Dogs Need to Have Their Own Space
I have four brothers and sisters, all in very close age range of each other. Until I was in high school, I shared a room with my older sister, who is a year and a half older than me. I remember the little spaces I would find in the room we shared where I could hide out even just for a short time. Sometimes I would move things around in the closet and build a small hideaway with my desk chair and a blanket from my bed. Sometimes I would put a blanket over my desk and hide out under the desk, reading my newest book from the library or writing in my diary with a flashlight. Sometimes, I would do nothing. Just try to be still and be quiet. To this day I remember those precious spaces and others I found and designed in the house when I was too young to leave on my own. When I got older, I found places of refuge from a chaotic household outside in parks and other places.
These thoughts come back to me when living in an apartment with two dogs plus other animals. Even now, I establish certain spots that are off limits to the dogs, like the bathroom and the kitchen. I used to have the bed off limits, but my dog, Scout, slowly took that over. The kitchen has strict restrictions for safety reasons in case I happen to be holding a hot pot of water. I eat a lot of pasta.
I firmly believe that your dog also needs to have spots all to themselves that are off limits to humans and other pets. I have found my dogs going to these spots all by themselves when they want to rest or just get away from the commotion in the house. Some examples of types of favorite spaces that work well for apartments are crates or kennels, either with or without a door, allowing the dog free access as they choose.
Another idea is to give your dog its own bed and put it in a spot that will remain consistent. One benefit of having a portable bed is that it can be taken with you if the dog boards at a kennel, travels with you in a motel, or stays with family and friends. Having this bed gives your dog a consistent, safe spot he can always turn to in any kind of environment.
You can also designate a piece of furniture like a chair or under a table, and have the dog’s bed in that location. If you choose a piece of furniture, it should be furniture that is no longer being used by the humans in the house. It should always be there for the dog, and not have the bed move from one place to another when somebody wants to use that furniture.