Do you live in an apartment with a reactive dog? Taking them out for a walk just got easier thanks to this trainer's tip

A cute goldendoodle dog sitting inside a delivery box against stacked cardboard boxes in the living room
(Image credit: Getty Images)

Having a reactive dog does come with its challenges, and living in an apartment can make things more tricky. You might not have as much space, and you’ll likely come into contact with other people and dogs when you’re on your way out for a walk. 

But, while living in an apartment with a reactive dog might not sound entirely plain sailing, there are ways to make your life — and that of your pup — a little easier, and some of the best dog treats are involved! 

Juliana DeWillems, the owner and head trainer at JW Dog Training & Behavior, has explained more in a recent Instagram post.

“Corners and doorways can be really tricky for reactive dogs in apartment complexes, because you don’t know what might be on the other side of the door or around the corner,” DeWillems begins. “One way to prevent being startled with something unexpected is to pause as you approach a corner or door and toss a handful of treats behind you.”

The idea is that your pup will go and eat the treats while you have the chance to check around the corner to see if there are any triggers coming your way — like another dog. DeWillems explains that those few extra seconds can make a huge difference in preventing potentially difficult situations. 

“Having a few dog training tricks up your sleeve, like this one, can make bathroom breaks and walks a little less stressful,” she sums up in the caption.

It can also be a good idea to let your neighbors know that your pup is reactive with people or other dogs. It’s a fact of apartment living that you won’t be able to avoid your neighbors totally, but to minimize tricky situations they might be able to let you know when they’re usually out and about or walking their own dogs, if they have them, so you can plan your dog’s schedule accordingly. 

This might not be practical in every apartment, but could you keep bathroom breaks outside to a minimum with an area indoors for your pup to go? There are a few different products that allow dogs to go to the bathroom indoors, so you may want to explore this possibility to help avoid your pup seeing other people and dogs as often.

If you live in an apartment and don’t have much outdoor space, you might find this article useful, too: I don’t have a garden for my dog but I meet all her needs without one - here’s how.

Pupford Beef Liver Training Freeze-Dried Dog Treats 
$16.89 from Chewy

Pupford Beef Liver Training Freeze-Dried Dog Treats
$16.89 from Chewy
We gave these to our tester Isaiah for his dog Hayes to try. He reports back that they're his new favorite treat and are a suitable size for training. "He could and would eat the whole bag if allowed!"

Adam England
Freelance Writer

Adam is a freelance journalist covering lifestyle, health, culture, and pets, and he has five years' experience in journalism. He's also spent the last few years studying towards undergraduate and postgraduate degrees in journalism. While a cat person at heart, he's often visiting his parents' Golden Retriever, and when he's not writing about everything pets he's probably drinking coffee, visiting a cat cafe, or listening to live music.