Great Danes are one of the largest dog breeds in the world, known for their gentle nature and imposing size. When it comes to training these gentle giants, many people wonder if they are easy to train. The answer is yes, Great Danes are generally easy to train, but like any breed, it depends on the individual dog and their temperament.

One of the reasons Great Danes are considered easy to train is due to their people-pleasing nature. They are eager to please their owners and respond well to positive reinforcement training methods. Starting training from an early age is also key to success. Socialization is an important aspect of training for Great Danes, as they can be wary of strangers if not properly socialized.

While Great Danes are generally easy to train, there are certain challenges that owners may face. For example, Great Danes can be stubborn at times and may require a firm but gentle hand in training. Additionally, their size can make certain training exercises more difficult, such as leash training. Overall, with patience, consistency, and positive reinforcement, Great Danes can be a joy to train and make wonderful companions.

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Understanding the Great Dane Personality

Great Danes are known as gentle giants due to their large size and affectionate nature. They are loyal and loving towards their family members and are known to be great with children. However, understanding their personality is crucial when it comes to training them.

Great Danes are intelligent and can learn quickly, but their stubbornness can make training challenging. They have a strong will and need a confident and knowledgeable owner who can establish themselves as the pack leader. Consistency and patience are key when training a Great Dane.

Despite their size, Great Danes are sensitive and do not respond well to harsh training methods. Positive reinforcement techniques are highly recommended, such as using treats, praise, and playtime as rewards for good behavior.

Great Danes are also known for their protective nature, which can sometimes lead to aggression towards strangers or other animals. Early socialization is important to prevent this behavior and ensure that they are well-adjusted to different situations and people.

In summary, Great Danes have a wonderful personality that makes them great companions. They are affectionate, loyal, and intelligent but can be stubborn and require a confident and patient owner. Positive reinforcement training and early socialization are important for a well-behaved Great Dane.

Starting Training at an Early Age

Training a Great Dane puppy from an early age can be beneficial in many ways. Puppies are like sponges, they absorb everything around them, and the earlier you start training them, the easier it is to teach them good habits.

Great Dane

Great Dane pups can be trained as early as 8 weeks old. Starting early with basic obedience training, such as sit, stay, come, and down, can help establish a strong foundation for more advanced training later on.

Puppy training classes can be a great way to socialize your Great Dane pup and teach them basic obedience commands. These classes also provide an opportunity for your pup to interact with other dogs and people in a controlled environment.

It's important to keep in mind that Great Dane pups have short attention spans and can become easily distracted during training sessions. Short, frequent training sessions (5-10 minutes) throughout the day can be more effective than one long session.

Consistency is key when training a Great Dane pup. Using the same commands and rewarding good behavior can help reinforce positive habits. Positive reinforcement, such as treats and praise, can be more effective than punishment-based methods.

Overall, starting training at an early age can help establish good habits and make training easier in the long run.

Essential Training Commands

Training a Great Dane requires patience, consistency, and understanding of their unique needs. One of the most important aspects of training is teaching your Great Dane essential commands. By mastering these basic commands, you can establish a foundation for more advanced training.

Basic Commands

Great Danes are intelligent dogs and can quickly learn basic commands such as sit, stay, come, and heel. These commands are essential for keeping your Great Dane under control and ensuring their safety.

When training your Great Dane, it's important to focus on one trick at a time and to reward them with praise and treats when they successfully perform the command. Repetition is key to mastery, so be patient and consistent in your training.

New Commands

Once your Great Dane has mastered the basic commands, you can move on to more advanced training. Some useful commands to teach your Great Dane include:

  • Leave it: Teach your Great Dane to leave objects alone on command to prevent them from eating or playing with something dangerous.
  • Drop it: This command is useful for getting your Great Dane to release an object they have in their mouth.
  • Wait: Teach your Great Dane to wait at doorways or before crossing the street to ensure their safety.
  • Off: Use this command to get your Great Dane to stop jumping on people or furniture.

Basic Training Commands

Great Danes are big dogs, and basic training commands are crucial for keeping them under control. Some basic training commands include:

  • Sit: This command is useful for getting your Great Dane to calm down and focus on you.
  • Stay: Teach your Great Dane to stay in one place until you release them.
  • Come: This command is useful for getting your Great Dane to come to you when called.


Mastery of these essential commands takes time and patience, but it's worth it for the safety and happiness of your Great Dane. Remember to keep training sessions short and positive, and to always reward your Great Dane for good behavior. With consistent training and positive reinforcement, your Great Dane can become a well-behaved and obedient companion.

Positive Reinforcement Training Method

When it comes to training a Great Dane, positive reinforcement is an effective training method that can help to increase the likelihood of good behavior. Positive reinforcement is the process of rewarding a dog with a treat, favorite toy, play, affection, or praise for good behavior. This method helps to create a positive association with the behavior and motivates the dog to repeat it.

To use positive reinforcement, it is important to reward your Great Dane immediately after they exhibit the desired behavior. This helps to create a positive association between the behavior and the reward. Rewards can be in the form of treats, toys, or praise, and should be something that your Great Dane finds motivating.

It is important to note that positive reinforcement should be used for all new behaviors, including sit, down, heel, come, leave it, wait, touch, and place. Consistency is key when using positive reinforcement, so make sure to reward your Great Dane every time they exhibit the desired behavior.

Using positive reinforcement can also help to build a strong bond between you and your Great Dane. The method is based on trust, respect, and love, which are all essential components of a healthy relationship between a dog and their owner.

