If you live in an apartment, owning a dog can seem like a fantasy. Huskies and Mastiffs, Shepherds, and
Retrievers are all off-limits. They’re just too BIG! It’s a recipe for disaster. Even an adorable fluffy poodle is
out of the question.
That’s a tremendous shame. Poodles are renowned for their hypoallergenic coats and their intelligent –
and easy-to-train – personalities. You’d think they’d be the perfect dog for a small abode.
But don’t despair!
Poodle mixes – often named doodles – are fast becoming popular. With all the tremendous traits of a welltrained poodle crossed with a small dog breed, poodle mixes are the cuddly answer to your small apartment
woes. As such, people are increasingly turning to poodle mixes – or doodles – to form a treasured bond
with man’s best friend – small apartment or not.
But understanding the crosses available, their sizes, temperaments, and personalities is essential before
bringing your poodle mix home. After all, owning a dog that needs three or four walks a day isn’t ideal if
you live on the thirtieth floor.
Want to know more? Read on!
What are poodle mixes?
The logic was simple: combine all the fantastic traits of a poodle – the hypoallergenic coat and intelligent,
loving characters – with another breed’s defining features. Poodles are the 2nd most intelligent dog breed
in the world, after all. That often means they form a deep emotional attachment to their owners – not
merely man’s best friend, but sometimes our soulmate.
So, did it work?
Yes! It worked amazingly. You’ll often know a poodle mix by the name. Typically, it starts with the name of
the other breed followed by either -doodle or -poo.
Golden retriever + Poodle = Goldendoodle
Cocker Spaniel + Poodle = Cockapoo
Labrador Retriever + Poodle = Labradoodle
Each of these remarkable breeds has a unique look and punchy personality. For example, cockapoos are
covered in adorable wavy chocolate brown hair – looking like giant lovable teddies. Meanwhile,
Sheepadoodles have that characteristic black and white coat of an Old English Sheepdog, only with the
poodle’s distinctive curl.
All these dog breeds are friendly, good-natured, and eager-to-please. They’re wonderful dogs.
But that raises the question…
What makes an excellent apartment companion?
Living in a high-rise, block of flats, or condominium isn’t a definite barrier to owning a dog – even a poodle
cross. But it does complicate matters. You’ve got neighbours, small spaces, corridors and elevators,
balconies, and fewer trips to the park to consider.
As such, what traits are you looking for in your apartment companion? When you go out poodle mix
shopping (or adopting), what are you after?
Here are a few non-negotiable traits you need in a poodle mix:
No barking. We’ve all been in an enclosed space with a barking dog. Like crying babies or broken fire alarms,
the noise is grating. Nobody minds the odd bark to get attention. Even a low growl is acceptable. But dogs
prone to sounding off for minutes or hours aren’t likely to win you a Neighbour of the Year award.
Thankfully, as a rule, poodles (and their mixes) aren’t berserk barkers. Being intelligent canines, they’ll rarely
need to utter more than a growl or woof to get what they want.
Fewer walkies. Steps, steps, and more glorious steps. Perhaps you’re lucky enough to live in an apartment
block with a lift. If not, heading out multiple times a day for a dog that needs vigorous exercise is unlikely
to be an inviting prospect. Even shepherding a dog into a lift – a tight, enclosed space with multiple people
– is a daunting challenge.
Often, smaller dogs require fewer walkies and runs than their bigger counterparts. While there’s no doubt,
it’s a tremendous pleasure to spend the afternoon in the park with your dog. However, it’s important to
factor your willingness to head to the local green into your decision. Don’t destine an active dog to the four
walls of your apartment.
People- and pet-friendly. In corridors, elevators, lobbies, and more, your dog is likely to come into contact
with multiple people. With little room to manoeuvre in the apartment itself, guests will become intimately
acquainted with your pooch. Therefore, it pays to find a dog that’s comfortable with other people, including
tenants and their pets. The last thing you want is a barking contest every time you pass someone on the
Size. While size isn’t a hard and fast rule – Great Danes, for instance, are docile enough to make good
apartment dogs – as a general guide, smaller dogs make better apartment pets. However, that can be
balanced against their energy levels. It’s all about achieving the right mix of traits. Plus, not all individuals
of a breed are alike – it’s always sensible to meet the dog before you buy. You don’t want to have found
the one cockapoo who drives you up the walls.
