Great Dane: Food, Health, Hygiene, Training and everything about this dog


The Great Dane is a friendly "colossus", affectionate and very playful, performs very well in the role of guardian, is responsible and reliable. It has some characteristics of its breed, and other characteristics of large dog breeds.

Before you buy it, make sure your breeder is trustworthy and gives you a good temperament dog. A dog with behavioral problems and that size can be very dangerous, even with training.

"The Great Dane is a friendly, affectionate and very playful" colossus ", performs very well in the role of guardian, is responsible and reliable."

How to care for a Great Dane

  • He fur color of a Great Dane It can be brindle, dark blue, black or white with black spots, in terms of size males tend to be slightly taller than females.
  • Great Dane requires little care in regards to its fur, just the necessary hygiene and brush it once or twice a week at the time you move it. It has a short, thick and satin-looking coat.
  • Although it has a large patio, it is very beneficial for its correct development to take a long walk every day, or at least several times a week. If you are a puppy you should not demand it, since your joints are just developing.
  • Because of its large size, it is essential to train and socialize them since childhood. So that they learn certain habits of coexistence very important considering their size. As it is: not jumping people, not biting (not even playing), etc. You have to be very careful if there are children in the house, since it is quite clumsy, especially as a puppy, and you can throw them with no intention.
  • The Great dane, like most large breed dogs, they are not very long-lived, their average life is around 10 years.
  • Prior tobuy a Great Dane, you should also keep in mind that this class of dogs consume a large amount of food and will do it in the same way for 10 years, we must be willing to take care of it and feed them correctly throughout this period. In addition to food expenses, all other accessory expenses are increased due to their size: spoon, toys, etc.
  • Therefore, it is a pet that will consume considerably in the family budget.

How to care for large dog breeds

Large dog breeds

The big dogs They are not only expensive to buy, but to feed and maintain them, do not forget that this dog will be your partner for about 10 years.

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Everything you should know about Great Dane

The German Bulldog is a giant dog that receives the nickname of “The Apollo of dog breeds”, for the proportion of his body, virtue to which we must add his companionship and his sweetness, features that make him the ideal pet for homes with children.

Faithful with his family and reserved with strangers, he differs from other large races in that he is nothing clumsy in his movements. As a curiosity we will tell you that both the popular Scooby-Doo, as the Astro of the Supersonic, are German Bulldogs.

Although its name may lead to think just the opposite, the Great Dane is not a dog that is considered to be originally from Denmark, but from Germany, although it is also true that in the United Kingdom the development of a dog was carried out quite similar that it could have influenced the German Alano as we know it today.

The "Grand Danois", as it is called in France, was named after the naturalist Buffon, who alluded to the conversion of the Greyhound in Great Dane, "under the influence of Denmark's climate."

The lineage of this dog is ancient. In fact, there are taxes of very similar dogs that have four or five thousand years. Before the 19th century, the German breeders' desire to generate a perfect dog for hunting, made it mix with other breeds, such as the already extinct German Bullenbeisser and some other dogs of the same nationality used for hunting wild boar .

Already in the fifteenth century it was crossed with English hunter dogs, after which came the influence of Greyhound and Mastiff. In the seventeenth century they became the favorite dogs of the European courts, although there were class differences within the same breed. Later, in the nineteenth century, some of these dogs boasted pedigrees of fourteen generations and more.

In 1882, in the United Kingdom a canine federation was founded exclusively for Great Dane, after which the following was founded in the American city of Chicago, in 1985. The acceptance by the American Kennel Club (AKC) came in 1987. Finally, in 1991 the breed standard was created, logging with it its worldwide recognition.

In its origins, this dog whose creation would have developed specifically in Berlin, was a fighting dog and one of the most aggressive hunting dogs that were known, whose behavior was considered very rough, which has nothing to do with the Great Dane that It has reached our days.

Characteristics and physical features

With a height at the cross of between 80 and 90 centimeters and a weight that is between 75 and 100 kilos, this is a giant dog with a square structure ...

Its appearance is really impressive, with a majestic and noble impression (defined as aristocratic by the standard), which places this extraordinary guard dog among the favorites of those who have guardianship as a priority. If this is your case, we recommend that you choose a male, who will be stronger and more muscular than a female, so his presence will deter intruders.

His head It is elongated and narrow., never wedge-shaped. His skull It is perfectly consistent with your body. His eyes They are large and almond-shaped, with an expressive look. His truffle, wider than round, it is black, although some show it with butterfly pigmentation (partly pigmented), or flesh-colored, except for blues and harlequins. His snout It is dark, deep and rectangular.

