Come and meet a few remarkable Great Danes
Sadly, personal circumstances brought Barrack (Manny) with his mother Bella into our care. Bella was rehomed after a short assessment, and Manny went into our Foster home. Manny had his leg removed when as a puppy, Bella rolled on him and damaged the leg.
He has proved to be a lovable chap coping extremely well with his disability. He was examined by our Orthopaedic Vet who diagnosed that it served no benefit to alter his leg, as his whole body had adjusted to the infirmity.
It of course slows him down, but he enjoyed his walks and play with his Foster mate. When out on a longer walk, Manny has a special harness that attaches to his body with a wheel for his missing leg, he manages the device extremely well.
He has now settled into a wonderful home where he enjoys life, loving all the attention from family and neighbours. He also adores his food, to a point that he eats too quickly. A bowl with restricted parts was purchased. After stuffing the food in Manny ate the top layer then cried because he could not get the rest out! Back to the bowl with just one restriction!
Cyril (alias Blue)
A tad apprehensive
I rehomed Blue in March the weekend before lockdown, he has been renamed Cyril, as he is deaf he doesn't mind what he is called! Cyril was a tad apprehensive for a day or so, new people, new dogs but he immediately bonded with my tiny Patterdale. I don't think he had much choice in the matter as she constantly sat on him, nibbled his ears or feet to get attention which he takes with good humour and is very gentle with her.
A joy to see
I managed to take him to work with me once before the shops were closed, he basked in the attention from all the customers and met a six month old Harlequin, there were gangly legs and flappy ears everywhere as they chased around.
Yesterday we went for our first public outing in a local forest, Cyril was off lead and romping around with the other dogs taking in all the flora and fauna, it was a joy to see. Thank you NGDR for everything.
Ringo had been bred in Poland. When his previous family came to the U.K. he had to spend weeks in quarantine. He was only 18 months old, a ‘juvenile delinquent’ comes to mind. He appeared to have had no training, certainly didn’t know what a lead was for. He had separation anxiety, which with all the travelling and kennelling, is no surprise, but very hard to teach the dog that he is now safe and secure. He still is wary of some dogs when out on a walk, and will react aggressively, training is ongoing. But, a loving dog, getting settled into his home and now not anxious when he is left.
Ringo is now a 5 year old gentleman
He is full of health and loving life. His aggressive tendencies have all but disappeared and he hasn’t pulled on the lead for a good two years.He has been to Spain with us twice in the last year. He is such a character who is extremely talkative, he is still in great shape and very active although the last 4 months we have tailored his exercise to give him more rest days.
Full of character!
Miley arrived at the age of 7 ½ and as our foster home can only take males, she stayed in our kennels. Probable because of her age it was 3 months before a lovely home came forward. Unfortunately the night before she was due to go to her home she suffered a Bloat attack. Miley came through a Gastroplexy operation well and after the recovery time in hospital, was able to go to her new home. She has now settled and enjoys the company of her companion Luke. As she now has a delicate stomach, a fish based food she seems most comfortable with. Perhaps her senior years allow for her stubbornness and selective hearing! Also, she is very vocal should her needs not immediately be answered.
Bertie came into our foster home at the grand age of 9 years old. He was fit and healthy and looking more like a Great Dane half his age. His foster companion Tilly, had to teach him to share the toys. He had his own ideas of how life ought to be, and could grumble his dissatisfaction. In his new home he befriended a Labrador called Holly, enjoying walks on the beach together. He greets people and all sized dogs respectfully and enjoys playing with them. He has a particular fondness of pugs and bulldogs and has to be caught, when off lead, before he follows them home. Bertie has fitted into his new home so easily and enjoying life to the full with his doggy friends.
At 8 weeks Buddy and his brother came into our care, both white, both deaf. Buddy had a lovely home for 18 months, then very sadly he had to come back to us. He was ‘looked after’ by Tilly and her family. Though he proved to be the most loving, obedient easiest Great Dane, nobody was interested in a deaf dog! After 3 months with Tilly and her family he came to me. I was waiting for an oldie as they are sometimes difficult to rehome.
I’m so very glad Buddy became part of our family, what an absolute pleasure he was, a perfect gentleman. He never chased animals, even a squirrel popping up right in front of him didn’t cause him to stir. Mind you, he did chase Tilly when she stayed with us, and their tug of war games were epic! On a walk through the woods one day a lady was approaching us, she was in awe of Buddy saying “she thought it was a Polar bear coming towards her”. Everyone, dogs of all sizes and their owners adored him, such a gentle, calm boy. He did have a little hearing, could never work out how he heard particular noises. He adored riding in my old Mercedes estate (tinted window for his privacy!). Wherever we took him we always allowed extra time as people stopped to admire such a handsome, placid fellow.
Tilly was not always the easiest dog, but she was a much loved family dog and went everywhere with us. Tilly also helped us foster about 15 Great Danes, doing it her own imitable way, as she would not tolerate bad behaviour. One of her ‘boys’ she looked after was a deaf dog called Buddy. They became close friends staying at each other’s houses when their people were on holiday.
