DIET

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The proper feeding of your puppy is extremely important. We believe that using a high-quality dog food is a proactive approach to caring for your dog. There is a direct relationship between overall health and the quality of ingredients fed to your animal. In addition, there are some serious health conditions that can come from feeding improperly including bloat and knuckling. Great Dane Puppies grow very rapidly so they should never be given a diet that is high in protein. Protein that is greater than 24% in a Great Dane puppies’ diet can cause them to develop knuckling which can occur in fast-growing large and giant breed dogs. It is a very painful and can be crippling to the puppy.

 

An improper diet causing puppy to grow to fast is a contributing factor. Great Dane puppies should only be given 24% or less Protein. If feeding grain free (NOT our recommendation) protein can be up to 30% although current studies indicate that a grain free diet a can contribute to cardiac problems including DCM (Dilated Cardiomyopathy) so we discourage it.  Calcium needs to be 1% or lower and Phosphates should to be 0.8%.  A 1/1%  calcium to phosphorus ratio is considered acceptable. Look for a Large Breed Adult premium food that the protein source is meat.  If the calcium and phosphorus are not listed on the bag you can always call the company or look on their web site.

 

Puppies should be fed three to four times a day. Smaller meals are easier to digest for the puppy and energy levels don't peak and fall so much with frequent meals. Use your judgment when feeding your puppy. If your puppy is to thin and you are maintaining a proper worming schedule, then increase the amount of food you are giving with each feeding. Most puppies will eat until they are full. If your puppy is a food hog (as in- gobbles his/her food down within a few minutes of placing it in front of him/her) then you may want to look onto a slow feeder or separate the amount of food into more frequent smaller portions per feeding. After two years of age you can switch your dog to a high-quality dog food and the phosphors/ calcium ratio is no longer an issue as by this age your puppy has usually reached full bone growth and development.

 

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Health and Wellness

 

The happiness of both our customers and our puppies is our top priority. We take placement of each of and every puppy very seriously. They have all been loved, cared for and nurtured by our family from the time of their birth. Because of this, each puppy we place is guaranteed to be physically healthy, well socialized and ready for a lifetime of love and companionship. Our joy comes from seeing our puppies go to their new loving forever homes. Our greatest reward is knowing the happiness and joy they bring to so many families. We take great pride in raising our puppies so that they will make wonderful companions and loving additions to their new family. 

 

All our puppies come with a Florida Health Certificate , 2 year genetic  health guarantee and life time breeder support. They will be up to date on all vaccinations and dewormed at 2,4,6 and 8 weeks of age.

 

Once a puppy is purchased, vaccines will be given at the risk of the Buyer’s decision. Please be aware that some vaccines can be very dangerous to puppies. Vaccines can have serious adverse reactions in puppies and studies have shown a link to (HOD) in Great Danes. Divergent Great Danes does not recommend the (LEPTOSPIROSIS) vaccine ever in the life of your Great Dane. We advise that Rabies also not be given before the age of 6 month and it should never be given with any other combination of vaccines. These are recommendations only based on years of breeding. We are not suggestion in any way that you not continue to vaccinate as this is extremely important to your puppies overall health. All puppies should be kept away from public places including pet stores and puppy parks until they have finished their puppy shots as only then will they have developed immunity to illnesses such as Parvo which is highly contagious and can be deadly.

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House Breaking 101

Done correctly, housebreaking should not be a turbulent production but just a matter of putting a little extra work into getting your puppy on a schedule during the first weeks after he/she arrives at your home. Don’t let unnecessary stress over this very natural, uncomplicated process taint any of the joy surrounding the puppy training process and your new dog’s puppyhood. Housebreaking your new puppy is going to take patience. You should begin to housebreak as soon as you bring your new puppy home. Puppies need to relieve themselves approximately six times a day. After about 8, 9, 10 weeks of age, the dog should be taught to go potty outside. Do not have paper or potty pads inside your home. Peeing is for outside only, or you are teaching your new pup it is okay to potty inside your home. Take advantage of any early training we have already started. Teach your puppy to potty on a designated spot outdoors, making him think. After you bring home your new puppy the first thing you need to teach the pup is to walk to the door. Do not carry it. Make the puppy walk or it will not learn to alert you. . A puppy should be taken out immediately after each meal since a full stomach puts pressure on the colon and bladder.