Overall, the positive reinforcement training method is an effective way to train a Great Dane. By using rewards and creating a positive association with good behavior, you can motivate your Great Dane to repeat the behavior and build a strong bond with them.

Dealing with Stubbornness and Distractions

Great Danes are known for their stubborn streak, which can make training a challenge. However, with patience, consistency, and the right approach, even the most stubborn Great Dane can be trained.

Stubbrn Great Dane

When dealing with a Great Dane's stubbornness, it's important to avoid getting frustrated or angry. Instead, remain calm and firm in your commands. Using positive reinforcement techniques, such as treats and praise, can also be effective in motivating your Great Dane to listen to you.

Another common issue when training Great Danes is distractions. These dogs can easily become distracted by their surroundings, making it difficult to keep their focus on training. To overcome this, it's important to start training in a quiet, distraction-free environment and gradually increase the level of distractions as your Great Dane becomes more comfortable and focused.

Using a variety of training techniques, such as clicker training and obedience classes, can also help keep your Great Dane engaged and focused during training sessions. It's important to remember that training a Great Dane requires patience and consistency, and that progress may be slow at times. However, with dedication and a positive attitude, your Great Dane can become a well-behaved and obedient companion.

Crate and Leash Training

Great Danes are generally easy to train, but it requires consistency and patience. Crate and leash training are essential parts of the training process.

Crate Training

Crate training is an effective way to house train a Great Dane. It provides a safe and comfortable space for the dog to rest and sleep. A crate can also help prevent destructive behavior when the owner is not at home.

When crate training a Great Dane, it is important to choose the right size crate. The crate should be big enough for the dog to stand up, turn around, and lie down comfortably. However, it should not be too big, as a large crate may encourage the dog to use one end as a bathroom.

It is also important to place the crate in a well-ventilated area with climate control. Direct sunlight should be avoided during the day.

Leash Training

Leash training is important for a Great Dane's safety and obedience. Retractable leashes are not recommended for Great Danes, as they can give the dog too much freedom and make it difficult to control.

When leash training a Great Dane, it is important to use a sturdy leash and collar that fits properly. The collar should be snug, but not too tight. A loose collar can slip off, while a tight collar can cause discomfort and injury.

It is also important to start leash training in a quiet, distraction-free area. The owner should encourage the dog to walk beside them, rewarding good behavior with treats and praise. Gradually, the owner can introduce more distractions and increase the length of the walks.

In summary, crate and leash training are important parts of training a Great Dane. A properly sized and placed crate can help with house training and prevent destructive behavior. A sturdy leash and collar, along with consistent training, can help ensure the dog's safety and obedience.

Socialization and Exposure

Great Danes need to be socialized and exposed to various situations and environments from an early age. This process helps them develop into well-rounded and confident dogs. Socialization involves introducing the puppy to different people, animals, and experiences in a positive and controlled manner. Early socialization is crucial as it helps the puppy learn how to interact with the world around them.

Exposure to different environments and experiences is also important for Great Danes. It helps them become accustomed to new situations and reduces the likelihood of fear or anxiety. This can include car rides, visits to the veterinarian, exposure to loud noises, and different types of parks.

Play is an important aspect of socialization and exposure. It helps the puppy learn how to interact with other dogs and people in a positive and appropriate manner. Playtime should be supervised and controlled to ensure that the puppy learns good manners and does not develop bad habits.

Overall, socialization and exposure are essential for Great Danes to develop into well-behaved and confident dogs. It is important to start the process early and to expose the puppy to a variety of situations in a positive and controlled manner.

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Professional Help and Training Tools

While Great Danes are intelligent and trainable dogs, sometimes it can be helpful to seek professional assistance when training them. Many trainers specialize in working with Great Danes and can provide customized training plans based on the specific needs of the dog and their owner.

Professional help can also be useful when preparing for the Canine Good Citizen test, a certification offered by the American Kennel Club (AKC) that demonstrates a dog's obedience and socialization skills. Passing this test can be a great accomplishment for both the dog and their owner.

In addition to trainers, there are also various training tools available that can aid in training Great Danes. For example, crate training can be an effective way to teach a Great Dane to be comfortable in their crate and reduce the likelihood of destructive behavior when left alone. When choosing a crate, it is important to select one that is large enough for the dog to stand up, turn around, and lie down comfortably.

Another useful tool for training Great Danes is a head halter or no-pull harness. These tools can help to reduce pulling on walks and make it easier to control the dog's movements. However, it is important to use these tools correctly and with the guidance of a professional trainer to avoid causing discomfort or injury to the dog.

It is also worth noting that Great Danes are considered to be a highly intelligent breed, with a ranking of 24th out of 138 breeds in obedience intelligence according to Stanley Coren's book "The Intelligence of Dogs." This means that they are generally quick learners and can excel in obedience training with consistent and positive reinforcement.

Overall, while Great Danes can be trained without professional help or specialized tools, seeking out these resources can be beneficial in creating a well-behaved and happy companion.


Great Danes are a breed of dog that can be well-behaved and gentle giants with proper training. They are known for being loving and affectionate towards their owners, making them a popular choice for families. While they may have a reputation for being difficult to train due to their size and independent nature, with patience and consistency, they can be easy to train.

Starting training at an early age is crucial for Great Danes. They are intelligent dogs and respond well to positive reinforcement such as treats, praise, play, and attention. Removing distractions during training sessions can also help them focus and learn commands more quickly.

It is important to note that every dog is unique and may have their own individual personality traits that affect their ability to train. However, with the right approach and a confident, knowledgeable owner, Great Danes can be trained to be well-behaved and obedient companions.