A strong character
Tilly was coming up for 9 years old when one day she became ill and died. She shared eight wonderful years with us, always ready for fun and games, a strong character. She was our first Great Dane and now as a family we could never imagine owning any other breed.
Tilly the matriarch
Tilly did not suffer fools gladly or shall I say dogs that were rude or became too big for their boots! This was particularly the case on home territory. A new foster dog was given respect for a short period of time before they had to live by her rules. If they did, they would be her best friend and she would play and also share her rug and if they were special even share her basket. But if they crossed her........ Tilly would wait at the bottom of the stairs to ambush any dog that came down.
She loved going in the car and would go and get her lead in anticipation. Also sunbathing was a particular pleasure of hers. The sofa gene was ever present but she knew she was not allowed. Upon hearing us she would slope off but the tell tale dent in the cushion and warm patch told it all, plus of course, the guilty look. Tilly would sit near the bottom of the stairs with her bottom on one step and front paws on another to look out of the window to see what was going on in the world.
Ruby arrived one Easter rather bewildered, it took her a while before she would wag her tail. She was senior in years and also over-weight, probable due to lack of exercise and poor feeding. She had 2 companions so she had to negotiate sofa sharing terms.
Sadly the Ridgeback died aged 12 leaving Ruby with her Terrier pal Timmy. He adores her and they are always together. Ruby has blossomed into a very happy Great Dane. We’re greeted on arriving home with Ruby throwing a blanket or cushion around gleefully and making a funny whistling noise.
Mouse is a very handsome seventeen month old boy. He settled himself into his new home immediately, and has never needed any training other than to stop pulling on the lead. After one month he was let off the lead, as his recall has been very good. He is friendly with people and dogs, but does play rather rough!
Elsa is now over 2 years old. She settled into her new home very well, with no major problems. She enjoys meeting new people and dogs on her walks, and after about 6 weeks, she was trusted to be let off lead. Elsa is fed a raw diet with very little dry food. Elsa is very playful, lots of fun and adores her new family's bed.
Discarded, found, now safe and loved.
Sophie was found roaming the streets; she had recently given birth to a litter and was very under weight. The Vet can only guess she's about three to four years old. Sophie is now a picture of health.
She settled into her home straight away with no problems, she slept well the first night and for a stray, she was also clean. Sophie has never needed any training, in fact she is very attentive to instructions. Most dogs she is fine with just now and again there's one that she dislikes, mainly German Shepherds.
Travel in the car is a great worry to her and she is sick. Perhaps she was thrown out of one and left behind, who knows? But the family are persevering, taking small steps to help her over her anxiousness. Sophie adores people (and the Rayburn) and is not at all wary of strangers. She loves playing with her toys and now her lovely character is shining through. One particular funny trait of hers is 'cat patrol', no feline is allowed in the garden!
Berkley was re-homed at 15 month of age. Now 18 months old he has settled into his new home very well. Though he is a strong dog he hasn't needed any training, in fact he was trusted off the lead after three weeks, as his recall is excellent. He is rather 'bossy' when playing; his favourite game is with a ball. Berkley is happy to meet any other dogs but is still vary of small breeds. Berkley is fed some complete meal with tinned but mainly raw meat.
Evermore in our hearts
Kiera came into our care at the grand age of 8 years old. She was re-homed after a quick assessment and settled in straight away. She was a perfect ambassador for her breed. She had no issues with other dogs, and when introduced to people, children in particular, there was never a problem. There were never any tricky moments other than her wanting to sit on your lap! Sadly, Kiera only had 5 months in her new home. She was the sweetest most loving character you could ever wish to take into your home and your heart.
Millie came from another dog sanctuary who could not rehome her due to her aversion to most other dogs. Her previous home was incredibly unstable and Millie found life confusing.
Secure and happy
At last a telephone call came; a family were needing a companion for their Great Dane that was pining for the loss of his friend. On the first meeting it was gratifying to witness Millie playing happily. She is slowly understanding that there is no need for bad manners. Millie and her new companion Theo cannot be separated, and she has settled in really well and enjoys long walks with Theo. She is great on and off the lead and has even started mixing with other dogs. She is most definitely the boss though when it comes to Theo.
Ralph is the most wonderful dog we have ever been owned by. He settled in almost immediately, taking over sofa and beds and became best pals with our current Great Dane. His favourite thing to do after sleeping and eating is popping the tops of empty plastic bottles. Ralph loves a spa treatment, he will get in the bath at any opportunity! He is vocal when he cannot figure out how to get up the stairs, so we stand at the top saying, left, right, left, right till he can get his brain and legs working in the right order! If our cockerpoo is asleep on my pillow or in his way on the sofa, Ralph will sing and bark until she gets fed up with him and moves; he knows how to get his own way.
My whole family love and adore this dopey, goofy giant of a dog, I really believe he is our once in a lifetime dog, perfectly befuddled in every way.
Lyra is the nosiest dog ever, she insists on ‘checking out everybody and everything’. Her other delight is climbing on things. If there’s a wall that needs to be looked over, then she’s up on her hind legs; if she could get on top she would, which we have to stop.
