Are Great Pyrenees Good Apartment Dogs?

great pyrenees taking a walking break from the apartment

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With the economy and the housing market looking the way that it does, apartments are becoming more and more popular as long-term housing solutions!  Apartments can be great for single people, couples, families, and even pets!  Many apartments allow all sorts of pets, so it’s up to you to choose the right one.

Tons of different dogs are able to live in apartments but of course, bigger dogs can be more of a housing challenge.  Great Pyrenees in particular are an interesting case!

So, are Great Pyrenees good apartment dogs?

Surprisingly, out of all the large breed dogs, Great Pyrenees are not the worst choice for apartment living!  However, keeping a Great Pyrenees in an apartment is a huge responsibility.  The decision to keep a Great Pyrenees in an apartment depends on multiple factors, including the dog themselves!

Since this topic is debatable, let’s go into depth about why a Great Pyrenees can make a good apartment dog, and how you can decide whether this is the right choice for you and your pet!

5 Traits That Affect Great Pyrenees Living In An Apartment

To help us determine whether a specific dog is a good fit for apartment living, we can start by looking at the general traits of their breed!

Great Pyrenees have 5 special physical and mental traits that affect their ability to live in small spaces.

1. They Are Large

Okay, so this might be obvious but did you know that adult Pyrs can weigh anywhere between 85 and 160lbs?

That’s right, up to 160lbs!

So, if you happen to have an extra-large individual from this breed, you can think of it as having an extra person in your apartment.  They will take up the same amount of space, generate heat, and eat plenty of food!

Just the fact that Great Pyrenees are so big will factor into whether they’re a good fit for an apartment.

2. They Are Fluffy (and shed a lot)

Great Pyrenees are known for their thick, fluffy white coats.  And while this might not seem like an important factor in apartment living, trust me, it is!

If you don’t already own a Great Pyrenees, you might not be able to understand how much they shed.  Because of their breeding, these dogs have a special double-layered coat.  This coat basically is made up of a soft fluffy underlayer and a thick protective outer layer.  You can think of it as a down jacket.

Unfortunately, this means that Great Pyrenees need regular grooming, and sometimes even daily brushing!

This doesn’t mean that you can’t keep a Pyr in a smaller indoor space, but you will need to be diligent about cleaning and about reducing the amount of the fur they actually shed.

If you do decide to bring your Pyrenees into an apartment, check out our tips for reducing shedding in Great Pyrenees here.

3. They’re Relaxed

One of my favorite traits of  Great Pyrenees is how relaxed they are.

Thinking that Great Pyrenees are high-energy dogs is a common misconception.  Even though Great Pyrenees were bred to live with livestock, they are not herding dogs.  Their job was more along the lines of protection and guarding!  The Great Pyrenees mostly laid around their sheep and kept predators away by barking or just with their intimidating size.

This means that today, members of this breed still have that laid-back personality.  While these dogs love to be outside and explore their territories, they spend most of their days lying around.

This is one of the qualities that actually make Great Pyrenees a good choice for an apartment.  When you compare them to Huskies, for example, they are way more relaxed overall and do well staying in a smaller space.

4. They Can Be Loud

Another important trait to mention about Great Pyrenees is how vocal they are!  This trait is probably the most likely deterrent from keeping a Pyr in an apartment.

Just like with many other qualities of this ancient breed, barking is second nature to them!  Long ago, Great Pyrenees used their loud intimidating barks to communicate with other dogs and to warn of predators from the livestock they protected.  Some of these dogs are still used as livestock guardians today, and their loud barks are never leaving.

Because barking is instinctual to a Pyrenees, it’s impossible to stop them from ever barking.  In an apartment, this could be a difficult scenario to manage.

Luckily, there are ways to reduce barking in Great Pyrenees.  You can even take time to train them so that they only bark when they’re outside of the apartment, for example!

5. They’re Loving and Affectionate

Yes, Great Pyrenees are independent, solemn, and sometimes even aloof.  However, these dogs are incredibly companionable and like to spend time near their families.

Because Pyrenees are affectionate, you will usually find them hanging out near or beside you.  One of the ways they might show their affection towards you is by leaning on you, or sitting right next to you!  This is actually a good thing for an apartment dog!

Even if you have a large mansion, with 30 rooms, you still might notice that your Pyrenees follows you around, and hangs out near you.  So, the proximity of an apartment isn’t really a problem for them as these dogs are used to staying close to their families and flocks.

What Do Great Pyrenees Need Everyday?

If you are thinking of living with a Great Pyrenees in an apartment, be prepared to give them a good amount of your free time!

There are some things that these dogs just need to have in their everyday lives.  Because Great Pyrenees are guardian dogs, they have special needs that might be even more difficult to fulfill in a small space.

They Need Exercise

Like most dogs, Great Pyrenees need regular exercise!

Now, that might not seem like a difficult thing, but remember, your Pyr won’t be able to exercise indoors, there just isn’t room.

