As a dog lover, you may have decided that you want to purchase a Great Dane puppy. Also known as a German Mastiff, these dogs can grow to be well over 150 pounds. However, these dogs do have a reputation for having a gentle disposition, making these dogs excellent companions and family pets.
Before you go out and buy a puppy, there are several things you must consider. Here’s how to buy a Great Dane puppy.
- Assess your lifestyle. Owning any type of pet is a big responsibility, so you must make sure that you are up to the task. Ask yourself if you have the time and energy to take your Great Dane out for a walk on a daily basis. If you live in an apartment, did you check if the building allows for animals? Does your home have enough room or a yard for your puppy to play in? Do you have the money to spare to spend towards the care of your dog? Pet food, toys and vet bills can really add up and put a dent in your budget.
- Get to know the breed before you buy. Before you make the commitment to own this type of dog, do your research. Learn about the nuances of this specific breed. Just as you would read baby books before the arrival of a new baby, it’s best to prepare yourself by learning about the type of dog you will be getting. You can read up on books from the library, or use the Internet to learn more information. Try dogbreedinfo.com and the American Kennel Club website at akc.org.
- Find a reputable breeder. Make sure you buy your puppy from someone who truly cares for the dogs, and doesn’t run his business like a puppy mill. A reputable breeder will only use good breeding stock to minimize the risk of genetic problems. You want to make sure he is certified. To find a good breeder, you may check with the American Kennel Club for a list of resources in your area. Get references from other dog owners.
- Check the dog’s background. Ask to see any certification related to the dog such as its championship certification. If the puppy has been to obedience school, ask for a copy of its obedience certificate as well or any Canine Good Citizen certificate. The dog’s pedigree is important and a good breeder should be willing to show you the dog’s ancestry whenever possible.
- Check the dog’s medical history. Ask for the dog’s vaccination and deworming records. Your puppy should be brought to the vet for his final checkup and medical clearance up to three days before you are ready to bring it home. The puppy should have also have a good orthopedic checkup rating from the Orthopedic Foundation for Animals (OFA). If the breeder is unable to show you any medical certification or documentation, don’t buy the puppy. Great Danes are prone to hip displacia so you may end up with a dog with various unchecked medical problems.
- Handle the dog you want. Visit the kennel or breeder and spend some time with the puppy you are planning to take home. It’s good to form a bond and see how the two of you will get along.
Take the time to do your research to fully prepare yourself with this wonderful responsibility. The companionship your dog will provide you will be priceless in your many years together.