Great Danes are known for their gentle nature; affectionate and good with people despite their large size and frame. But, what about barking? Is this breed guilty of raising their voice regularly or more often than others? Curious, I did some research and here is what I was able to find.
So, do Great Danes bark a lot? Great Danes are known for barking a lot. A Great Dane will commonly bark when hungry, bored, when they see something outside, when they want to go out for a walk, among other reasons. Foresight and training are perhaps the two most effective ways to minimize barking in this breed.
Great Danes are brave and communicative dogs; if something is on their mind, they must share it with those around them.
This may sound lovely, but if you have ever heard a Great Dane bark, you would know it doesn’t sound lovely.
Danes generally have sweet-natured temperaments, but their bark is deep, resounding, and some might say terrifying.
Let us now take a look at the Great Dane dog breed and this form of communication, which essentially is what it really is.
We’ll also be looking at the causes of why Great Danes bark so much and some practical things owners can do to reduce it. So, be sure to read to the end!
Are Great Danes Barkers?
Great Danes are notoriously barky. It doesn’t help that Danes are confident, brave, and boisterous, in addition to having a terrifyingly loud and overbearing bark.
Many owners of Great Danes report that their dog barks at any movement, noise or activity; particularly if they can see it going on outside from the window.
To a Dane, the purpose behind this is to notify their owner of the occurrence, and to let them know and be aware of the event.
Acknowledging a Great Dane when they are barking is usually enough to calm them down and to get them to quieten.
Great Danes are not likely to attack intruders, nor show signs of aggression without a sufficient reason.
Thankfully, your Great Dane will not feel the need to lunge for an intruder; the mere sight of these dogs along with their terrifying persistent bark is enough to keep any intruder away!
The vast majority of Great Danes would not be described as nuisance barkers, but only adequate training can prevent excessive barking.
If this behavior is not rectified from an early age, you will have a canine with the loudest and deepest bark that you are likely ever to hear.
Your Dane will constantly bark, and no matter how loving they may be, their vocalizations will drive you and your neighbors insane.
This is important because you may not always be around to acknowledge them and to reduce their barking. If you are out of your home for example, you will not be able to calm them down. Training is therefore, the only real long-term solution.
One other important thing to note, is that Great Danes are known to yawn, grunt and even “talk”. They are a very vocal breed, and some owners (often new to the breed) fail to distinguish between these sounds and ‘barking’.
Owners often report roo-ing, boofing, and other types of “talking” which this breed uses to convey a number of different messages.
For example, did you know that Scooby Doo was a Great Dane?! This is why his character talks a lot and makes these distinctive sounds. Its based on the breeds traits.
Why Does My Great Dane Bark So Much?
One of the main reasons why Great Danes bark so much is due to boredom.
Like most working dog breeds, Great Danes have what seems to be unlimited energy. If it is not burned throughout the day, all of this pent up energy will come out in the form of mischief and barking.
It is not easy keeping up with these dogs, but there are training exercises that are sure to tire them out, making them less likely to bark.
They won’t have as much energy or enthusiasm for it!
Great Danes are very protective of their owners, and they are likely to perceive any stranger or anyone who comes onto your property as a possible threat. Your Great Dane will continue barking until the stranger has left or until you ask them to stop.
Great Danes are extremely sensitive and experience separation anxiety. Your Dane will except to accompany you everywhere you go.
If they are left alone, even for a few minutes, they will immediately respond and are likely to howl and whine until you return. When you do, they will likely bark excitedly, and this can go on for a while.
All in all, the reason why some Great Danes bark excessively is because they have not been adequately trained; they do not know that this is a behavior that they should not engage in.
While you can never stop a Great Dane from barking, you can teach them to control it. A dog must communicate with their family, but only when it is truly necessary.
Ultimately, it is the unnecessary communication you want to prevent.
How To Stop Barking In Great Danes
As mentioned in the last section above, bark training is not about putting a complete stop to barking.
