Great Dane puppies, like many other large breed dogs, grow so fast that they do not look like puppies for long. Do not let their fast growth deceive you though, they keep their puppy energy and playfulness for up to three years. They grow fast yet age slow, it seems. Great Danes are loyal and good with children with proper training. Do not just toss this dog into the back yard, they need daily socialization and training so any behavioral problems will be worked out while they are small.
Great Danes need lots of attention and care in the first few years. The investment in your time is well worth it though, few dogs are as loyal as Great Danes.
Do Not Over Feed a Great Dane
Feeding your Dane is not simple as just filling up their bowl once a day. Large breed dogs grow faster than small breads, and if fed too much protein they can actually grow too fast. If a Dane grows too fast they can develop symptoms of two diseases that plague over-fed large breed dogs. If your dogs shows symptoms of pain in the legs or joints, runs a fever, or loses his appetite he may have Hypertrophic osteodystrophy or Panosteitis from too fast growth. This occurs most during months 5-9 and can be caused by over-feeding or feeding a dog food with too much protein. Do not let fear of rapid growth keep you from the breed, using quality dog food and measured feedings will prevent rapid growth.
An Active Lifestyle Will Keep You and Your Great Dane Healthy and Sane
Keeping your Great Dane busy will also keep him happy. If your Great Dane is bored he will find ways to occupy himself, and sometimes your furniture and household items will be the cost you pay. Give your dog a job or a hobby to occupy his mind. The hobby can be as simple as hidden toys, a daily game of fetch, and a treat filled Kong to work at. Or it can be complex as rigorous walks, play at a dog park for socialization, and a job like visiting children at a hospital. An ideal life for an energetic large breed dog would be a combination of these things each week. It is important to know that a Great Dane is not a dog to ignore in a kennel or yard all day. They are big social animals who will need your attention and love; the good news is that they will give it back to you two-fold.
Great Danes Are Like Big Children
A Great Dane’s personality is a big as his body. While he may seem like a tough guard dog, if he is left in yard he will feel left out of the family. With proper training this giant can fit into your home and is easily potty trained. Keeping a Great Dane socialized is as important as making sure they eat a proper diet and exercise regularly. They need a well rounded life much like human children do.
Having your very own Marmaduke is rewarding. They are eye-catching in beauty and size, loving and loyal, and in their own way vulnerable and funny. However, having a Great Dane is not as simple as tossing out some food and walking him on a leash when you feel like it. Great Danes are good for the active dog owner who wants a true best friend and is willing to invest the time in being a friend in return.