Are Border Terriers Good Apartment Dogs?

are border terriers good apartment dogs

Table of Contents

Border Terriers are a small to medium-sized breed of dog, originally bred in the Scottish Borders region for hunting foxes and other small animals. Today, they are popular companion dogs and are known for their independence, intelligence, and fearlessness.

Border Terriers are active dogs and need plenty of exercises, but they are also very affectionate and loyal to their families. So, are Border Terriers good apartment dogs?

The answer is yes and no. Border Terriers are not the best apartment dogs if you are looking for a low-maintenance pet that doesn’t need much exercise.

However, if you are willing to give them the exercise they need, they can make great apartment dogs. They are generally quiet dogs and are not prone to excessive barking unless they are bored or frustrated. They also have a moderate level of energy, so they won’t require hours of strenuous exercise every day.

Border Terrier

Border dogs are affectionate and have great personalities. Highly intelligent, these breeds excel at agility and play. Border terriers can be great for small children but can be regarded as one of those best choices if there is enough time.

are border terriers good apartment dogs

They need some exercise and can be incredibly good outdoor companions if given an active lead. Their terrier-like history – as well as their high hunting power — suggest they may hunt down smaller animals.

Its wiry coat requires just brushing every couple of weeks and they are an incredibly strong breed and are generally easy to maintain.

In addition, Border Terriers are relatively low-shedding dogs, so they won’t add to the already-existing hair problems in many apartments. Overall, Border Terriers can be good apartment dogs if their exercise needs are met by pet owners.

History Of The Border Terrier

Those that were once border terriers are dated from the Scottish – English border. The breed has a close relationship with the Dandie Dinmont and Bedlington – terriers which were both bred in this region.

are border terriers good apartment dogs

Originally the settlers of this country wanted dog breeds that would fight foxes that were threatening their flock in the 19th century. The border terrier has short legs to keep on hunting but small bodies allowing them to crawl in fox snouts.

The big Foxhounds in this region have never succeeded. The American Kennel Club grew to recognize the breed on its first day of service in 1921. The kennel club became the United States Kenneling Club in 1930.

More About The Border Terrier Dog

Border Terriers are small dogs who have an alert eye, strong hunting, and digging skills, are characterized by high levels of energy, a positive attitude, and are very intelligent. Its temperament is intelligent, loyal, fearlessly loveful, and sometimes stubborn, but not as bad for family dogs as some more aggressive breeds.

Border Terrier doesn’t suit every person, and you have to do your research before you bring one home. Border Terriers are wonderful dogs that love to play.


Shlomo Freiman, MD – Animal Hospital of Factoria in Bellevue, Washington – says Border Terriers are his favorite dog breed. Freiman says they have several typical breed characteristics such as intelligence, energy levels, and a tendency to be troublemakers.

They are also laid back. These dogs are also excellent for singles or active seniors.

are border terriers good apartment dogs


Border Terriers are small, wire-haired dogs with a unique look, weighing about 15 pounds. It is argued that it has an “otter head” (but not completely correct). The affectionate breed has characteristically quiz-like eyes and lips covered in whiskers.

Border dogs are active small dogs who enjoy walking and going long walks with their people. Border terriers have double coats that feature rougher, wiry bald hair on the outside and soft fluffy hair underneath.

Caring For Border Terriers

Getting your terriers groomed is pretty simple. Generally, they only need brushing or baths every couple of days. During the summer, you may want to brush each day (and maybe choose a special brush for shedding).

Border Terrier shedding is low during the dry season. Border terrier puppies need human companionship in their development. Social Border terriers love family and are eager for trips with their friends.

Living needs

Border Terrier dogs are happy to stay in apartments as long as they have enough space. A half-hour walk a day can help. But the strong hunting instinct makes border terriers a little less friendly than their companion animals.


Border Terriers tend to be strong but may also suffer from genetic issues such as seizures and cataracts or orthopedic problems. You should always ask their breeders what tests are being done for such problems, Frieman said.

Border terriers generally remain energy-rich with age and usually have a long and active existence. There are people with a 14-year-old terrier who joined the family for a 1- to 2-day walk.

are border terriers good apartment dogs

Diet and nutrition

Provide your border dog with the most nutritious food you can get and keep fresh water available. Depending on age and activity level, dietary patterns and quantities may differ.

Talk to your vet for a complete nutrition plan. Also, remember that dogs should be given treats and additional food every day so they are not overeating.

Pros And Cons Of Owning Border Terrier Vs Other Dogs

Owning pet dogs comes with pros and cons that must be weighed before making the commitment. The Border Terrier is no different.

This guide will list some of the Pros and Cons of Owning a Border Terrier to help you make an informed decision about whether or not this small dog is right for you. 

The Pros of owning a Border Terrier include: 

  • They’re low-maintenance when it comes to grooming (compared to other breeds). 
  • They have a lot of energy and require daily exercise, making them great for active people. 
  • They’re relatively small, making them well-suited for city living. 
  • They’re intelligent and quick learners, so they’re easy to train. 
  • They form strong bonds with their owners and are very loyal companions. 

The Cons of owning a Border Terrier include: 

  • They’re a high-energy breed which can make them destructive if they are not sufficiently exercised. 
  • Their hunting instincts can make them difficult to keep around small animals such as rabbits or guinea pigs. 
  • They can be barking dogs and may bark excessively without proper training. 
  • Like all terriers, a border terrier can be stubborn and willful so requires a firm hand when training. 
  • Their hair can shed year-round, though regular brushing can help reduce the amount of hair shed around the house. 

Before bringing home a Border Terrier, consider both the Pros and Cons to decide if this breed is right for you and your lifestyle.

More Of The Same Category​

Tony K.

Tony K.

I got our Border 3 years ago "for my daughter" and this bundle of joy became a beloved member of our family, so I thought why not share the love!

About Me

I got our Border 3 years ago “for my daughter” and this bundle of joy became a beloved member of our family, so I thought why not share the love!

Recent Posts

Know Your Dog!