Instead, you are looking to help your dog control the amount they bark.
Bear in mind; Great Danes are highly sensitive, so do not shout at your dog when they make mistakes as this can emotionally hurt them deeply.
The best way to limit excessive barking is to work consistently with your Great Dane while they are a puppy. The earlier on in their life you can train them; the better for all parties.
When doing so, you’ll want to be consistent, and do so several times a day – consistency is vital.
Puppies absorb information more readily than adult dogs, and they can learn to understand basic commands from an early age.
Training will not only work off excess energy, but it exposes your dog to a wide array of sensory stimuli to prevent phobias and intolerance to unfamiliar objects and situations.
Interestingly, bark training involves teaching your dog to bark. Yes, you read that correctly.
Your Great Dane will learn to bark when it is appropriate to do so. This is in effect training them when it is okay to communicate. It inadvertently teaches them when it is not appropriate to do so.
Let’s look at an excellent method for teaching your Dane to “speak” and “quiet.”
This process requires a dog training clicker (like this excellent clicker from Amazon) and a bag of healthy and tasty treats:
- You can begin training when your dog is already barking by saying “speak,”. Click the clicker and offer your dog a treat. Once you have your dog’s attention, say “speak” again. When your dog barks, click the clicker again, then offer a treat and lots of praise.
- Repeat this method until your dog barks after every command and seems to comprehend the word “speak” and that it is related to their barking.
- Once your dog completely understands “speak,” apply this process to when they are quiet and reward them for being silent when you command it of them. This time your dog is learning the word “quiet”.
- In time, you can teach them the word “stay” using the same process.
- In fact, you can use this for a range of different words and commands, like “sit”, “down”, etc.
You can teach a Great Dane puppy several easy commands (sit, stay, down, heel, come) and it is great and ideal to do so.
Your dog learns useful skills, and it also teaches them to respect you as their owner.
As soon as your dog understands that “speak” means bark and “quiet” means no more barking, it is easier to correct your dog when they barks too much.
Always have treats on hand, and look to reward good behavior and the following of commands.
Never punish bad behavior, shout or limit attention to your Great Dane. Remember, it will take time, patience and consistency, but it will be worth your while in the end.
Great Danes are barkers; that’s just the truth of the matter.
There are many upsides to owning a Great Dane, but their terrifying bark is not one of them unless they are warning you of an intruder.
These dogs are not shy. Generally speaking, Great Danes are very confident, and they expect you to listen to them, as they have so much to say.
Thankfully, these dogs are easy to train and can learn several basic commands from puppyhood and a young age.
This is not to say that you cannot train them when they are older, but it will be a lot more challenging and will require more patience and time. ‘You cannot teach an old dog new tricks’ is just a saying, and is not necessarily true with this breed.
Its important to consider that you cannot, nor will not be able to stop them from barking entirely.
Thankfully, you can teach them to bark only when it is appropriate to do so and this makes for a better life for everyone.
Positive reinforcement helps your canine understand what you mean when asking things of them, mainly because it involves getting a reward and lots of praise.
Great Danes love to see you appreciate the efforts they go to make you happy. They are people pleasers, after all.
Do Great Danes need a lot of attention? Yes, Great Danes require a lot of attention. They are a very affectionate and social dog breed and like to be in the company of their owners, along with other people and animals. They are equally known for being very good with children. Owners often report their Great Dane cuddling up to them and “leaning” on their owners; a sign of affection.
Can Great Danes be left alone? Great Danes are a very social dog breed and require regular company regularly throughout the day. Great Danes are known to become very anxious when left by themselves for extended periods. So while some short time away should be okay, anything longer can this will adversely affect the well-being of your dog. For this reason, if you have a busy schedule, frequently travel or would otherwise not be around, this may not be the best dog breed for you.
I am a practiced pet owner with decades of experience owning a number of different pets. I am also the main writer and chief editor here at Pet Educate; a site I created to share everything I’ve learned about pet ownership over the years and my extensive research along the way.