog breeds that are considered to be the most aggressive include American Pit Bulls, Rottweilers, Dobermans, terriers, and Great Danes.

With some large dogs, such as Great Danes, their size alone is what makes them seem riskier than other breeds because they can easily cause injury to someone just by running into them.

How To Deal With Dog Restrictions

Dog negotiation

As a dog owner, these restrictions can feel very unfair.

You might have a dog that’s on a restricted breed list but has never been temperamental.

Maybe your Rottweiler is an absolute sweetheart or your Great Dane has never run into anyone; instead, it treats people with gentleness. What then?

There are some things you can do to work around apartment dog restrictions, such as if the landlord is the one who set these breed restrictions. Here are three things to try before you go ahead and accept the restrictions.

  • Set up an interview with the landlord in which you bring your beloved dog to meet him/her. This could help the landlord see that your dog is not aggressive or hyperactive enough that it could cause problems, either to your apartment or other people living in the building. If you have a dog that is heavier than the building’s pet weight restriction, perhaps an interview could also help you show the landlord that even though Fido weighs 40 pounds, he’s not an active dog and won’t cause you any problems. 
  • Create a dog resume. It might sound funny to make your dog his/her own resume, but it can be very valuable. This resume should contain important things like vet records, pictures, and any other information you have to help you show the landlord that your dog is well-behaved and has a good nature.
  • Don’t forget a reference letter! In addition to having a dog resume, showing your landlord a reference letter from a previous landlord that states how your dog never caused problems can be exactly what you need to be able to live with your pet. If the landlord can see that your dog hasn’t caused problems in the past, then he/she might take a different approach to your dog.

What Fees Do You Pay For Keeping A Dog In Your Apartment?   

Dog Price Apartment

If you’re renting an apartment in which you’re living with your dog, it means that you’ll usually have to pay what’s known as a pet deposit.

This covers any damage caused to your apartment by your dog, as Apartment Guide reports. This pet deposit is paid back to you when you move out of the apartment, provided that your dog hasn’t caused wear and tear to anything in the apartment during your stay, that is.

Besides for paying a pet deposit, there’s also pet rent that is common in corporate-owned apartment buildings.

Pet rent basically means that you pay pet rent monthly to be allowed to let the pet live with you. You can expect to pay between $50 to $100 for pet rent.

Interestingly, when landlords don’t have weight restrictions on tenants’ pets, they tend to charge more pet rent.

A report by MSN Real Estate and Firepaw found that these landlords tend to bring in an extra $100 per month from pet rent alone, as Landlordology reports.

Where To Find Apartments With No Dog Weight Restrictions

Apartment Dogs

Although pet weight restrictions are becoming quite common, that doesn’t mean you can’t find an apartment to rent with no weight restrictions for your beloved furry family member.

One of the best ways to find an apartment that allows dogs without weight restrictions is to look for an independent landlord.

If the person is renting out their own unit, this will probably make it more likely that they’ll be okay with accepting a range of pets.

Choosing an apartment that’s outside of the city might be your best bet for finding a home without pet weight restrictions.

This is because areas that are located outside of the city tend to have more pet-friendly parks and single-family homes, so you might find more pet-friendly apartments.

When searching for pet-friendly apartments online, search for the phrase “pet-friendly.”

However, bear in mind that sometimes these search results don’t provide information about apartment dog restrictions when it comes to weight – you’ll still have to contact the property to find out more.

But, you might be pleasantly surprised to find that some actually don’t have those restrictions in place.

Related Questions

What’s the smallest dog breed that’s apartment-friendly?


There are a few breeds that weigh next to nothing. These include Chihuahuas that don’t get heavier than six pounds and the Pomeranian that weighs between six and seven pounds.

Do you have to pay pet rent if you have a service animal?

Service Dogs

If you own a service or assistance animal, your landlord can’t make you pay pet fees. However, he/she is allowed to charge you a security deposit.

If the animal causes damage to the apartment, then you can be charged for these expenses, as Humane Society reports.


Learning that the apartment you’re interested in moving into has a weight restriction for your dog can be disheartening.

That said, there are ways to find apartments that don’t have these restrictions in place.

If you currently don’t have a dog but you’d like to get one, choosing a small dog that remains small throughout its life is a good idea so that you don’t have to worry about getting into your landlord’s bad books because of apartment dog restrictions.

Last updated on:

About The Author

Leave a Comment

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *