Are Great Danes Hard to Train?

By John Martin - May 7, 2021

Great Dane on lead

A giant dog seems to be difficult to manage and train in the beginning. Great Danes are known for their relatively big size and their smartness.

As a would-be owner of a Giant Dane, you must be wondering, “Are Great Danes Hard to Train?” Yes, they appear to be difficult, all due to their giant size.

Read on to know the ways you can train them.

Are Great Danes Difficult to Train?

A Great Dane, if not trained, becomes hard for you to handle. But it is not as difficult to train as it seems to be.

A Great Dane has an average ability to learn a command. The dogs get stubborn at times. However, the dogs learn faster when they are puppies before they become a giant dog.

Certain factors can affect the training and make it hard for you to handle your dog.    

What Are the Factors That Affect Your Dog Training?

You can find these factors given below that can make the training of your Great Dane difficult.


The first factor depends on age. If you start early, it will be better and easier to train your Great Dane.

Starting training at an early age will help you train your dog from scratch and prevent addiction to bad habits.

The training won’t be a matter of time. Some dogs take extra time to learn and form those habits while others learn very easily.

Taking some time out daily and training your dog will have a considerable impact on your dog. Also, you will spend some pleasurable time with your dog.

Although it is not difficult to train a fully-grown adult dog, you have to be more patient with the stubbornness in learning new commands.


Trainers are a crucial part of dog training. Not all trainers can train their dogs the way they want.

You, as a trainer, may not be professional in training your Great Dane. But you can learn the skill. What is better news than that?

Training a dog is a professional skill that cannot come to you naturally. If you have been around dogs or have trained one in the past, this would be an added advantage over a new trainer.

To train a Great Dane, you should be precise and clear in your training. Great Danes are not good at understanding complex and difficult commands or mixed scenarios.

Begin with training your dog one simple command repeatedly till your dog becomes a master at it. It could lead to multiple training sessions, but it is worth the effort.

After that, you can try to incorporate different and new commands. Simple training will get to the desired results out of your dog.


Each Great Dane is unique in its personality and characteristics. While some dogs are stubborn, others can be compliant and mellow.

Great Danes are the total opposite of each other in terms of personality. It is important to know about the personality traits to develop the training accordingly.

With the mellow and pleasing Great Danes, the training would be more fun and relaxing. The dogs will do what you want them to.

Who doesn’t love rewards? You can try to reward your dog with some food or other stuff that they love every time they respond to your command correctly.

Stubborn Great Danes are the difficult ones. Independence and Stubbornness these qualities will make your dogs do things in their way rather than listening to you.

You will have to find ways to make your dog learn with you. Try to tempt your dog with their favorite treats or toys. Anything that motivates will help.

What Are the Benefits of Proper Training?

You are training your dog to protect them and teach them the ways of living correctly. With training, your dog will learn a lot of things.

Socializing with The Outside World

A well-trained Great Dane is more likely to enjoy and socialize with the outside world than an untrained dog.

Your dog will live a more fulfilled life, knowing everything important.


Millions of dogs die on the road every year. Over 1.2 million dogs are reported to have died in the United States every year.

That is where training comes to play a crucial role. Training can save their life as your dog will always keep an eye on the road for safety.

Relationship with You

As you all know; dogs are man’s best friend. Dogs remain loyal until the end.

If you have a great relationship with your dog, it will be easy to manage. Also, you and your dog will enjoy more during the training sessions.

Related: Are Great Danes Good With Small Dogs?

How Long Should You Train Your Dog?

Learning always takes and requires time and consistency. If you learn something one day and you haven’t revised the next day, there is a high chance that you will forget it.

The same goes for training your dogs. It requires consistency and repetition.

It is almost like learning a different language. You cannot speak like your dog, and your dog cannot speak like a human. You have to understand each other and decide what each one of you is trying to say.

Puppies are thought to have small attention spans. You can arrange short training sessions for them.

Schedule your training sessions in such a way that will motivate and also give your dog enough time to rest.  

Training is meant to educate them on the basics of living a fulfilled life as a disciplined dog. If you find your dog getting restless or tired, make your sessions short.

Your motive should be to make your dog feel happy at the end of each session.

What Should I Need to Train Great Danes?

Apart from finding out what motivates your dog for training, you might also need some tools.

The first tool you need is a 6-ft non-retractable leash. With this tool, you can have more control over the training process.

Another tool is a line leash that should be 50 feet long. That helps in maintaining control and connection when you are trying distance command training.

Related: Can Great Danes Swim?

What Are the Important Commands to Train Your Dogs?

There are several commands which you can train your dogs on. However, your dog should know these three commands first before introducing another.

There are many sessions that would not end with having a great experience. Like crate training, you should think of ways to associate this training with some positive experience.

These three commands form the basis of a foundation for any kind of training. After your dog has mastered these skills, you can move forward to add more complex commands in your session.

Sit Command

Sit is one of the most basic commands, but this will make your dog ready for the next commands as well.

Also, your dog will learn self-control. While sitting, your dog is less likely to get out on the street or jump around in the house.

Sit would be another command for, please. Your dog will sit to get a treat, to eat, to play, and much more.

How to Teach

  • Get your dog’s attention to yourself.
  • Use a treat or a toy as a motivator.
  • Take the item close to your dog’s nose in such a way that it is within reach of your dog. Do not yet let your dog take the item.
  • Your dog’s movement should be in such a manner that the head is raised, and the rear end is close to the floor.
  • Try to make the rear end reach the floor by limiting the backward movement and placing your dog around the corner.
  • Once the rear and reaches the ground, try to say “SIT.” You should speak clearly and in a very confident tone.
  • If your dog follows what you have said, reward you Great Dane with the item.
  • Make sure you don’t forget to release your dog from the sitting position. You can choose any other term to release your dog from all other commands.

Come Command

It is an important command in terms of safety. You will be able to recall your Great Dane from any distance from this command.  

How to Teach

  • Begin with the same steps of Sit 1-2.
  • Take a few steps away from your dog.
  • Clearly and with a loud voice, say, “COME.”
  • If your dog doesn’t move, give the leash a gentle tug.
  • As soon as they start making progress, you can take the leash’s help as a guide to help your dog come to you straight.
  • Also, you can lower yourself to make the height of your dog.
  • Your dog should completely come to you and hug you. At this point, the command is complete.
  • Do not forget to reward your dog with delicious treats.
  • After this, release the command, take a break, and repeat the set.

Down Command

Like, Sit is a kind of request command, Down will not let your dog make mischief due to the position.

The command is useful when you are outside in public and you want your dog to behave properly.

How to Teach

  • Repeat the Step 1-2 of Sit.
  • Say very confidently, “DOWN.”
  • Very slowly move the item in a motion that is parallel to your dog’s body. Take the item slowing in front of the nose, then towards the ground, and then take it directly away from your dog.
  • You can also softly press their shoulders to make your dog follow the downward position.
  • Once your dog has reached the ground to the elbow, butt, and belly touching the ground, they have completed the command.
  • Reward your dog with the motivator and praise your dog.
  • Release from the command, take a break, and repeat.

Final Thoughts

Great Danes are a popular choice for a pet. They are a very gentle and people-pleasing breed. Although it is difficult to provide proper training, you can always find ways to motivate your dog.

Great Danes, due to their big size, need more reinforcement and time. You, as a trainer, now know the best ways to train your difficult dog.