The vast Majority of today’s so called “gentle giants” are just big dopes. Mild tempered beasts, all but harmless, excepting those so weak nerved they become fear biters. Quite often cowardly, and not really fit for more than couch warmers and yard ornaments. They do love their people, they do stick around, they are generally pretty easy to handle. Obviously they are not all the same, but if we speak to the breed as a whole, I’ll stand behind that assessment. And I’ll continue to look for an exception, a Dane with smarts, with heart, with balls.
Energy level: 3
Laid back beasts, many of whom live comfortably in houses all their days.
Just not that bright, of course every dog owner owns the smartest dog in the world, and Dane owners are no exception, and I’m always looking for a smart one…… but on the whole….. that’s a needle in the haystack proposition.
I think this is an understated quality of the Dane, many do excel in obedience work, many are instinctively inclined to please.
Yea, not really, most would be more aptly defined as Couch than Estate guardians.
There again, unless you scatter couches about your property you can be fairly confident they will be by your side.
Not unless you really spread out the couches
Prey drive: 6-8
Understated; these dogs were bred to run down and kill wild boar, that is not for dogs feint of heart. Wild boar, for those who don’t know, are big, mean, and extremely capable of killing the biggest of dogs. Danes hunted boar for a very very long time, and in some parts of the world they still do. The most laid back Dane might surprise ya if it’s given something to chase. And you might be surprised at what they do upon catching in the fervor of the moment.
Dog aggression: 2
Generally very little of that, exceptions aside. Any such dog aggression would not reflect well amidst the little old lady crowd that has long since claimed the breed, a thing they have been at work breeding out for decades.
Human aggression: 3-6
Many clearly are too afraid of their shadows to think about standing up to a human. But one does hear stories of an otherwise peaceful creature that rose to the occasion when it’s people were threatened. I think that willingness may be underestimated in this breed. They are not aggressive per se, far from it, but I believe it’s probably easier than one might expect to find one willing to lay tooth on a man if it feels that man is threat to the people it loves. There is, it seems to me, an exceptional level of devotion to owner in the Dane.