Great Danes are the largest known dogs also known as Apollo of dogs. They are also called gentle giants. There might be many misapprehensions about their swimming skills because of their great size and structure. Generally, people think that great Danes might not be good at swimming despite their size.
But that is not entirely true. The most researched questions regarding the great Danes is whether or not they can swim. If your dog is short-legged, their swimming style would be keeping their whole head up in the air and their body inclined vertically. But as great Dances are large dogs, they have heavy muscular body and symmetry.
It is generally noted that great Danes are good swimmers if they are trained well. They are not natural swimmers. They will be more capable of swimming due to their upper body that is strongly built and for the same reason, they can manage to stay up in the water on their own for some time.
In this blog, we are answering queries regarding great Danes and their abilities to swim. Not every dog has the ability to swim. And therefore, never try to make them swim directly without any constant supervision.
Are great Danes natural swimmers?
As mentioned above, great Danes are not natural swimmers. Their overly built body can maintain and help them float for a short period. Therefore, they can manage risky situations like floods.
But do not leave them alone to swim while training or even after training because there is a possibility of exhaustion or drowning. Great Danes were developed for hunting and they were called catch dogs. Swimming is a secondary thing that can be acquired by proper training.
It is extremely important to understand that just because your dog can swim efficiently, do not forget to keep constant supervision over them because accidents can happen anytime.
Great Danes are not built for swimming even though their body structure allows them to swim. You must always check if your dog is comfortable while swimming and if there are any symptoms of drowning or losing their breath.
How do they swim?
To navigate in the water, most dogs including Great Danes use the technique called Doggy paddle. The dogs keep their heads out of the water while also paddling with their limbs which mimics the boats paddling.
Their front legs would be moving from side to side and their back paws mimic the kicking motion. It helps them to float and they can move ahead and not lose their momentum. Their body structures usually allow them to swim for a short distance.
Know your dog’s nature
Keep in notice your dog’s behavior and temperament for different things while growing up. It says a lot about their nature.
Great Danes are usually gentle and extremely friendly but that does not mean that they are immune to any kind of other emotions like fear, stress, and aggression.
When put in fearful conditions, great Danes can become aggressive for the escape if they are not properly trained or socialized.
How to train a great Dane to swim?
Always remember never to rush through the process of training that your dog needs on how to swim. It gradually happens with trust and confidence. Most dogs react so much to water just as humans do.
They are scared and might resist going into the water at times. For this, you must allow your dog to know that he/she is safe in the water.
The basic thing you can try is going into the water yourself first. This will either tell the dog that you need his/her help or tell him/her that it is safe to get in the water just because you did.
Trust and confidence is the key to train your dog. And also, the treats. It would be beneficial to use treats as a calling mechanism. The Great Danes are protective and trusting and thus, they will jump into the water for the same reason.
Always keep a check on your dog and do not leave them alone even after they are trained properly.
Continue giving your dogs an exposure to water in a great amount to make them fearless of water. They will do better as they experience and take their own time with the new adventure.
Where to train?
You can always train your Great Dane to swim in your pool if you have one, or making a plastic pool, or in the bathtub when they are puppies. If you have a lake or a pond nearby, you can take your dog to train over there.
Most people take their dogs to the ocean but one should know that it is not very safe to take your dog to swim at the ocean if he/she just learned how to swim.
Again, to take care, make sure that they do not drink the water from the pool. For this, you need to make sure that they are fully hydrated before entering the pool.
It is not a very great idea to force your dog into swimming or any other activities he or she is scared of/not interested in.
Great Danes could the best swimmers if trained properly but it is highly recommended to be extremely careful while training.
Signs like gasping for breath, slow paddling, head underwater can be signs of a struggle and the dog should be immediately assisted because they are not naturally built to swim.
Great Danes are very majestic and powerful dogs that were used as the ones to hold down to caught wild animals and that says enough of their strength.
Because of their brawny body, they can move forward with their legs in and head out of the water for a short distance.
Great Danes make the wonderful pets that they are. They are very friendly and loving around their humans and also towards other people and other dogs. Do not let their size fear you in any way.