Anyone who’s ever shared their life with a Great Dane knows they think they’re lapdogs, despite their vast size. You’re sitting on the couch, minding your own business, and your dog is on your lap the next thing you know!
Why Do Great Danes Sit on You?
Although it may seem like dogs do this out of dominance, this isn’t the case. Dogs, including Danes, have a lot of reasons for doing things like trying to sit on their owners. Read on to learn more about why dogs do this.
Do Great Danes Sit on You Out of Affection?
Believe it or not, affection is one reason some big dogs like to sit on their owners. Great Danes are cuddle bugs, despite their large size.
Danes form strong bonds with family members, wanting to be with their families as much as possible. Every lap is fair game, even a child’s lap! Sitting on you is a way for these dogs to show that they want to share space with you.
Demonstrating Belongness is One Reason Great Danes Sit on You
Dogs like to demonstrate to the world that their people belong to them, and Great Danes are no exception. This behavior often starts with sitting or rolling on your sofa. Your dog might ramp things up by sitting on you for further emphasis.
Your pet requires assurance of his place in your life. Sometimes, this behavior happens after you’ve been out or another dog has been in the house. Giving your extra dog attention helps in this case.
Do Great Danes Sit on You to Be Dominant?
It’s relatively rare for Great Danes to assert their dominance by sitting on you. However, one possible exception is when you’ve recently acquired a new dog. Your Dane might be trying to establish himself as more important than the new dog.
This behavior usually subsides as the dogs become more used to each other. However, there might be trouble if your Dane starts growling or barking. Speaking to your vet might be a good idea if this behavior becomes a regular occurrence.
Great Danes Love Having Fun
When many Great Danes sit on family members, they’re looking to get some fun started. Playful noises and non-threatening growling are sure signs they’re ready to play. Your dog might even begin to roll around.
Playtimes with Danes are some of the most enjoyable times you’ll have with your pet. This behavior often leads to wrestling, which is always fun when you have kids around. The robust play followed by dog kisses is always fun.
Great Danes May Sit on You to Bond More
Having a dog that enjoys cuddling is something that many dog parents love. Affectionate dogs are excellent stress relievers for often-stressed owners. There are incredible benefits for the dogs, too.
The more time your dog spends with you, the stronger your bond. Spending time together is essential for bonding, and your dog’s sitting on the couch is something you should encourage unless you see dominant behavior coming from the interactions.
Are Great Danes Oversized Lapdogs?
One thing we must remember with dogs like Great Danes is that they are unaware of their large size. A cute puppy will grow into a giant-sized dog very quickly, and it never occurs to these dogs that they’re too big for some things.
If a Dane can’t get a spot on your lap, he will make do with any place where he can be as near you as possible. You can find one of these dogs trying to get into any space he can on the couch or chair where you are sitting to get close.
Even if your dog crowds you out, you may want to think twice before making him get off. These dogs are sensitive and may see your efforts to shoo them off furniture as a rejection.
Dogs enjoy getting to their owners’ level to feel a greater sense of connection. Your dog probably also finds getting as close to you a great way to get extra attention. This is to be expected if you share your life with a Greate Dane.
Great Danes Have a Practical Reason for Sitting on You
Overall comfort is another reason Great Danes might sit on you. Because these dogs have long limbs, going down into a full squat is often tricky.
You might notice that your dog goes down into a half-squat when he sits. His rear end probably will not touch the ground even in a sitting position. This maneuver, pretty much specific to Great Danes, is called a hover-squat.
Your Great Dane Could Be Staying Warm
Sometimes, owners don’t complain about their dogs sitting on them because the dog might be cold. If your home has tile or wooden floors, your dog might sit on you to warm himself up.
Great Danes are cold-intolerant due to their short, thin coats and low body fat. If your dog sleeps in a spot that is too cold, this may be enough to make your dog end up getting sick.
One thing you can do to help your dog out when you notice him cuddling on your furniture is to give him a blanket. Most dogs with short coats will enjoy having a blanket, although chewing might be expected with puppies and younger dogs.
Don’t be surprised if your Great Dane always wants to be at your side as you sleep. You’ll be able to keep each other warm very quickly.
Could a Great Dane Sit on You for Medical Reasons?
Sometimes, there could be a legitimate, serious reason for your Great Dane sitting or leaning on you. Sitting or leaning on you could indicate that your dog is living with hip dysplasia.
It would help if you tried to observe how often your dog ends up leaning against or trying to sit on you. You may want to schedule a vet visit if you notice your dog leaning into an awkward position or leaning more than usual.
Regular checkups should be part of any dog’s life; giant breeds are known to have health issues. However, behavior that signifies possible hip dysplasia is severe enough to warrant a vet visit, specifically to check your dog out.
Could Your Great Dane Have Separation Anxiety?
Many would consider Great Danes a somewhat needy breed. They are devoted to their owners and don’t know what to do with themselves if left alone.
Some of the Great Danes’ most common signs of separation anxiety are refusing to eat or destructive chewing. Another sign of separation anxiety is your dog being ultra-clingy, such as leaning or sitting on you more than usual.
When your dog clings to you by sitting or leaning on you, he wants you to stay. In some ways, dogs are like children and think they can stop you from leaving by being clingy.
Making up for your dog’s time alone may help dissipate some of this anxiety. Extra attention time is usually in order, as it will help reassure your dog.
When your dog is in a better mindset, he’ll have less anxiety over being left alone. Although dogs lack the same concept of time that we have, they do know when their favorite people aren’t nearby. Your dog needs to know that he matters.
Do Great Danes Sit on People to Be Protective?
Another typical Great Dane trait is protectiveness. One of the ways protectiveness influences these dogs is by needing to keep an eye on their owners.
A giant breed’s size is an effective deterrent against harm. If anyone or anything poses a threat, these dogs want to make sure the intruder knows to back off. After all, anyone who doesn’t know your Dane has no way of knowing whether he’s mean or not.
What Are Some Other Ways Great Danes Show Affection?
Great Danes are some of the most devoted dogs that exist. Besides trying to sit on or lean against their family members as much as possible, some of the ways these dogs like to show affection include:
- Cuddling up to people in bed or on the couch
- Putting a paw on you
- Following you around the house or yard
- Jumping up at you, especially when you return from being outside
- Licking your hands or face
- Making prolonged eye contact
Great Danes Sit on You for Different Reasons
Great Danes sit on people for different reasons, ranging from attention to protectiveness. Although this behavior can sometimes be inconvenient, it is seldom harmful and helps your dog show that you matter.
As long as your dog is not acting unreasonably possessive or aggressive or sitting on someone too small to tolerate this behavior, there is no harm in allowing your dog to sit with you.