His neck It is long, muscular and dry, neither short nor thick. His ears, of high insertion, they fall naturally and are medium. It's tail It is also of high insertion, slightly curved and wide, tuning towards the tip.

As for their movements, we have already hinted that they are not clumsy or gross, but harmonious, elastic and agile. The extremities, if viewed from the front or from behind, must move in parallel.

Color and fur

German Alano has a pigmented skin in all specimens with solid colors. Your hair is dense, smooth, flattened and shiny.

The chromatic varieties in which this breed is raised are the tabby, the fawn, the blue, the black and the harlequin:

  • The tabby It goes from pale golden fawn to intense golden fawn, with regular black stripes that are clearly drawn in the direction of the ribs. A black mask is desirable but no small white marks on fingers and chest.
  • The fawn it also goes from pale golden fawn to intense golden fawn, a black mask being desirable but not white spots on fingers and chest.
  • The blue It is raised in a dark blue steel, which allows white markings on feet and chest.
  • The black being raised in a jet black, which allows white marks. It includes the "Manteltiger", a variety in which the black color covers the body as if it were a mantle. Neck, snout, chest, legs, belly and tip of the tail are allowed to be white, just like the specimens with white base and large black spots.
  • Harlequin, called "Tigerdoggen", exhibits black and white patches. Its basic color is pure white, to be lacking mottled. Its patches are jet black, broken and irregular, perfectly distributed throughout the entire body. Brownish or gray patches are not desirable.


Proud, faithful, strong and patient, the Great Dane hides an immense heart under its striking appearance. The sensitivity and the enormous affection he shows towards his owner, whom he loves above all, are a constant in his life.

Unlike other large dogs, he likes to share space within the home with all family members, feeling one more of the group, which does not mean that it is a dog to live in an apartment.

Evidently a house with garden or land, is the type of home that requires this impressive can, what happens is that, once you have enjoyed the outer space, exercising at ease, you will love to go home to enjoy the daily routine.

Apart from its extreme sensitivity and its link to its owner, this dog is characterized by your loyalty, your balance and your peace of mind. Obedient and lively, you will have to get the idea that his presence at home will require your attention, because he will love that you dedicate time to play with him and to allow him to show you all the love he has inside.

Inside the house is a dog quite consistent with its size, which makes him try not to break anything, not to dislike his owner. In spite of this, you will have to be careful with his tail, because the strong and energetic movement of the same, acts sometimes as if it were a true whip.

On the other side of the coin, we cannot forget that the dog we are holding is a guard dog and, therefore, will be reserved with strangers. Self-confidence is another of its virtues.

Not at all fearful, It is a good companion and easy to guide, which does not usually show signs of aggressiveness and to which it is not easy to decentralize with provocations. Anyway, as you will be imagining, this is not a dog for first time owners.

We must start from the basis that a canid with such physical power needs an owner not only strong enough to be able to control it if necessary, but capable of channeling his education from the moment of its adoption. A responsible owner must always keep in mind that the consequences of raising a giant dog without worrying about the animal obeying it can be very dangerous.

The Great Dane is a dog that will not leave anyone indifferent and that requires a early and intense socialization To become the partner you want. Remember that although today his behavior is hardly aggressive, a careless owner could cause serious damage to a third party, due to lack of diligence in the education of an animal that powerful.

Relationship with other pets

The German mastiff usually shows great respect towards the rest of the dogs, with which he can live perfectly, provided you have educated him for it. For this reason it is an excellent option whenever you want to share your home with several pets, including one or several large dogs.

Relationship with children

The relationship of the German mastiff with children is perfectWell, one of these copies, well socialized, will be lovely with your children. His intelligence will also lead him to show his innate courtesy, leaving for a while when the little ones in the house test their patience too much.

There is no doubt that the size of this dog, compared to a small child, is excessive, so we always advise the supervision of the games between them, given the possibility that children end up accidentally on the ground .

Basic care

Nobody denies that walking through the street with your Great Dane is a real luxury, because seeing the sublime gait of this animal is a real spectacle. This can lead certain people to decide to adopt a copy of this breed as a whim.

Never give in to such an impulse and try to make your decision to share a home with this dog the fruit of a meditated decision, which carries a serious and lasting commitment, equivalent to the life expectancy of the German Mastiff, which is between 8 and 10 years.


The feeding of a German mastiff, regardless of whether it is a puppy or an adult, should be specific to giant-sized dog breeds, designed to cover your specific nutritional needs. However, depending on their age, you will choose between a high quality dry feed from the junior or adult range.

