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Hi, so I'm new here and I apologize if this is a question that's already been covered or if it's in the wrong place, but I was wondering if anyone knew of a way to search for an apartment that would allow a doberman other than calling every complex in a 20-mile radius. We already have the dog and there's is no option of me getting a house or anything like that. It's just a temporary solution for while I finish school. I live in the Hampton Roads area of VA if it helps. You can skip the rest of this post as this was the main question, I just thought I'd include more information in case anyone needs to know the reasoning behind my need for a doberman-friendly apartment and the overall situation.

As a little background, I am a 21-year-old college student. I've always been the one in my house to care for and train our dogs (over the years that includes a border collie, a yorkie, and a lab), so I have plenty of experience with dogs. About 2 years ago, my sister, against every argument I gave, bought a doberman puppy. Unfortunately, she is by no means a competent or responsible do owner. The dog stays in her crate all day because my sister doesn't like the dog coming up demanding attention and always being underfoot, and doesn't like her running around the small condo (she is a couch potato so the dog isn't allowed a walk further than the front yard to pee and a weekly 15-minute excursion to the nearby tennis court to run while my sister reads the news). Because of how long she is in the crate she inevitably has accidents which my sister takes to mean she isn't housebroken, so of course she gets to stay in the crate even more so she won't have an accident on the carpet. If my sister is leaving for the day, say to go to work at 9 a.m. and is planning to go out after work and won't be home until late, say 10 at night, she will just not feed or water the dog so she won't be capable of making a mess. The dog doesn't have toys or a bed because she will tear them apart, and the bones and toys for big dogs are too expensive etc. etc..

Now needless to say, that is not how to take care of a dog. The dog is a good dog and very well trained. In summer (my school is out-of-state), I'm the dog's primary caretaker. If she gets a good walk 1-1.5 miles, she is basically a couch potato the rest of the day. She knows all her commands and is very friendly. We take her to a cage-free doggy day care several times a week so she can run and play and socialize frequently and that wears her out too. So point is, the dog isn't any more of a hassle than any other large breed dog. Now to the problem side, she used to love her crate. Because my sister has over the years begun to leave her longer and longer, she is afraid of it. Right now I'm puppy sitting as sis is out of town for a week (she loves to travel and just leaves the dog with whoever will take it) and i had to force her into it for the night to prevent her from chewing something while unsupervised even when i offered her a special rawhide chew for going in. She isn't food aggressive, but when i went to pick her up, she made a mad dash for her food as soon as i opened the crate and when I went to pet her she braced herself and started eating super fast like she thought I was about to take her kibble away (found out later she had been crated for 16 hours w/out food or water even though I showed up when I was supposed to). She also now refuses to come when called, even with treats, because she is scared I'm trying to catch her to crate her again.

So anyway, I want to take this dog from my sister next summer when I move off-campus before my sister completely ruins her (and she has ruined a dog before. it got food aggressive and would snap at her all the time). I don't want her going to a pound because being the breed she is, it's unlikely she would be adopted out. I have already found an affordable daycare to make sure she gets social time, but I don't know how to go about finding the apartment. Any pointers?
 

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Well, first, I'd make sure it was cool with your sister. I sympathize with the situation, I'm going through the same thing with one of my sisters and Titan, but in the end it's "her dog" and not "your dog", so while you might hate it if she says no to you taking her, that's the end of that story.

As for finding a place that will let you rent with a dobe, no idea how to help there, since I was already living in dog-friendly housing and will be moving to more dog-friendly housing. It helps if you're responsible and honest, and willing to work with a landlord. Some will say no anyway.
 
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Discussion Starter #3 (Edited)
Well, first, I'd make sure it was cool with your sister. I sympathize with the situation, I'm going through the same thing with one of my sisters and Titan, but in the end it's "her dog" and not "your dog", so while you might hate it if she says no to you taking her, that's the end of that story.
She already doesn't want her and she got rid of the previous dog I mentioned that she ruined. The only reason she hasn't given up yet is she still has enough places to take her for free where others will keep her like my parents house or having me come dogsit. But if the dog becomes any more "inconvenient" she will probably go to the pound.

And yea, I've always lived in a house with acreage up until now as well, so I know what you mean. And as for the responsibility/hard work, I'm a Dean's List grad student getting my Doctor of Pharmacy Degree with a minor in Leadership Studies. My parents will be cosigning as they will be the ones paying my rent so we more than meet all of the requirements most complexes have set for rent. And the dog can pass any obedience/manners/aggression test if I could get someone to let her through on that as well.
 