Her favourite toy is her Scottie of which she has two, one black and the other white. She stole the first one from another dog. She has a love hate relationship with them. One minute she’s shaking it without mercy, next she’s sucking it like a dummy curled up in her bed! At training club now she will do stays, recalls and retrieves, however, if training night falls on a full moon, Lyra’s away with the ‘fairies’.
Awhile ago she spotted a squirrel on the ground, that promptly ran up a nearby tree, and Lyra charge up the vertical trunk after it, completely off the ground, and then followed the archetypical cartoon slide back down with her claws in the smooth trunk! Now she’s convinced that the squirrel is still up the tree, and every other day will attempt to get back up just to check. The picture of Lyra sitting at the bar is a typical occupation, she knows the doggy biscuit jar is on the bar. Notice the floor isn’t good enough for her, if everyone else is comfortable, so she should be!
A new companion
Lucy came into rescue as a 1 year old with severe eye problems, Entropion and Cherry Eye. After the post-surgery the eyes recovered very well and she was ready for her new home. Lucy’s new ‘companion’ was a Copper Black Maran young chick, significantly when food was available.
The chick called Ava became caught up in a food fight with 2 ponies, and severely broken a leg. Lucy was always keen to chase the hens (only scatter them for fun!). However, as Ava was recovering, Lucy was curious but left her alone. In time Ava recovered and Lucy accepted her within the house and the garden.
Contented in his twilight years
Sam came into National Great Dane Rescue on 1st December 2018. He was an 8 year old Black Great Dane. We travelled down to Wiltshire from Scotland to see him. When we saw him his coat was very dull, his eyes were like slits, calluses on his elbows and back legs, not much muscle on his back legs and so thin you could count his ribs. Apparently he had never been to the Vet's and was fed on Asda complete. We took him to our Vet's the next day. They could tell by looking at his teeth that he was probably 4 - 5 years old also the way he was moving his body. They also thought he was kept in the dark by his eyes, in a crate as little muscle in back legs and laying on a hard floor or concrete due to his big calluses. We fed him on Royal Canin biscuit and meat with added rice and chicken. Twice a week added Extra Virgin Olive Oil to improve his coat. At first he didn't like male dogs. So we took him to Dog Classes and meeting up with friends who have Danes for a play day on the beaches. So he hadn't been socialised much with other dogs. Now loves to see them. Took him to The Rapha Centre where they analysed his fur and said his immune system is lacking in Vitamins and Minerals. He takes three tablets a day.
Adored by all
Sam lived with another Dane called Sophie, who was nearly nine years old, but sadly they only had eight months together before she suddenly passed away August 2019.
Then came along another Dane who was two and a half in November 2019 called Nancy. She kept Sam playing nearly all day with the odd sleep here and there. He's fantastic with our three grandchildren aged between 10 - 16. He is calm and let's you do anything for him. Loves food, laying in the sun, holidaying in our caravan, out in the car and play days on the beach with other Danes.
Loves his two beds one warm and one cool . Started cleaning his teeth with a toothbrush then progressed to a child’s electric toothbrush. Due to no muscle in his back legs Sam went on to have Physio, and Hydrotherapy.
Sadly he has Arthritis in his hips and back legs which started in June this year and is on medication. Also takes CBD Oil which he loves. He hears the bottle and you turn round and there he is, sat waiting for it.
He is such a loving and caring boy. Likes to get right in your face for a cuddle. So glad we got the chance to Rescue him and wasn’t put off by the condition he was in. We are forever grateful to Andrew at National Great Dane Rescue for letting us have him.
We were so privileged to take on our first rescue Dane, Chudley, from NGDR. He bounced into our lives as a hungry 2 year old brindle boy full of fun despite his difficult start in life.
He was 15kg underweight when we got him and he lost no time in raiding our kitchen to make up for those missed meals. His most favourite treats were croissants and on one memorable occasion I heard from a room guest staying with us they had tried to wrestle a bread basket full of them away from him - they lost before I had time to come to their aid. It was possibly our fault as most Saturdays we would take him to Milsom Yard in Bath for coffee and he would always have his own croissant, much to the amusement of people in the cafe.
He was the most gentle boy and welcomed other dogs into the house on a regular basis as we board dogs whilst their owners are on holiday. He shared his toys, his bed and I am sure would even have shared his food had you been quick enough!
On the meadows he was known as "the peacemaker" as he would on occasion use his bulk to prevent an altercation between over excited dogs. He also caused much amusement on walks because he would linger behind if he thought we might be returning along the same route - no point in over exerting oneself. He had the most stunning almond shaped Amber eyes to go with his beautifully marked coat and was meticulous about his appearance. This meant never getting muddy or going out on rainy days or even potentially rainy days, the rest of the family would return wet and mud spattered from a walk and he was always spotless unless he had come across the great joy of a cow pat and then all bets were off!! So it was Chudley that inspired me to run a half marathon for NGDR because a down and out Great Dane needs all the help it can get despite being the noblest and gentlest of breeds their size can make finding a home so much more difficult.