Regardless of the feed, which is the basis of your diet, you can provide your dear friend extra supplements of those known to be beneficial for the breed, since being a dog that has to reach a considerable weight in a short time, its bones and joints support a remarkable additional work that has to be compensated.

The possession of a German bulldog is not going to make you a great sacrifice when it comes to caring for your physical appearance, because this is not a flirtatious lapdog that needs your continuous arrangements. The only thing that this breed is going to demand is a basic hygienic maintenance that makes the life of the animal and those around it more pleasant.

Dental hygiene

The oral cleaning of dogs is as essential as that of humans, so those owners who complain about halitosis problems and other similar problems in their dogs, should reflect on whether they are properly serving the mouth of their big friends.

Apart from regular tooth brushing, there are other products such as dental snacks for dogs with which you can counteract the tartar, plaque and bad breath of your German bulldog, to which you can add some more like the bovine skin bite sheets, with high content of minerals and vitamins that, in addition to cleaning your teeth, help to strengthen the muscles of the jaw.

Bath and drying

Bathing and drying a giant dog is a real waste of skill and patience that not all owners are willing to face at home. Some of them choose to go to dog wash centers which in many occasions also offer self-cleaning service.

The short, dense and lustrous hair of this dog will look beautiful simply with two or three good weekly brushes Keep it in perfect condition, free of dead hair and dirt. This work is also facilitated by the fact that its fur is a single layer, so you will not have to work too hard on a task that will help you to further strengthen the beautiful relationship that you surely already have with your pet.

Vaccines and antiparasitic treatments

Check with your veterinarian for the vaccination schedule that most suits your German Alano and pay special attention to receiving all the doses that this professional indicates, in order to strengthen your dog's immune system. Also place an antiparasitic pipette or collar that allows you to keep parasites at bay, which could otherwise affect your health very negatively.

More common diseases

Every owner wants to breed a healthy and happy dog. Those who choose a Great Dane as a life partner find themselves with the advantage that This dog is in very good health suffering, as a general rule, few diseases.

Among the pathologies that are associated with this breed are gastric torsion or stomach torsion (very typical in large dogs), heart problems, hip dysplasia, staggering syndrome and juvenile spots.


What once was a powerful combat dog is today a great companion animal that is very easy to love, but that can become a real challenge if you don't know how to educate it.

It is important that you supply big and attractive toys for him, especially during his first year of life, so that he is entertained. While you are a puppy, keep him away from valuable belongings and children's toys, as he can be fixated with them and eventually tear them apart.

Prepare a firm and large bed where you can rest at ease, allowing your sensitive joints to not be damaged. To the extent that this dog will thrive better the closer it feels to its owner, the ideal would be to place its bed not too far from yours, which will give the animal tranquility and comfort.

You must protect him from possible slips and falls, which could also damage his joints, for which it will be essential that you place non-slip mats and carpets throughout the house.

His guardian duties, not being an aggressive dog, are usually limited to barking in the presence of a stranger, which does not detract from his good instinct for the development of this work.

Its adequate socialization must begin because the German Alano recognizes in you the alpha leader of the pack which now constitutes his adoption family. Do not allow him to carry out a minimum of dominance, since that could be the beginning of the end of the correct hierarchy among you.

If you think that you would not know how to take charge of the situation, because of your lack of experience with dogs or because you have trouble exercising authority, of course this dog is not made for you. Its colossal size, together with a possible dominant behavior and socialization problems, would make it a real danger for your family and environment as soon as you reach the adult stage.

A charismatic leader and worthy of being respected by this great dog will be the one who does not appear weak before the animal, enforcing a safe, consistent and strong character, that the dog interprets as an extraordinary guide for the group.

If, on the contrary, the German bulldog is gaining ground on a day-to-day basis, until its decisions weigh more than yours, the animal will gradually assume the role of leader, to the point that he can face you, given the surreal conflict of interests that such a situation would entail.

From the beginning you set the rules and make them very clear to your noble friendWell, there is nothing that confuses a dog more than not knowing exactly what is allowed and not doing. A balanced dog is the one who knows for sure where its limits are.

When it comes to training you, do not pretend to be too rigorous and much less use bad manners or physical punishment. You will get much more from this fort if you use the techniques of positive reinforcement How well they will make you feel. Obviously, you should have a little patience to "turn a blind eye" to the behaviors you don't want, but in the long run the results will be spectacular.

Always reward your German mastiff, either with dog treats, with pampering and praise, because nothing will make him happier than noticing your approval, which will lead him to want to repeat that attitude that brings out your smile.