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You would probably have more luck finding a place to live in if you go to owners of small apartment units and folks renting out just one or two places. You might want to try to find a house for rent--their rules might be a little looser and you might find a place with a fenced yard.

You could also take advantage of her training and get some official training (attending obedience classes, maybe) and actual written certification that she has had formal training--proof of titles in obedience or a CGC, for example.

You can also look into doberman rescues, who take special care to place the dogs they take on in homes where they can fit in and have a good life.
 

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Discussion Starter #5
Thanks for the ideas. Though ideally we don't want her to leave us at all and unfortunately, once my sister has given up, she won't go out of her way to do anything as she will forget about the dog as soon as she drops it off. And while exercise is not an issue as I can give the dog a long daily walk/jog as well as send her to a puppy daycare to run and play, I have already looked into renting a house but that is problematic for a couple of reasons:
1. Unfortunately, my school is not in the best area, it's not bad, but still if my dog were loose every day I would be worried someone would steal her (for fighting or just because she's good looking) or that someone would claim she was dangerous or tried to bite them.

2. I can't afford to rent a house by myself and would rather avoid roommates who might accidentally let Diamond (or Luau, the yorkie who will also be staying with me) get loose.
 

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Most dobermans want to be inside with their owners and do not do well left in a yard anyway--for the reasons you state--folks might try to steal her, or might tease and pick at her which risks her developing problem behaviors. About all we use our fenced area for is for pottying; their exercise happens away from home.
 

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No one might agree with me but if I was in your shoes, I would make sure Diamond found a good doberman rescue that can take her in. I mean, college student on a limited budget renting with two dogs, one being a doberman is a lot. It can be done, I'm sure people who do something similar will speak up and tell me how wrong I am but ultimately, Diamond is not your responsibility. You did not fail her if you do not keep her. Don't feel like you have to clean up after your sister's mistakes.
 

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The Morgans in Chesapeake, VA allow large dogs. Here's a link: The Morgan Pet Friendly Apartment Hampton Roads, VA. If it interest you, I'd call and ask about Dobermans to be on the safe side. It's difficult to find apartment buildings that will allow it, but they do exist. There are quite a few nice apartment complexes in my area that don't have a breed restriction.

You may want to also make a list of places that interest you, and call and ask them. Just because somethings listed on a website, doesn't mean it's always true. Sometimes places can be flexible as well.
 

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Discussion Starter #10
Your dog would be in the house though, correct?
Yes. I don't believe in leaving dogs outdoors for extended periods. Right now my parent's house is about 2 acres. Maybe 0.75-1.0 acres inside the fence. She gets to play in the yard (supervised) but then returns indoors. Otherwise, she is content to spend all day napping/chewing/playing within a few yards of me (I've been using her as a footrest for the last hour haha)
 

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No one might agree with me but if I was in your shoes, I would make sure Diamond found a good doberman rescue that can take her in. I mean, college student on a limited budget renting with two dogs, one being a doberman is a lot. It can be done, I'm sure people who do something similar will speak up and tell me how wrong I am but ultimately, Diamond is not your responsibility. You did not fail her if you do not keep her. Don't feel like you have to clean up after your sister's mistakes.
I understand the concern, but my budget is not that limited. Just too limited for a house haha. I'm on scholarship so I don't have any actual school bills, just cost of living and whatnot. And my parents are willing to help cover whatever reasonable expenses I have as up until now I have gone to school for free. And the second dog is 12 years old. She doesn't really require much care and is very inexpensive to handle. Whenever she needs a new toy I just sacrifice another sock and she's good to go, so I'm really only concerned about the care of the doberman. However, it's not about who's responsibility the whole thing is. It's about a perfectly good dog being abandoned for no good reason and all the things she will have to go through through no fault of her own. Yea, I don't have to clean up after my sister, but I shouldn't let a dog who has been a trusting member of the family for years be shipped off to god knows who or where when there's no real reason either.
 

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Okay, I don't understand what you meant by your dog being loose then?

1. Unfortunately, my school is not in the best area, it's not bad, but still if my dog were loose every day I would be worried someone would steal her (for fighting or just because she's good looking) or that someone would claim she was dangerous or tried to bite them.
 

