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Will A Great Dane Be Good with Another Dog? Facts & Personality Traits

Written by: Nicole Cosgrove

Last Updated on April 15, 2024 by Dogster Team

Merle great dane dog

Will A Great Dane Be Good with Another Dog? Facts & Personality Traits

When choosing a loyal and dependable family dog, the Great Dane is a great choice. They enjoy the company of people and are even good with children. But, what if you live in a household with more than one dog? Will Great Danes get along with them? The good news is—yes, they will very likely get along with another dog!

In this article, we discuss what makes Great Danes good with other dogs, their aggressive tendencies, and how to manage them!

Dogster_Website dividers_v1_Jan 18 2024-01-TESTDo Great Danes Get Along with Other Dogs?

Fawn Great Dane Dog Breed
Image By: Jesus Souto, Shutterstock

Great Danes may be intimidating due to their stature, but these gentle giants have a great reputation of being one of the friendliest dogs around! They are generally known for getting along with not just other dogs, but cats as well! This makes them good for multi-pet households.

Although unintentional, they are most likely to hurt other pets during play time due to their size, especially if they are much smaller. They do not understand their size and strength, and their excitement can result in them clumsily cause injury to other pets.

Like other things surrounding dogs’ behavior, early socialization and exposure to other pets can increase the chances of your Great Dane doing well around other pets.

Are Great Danes Good with Kids?

Great Danes are also good with children! They love their company, and have a natural protective instinct with small kids. They enjoy playing with them, but just like with other pets, they may unintentionally hurt little children because of their size and strength. Because of this, it is recommended that you do not leave your Great Dane to play with them unsupervised, to prevent any unwanted accidents.

Despite these cases of accidental injury, Great Danes are gentle in nature and can learn how to appropriately gauge their level of play with little children.

Are Great Danes Good Family Dogs?

woman and her black great dane dog sitting on a grassy field
Image By: ButtermilkgirlVirginia, Shutterstock

Great Danes are also good family dogs. They are naturally protective, making them great guard dogs over their family and home. They are also very affectionate, gentle, and enjoy the company of their humans.

They are active dogs that require occasional walks to burn some of their energy, as well as to keep their nails worn down. Great Danes are calm and laid back, and do not mind simply lounging at home with their humans. Due to their size, you may also need to account for the space they need to move around the house with ease.

Because of their personality with people, children, and other pets, Great Danes make excellent and reliable family dogs overall!

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Can Great Danes Be Aggressive?

Like all dogs, Great Danes may have some aggressive tendencies, as there is not one breed that is considered “without aggression”. Although calm, friendly, and gentle overall, Great Danes can exhibit a few types of aggressive behaviors in certain situations.

Adult great dane dog leading puppy out into the water to teach him to swim in golden sun from beach
Image By: SeaRick1, Shutterstock

Stranger Aggression

Great Danes are territorial and protective in nature. They may exhibit some form of aggression towards strangers who enter their homes. You may also find them barking loudly whenever strangers go near their property.

In most cases, this characteristic makes them the perfect guard dogs, and authoritative barking may be the most aggressive behavior you may see from your Great Dane. They have an instinct to protect, though attacking tendencies are rare among the breed.

Leash Aggression

Going back to Great Danes’ protective instincts, walking on a leash can naturally trigger their protective tendencies toward their owner. You may find Great Danes barking at strangers or other dogs during walks, the same way they do at home. This is not because they want to attack them, but because they are exhibiting dominance to protect their owners.

This behavior, while not alarming on its own, can be properly managed through early socialization as a puppy. Early socialization can help lessen their need to exhibit dominance towards others they encounter on the street, while still maintaining their protective nature.

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Other Forms of Aggression in Great Danes

Great Danes can exhibit other forms of natural aggression that they may never outgrow, as a result of improper socialization. These types of aggression commonly observed are food aggression, fear aggression, and conflict aggression.

  • Food aggression is a type of aggression commonly found among puppies. When growing up, puppies often have to compete with their siblings for food. Food aggression is when your Great Dane shows signs of aggression over their food, which must be corrected immediately.
  • Fear Aggression, like food aggression, can come from puppyhood, when they are helpless and depend on their mothers or owners for protection. This is manifested whenever they perceive something as a threat. Nervous and anxious Great Danes may be impulse biters, especially if other pets or people get too close.
  • Conflict aggression is a form of aggression rooted in dominance. Great Danes with conflict aggression will use their large stature and intimidating barks to assert dominance over people and other pets.
  • These various forms of aggression must be addressed immediately by consulting with a professional for animal behavior. This also further highlights the importance of early socialization for all puppies.

Safety Tips for Preventing Aggression

Great Danes are naturally friendly and gentle dogs that love interacting with people and pets. But like all dogs, not all Great Danes are the same, and some may exhibit undesirable behaviors. To prevent any unwanted aggressive behaviors, as well as promote healthy interactions with people and other pets, early socialization is key!

Aside from early socialization, it is also recommended that they are exposed to different situations. This helps them get comfortable with dealing with unfamiliar circumstances—especially if they are exposed to a variety of smells, sights, places, temperatures, and even levels of light. This should drastically decrease their risk for fear aggression while promoting positive experiences for them as puppies.

For first-time Great Dane owners, enrolling your dog in professional training programs may also be recommended. Proper training, exposure, and socialization can help your Great Dane become an excellent family dog, especially with other pets.

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Great Danes are naturally impressionable dogs that work well with other pets. With proper socialization and early exposure as young puppies, Great Danes can be trained to be the perfect family dog for you, your children, and your other pets as well!

Featured Image Credit: DragoNika, Shutterstock

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