Five best poodle mixes/crosses for apartments
The best poodle crosses for apartments or flats are Cockapoos, Yorkipoos, Schnoodles, Bidoodles and Schipoos. This is because they are generally smaller in size, need less exercise than pure breed poodles, have a friendly and calm temperament.
Cocker Spaniel and Poodle
A firm favourite of poodle mixes – cockapoos are one of the world’s most loving dog breeds. They’ve got
better social skills than most people. Being 100% people-orientated means they’re perfect for those tight corridors and stairs. Plus, they’re readily trainable – retaining all their poodle parent’s intelligent genes. This
is one smart pooch!
Their size can vary considerably. However, they are usually smaller, so you won’t find yourself constantly
tripping over them. That also means they’re easy to pick up and give a cuddle. And you won’t be able to
resist their gorgeous brown locks.
Playful and fun – they’re a great apartment dog. They can be quite energetic, however.
Yorkshire Terrier and Poodle
The Yorkipoo in two words: fun-loving and affectionate. These little bundles of love are as cute as they are
apartment-friendly. You can clearly see the Yorkshire Terrier coming through in their coat’s colouring, but
with that classic poodle wave.
They’re exclusively small dogs with no great need for extreme exercise. Indeed, a Yorkipoo is more than
content to sit in your lap while you binge the latest series on Netflix or catch up on your favourite soap.
The downside? They tend to bark – a lot. It’s only a major issue if you’re not giving them enough attention.
But it’s likely to be frustrating for your neighbour while you’re out at work.
Schnauzer and Poodle
An unusual mix with an adorable look. Excellent lap dogs and cuddly companions. Most are around the size
of a toy or miniature poodle – but come in a wide range of colours, including black, brown, grey, silver,
sable, apricot, and more.
Known for being timid puppies, they open up as they age. Once older, they can need a fair bit of exercise,
though they’re a long way from being amongst the most energetic dogs. Ideal if you live within a few floors
of the ground, not so great if you’re 100 hundred feet up.
Still, they’re easy to train. An all-around wonderful poodle mix breed!
Bichon Frise and Poodle
A small toy-sized poodle mix that loves care and attention – and gives it back in bags. Their happy and
ebullient personality is quite simply contagious. Whilst for other dogs, dancing and jumping can be offputting, the bidoodles diminutive size significantly reduces the hassle.
Plus, despite being a little mouthy and energetic, these tendencies can be readily trained out early on. Being
eager-to-please means training is no hassle (with the notable exception of potty training).
But with little to no aggression, a friendly and trainable personality, and small, easy-to-handle size, the
Bidoodle is the ultimate small apartment dog. Just a little bundle of joy.
Shih Tzu and Poodle
Are you living the high life? Looking for a dog that loves to lounge? That’s the Shih-Poo in a nutshell. These
fluffy furballs are known for being more than a little lazy. They love small, quiet homes where they’re
content to spend the day cuddling on the sofa. Sweet doesn’t do them justice.
They’re also stunningly loyal. Sparking into action to defend their owner from any perceived threats – so,
they’re surprisingly good guard dogs.
Still, they can be a little proud and stubborn – blame that on the Shih Tzu genes. So, training them is often
easier said than done – though not impossible. But, if you’ve got the patience, this is an ideal apartment
dog suitable for any high-rise. Just remember to be firm.
Don’t assume apartments impede dog ownership. All it takes is a little care and consideration. Selecting a
dog that is quiet and less energetic than the average is a great start. But with poodle mixes combining the
poodle’s excellent traits with the docility of other breeds, there’s plenty of choices available.
All of the chosen poodle mixes – Cockapoos, Yorkipoos, Schnoodles, Bidoodles, and Shih-Poos – would all
make fantastic apartment companions. So, which one are you going to pick?