Great Danes are quite a handful and also are called “the largest lap dogs” because they love to be near their owners as much as possible and they are happiest when they are touching them.
As puppies, Great Danes are very boisterous and clumsy as they grow into their large bodies, but as adults, this breed seems lazy in comparison to small breed dogs. So, you can say that an adult Great Dane is lazy.
Great Dane Energy Levels
Most all large breeds of dogs have lower energy levels than smaller breeds of dogs, and this is certainly true for the Great Dane. As puppies, they have unlimited energy and they like to bounce around and “hug” their owners by jumping up on them with a paw on each side of their waists. As adult dogs, Great Danes have a very low energy level, so many do call them lazy as they can sleep from 16 to 18 hours a day.
Most all Great Danes will guard your home and bark if they hear someone outside. If they perceive someone as being a threat to their family members, their loud and deep-toned bark is enough to scare most people away.
Great Danes that are properly socialized don’t bark at each and every sound they hear, but socialization means that you need to teach them what normal sounds and sights are and that they don’t need to be alarmed at these things.
How Lazy Are Great Danes?
Great Danes are perhaps the largest dog breed in the world and they earn their title of “gentle giants” for being laid back and calm at most times.
They are much calmer than smaller breeds of dogs and are not interested in running a marathon with you, Instead, they want to be by your side all the time and they do get the “zoomies” just as almost all dogs do at times.
Great Danes don’t actually require a lot of exercises as some other high-energy dog breeds do.
They are a perfect match for an owner who has a large backyard for them to play in to achieve their exercise needs.
Why Are Great Danes So Lazy?
Great Danes are usually over 100 pounds at maturity and intense exercise can cause bone injuries and joint injuries too. If a Great Dane is overweight, he will definitely be at risk for bone and joint injuries.
Great Danes can be lethargic in nature just by being this breed of dog, but in addition, they may have issues that lead them to be very lazy and lack energy, such as dehydration, bloat, anemia, and hormone changes, and infections.
If your Great Dane suddenly becomes even more lazy than normal, you should take him to your vet for a check-up to rule out any medical issues that may be underlying.
When Is Laziness a Good Quality in a Dog?
The lazy nature of a Great Dane is very appealing to owners in many different ways. If the owner is not that active of a person or they are older or a single person, then they welcome the fact that their dog just hangs around with them and acts like a couch potato.
An inactive or older person will most likely not want a dog that they need to take on multiple long walks a day, but instead, they prefer a dog to just be near them at all times–even if he does sleep a lot.
The very calm demeanor and laziness make them quite appealing to people for service dogs.
The Great Danes’ grooming needs take very little time as they have very short hair and they are easy to take care of.
If used as a service dog, the owner won’t feel bad about not being able to exercise with the dog for long periods of time, because he only needs about 30 minutes of exercise a day.
How to Add Perkiness To Your Great Dane
There’s nothing wrong with you letting your oversized dog sleep most of the day because this is totally normal.
Your dog could have a bit more pep in his step though, and maybe you want to spend more active times with him. If a dog is bored, he may sleep even more than normal.
You can offer your Great Dane some enrichment toys to keep him busy. Puzzle toys are always a big hit with a big dog.
You stuff some tasty dog treats or peanut butter in them and then your dog has to figure out how to get to the tasty part.
This is definitely a low-energy enrichment toy because your gentle giant can merely lie on the floor and lick the toy for a long time to get the goodies.
You can play fetch with your dog to get them off the couch. Teach him the sit/stay command and get it command, so he’s actually learning something new while playing a game.
You can make a simple homemade agility course in your backyard with hurdles for your pooch.
You only need some inexpensive PVC pipes that are pounded into the ground, add a T joint to every two upright pipes and place another piece of PVC between them horizontally at about chest height for your dog.
Your dog will love spending time with you doing anything you wish because Great Danes like a lot of close contact with their owners.
You can simply take him to a dog park for exercise, go on a walk together or just play with him with his favorite toy.
No matter what activities you share with your four-legged friend, it makes the bond between the two of you very strong.
How Much Exercise Does a Great Dane Need?
As puppies and up until about 3 years old, Great Danes will get plenty of exercise on their own, just because they are full of puppy energy and are very playful. After 3 years old, the Great Danes only need 30 minutes of exercise a day to stay healthy.
The exercise time can be filled with letting your pooch play in the backyard for a half hour, going for a walk on a leash around the neighborhood, or going to the dog park.
It’s an important thing to point out, that you shouldn’t go for a run or any other strenuous activity with your Great Dane until after he is 2 years old. His joints are still growing at younger ages and too much exercise can lead to health issues, such as dysplasia.
The half-hour of exercise is important for adult Great Danes, so they don’t become overweight and at risk for many different conditions because of the added weight.
What Are the Health Issues of an Overweight Great Dane?
Arthritis is one of the most common problems that Great Danes experience in any case because their weight puts pressure on their joints. Too much exercise at too young an age also causes arthritis.
Overweight dogs are also susceptible to a torn ACL ligament in the knee, breathing, and heart conditions from the extra stress caused by being too heavy and fatty tumors.
Overweight dogs also can have severe issues when they are put under anesthesia for a medical procedure which can lead to death.
How To Keep My Lazy Great Dane From Being Overweight
Since your large breed dog lies around most of the time, he needs fewer calories in his food than very energetic dogs do.
Choosing a dog food for large breed dogs that is low in both carbs and fat and high in protein will help him to maintain his figure. Your vet can suggest a dog food that’s best for your pet.
You should always choose a dog food that is for large breed dogs and for the right life stage of your pooch as well. There is puppy food, adult dog food, and senior dog food as well as special diet dog food, which are all for large breed dogs.
You should be actually measuring your Great Dane’s food and separating it into three small meals a day.
This keeps him from overeating, as many large breed dogs do when they are free-fed with food in their bowl at all times. It also helps their digestive system and prevents bloat.
Don’t go overboard on the dog treats because these are usually high in calories and carbohydrates.
Also, advise your family and friends not to sneak your dog’s human food off their plates thinking they are doing something nice for your dog.
Make sure you put human food where your dog can’t reach it because Great Danes can easily reach to the rear of your countertops and chow down on your food.
So, in comparison to small breed dogs, Great Danes are quite lazy pets. Some people really appreciate this trait so they don’t need to feel bad about not exercising their dog enough.
Just a simple romp in a large backyard or playing a game with you can get your gentle giant up off the couch to enjoy time with you.