Sometimes Bigger isn’t Better

Penn LogoWhat? You’re afraid of big dogs? No way. I totallyIMG_00001416_edit understand. I used to be too. When I was a kid, there were big dogs everywhere and we always had little ones. The thought of any animal who might be able to knock me down scared the ever livin’ out of me.

I never knew where my big dog fantasy of owning a Great Dane really came from. I had a high school friend write me shortly after I announced that Penny would be coming home from the breeder on Facebook. He said he remembered that I wanted one back in school and was so happy that I finally was getting what I wanted.

I know as an adult watching the Danes bound through the park absolutely staggered my imagination and my love just grew. But in high school, if I could just remember that far back, I think it was the sheer size that just fascinated me.

I remember signing up to get the pick of the litter with my breeder and going home and letting the idea IMG_00001409_editsorta stew for a bit. I mean, I was ready, super ready, to get my Great Dane, and had read and done everything I needed to in order to prepare, but I wasn’t prepared for the size. Sure, the crate was big and I had a uhaul truck full of kibble, but I actually found myself keenly anxious about how LARGE this dog (and my commitment) was.

Now, at 90 lbs, she rolls on the floor with me and her paws could imageseriously crush my bones given the opportunity. I am so grateful that I took training and taught her sit and stay and down. For the most part, this amazing gentle giant listens. But she’s still a puppy, and has those moments of wanting to wrestle and play – even if the only thing around in her weight class is me.

So my advice to the fearful and naysayers that a dog this large is unruly? Sure, you can be absolutely right on this one. Dogs can be weapons or hateful mean creatures. Let’s all try and be better pet parents and ambassadors of our breeds – mixed or pure!

Teach others about your pet if they’re ignorant on treating them properly, realize not everyone understands the proper behaviors – especially when you have a “novelty” breed – giant or toy…

Prepare yourself for a dog this size, go play with one. Know, and own, that you are the commander of your pet, not it’s BFF. They need attention and to be reigned in just as much as their size commands attention in any arena. Don’t make others fearful of your dog – no matter the size or breed – remember, this is man’s best friend and using them for macho tactics isn’t ok.

Happy Holidays from Penny and the fuzzy gang here at LAA. Happiness and hugs spread all around.

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