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Why Does My Great Dane Follow Me Everywhere?

why does my great dane follow me everywhere

Being the owner of a Great Dane is extremely rewarding. The Great Dane is not only a loving and sweet canine, but it is an extremely loyal and alpha park animal.

If you have a Great Dane and he has been following you around the house without letting you out of his sight, you may be wondering why he is doing so and what may be causing his behavior.

Oftentimes, when a Great Dane is following one particular person around non-stop, they may be doing so for a few limited reasons–ranging from traditional pack behavior to dealing with separation anxiety.

Knowing how to identify particular behaviors and habits in your Great Dane can help you to determine why he is always following you around everywhere you go.

Separation Anxiety

The Great Dane is known as an extremely loyal, dedicated, and committed dog, which is why it is not uncommon for them to experience separation anxiety from their owner from time to time.

If your Great Dane is not familiar with being independent or dealing with your absence, they may have a harder time allowing you out of their sight.

You may notice your Great Dane seems increasingly jumpy, anxious, or excited when you leave the room or even if you leave your house for just a few minutes to a couple of hours.

Some of the most common signs that your Great Dane is experiencing separation anxiety might include:

  • Appear noticeably jumpy, erratic, and anxious when you are planning to leave or each time you return from being out or away, even if you were only away for a limited period of time.
  • Acting out destructively while you are gone outside of the house, tearing up clothing, furniture, and surroundings.
  • Acting negatively whenever you are planning to leave the house.
  • Physical reactions to your absences, including shakiness, tremors, nausea, vomiting, and being unable to relax

Dealing with separation anxiety in a Great Dane is not always easy, even if you have a Great Dane who is young and still a puppy. Working through separation anxiety may be possible in increments and by helping your dog to become more comfortable with being on his own.

There are also various medications as well as CBD tinctures that are recommended by many veterinarians today for canines that suffer from anxiety disorders such as separation anxiety.

Reinforced Behavior

Whenever a dog is acting out or acting up, including Great Danes, it can often be attributed to having their bad behavior reinforced by their owners.

Unfortunately, even if you believe you are doing the right thing by encouraging your Great Dane to follow you, this can lead to his inability to listen or respond to you when it is time for him to spend some time alone or to listen to your commands.

If you are constantly praising your Great Dane while he is following you, sharing your food, or even providing him with treats periodically as your companion, he has no reason to believe he should ever be apart from you.

When his behavior has been reinforced positively over time, he will be less likely to remain independent for extended periods of time, which can also lead to potentially debilitating separation anxiety if it is not addressed and remedied as quickly as possible.

Some ways to help break bad behavioral patterns and habits that have developed over time with accidental reinforced behavior include:

Being consistent

Consistency is key when it comes to breaking any behaviors, especially with a stubborn and intelligent canine such as a Great Dane. If you want to help your Great Dane to become more independent, the work begins with you.

Being consistent when you set boundaries and tell your pup no is essential in order for any true and long-lasting changes to take place in your dog’s behavior.

No more frivolous rewards

Of course, you love your dog and want to show him how much you love him as much as possible. However, in order to successfully break accidental reinforced behavior, you will need to stop handing out frivolous rewards.

Only give treats and rewards to your Great Dane once he has shown he can listen to you while also remaining on his own and independent when he is told to do so by his owner.

Avoid responding immediately

If you want to break how clingy your Great Dane is with you, you can do so by stopping yourself from giving in to his or her every whim.

Each time your Great Dane follows you for attention, continue completing your own tasks without reinforcing the expectation.

While this can require a commitment on your behalf, it will help your Great Dane to understand that his following you does not automatically equate to infinite belly rubs on-demand.

You Have an Attention-Seeking Dog

It’s not uncommon to have an attention-seeking Great Dane, as Great Danes are known for their ability to bond with just one owner over the course of their lives.

Great Danes are also known to be a needy breed, meaning they enjoy affection and attention from owners as well as strangers alike.

If you love your Great Dane but need him to maintain a bit of independence, keep the following tips in mind:

  • Ensure your Great Dane’s needs are all being met and that he is content with his food, water, exercise, and play.
  • Always make sure that your Great Dane receives enough mental stimulation and attention each day.
  • Walk your Great Dane for at least 30 to 45 minutes each day to help provide pleasure, stimulation, and physical exertion for him, which may help him to feel more satisfied and content.
  • Provide adequate space for your Great Dane to relax, play, and sleep.
  • Offer plenty of toys and activities for your Great Dane to remain entertained on his own when you are out and away from home or when you require some space and independence yourself.

The Dog is Acting on Instinct

Another reason your Great Dane is following you around non-stop is that he is just simply living how he is genetically wired.

The Great Dane is known for its instinctive pack behavior, which causes them to seek out a leader of the pack to turn to in everyday situations, which is typically their owner.

Even though they are not living out in the wild or responsible for hunting their own food, the Great Dane’s genetics are simply ingrained in them to this day, regardless of breed and the level of domestication they have in their genetic profile.

Most Great Danes that act on instinct do so because they have put all of their trust in their owners.

Great Danes prefer it when their owners are able to guide and instruct them, from basic commands to daily tasks and routines.

Some of the best solutions to consider if your Great Dane is simply acting on instinct when following you around day-to-day include:

  • Increased command training: Reinforcing command training is extremely beneficial for Great Danes, who prefer routines and structure. Command training can also help your Great Dane to maintain control of his instincts.
  • Structure and routine: Any dog who is a pack animal, such as the Great Dane, can benefit greatly from a dedicated routine and structure in that routine. You can also reduce the risk of your Great Dane developing separation anxiety with a proper routine in place.

Related questions

How do Great Danes show love?

Great Danes show love by following their owner around, asking for attention, and even appearing excited each time their owner arrives home from work or after a long day out.

If you have a Great Dane who is extremely attached to you, he may attempt to show off with tricks he has learned or by giving you affection in the form of cuddles and kisses.

Do Great Danes need a lot of attention?

This will depend on the Great Dane you have as well as his own personal preferences. However, Great Danes are known for their attachment to their owners, which may cause them to be a bit more demanding than other breeds.

For those who are often out of the house, working, or do not have time to tend to a dog each day, the Great Dane may not be an ideal choice.

What does it mean when my Great Dane sits on me?

When your Great Dane sits on you, he is simply showing you affection and love. He may also be seeking attention, depending on whether or not he is in a playful mood.

At times, when a Great Dane sits on you, he may also be attempting to get your attention for food or even to be let outside.

A Great Dane makes an excellent companion, especially for those who are seeking dogs for protection, but also for love and loyalty.

When you know how to handle your Great Dane if he is following you wherever you go, you can take the time to observe and monitor his behavior to gain valuable insight into why he may be feeling attached to you at any given time.