Getting your Pyrenees enough exercise will require you to get them outside at least one time per day, which brings us to the next point.

They Need To Spend Time Outdoors

Great Pyrenees need outdoor time!  Many Great Pyrenees will spend the entire day and night outdoors if they are allowed.

Again, this is something that is instinctual for this breed and just, is!  Many Great Pyrenees owners report issues when trying to get their furry friend to come inside, even when it’s freezing!

So, what does this mean for an apartment?  If you don’t have a small yard attached to your apartment, you need to make sure your Pyrenees gets outside every day.  If you live in an area that had extremely cold or hot days that you won’t want to walk in, you need to think about this hard before making your Pyr and apartment dog.

They Need Company

Because Great Pyrenees are guardian dogs, they are used to being surrounded by animals and now by people.  A Great Pyrenees might have an issue spending the entire day alone.

If you work from home, this could be a big plus for your Pyr!  They will probably spend a lot of the day sitting next to you while you work.  If you don’t work from home, you might want to consider getting your Pyrenees a companion.

While this is an issue regardless of how spacious your home is, being in an apartment can make a Great Pyrenees feel even more isolated!

So now that we know more about what Great Pyrenees need, let’s talk about how you can decide if your dog (or future dog) will be a good indoor doggie.

What Factors Determine If You Can Have a Great Pyrenees In An Apartment?

To say that Pyrenees are all good or all bad apartment dogs isn’t fair.  There are so many different factors that go into this equation!  Here are some things to consider when you make the decision about keeping a Pyr as an apartment dog.

Time Spent In Your Apartment

As we just talked about, Great Pyrenees are companions, guardians, and family animals.  They need to be around other people or animals.

If you spend a lot of time in your apartment, this is a good thing for your pup!  On the other hand, if you have a busy schedule, work overtime, or even multiple jobs, your Pyreneees is going to get lonely.

Freetime For Your Dog

On top of just being in your apartment on the regular, you will also need extra time in your schedule to take care of your Great Pyrenees.

While this is true for any pet, Great Pyrenees need daily exercise and outdoor time.  If you don’t have a large yard you need time to take them out.  Being realistic with yourself is the best way to avoid having a dog that feels “too big” for your apartment or even for your life in general.

Neighbors and Building Rules

If you are already living in an apartment building and plan to stay there for a while, you can use this to your advantage.

Do some research!  Does your apartment building allow pets?  What about huge dogs?  Is there a pet fee?  Being responsible in these scenarios is the safest choice for you and your pet.

If you want to bring a Pyrenees into your apartment, get to know your neighbors a little bit better!  Odds are, if they also have dogs, they might be more understanding of the occasional barks and woofs.  But, if your neighbors aren’t tolerant, they may end up complaining about your new roommate.

The Personality of Your Great Pyrenees

This factor is probably the most important factor in what makes a good apartment dog!

Personality varies greatly among individuals of a certain breed.  It’s true, for the most part, Great Pyrenees are relaxed, playful, and loving.  They aren’t usually too hyper, aggressive, or standoffish.  But, you never know!

If you meet your future dog before adoption and feel like they have more energy than you expected, they might not be the right fit for an apartment!  Likewise, if you already own your Great Pyrenees, you should have a good idea of how they would behave in a smaller living area!

It’s important to think about all of these things when you decide if your situation is good for a Great Pyrenees!

How To Dog Proof An Apartment For A Great Pyrenees.

Hopefully, by now you can understand why a Great Pyrenees can actually make a pretty good apartment dog!

To make your apartment more “Pyrenees friendly” here are a few tips!

Make sure your Pyrenees has plenty of toys to chew on throughout the day!  If you plan on being gone for long periods of time, you will be happy that your pup chews on their toys and not on your furniture!   It’s also a good idea to tuck all of your electronic cords away and to keep your PYrenee’s food storage in an airtight container!

Another good practice for keeping a Great Pyrenees indoors is to make an area in the apartment that is theirs.  This can be a crate, a bed, or a special place somewhere that is just theirs!  This will minimize the fluff your GReat Pyrenees leaves around the house, and help them to feel more relaxed when you’re away.

Can You Raise Great Pyrenees Puppies In An Apartment?

One big bonus of getting your Great Pyrenees as a puppy is that they will get used to whatever you teach them is normal!

So, if you decide to get a puppy and raise them in an apartment, it could be even better.  Puppies are constantly learning and adapting and if your Pyrenees grows up understanding apartment rules, it makes them even better suited for indoor living.

This video shows some tips on how to raise a puppy in an apartment.

With the right training, your puppy Pyr can become a great indoor dog!

Final Thoughts

So, have we decided once and for all if Great Pyrenees are good indoor dogs?

Pretty much!

In general, Great Pyrenees can make good indoor and apartment dogs.  You have to consider a ton of factors when you decide to raise a Pyr in an apartment.  Neighbors, landlords, and your schedule come into play.  Your dog’s personality and training will also make a huge difference!

But, with the perfect circumstances, your Pyrenees can make a great apartment dog.