Great Danes are known to be funny, fun-loving dogs that have a lot of personality. But according to those who know most about the breed, they can be a bit of a challenge, too. Great Danes grow to be one of the largest breeds of dogs and have their own personality quirks, health concerns, behavior challenges, and care requirements. The more you know about raising Great Dane puppies before you purchase, one, the better prepared you will be to be the best owner and help your new puppy grow into a lifelong friend. Here are seven tips for raising Great Dane puppies that will help you and your new pup, get off on the right foot.
- Crate train – As soon as you bring your puppy home, training should begin. Your new puppy has no idea what is right and what is wrong when he starts off in his new world. It’s up to you to teach him and the best way is to start by crate training. Putting your puppy in a crate serves many purposes, including helping him get through the housebreaking process, prevents him from getting to areas of the house where you don’t want him to go, and out of trouble. It will also help with separation anxiety which is common for puppies to have, as well as it gives your puppy a sense of security to be in a crate. They learn to love to climb in for naps and nighttime, or during a storm, for security.
- Don’t play rough with your puppy – It’s easy to want to get down and rough and tumble with your puppy, especially when yo have a bigger puppy, like a Great Dane pup. Rough play as a puppy may be cute, but as your Great Dane grows into an adult and gains his full weight and height, rough play won’t be as fun when he overpowers you. Teach your Great Dane puppy how to play using his toys in a calm manner so that he learns his boundaries and limitations with playtime. They do not realize how big they are and rough play can lead to injuries, the bigger they get.
- Exercise, exercise – Great Danes need a lot of exercise since they are a big breed. They are not meant to stay cooped up in a house and lay on the couch. Big dogs have a lot of energy to expend and when they don’t get it, mischief is the typical repercussion. Start a regular, daily exercise routine early so that he knows what to expect every day and prevent a level of anxiety that can lead to a little trouble making from your pup.
- Feed with care – Your puppy’s health is so important and it begins with feeding your puppy. There are a lot of dog foods that contain a lot of protein and fat, which can be too much for a growing Great Dane. Talk to your vet about the best diet and food recommendation for your puppy. Starting him on the right diet from the start, will help him grow into a happy, healthy adult.
- Keep him happy with chew toys – Your new puppy will be teething for several months as he grows. Like human babies, puppies need plenty of chew toys to keep them occupied and help them get through the uncomfortable stage of teething. This also teaches your puppy what he is allowed to chew on, and what is his and what isn’t to chew on.
- Teach him basic commands – Your puppy needs to learn basic commands so that you have control of him and develop good behavior patterns. Basic commands also allows you to establish your position in the pack.
- Comfortable car rides – You will probably be toting your Great Dane in the car for different reasons, at different times. Trips to the vet, the dog park or just a ride along for fun, can be traumatic and frightening for a dog if they are not used to riding in a car. In the beginning stages of your puppy’s life, start taking your dog on short little rides in the car to get him used to being in an enclosed environment. A short trip around the block every day will help him get him acquainted with car rides and will help prevent motion sickness from becoming a problem.
Raising your Great Dane puppy starts with good training from the beginning. Following the above tips will help you to raise a happy, healthy Great Dane.