How To Keep A Great Dane Healthy

Owning and caring for a Great Dane can seem daunting because of the large size and needs. However, there are simple ways to easily care for them. If you’re wondering what care is involved in having a happy and healthy Dane, then don’t worry because in this article we will show you how to keep a Great Dane healthy.

I’ve got a list of helpful ways that will ensure the well-being of your Great Dane. All of them are key Great Dane care practices that every owner should know to better care for their dog.

How To Keep A Great Dane Healthy

how-to-keep-a-great-dane-healthy

Provide a balanced high-quality diet

A Great Dane needs the right nutrition for healthy growth. Good nutrition helps to support healthy skin and coat, strengthens the immune system, development of muscle, strong bones and joints.

To keep a Great Dane healthy therefore requires that they are provided with the right nutrition. Without a balanced quality diet, they become more susceptible to infection and are limited in proper growth. Provide your dog with food formulated for large/giant dog breeds which are made to provide them with a good balance of nutrition for healthy growth. 

Select the dog food depending on their age, that is, either a puppy or adult large breed dog food. Our top picks and what we recommend are Taste of the Wild grain-free dog food for adult Danes and the Nutro Ultra large breed puppy dry dog food.

Exercise

Exercise is an important aspect of a Great Dane’s health for both physical and mental health. It enables them to be active and supports their overall health.

Exercise, in this case, involves activities such as walks, scavenger hunts, flyball sports, weight pulling, and tracking. These are activities that the Great Dane loves to engage in that also keep them fit and mentally stimulated.

The activities can be scheduled as either daily or weekly routines for your dog. The Great Dane is not particularly a runner, however, they enjoy walks.

A daily short walk is all they need plus other weekly activities to keep them active. Walking as an exercise does not need to be intense, just a brisk walk of around 30 to 60 minutes is enough. 

A point to remember is not to overexert your Great Dane in these activities before they reach 2 years old because before their bones are still developing and too much pressure on them can lead to skeletal health problems.

Exercise should also not be done around mealtimes at least 1 hour before and after meals because of the risk of causing bloat which is fatal in Great Danes.

Exercise is important to keep them healthy but should be carried out in moderation.

Grooming care

Grooming involves care for your dog’s body, which includes, their skin, coat, teeth, nails, and ears.

The good thing about the Great Dane is that they do not need very frequent grooming care and grooming involves simple processes. You just need to have a schedule for the sessions.

Grooming is not only important for a good appearance but also supports good health by preventing the occurrence of infection and identification of irregularities on your dog’s body that may need medical attention.

The below comprises the grooming care for a Great Dane:

Bathing

A bath is essential for keeping the skin and coat of your dog clean and healthy. A dirty coat can be a breeding ground for bacteria and yeast which can overgrow, leading to the development of infections.

A Great Dane should be cleaned on a need basis depending on their level of activity and lifestyle. A good duration in between baths is every 6 to 8 weeks.

They do not require frequent bathing compared to long-haired dogs because this may dry out their skin leading to irritation.

Select good products for the bathing process. Select a dog shampoo based on their skin sensitivity. I recommend Buddy Wash dog shampoo which is gentle, lathers well to remove dirt and it is also great for Great Danes with sensitive skin.

The KONG brush is the best for shampooing because it has rubber bristles that gently scrubs the Great Danes coat.

Brushing their coat

In between baths, brush your Great Dane’s coat at least twice a week.

Brushing promotes healthy skin and coat. It removes loose shed hair, dead skin cells and also spreads their natural skin oil throughout their hair to give the natural sheen of the coat.

During the process, you can check their skin condition and if you notice anything abnormal, call your vet.

Brushing is also a time for you to bond with your dog as you enjoy the time together.

Great Danes do not shed a lot but shed more around the springtime and brushing helps in reducing shedding by removing loose hair.

A great brush for grooming them is the KONG brush which acts as a great shampooing, grooming, and de-shedding brush.

Cleaning the ears

The Great Dane’s ears can get infected quite easily because of the warmth and moisture within them.

This conducive environment is also created when water enters the ears from activities such as swimming or taking a bath and are not dried completely. It is essential to control this.

There are natural bacteria and yeast on the skin and ears of the Great Dane which normally present no harm but their overgrowth causes infection.

Cleaning of the ears helps to keep them dry and prevent the overgrowth of the microorganisms.

Cleaning should be done during bath time and regularly between baths. 

The Virbac Epi-Otic ear cleanser is also a good  option for dislodging ear wax and drying out the ear to prevent creation of a moist environment for microorganisms and emergence of infections.

The best wipes are the PetMD antimicrobial wipes which also effectively clean your dog’s ears.

Dental care

Dental care is important for the prevention of diseases such as gum disease, gingivitis as well as bad breath from your dog.

Without a regular schedule for cleaning their teeth, plaque and tartar accumulate on the teeth and cause disease due to the accumulation of bacteria.

Brush your dog’s teeth weekly to prevent this.

The best brush set for cleaning a Great Danes teeth is the Arm & Hammer dog toothpaste and toothbrush.

The brush is long and flexible enough to reach all the teeth and the dog toothpaste is also effective in cleaning and removing food debris from the teeth.

Trimming of the nails

The nails of the Dane can grow out if they are not cut and can lead to ligament and tendon damage because of the pressure on them from the dog’s weight as they walk.

Cut the nails when they grow too much. Care has to be taken when trimming their nails, not to cut too short because if you do, you may clip the small vein that is in the nails and they will bleed.

Only cut small amounts at a time.

The best nail clipper to use for this process is the GoPets nail clipper for large pets which is easy to use for cutting the Great Dane’s nails.

The nail cutter reduces the chances of injuring your dog based on its safety sensor which prevents over cutting of the nail. If you need help knowing where to cut the nails, ask your vet.

Training and socialization

A healthy Great Dane is also one that is well adjusted to living well with the people around them as well as other animals or pets.

You certainly do not want a dog that is out of control and can harm those around them or hurt themselves in the process.

Training and socialization provide the essential guidance for behavior adjustments.

Training also enables you to better communicate with your dog through obedience training that teaches them how to respond to you.

Engage a dog trainer or animal behaviorist that can assist you with this from when your Great Dane is a puppy.

You can also learn how to effectively continue training to enforce the desired behavior you want your dog to have.

Medical checkups

Part of keeping a Great Dane healthy is ensuring that they are not sick and being able to prevent illness.

The health status can be determined through regular checkups by your vet who examines your dog to identify any abnormality or any health problem that needs to be addressed.

The Great Dane is at high risk of several hereditary and breed-specific health problems and to be able to make sure they are ok and catch any disease early, regular medical checkups are important.

Take your dog to be examined regularly and to be provided with specific health advice best for your Great Dane.

Also, make sure that your Great Dane puppy gets all its vaccinations to prevent infections.

Your vet is the best resource to ensure your dog is healthy because they understand their individual medical history and can provide recommendations best fit for them based on this to treat, prevent disease as well as maintenance of health. 

Conclusion:

Caring for a Great Dane is not overwhelming as it is perceived to be. The care involved in keeping them healthy is not tedious because they require simple needs to keep them healthy.

When you understand their basic needs and what is required to care for them, you are well on your way to raising and having a healthy Dane.

In this post, we showed you how to keep a Great Dane healthy. By following the care tips you will be able to provide the best care for your Great Dane and have an all-round happy and healthy dog.

If you liked this article you may also like to learn more from the below resources on Great Danes.

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Patricia Williams

Patricia Williams

Patricia Williams is a writer, mum, and animal lover with extensive experience with dogs. She loves talking about animal advocacy and care. She lives with 4 German Shepherds and 1 cat.