pets in tokyo

Having a pet in Tokyo

Having a Pet in Tokyo

Having a pet in Tokyo might have different implications from having a dog or a cat in the country you are coming from. In this article, we will summarize some of the important points in regards to adopting or buying a pet in Japan.

Pet-friendly accommodation

First of all and most importantly, you should remember that animals are not allowed in every building and every apartment. We are not talking only about rental properties, but even if you decide to buy an apartment, you might find out that the animals are not permitted, as they can make noise and disturb the other tenants. Thus, if you planning on getting a furry friend one day or already have one, make sure that you can keep it in the apartment you are checking out. 

Buying and Adopting

Once you confirmed that animals are allowed in where you live, you can start looking for an animal. You can adopt or buy them. If you are going for adoption, there are several adopting agencies. Regardless of the agency you choose, you will need to fill in an application form, prepare your apartment, prepare the money to pay to the agency to cover all the vaccinations, etc. Once everything is done, and you are approved, you can get a pet for a trial period. During the next 1-2 weeks the agency will see if you and an animal have the match. If it is all fine, congratulations, now you have a pet!  
Buying is much easier but it is also much more pricey. On average a puppy costa 300,000-500,000 yen but the sky’s the limit.

Cost of having a pet

Having a pet in Japan is expensive. Starting with a pet-friendly apartment, which usually is a little more expensive. Afterward, you also need to make the vaccinations, buy food, buy essentials such as a leash, toys, etc. The statistic says that having a dog will cost you around 300,000 yen/a year and 160,000 yen for a cat.


Finding a hospital for your fluffy buddy isn’t a problem in Tokyo. It might become a problem if you do not speak Japanese well. Here are some of the clinics that can provide their services in English as well: Toranomon Veterinary Clinic, Akasaka Animal Hospital, Animal 24.


Of course, there are also rules and proper etiquette when it comes to pets and especially bringing them to a public area. But no worries! There is nothing too crazy or complicated. First of all, please make sure you clean after your dog! Secondly, always keep your dog on a leash. Thirdly, be aware that not all cafes and restaurants allow pets. You can check if the place is pet-friendly on their Tabelog page or by calling them directly. Lastly, if you wish to use a train or a taxi with your pet, know that the pet must be inside a cage. Approved cage sizes are also better be checked in advance. 

Did you find this information useful? is it really that much different from your own country? Any other information we should have covered in this post? Let us know in the comments down below.

If for whatever reason you cannot have a pet now but you love them very much, head to one of the pet cafes we mentioned in this post.