Finally, and if you are wondering if you would be the ideal owner of a Great Dane, you should reflect on whether you can and want to assume the high economic cost which means living with one of these giant dogs.

The food will probably be the largest of the expenses that you will have to face but not the only one, because bed, giant dog toys, antisarro snacks, products for canine hygiene and veterinary bills will be others that are part of your future diary.

Origin of the Great Dane breed

(Photo via: expert animal)

The oldest known ancestors of Great Dane are the Bullenbeisser, now extinct, and other German hunting dogs. The crosses of these dogs gave rise to several varieties of bulldogs, reaching the Great Dane that we know today in the second half of the 19th century.

It is curious that the name of this breed refers to Denmark, having originated in Germany. It is not well known why it is so, but there are also other names that call this breed, such as German Mastiff, German Bulldog or German Alano.

The Great Dane is a breed that enjoys great popularity worldwide, partly due to the cartoon character Scooby Doo.

Physical characteristics of Great Dane

It's about a very large, powerful and imposing looking dog. It is very proportionate and stylized despite its large size. In fact, they are quite thin, this can be seen especially in the back half of your body.

The head of the Great Dane dog is thin and elongated, but not pointed, the snout is somewhat rectangular and very well defined. The truffle is something big and is usually black, except in harlequin or bluish dogs, in which the truffle can be flesh colored or with black spots. His eyes are medium, almond-shaped and lively, they are usually dark, but sometimes somewhat lighter or even of different hue. The ears of the Great Dane are tall, medium and droopy, Great Dane is one of those races that has traditionally suffered the cruel and unjustified ear cut, but currently, luckily it is in disuse. In fact, if you remember, Scooby Doo had erect and triangular ears ... he was a great Dane with his ears cut off.

The hair of the Great Dane breed is short, shiny and soft, attached to the body. There are different recognized shades: brindle, black, harlequin, fawn or blue.

Dog character Great Dane breed

Don't let the immense size of the Great Dane give you the wrong idea of ​​your temper! They are very friendly and cheerful dogs. Of course, they can be somewhat reserved with strangers, although not aggressive. Anyway, to avoid problems it is always advisable (if not mandatory) socialize great dane from puppy, as with all dogs. This will get used to interact with everyone: acquaintances, strangers, other dogs and animals. Even though you usually have some fear of big dogs in this regard, Great Dane gets along great with children. Of course, you have to teach both to relate and treat each other properly.

Traditional training methods do not usually give good results with the Great Dane, and we could almost dare to say that with any dog. It is advisable to follow methods based on positive reinforcement and reward, such as clicker training.

They are not especially active outside the home, but yes they can develop a certain destructive character if they spend too much time locked up and / or alone, due to nervous breakdowns and boredom. This is more frequent when the Great Dane dog is a puppy or teenager.

Care of the Great Dane breed

Caring for the hair of the Great Dane is quite simple, just brush it occasionally to remove dirt and dead hairs. Simply bathe it when it is really dirty, and preferably in a dog grooming salon. More than anything, because its enormous size can make the task very complicated at the hands of someone inexperienced.

Great Dane dogs need moderate exercise, several walks a day and stimulating games. Although they are very large dogs, They do not adapt well to outdoor life, so it is not advisable to have them in the garden. Better at home with the rest of the family, and go outside when you have a walk or exercise.

They have a very soft and calm character, so they could get used to living in an apartment or flat, however, due to its large size, We do not recommend that you target a Great Dane in your home if it is too small. You could feel overwhelmed and the dog could also break things unintentionally.

Before adopting a Great Dane, or any other giant race, we must think if we can afford the food expenditure that will require us. Eat a lot! In addition, it is always advisable to buy specific feeds for large breeds, to ensure that their nutrition is correct.

(Photo via: 101razasdeperros)

Great Dane Dog Health

Unfortunately, the Great Dane dog It is prone to several canine pathologies. You may have noticed that they do not have a life expectancy as high as other dogs, and that it is only 8-10 years old. However, it is important to mention that generally the longest-lived dogs are small ones. A yorkshire terrier, for example, can live up to 20 years, rarely less than 15.

Some of the typical diseases of the Great Dane breed are:

  • Hip and elbow dysplasias, common in many large breeds.
  • Gastric torsion
  • Cardiomyopathy
  • Cataracts and other eye problems
  • Wobbler syndrome
  • Osteosarcoma

In order to prevent all these and other diseases, We recommend regular visits to the veterinarian so you can do a review and evaluation of the dog's health. Also, of course, always remember to keep vaccinations and deworming up to date. Go to your veterinarian if your Great Dane has any symptoms of illness, discomfort or unusual behavior.