Bigger the dog, bigger the responsibility? In a way, yes.
Owning a dog is a serious decision that not only affects your life, but lives those around you as well, and owning a large dog demands a certain set of skills and needs from everyone.
Not only that you need a bigger and more expensive bed for a large size dog, but you need to carefully choose a dog bowl for both water and food, and maybe even pay higher for veterinarian services.
If you want to welcome a colossal canine into your home you need to think about some things first and be sure that you can satisfy them.
Here is what you should consider first before you let that fluffy giant steal your home and heart.
Proper training and early socialization are imperative when it comes to owning a well-behaved dog.
When you own a large size dog training is a top priority. Not that they are more ludacris than medium or small size dogs, but it’s just that they are big and can knock things out more easily.
Imagine this scene: you are out on a walk with your Great Dane and he sees an elderly neighbor that he adores and decides to greet him by jumping on him. Sounds scary a bit, right?
Since this is a large size dog the chances are that he can easily knock your elderly neighbor down and cause non-desirable bruises, injuries, or even worse.
This is why your large size dog must know basic commands and follow them identically, when on a leash and off the leash. For everyone’s safety, it’s crucial to control your dog all the time.
You don’t want to be pulled when on walks, so make sure that you start training your dog as soon as you get him home.
Arm yourself with dog toys, treats, and extra patience, because you will need it.
Training is a process, and creating a well-behaved and trained dog takes time, energy, and creativity.
Make training sessions fun and short – repetition is boring to dogs, especially to bright breeds who enjoy mental stimulation. Make sure that owning a large size dog is for you.
If you are a first time dog owner maybe you should think about getting a smaller size dog, a breed that’s more suitable for first time dog owners – some breeds are just better than others when it comes to just entering the canine world.
Exercise Is A Must
Have you ever heard that saying – A tired dog is a good dog? Well, this is the ultimate truth when it comes to owning a dog.
Energy levels vary from dog to dog. In fact, dogs of the same breed may have different energy levels.
The truth is that many large dogs are as active as they are massive. This means that daily exercise is a mandatory step to keep them healthy and strong, both mentally and physically.
Official exercise recommendation is between 15-60 minutes of exercise twice daily. This may vary depending on the dog’s age, health, and breed.
Regular exercise is also important to keep obesity away. Carrying added weight created pressure on joints and hip and can lead to many health issues.
Did you know that large dogs are prone to joint problems?
This is especially seen in German Shepherds, who need serious exercise plans to keep their joints healthy and strong.
If you work away from home, or just don’t have enough time to provide regular exercise, think about hiring a dog walker, to help you keep your dog in shape.
This is a great option if your budget allows it, plus your dog will love having regular exercise.
If you are thinking about this option, make sure that you go for the walker who already has experience with larger dog breeds. Not every breed is for everyone, nor it’s easy to master walking a large size dog.
Nutrition Is The Key
Dogs thrive on high-quality food. You may think that providing quality food should to enough for your large dog, but real work otherwise.
Large dogs must receive the appropriate diet, especially when puppies and in their early years.
Large breeds puppies grow more quickly and for a longer time, opposite to smaller dogs.
Fast growth means that large dog puppies are vulnerable to nutrient imbalances and deficiencies which are usually linked to several painful health problems, like hip and elbow dysplasia.
Luckily, there are so many brands that make great food for large dog breeds and do their best to provide needed nutrients. Your veterinarian can always recommend the best large dog care option for your dog.
You should also discuss with your veterinarian about joint supplements as an addition to your dog’s diet – these can be very helpful when it comes to supporting their bones.
Larger Dog Higher The Expenses
Owning a dog has its perks, but it also comes with a certain level of expenses. Dogs have ongoing needs in terms of food, toys, treats, and veterinarian check-ups.
With large dog care, everything is super-sized, including expenses. Big dogs require more food, a higher dose of medication, larger toys, and even preventive treatments.
This means that you should stretch your budget or plan higher expenses.
Responsibilities Of Bringing A Large Dog Breed Into Your Life
Big or small dog, responsibilities are not changing a lot.
Regardless of your dog’s size, you need to provide love, protection, a happy and safe environment, and meet all of their basic needs.
You alone are responsible for getting a dog and making sure that that same dog reaches its senior years, and does not die alone.
You need to be patient with your large size dog and understand well what they need before you get a dog.
Once you get a dog, you are committing to care about someone for at least seven years.
If you are lucky enough your large size dog might live up to fifteen years, all depending on the breed.
Abandoning your dog shouldn’t be an option no matter what – this is why it’s so crucial to be 100% that you can afford to own a dog. Sure, unplanned things in life happen, which is why plan B is so important.
Most Popular Giant Dog Breeds
Giant dogs are great pets, as long as you know how to manage them. Some people prefer small dogs, while others claim that there isn’t anything better but owning a giant dog.
Sure, they are packed with many pluses: they are true softies with big hearts, gentle temperaments, and sweethearts.
Some are even convinced that they are one-of-a-kind lap dogs. On top of that, they are usually highly intelligent and easy to train.
Now when you are familiar with massive factors on owning a giant dog, let’s see which breeds are proud to be called large dogs:
- Saint Bernard
- Dogue de Bordeaux
- Great Pyrenees
- Irish Wolfhound
- Great Dane
- Scottish Deerhound
- Greater Swiss Mountain Dog
- Bernese Mountain Dog
- Cane Corso
- Dogo Argentino
The Bottom Line
If you are 100% sure that a large size dog is a dog for you, you shouldn’t think about downsides as well.
Having a giant dog comes with its perks – bigger the dog funnier the goofy moment, but there is a massive downside that you should think about.
Large size dogs tend to live shorter. This is a hard pill to swallow, especially for younger children, but massive dogs tend to have a shorter life span.
Many of large size dogs tend to live about six to ten years, while the average dog lifespan is around 12 to 15 years.
If you are still getting a large size dog, make sure that you use every second well.
Provide your giant dog much-needed love, a supporting environment, the best quality food possible, and training that will shape your sweet giant into a well-behaved canine citizen.