Can we talk about Danes?

Discussion in 'The Dog Breeds' started by milos_mommy, Oct 20, 2012.

  1. milos_mommy

    milos_mommy Active Member

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    Quite a few Dane people on here, and I realized now I don't know all that much about them.

    Mostly I want to know what they're like as guardians or with strangers in and out of the home, and what it's like to train them. Also perhaps their playfulness and energy level.

    I know a good deal about their health concerns and history, so I'm mostly interested in their personalities.
     
  2. Lyzelle

    Lyzelle New Member

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    Most of the Dane's I've met have been seriously goofy dogs, in the best way possible. Really fun and happy go lucky. Some have been more reserved with strangers, and some have been LOVE ME EVERYONE. The ones I've met in their own houses...meh. There were times I didn't know they were there. They had no interest in me.

    For a large breed, I'm always really surprised at their energy levels. They can definitely go.
     
  3. AllisonPitbullLvr

    AllisonPitbullLvr New Member

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    I used to dog walk one. He was really sweet but quirky.

    He was a very shy puppy but the owners did a great job at gently socializing him and he was coming out of his shell. Then, he was diagnosed at 8 months with Wobblers and he is now completely agoraphobic. He literally won't leave his house and yard and is afraid of everything in the outside world.
    BUT, inside the home I find him to be very typical of my experience with the breed-- playful, goofy, affectionate, funny.
     
  4. Barbara!

    Barbara! New Member

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    I've met a couple that were really go-go dogs, but most of the ones I've met were just about regular energy level and big goofs. I don't think I've ever met one that was really agile...although I'm sure they exist. Lol. They've also always been pretty aloof, but give you a lot of love if you get their attention. I've always noticed a big difference in temperament between badly bred ones and well bred ones... Which is to be expected in any breed. They're mostly very soft dogs and I've known a few rescued ones that were just borderline ruined due to their past... Too heavy of a hand and you can really leave a lasting mark on them.
     
  5. Danefied

    Danefied New Member

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    They are a guardian breed. Not hardcore like some breeds, but they notice things, alert bark, and without proper socialization can be very suspicious of strangers.

    Properly socialized they are just more alert. Our two are perfectly fine with strangers, gregarious even, but they know who their humans are and can be protective if need be.

    Training a dane is fun :) They are not border collie biddable, but they’re not bull terriers either. They are several danes I know who do agility, rally, obedience and my friend in Germany does SchH (IPO) with her dane and trains with a gal who’s dane competes at the national level.

    I don’t know that I would call them soft dogs - “soft†and “hard†mean different things to different people anyway, but traditionally I don’t consider danes a “soft†breed. They were originally bred to hunt boar after all. Not a job for a dog who would be easily deterred by a cornered boar.

    Speaking of, many people seem to be surprised at how prey driven some danes can be. They are a hunting breed and prey drive is definitely something many danes have their full share of.

    Our girl is prey driven, agile, and FAST. She can and does catch rabbits and field mice in our fields. I keep wanting to get her out to lure course, I think she would love it!
    Lunar is less interested in little stuff, but goat sized and bigger peaks his interest. He’s an old man now and knows what he can and can’t catch, so he’s not as big of a pain as Breez, but they both are definitely hunters.

    Energy-wise... eh... medium? As puppies they are notoriously energetic, rearrange the house with zoomies giant puppy PITA energetic. And they are puppies for a LONG time. At 3 and a half, Breez is slowly growing a brain. But she’s not like Bates in that she won’t make her own fun is she misses a walk or two. I’d say once you get them out of puppyhood, their energy levels will match whatever suits yours - unless you’re a triathlete or something! If you want to chill they’ll chill, but if you want to go for a hike they’re game too.

    Playfulness - total goofballs. They have no dignity LOL! IME most are very mouthy. I can’t tell you how many owners report their dane has to have something in their mouth to play or when excited. Both of mine do. They also are boxer-ish in liking to use their paws to slam things. Teach a dane “target†with paws with care!

    As you can see, I can talk danes all day! :banana:
     
  6. SaraB

    SaraB New Member

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    All of the danes I have had in my house, resident and fosters alike, have been gaurdy. Most alert bark, and then you get the screw loose ones that take it upon themselves to police who comes and goes. Same with strangers, it is very common to have a dane be shy or reactive to strangers (even well socialized ones). Others can be great, but it is something to take into consideration.

    My danes have always been on the higher side of energy. Classic was called a "border collie in a dane body". He was nonstop and most of that was because of his issues and got better with meds but it was still there. He needed more stimulation/exercise than my border collies. Not joking.

    The fawn color family tends to be lazier, the harl color family tends to be higher energy. Of course thats only true with breeders that breed within the color families.

    Health is the biggest concern. Medications are expensive and they tend to get sick. A lot.

    My computer is about to die, for more info, feel free to PM me!
     
  7. Greenmagick

    Greenmagick New Member

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    Pretty much been covered already but yes, they are not a hardcore guardian breed, but they do alert, they do pay attention, and they do notice things. As young dogs this can be quite comical (Danefied, post your video of Breez and the new truck lol) like when I put a bag of tomatoes at the end of the driveway and Ivy boofed at it for like 20 minutes:/ It was new and "different" and she wanted to make sure I knew it was there. She also tends to be very protective of the kids and watches them like a hawk when they are outside, but when inside and "safe" she sleeps through all manner of them screeching and running etc. She is very smart and a problem solver as well. She will be 4 in January and I am just in the last year or so really seeing her mature personality...she still plays and can be goofy, but the puppy energy of it is gone for the most part.