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Most dobermans want to be inside with their owners and do not do well left in a yard anyway--for the reasons you state--folks might try to steal her, or might tease and pick at her which risks her developing problem behaviors. About all we use our fenced area for is for pottying; their exercise happens away from home.
That's her exactly. She gets grumpy if you lock her outside or confine her somewhere alone while at home and barks nonstop to say "Oh, you're just going to leave me here? Well, I hope you didn't like your eardrums because it is now my mission in life to make them explode."
 

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When I ended up needing to get an apartment after becoming homeless temporarily after hurricane Irene I could not find a place that would be willing to take on a border with a doberman. But how it worked out was I called up and let the person know I had a dog but not what breed and brought Nova when I went to go meet him and see the apartment. He ended up making an exception because he saw how well behaved and calm she was and friendly to him. Really, I got lucky, but if you can find one where you might be able to meet the owner or someone who can make decisions they might change their mind. The main concern if they're not petty usually is the safety and well being of their residents when they disallow specific breeds. Just a suggestion.


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Okay, I don't understand what you meant by your dog being loose then?
melbrod suggested me renting a house so that I could make use of a fenced yard. (I probably should have quoted that, oops). I was trying to say that a house was not an option for me and the point of having the yard was irrelevant because I would not be comfortable leaving the dog in the yard due to the surrounding area being what it is. The dog would still have plenty of exercise however.
 

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When I ended up needing to get an apartment after becoming homeless temporarily after hurricane Irene I could not find a place that would be willing to take on a border with a doberman. But how it worked out was I called up and let the person know I had a dog but not what breed and brought Nova when I went to go meet him and see the apartment. He ended up making an exception because he saw how well behaved and calm she was and friendly to him. Really, I got lucky, but if you can find one where you might be able to meet the owner or someone who can make decisions they might change their mind. The main concern if they're not petty usually is the safety and well being of their residents when they disallow specific breeds. Just a suggestion.
That's a really good idea. The unfortunate problem is, the dog lives in GA (my home state) right now. My school is in VA. So ideally, I need to find a place that will at least agree to the breed, but with some sort of contingency like passing a test so that I can just drive the dog up with me when I move in. Otherwise, it's not really feasible to transport the dog back and forth to check out different apartments.
 

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Got it about the fenced yard.

But I was thinking how nice it is to have a fenced yard for that 3AM potty EMERGENCY (that's what the dog calls it, anyway) so you can just open the sliding door to let them out, then close the door and stand in the doorway to watch until they do their business. No winter coat and boots, no raincoat or umbrella, PJ's are OK and so on....

We raised our first dobe in an apartment, and it was a hard job to make it work--but a fenced yard would have been easier.
 

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I'm with Emily. Why do you think the only purpose of a yard is to leave the dog out there alone for long periods of time?
 

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Okay.......but I live in a good area and I would never leave my dog in the yard if I wasn't out there. Sorry, I'm confused!
Ok, let me try to explain better. Right now, I live in a great suburban area. I love to let my dogs out to play in the yard. And i'll sit out there or throw the ball or just let them play in the yard. Or if I'm in the kitchen I can put the larger dogs out to play and watch through a big window while I'm cooking. The fence is set well away from the street, and even if say, a neighbor came over to say hi and they hadn't met the dog, they would typically just ask if she was friendly and pet her and it would be all well and good. Where the school is, it is more of an urban environment. There is no such thing as a large yard and everything is right on the street. Except for the few nicer communities, there is a lot of foot traffic and a lot of less than friendly dogs (largely due to--I kid you not--people wanting to look cool so they buy a pit bull and train it to growl at people and be agressive). It is very likely that if I let the dog out for a quick wee, someone might call her over and steal her for use in dogfighting or to breed. Or people think it's funny to let their dogs try to attack each other through the fence or throw sticks at the dog. Lastly, my dog is big. She can put her feet on the top of any fence, and she will to say hi and let someone pet her. Someone looking for money can sue me by claiming she tried to attack them over the fence and bit them. While she doesn't even nip at people, due to the breed having its reputation, who do you think will win in court? Thus, even if I had a yard, I would prefer to take my dog on a leashed run on a trail or take her to daycare for a few hours for social time just to prevent anything bad from happening. Maybe I'm paranoid because I am from a very nice suburban area and moving to an area that is urban and just ok, but that is just the vibe that I get. I hope that explanation helps.

Oh, and after my last year of school, I will be free to return to my safe-yard, many-acred suburbs.
 
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