Pervez Musharraf's lawyer, Qamar Afzal, said his client had voluntarily presented himself at a Pakistan court.
Mr Afzal said he had asked the court to order police to place Musharraf under house arrest at his residence rather than put him in jail.
Another lawyer for Mr Musharraf told Reuters his legal team plans to appeal the arrest order later today.
The former army chief, who ruled Pakistan from 1999-2008, returned to Pakistan last month from nearly four years of self-imposed exile in the hope of running in next month's general elections.
But his bid to run for office has been rejected by election officials and he has instead found himself battling a host of legal challenges relating to his years in power.
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Bodies are being buried in backyards and overwhelming morgues as officials try to find another plot of land to lay them to rest.