    Qcumber, well, he is just now 11 months so mostly total goof. He is a clown and his energy level is fairly high still (but nothing like a true high energy breed). He is pretty easy to wear out and is very good at settling (even if he does bounce right back up if he even thinks you may be ready to play again).

    Ivy and Quke are both agile and fast. Can they do an agility course like say a border, well no. But when the do zoomies in the yard, they go full out. They wrestle hard, run hard, and can leap. Ivy's breeder does agility with her dogs.
     
  8. milos_mommy

    milos_mommy Active Member

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    Thanks guys :) How common is DA in the breed? I know it's definitely not unheard of and more common than DA in say...retrievers...is it as prominent with them as it is with breeds like ACDs or GSDs or the like?
     
  9. spiffy

    spiffy New Member

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    At a glance, Danes would seem ideal guard dogs because of its massive size. Most Danes would measure 30 inches or more at the shoulders. The mere size of the dog would intimidate wrongdoers. This breed though was affectionately dubbed "Gentle Giants" by its fans. Danes make ideal home companions because they are loyal, gentle and affectionate. The love these dogs have for their owners is as big as their size.
     
  10. Barbara!

    Barbara! New Member

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    I've actually never heard of a dog aggressive Dane. Personally.
     
  11. Greenmagick

    Greenmagick New Member

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    I would say DA is probably medium. Its not as high as certain breeds but I wouldnt classify it as rare either. I would guess though that its more likely reactivity than true DA in many cases.
     
  12. Danefied

    Danefied New Member

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    Yep, like Greenmagick said, not rare. SSA is not rare either.
    On the dane board both DA and SSA show up a good bit. And like Sara B said, reactivity issues are not rare in the breed either. They are a molosser breed and many of them pick fight over flight, especially as they mature.

    Danes do know how big they are and many do realize that they can scare the bejeebers out of folks by putting on a good show of teeth and noise. This is why IMO confrontational training techniques are just not a good route with these dogs (not that they are really with any dog) because eventually they will figure out that they ARE bigger and stronger than you and you end up with this giant dog looking at you saying “make meâ€. Its not surprising that a lot of danes end up in shelters and rescues around maturity.

    Oh, on the topic of “make meâ€, another dane technique is to go limp. In our house we term it “jello dogâ€. Imagine trying to wrestle a giant water balloon. This is what its like to try and remove a dane from your lap who has gone “jello dogâ€. It doesn’t help that at this point your legs are probably numb. Some danes employ this technique to avoid the bath tub or being led to their doom (aka the scales at the vet).

    The term “gentle giants†bugs me honestly. I think it set a lot of new owners and their dogs up for failure.
    These dogs are not inherently gentle. They are a giant, powerful dog who can weigh 100 pounds at 6 months. Just watch any 6 month old puppy go through the day, now picture that puppy at 100 pounds. They like to be physical. You watch them play, and you can hear the body slams. They have no concept of how delicate humans are by comparison.

    One slap with a paw (that they love to use) can leave you with a bloody nose. DH loves to wrestle and play physically with the dogs... At 7 or 8 months Breez flattened him playing outside. Knocked a full grown man who was ready for the hit flat on the ground. (He knows now not to give her a running start.) She has also chipped one of his teeth (or was that Lunar?) and I’ve bitten clean through my tongue being clocked on the chin with a dane head.

    They can be TAUGHT to be gentle, but it does have to be purposefully taught.

    Dane tails are deadly. Like fling a coffee mug off the table, across the room, in to the wall deadly. Like, drop a man to his knees if he gets hit *there* - which happens surprisingly often because of their height. This is Breez demanding dinner:
    http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=t6dJA74EqRk

    The scary truck:
    Breez was about 11 months here. Truck was new and clearly dangerous.
    http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=HLiKRhvGHQA

    This one... there are no words really... but it gives you a glimpse in to two dane personalities:
    http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=tyMCoIWE3aA
     
  13. SaraB

    SaraB New Member

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    Anyone that has lived with a Dane knows that term is just not true. Even a happy go lucky Dane is not gentle.
     
  14. SaraB

    SaraB New Member

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    Have you heard of Classic? He was human aggressive. Most of my fosters had issues in one form or another. Most of the Danes I have in classes are at least reactive. Now, yes I did take in the behaviorally challenged fosters and yes your average Dane owner doesn't sign up for obedience classes unless there is a problem, but the reaction issues are very common.
     
  15. Renee750il

    Renee750il Felurian

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    You guys are making me miss Phoenix, the black Dane who belongs to the friend whose animals I watch when she's out of town.

    Phoenix thinks he's a Rat Terrier . . . . He has no clue how big he is.
     
  16. Romy

    Romy Taxiderpy

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    Strider has a rather large scar on his muzzle from an idiot lady who allowed her dane to drag her over at a show, while shrieking "HE'S FRIENDLY HE'S FRIENDLY!" and me trying to shout over her to keep him away from my dog and body blocking.

    Try blocking a dane some time or backing out of its reach when the owner is letting it drag her around on a shoestring. Her dog got in Strider's face, lifted his lips and snarked him right in the face. It laid his muzzle right open and he was bleeding everywhere. I ended up having to take him in the ring with a bloody muzzle, luckily the judge saw what happened and complemented him on how well he handled himself. She also gave him a V-1.
     
  17. Renee750il

    Renee750il Felurian

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    Shiva got accosted by one at the pet supply, and there was one who considered coming over the 3' ornamental iron fence around his front yard one afternoon when I was walking Bimmer and Kharma. I'm not sure whether he was after me or the two dogs, or all of us, but his owners are definitely idiots who are just asking to lose their dog and have the hell sued out of them one day.
     

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