General information about training

The main idea of the training is that the dog should be taught to use his hindquarters. Hip joints, stifle joints, hock joints and even toes should be flexible and work as good as an oiled machine. The ligaments should be strong and the muscles - powerful and flexible. Needless to say that only dogs with healthy limbs are allowed to participate in training. Exercise therapy is out of the question. Appropriate load to the hindquarters will improve the general posture and body’s balance. As a result of the training, forequarters begin to work freely and easily, the normal, well set neck appears, withers is seen distinctly, too much arched loins comes to normal, the croup unbends. The movements of the dog after the training are reachy and effortless. What should be done to achieve this?

Puppies begin training in kennel when they are 1 month old. They may have walks on natural ground in special open-air cage. After every meal and sleep puppies should spend time gamboling outdoors. In a month puppies may go with their trainer for relatively long walks. Remember, that the puppies should trot mainly. They normally don’t like to move like that, because it’s more difficult to move hindquarters by turns than to push off using two hind legs simultaneously. If the puppy is bony, the trainer should walk slowly with frequent stops.
At the age of two months the puppy should be trained to wear collar, but consider that harness is better, because it doesn’t prevent the puppy to move freely.

How to choose the right harness? The harness should have narrow straps  without any pressure on the dog’s neck. It should make discomfort to the puppy when he tries to lie down.
The collar should also be narrow and “uncomfortable”, i.e. the puppy should feel discomfort when trying to pull. Steel choke collar will suit perfectly. In case the puppy manifest stubbornness such collar will help him understand that this behaviour is wrong.  

There is no need to have some special training tools. Don’t use bicycle, sledge and tires. First training sessions should pass without additional burden. Don’t use sausages or any other additional food, because training is meant to teach the dog. Sportsmen don’t have a snack during the training, do they? Besides, the dog shouldn’t always look back at the pocket with the food. Drinking is also undesirable during the training session. The dog may drink water right after the session is over.

The training session itself should last approximately 20 minutes in a day, thus even very lazy owner of Great Dane can’t say he has no time to work with the dog, because he is too busy, etc. You can always find 20 minutes for your beloved dog, even if you have two dogs.

Firstly, you should determine what kind of exercises are the most important to your Dane and make a certain schedule, for example for one week. Don’t try to do all types of exercises in one training session. Besides, don’t forget to plan “weekends”, when the dog may gambol with other dogs or alone.

Dogs are usually happy when their owners work with them, even if the work is hard. Along with the happiness, caused by physical activity, Great Dane is happy that his owner spends time with him.

You may take two or three dogs to the training session. When you are working with one of them, the other envies to the “lucky” and when you work with him, he does everything to prove that he is worth your love and attention. Don’t forget that the dogs are inclined to imitation. For example, the puppy will rather run after the bicycle, imitating his mother.

The main commands, that the dog should teach during the training sessions are “heel”, “go” and “stay”. The commands are said distinctly for the dog to be able to concentrate his attention. Please, each time use the same word to command. It’s not allowed to say “heel”, then,  for example, “walk here”. The dog should know these commands because using them you will control your dog in the ring. However, you won’t be able to use punishment there. That’s why the dog should understand that every misbehaviour causes discomfort. As a result being in the ring your dog most likely won’t check your backbone.

Some people think that the most important thing is to buy “the right” dog, and he should automatically run and walk correctly. This is the same delusion as if you buy a Rottweiler it automatically becomes perfect guard. The working dog should have only bent for certain work. You don’t have to spend many time for training. All you need is to understand the sense of the exercises, precision and regularity of their fulfillment. And  then you will be able to say: “My Great Dane has realized his potential"!