Please remember that a puppy is not physically able to control the muscle that allows him to "hold it" until he is about 12 weeks of age. Before this time, good housebreaking routines should be practiced to avoid having your puppy go the to the bathroom all over your house. Watch for signs of urination or defecation, such as turning in circles. Take your puppy out often. Using a crate or confining your puppy to a small part of the house that has easy clean up floors are some ways to ensure your puppy does not urinate all over your house. It is much harder to housebreak a puppy if he smells his/ her urine in places you do not wish him to relief himself.  Another built-in plus when it comes to housebreaking is our puppy’s digestive tract, which is extremely quick and efficient. Five to 30 minutes after the puppy eats, she’ll want to defecate. So, with a consistent eating schedule, and your attention to the clock, your puppy can maintain regular trips outside.

It is important to understand your puppy. Dogs want to please; the trick is to make them understand what it is you want from them. Dogs do not think the way humans do. When you are unhappy with your dog, it assumes that whatever it is doing at the exact moment you show disapproval is the thing that is upsetting you. For example, if your puppy relieves himself on your floor and you show your disapproval five minutes after he has committed the act, the puppy will think that the mess on the floor is bad.  He will not relate the fact that it was the act of relieving himself on your floor that you disapprove of. The dog will eliminate, see the mess and get worried; you are now going to be unhappy. This is the reason so many dogs will relieve themselves in inappropriate places and look really guilty about it, yet they continue to do it. Some owners start to think that their dog is being sneaky when really it does not fully understand what it is doing wrong. It knows the mess upsets you but does not understand that it should stop "making" the mess. To your dog, these two things: "the mess" and "the act" are unrelated. The trick is to catch your dog in the act and make him understand. You should not hit your dog. Your tone of your voice is enough to make the dog see you are unhappy. A firm "No! You are not allowed to go in the house. No! No!" is all that is needed. Immediately take your dog outside to the appropriate place. Wait for your dog to go again and when and if he/she does, praise him/her.

Do not use treats when potty training. As It takes the dog's focus off going to the bathroom and puts it on the food. You do not want the dog's brain to be on food when it is time to relieve itself. This often causes a dog to not completely finish eliminating because the dog is looking and waiting for food. The dog will often come back inside the home and go to the bathroom again after just being out.

 

 Keep the focus on the task at hand. Rewards for eliminating outside should be the relief the dog feels when it empties itself, your happiness that the dog did the right thing, along with verbal praise. Once your puppy has successfully gone outside, it is important to reward the good behavior. It doesn’t have to be a big, loud celebration, but a simple quiet approval can get the message across of a job well done. Use Positive reinforcement. Don’t punish your puppy for an accident or do anything to create a negative association with her bodily functions. Stay calm and assertive and quietly remove the puppy to the place where you want him to go.

 

 

 

 

 

Crate Training

We at Divergent Great Danes highly suggest that you crate train your puppy. It is a great tool for potty training but also a way to keep them out of mischief. Danes grow extremely fast and during the “growing up stage” which can last up to 2 years. Because they are large dogs they can be destructive. Reality is, you cannot watch your puppy 24 hrs. a day, 7 days a week. A crate is a great way to potty train your puppy as well as give them a safe place for quite time when you are busy and unable to give them your undivided attention.

 

Before you crate-train, please be aware: a dog that is left in a crate all day long, gets let out in the evening after work for a few hours and put back in the crate for the night can become neurotic, destructive, unhappy and noisy. If you work all day, it is recommended that you find someone who can take your dog out for a long walk in the afternoon. Dogs are not fish. They need something to occupy their minds. Dogs are den animals and like the crate, but even a den animal would go crazy if it was locked up all day long. Keep in mind that a puppy can only physically hold it for so long before its body just cannot hold it any longer. Until the pup's bladder is fully mature it will need to be taken out often. You must be willing to invest time and energy for just a few short weeks in house training. The effort you put in now will last for the rest of your pet's life.

