How to Train a Great Dane Puppy

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Great Danes are stunning, beautiful dogs who are intelligent, friendly and good with children. However, these “gentle giants” can become giant troublemakers if not trained correctly. With persistence, patience and a positive attitude, it can be easy and rewarding to train your Great Dane puppy.

Start training your Great Dane puppy the first day she arrives in your home. The sooner you begin, the sooner you will have an obedient puppy who is potty trained.

Buy a dog crate. One of the easiest ways in which to potty train a Great Dane puppy is through a process called crate training. The key is to buy a crate that is only big enough for your dog to stand up and turn around in. The thinking behind crate training is that your dog won’t want to relieve himself in the area he is occupying. If you buy a crate that is too big, your puppy will be able to move away from his urine or stool and won’t mind it being there. But if he would have to lay in it, chances are he won’t use the bathroom in the crate. The best times to put your puppy in his crate is when you are sleeping or away from your home.

Stop any undesirable behavior immediately. Your Great Dane puppy may be a manageable size now, but in a few months, she will be quite large and possibly difficult to control if she is not trained correctly. If she jumps up on people, make sure you stop that behavior now or you will have a 100-lb. dog doing it soon. If she play bites you now, she will when she is an adult if that behavior is not corrected as a puppy. Giving her chew toys may help to keep her from biting you and other objects in your house.

Be persistent and consistent. It is very easy to get lazy while training your dog, but for him to behave the way you want him to, you must be persistent and consistent in your training. Always correct his bad behavior. If you aren’t stopping him every time he jumps on you, you may not be able to correct that habit. Additionally, when training your Great Dane to “come,” “sit,” “stay” or whatever other trick you wish to teach, be sure to use the same words consistently. Doing otherwise may confuse him.

Tips & Warnings

  • Only discipline your dog when you catch him in the act. If you come home to a chewed up pillow that he destroyed hours ago, he will most likely not remember that he did that and won't understand when you tell him "no."
  • Some Great Dane puppy owners are concerned about how many crates they may have to buy during the potty-training process, because of how fast their dogs will grow. If this concerns you, you can buy a bigger crate, but block off part of it with blankets or anything that is sturdy enough to keep your puppy away from that side. And as he grows, remove just enough so that the crate is just big enough for him to stand and turn in.

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