For Great Danes we recommend buying an extra-large Crate that they will grow into but be sure it has a partition, so you can adjust the size as the puppy grows.  It should be large enough for the puppy to stand up and easily turn around but no larger. Dogs do not want to soil their beds and the use of a crate teaches them to control their urge to eliminate. You must maintain an eagle-eye at all times. As soon as you see him pacing, sniffing around, and turning in circles, immediately take him outside. He/she is telling you "I am going to go pee-pee somewhere, and this carpet looks like as good a place as any." NO, you do not have time to put on your shoes, just go. Be patient and do not rush your pup. He may have to go several times in one "pit stop." Give him about 10 minutes before taking him back inside. Do not play with him while you are on this mission. Let him know this is a business trip.

 

Make sure you take him out after every meal and play session BEFORE you put him back in his crate. Be consistent and establish a schedule. Pay attention to your puppy's behavior so you can develop a schedule that works for you and the pup. When does your puppy naturally defecate? In the morning? Ten minutes after eating? Around bedtime? You may have to make some compromises. Be fair to your puppy. He cannot be expected to stay alone in his crate for endless hours and not relieve himself. Make sure everyone who is involved in the housebreaking process is using the same spot in the yard and the same word. Everyone should agree on the place they will take the puppy. The odor from the previous visits will cause the puppy to want to go in that spot. Use a simple word like "outside" when taking your puppy to the chosen spot. Use this word consistently and later this word will help build communication between the family and the dog. When you notice him going toward the door and you say "outside" he can say, "Yup, that’s where I need to go."

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During the day under supervision we leave the crate doors open for our young dogs. often times the crate becomes a safe quite area for pups to unwind and rest . They will go in on their own without prompting. Laying on their backs completely stretched out seems to be a favorite sleeping position .

Sometimes they even prefer to share a crate.

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Early Neurological Stimulation

We strive to provide families with a healthy well rounded puppy. This starts shortly after birth. Early Neurological Stimulation (ENS) is something we do with all our puppies starting usually 3 days after birth (provided puppies did not endure an especially stressful delivery) and continuing through day 20.  ENS is done for consecutive days using  mild forms of stimulation that lead to mild stress in the puppy. These stresses help stimulate the neurological system which improves the growth and development of the pup’s immune system, cardiovascular system, as well as stress tolerance.
The process consists of 5 simple exercises which are completely harmless to the puppy. ENS is done for 3-5 seconds and the entire process only takes about 30 seconds per puppy. We perform Early Neurological Stimulation on our pups because we see the benefits of ENS as it has been shown to help jump start the pups neurological system and enables the system to kick into action earlier than it normally would.  ENS emphasis a remarkable difference in the dogs performance, learning capacity as well as the ability to deal with stress in a positive way.
The result being an increased capacity as the puppy grows and matures to become a healthy, well rounded, intelligent, calm dog that will make a wonderful addition to your family.
Other benefits of ENS are
Improved cardio vascular performance (heart rate) as well as a stronger heart beat, stronger adrenal glands, greater resistance to disease and more tolerance to stress.

Proper Exercise for Young Puppies

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When you get your 8/10 week old puppies, please keep this image in mind.  Their bones do not even touch yet.  They plod around so cutely with big floppy paws and wobbly movement because their joints are entirely made up of muscle, tendons, ligaments with skin covering. Nothing is fitting tightly together or has a true socket yet.

When you run them excessively or don't restrict their exercise to stop them from overdoing it during this period you don't give them a chance to grow properly.  Every big jump or excited bouncing run causes impacts between the bones.  In reasonable amounts this is not problematic and is the normal wear and tear that every animal will engage in.

But when you're letting puppy jump up and down off the lounge or bed, take them for long walks/hikes, you are damaging that forming joint.  When you let the puppy scramble on tile with no traction you are damaging the joint.

You only get the chance to grow them once. A well built body is something that comes from excellent breeding and a great upbringing-BOTH, not just one.

Once grown you will have the rest of their life to spend playing and engaging in higher impact exercise.  So keep it calm while they're still little baby puppies and give the gift that can only be given once.