About Great Dane Rescue of North Texas
Great Dane Rescue of North Texas, Inc. is an all volunteer, 501(c)(3)
nonprofit organization dedicated to providing medical attention and foster
care while seeking permanent homes for abused and abandoned Great Danes in the
North Texas area. To reach its goals, Great Dane Rescue of North Texas rescues sick,
injured, abused, and abandoned Great Danes, finds loving and knowledgeable
permanent homes, educates the public about the temperament, characteristics and
special needs of the Great Dane breed, teaches responsible pet ownership,
promotes animal identification programs, spay/neuter programs and general
animal population control. We are members of the Great Dane Rescue Alliance
and DFW CARES. We provide several financial and educational public programs.
All Great Danes that come through the rescue program are
spay/neutered, heartworm tested, given Rabies, DHLPPC and Bordetella vaccinations,
fecal tested, micro-chipped, and given their first heartworm preventive. All
Great Danes are treated for any parasite and illness present including but
not limited to intestinal worms, heartworms, upper respiratory infections,
ehrlichia, broken bones, and special surgeries.
Rescued Danes are placed in foster homes while they are with us
and live as part of the fosters family. During this time each Dane’s
health and temperament is evaluated which helps us make appropriate
permanent placements. In addition to providing medical and emotional
rehabilitation, all foster homes crate train, work on basic obedience
Q & A Can you survive a Great Dane?
Where do they come from?
Most of our Danes are rescued from euthanasia in North Texas
shelters where they are either released to the facility by their owners or found
as strays and remain unclaimed. We do occasionally take in Danes needing
to be re-homed by their owners, but the shelter dogs are our priority as
they have no place to go.
Why do so many Danes end up in rescue?
There are many reasons that Great Danes end up in rescue. Some of our Danes were strays,
found wandering the streets with no identification
and therefore subject to death at a local animal
control facility when they are unclaimed by their
owners. Animal controls call GDRNT to come rescue
these Danes before their scheduled euthanasia.
Of those released to facilities or to other people by their owners, the
story of “why” seems to be repeated over and over again. Many people buy
puppies on impulse, without taking the time to look into the personality,
activity level, and needs of the breed and then find themselves with a giant
dog that is simply not compatible with their family. It seems that those
cute little pups grow up. The owners give them up because they are “too
big”, “cost too much”, “poop too much”, “chew stuff”, “destructive when
left alone”, “need too much attention”, and “knock the kids down”. Had just
a bit of research into the personality, temperament and needs of this
breed been done, each of these reasons would have been discovered before
acquiring a Dane. A Dane is not a good choice for every family. Like
any breed, some fit into a particular family’s lifestyle and budget, and
We also hear many non-breed specific reasons for giving up a pet.
Most commonly are relocation, pregnancy/new babies, job changes that result
in the owner having less time available for the dog, and even that the
children aren’t feeding /walking/ cleaning up after the dog even though they
said they would. While there are some limited situations that cannot be
avoided, prospective dog owners should carefully consider that bringing home
a dog requires a 10-13 year commitment. Very careful and thoroughly
informed consideration should be given as to whether this commitment
can be made prior to adoption.
Are all your rescued Danes abused?
No. Many of our Danes are just unwanted due to various reasons. Some
are medically neglected – some severely. We do get in Danes that have
been mentally and physically abused. All dogs are tested and closely
watched for possible abuse and rehabilitated if needed. All temperament issues
are fully disclosed and discussed with potential adopters.
What medical problems do they have?
Like any purebred dog, there are medical conditions that all
prospective owners should be aware of. Bloat and stomach torsion is among the
most serious afflictions that Danes can be stricken with. When this happens,
the Danes stomach can actually flip over on itself. Gas begins to fill the flipped
stomach, blood circulation is cut off at both ends. The stomach tissue begins to die.
This is a life-threatening situation and can kill the dog quickly. Little is known about
what causes bloat, but there are several measures that can be taken to lessen the risk of
it: two small meals a day instead of one large meal, feeding a low-protein high
quality food, and no exercise after meals are just a few. There is a surgery that
can be performed to tack the stomach into place so that it cannot flip. There
are several kinds of gastropexy surgeries that are effective preventions.
Speak with your vet about it or call us for referral.
Are Great Danes good with children?
Yes, and no. Generally the Dane temperament is compatible with
children. However, they are giant dogs. Your toddler will get knocked down on
a regular basis, will get stepped on and pawed occasionally and tail
whipped. And yes, this may cause scratching and bruising. An adult is generally
a wiser match to young children than a pup, having settled down their 100-170 pound
selves. And remember, children should ALWAYS be supervised around ANY dog.
Are Great Danes good with other animals?
Like within any breed, each Great Dane is an individual. In general, the temperament
of Great Danes allow them to enjoy the companionship of other large and small dogs.
Many think cats are their best friends. We do our
best to test the temperament of each individual Dane to find out if they
are compatible with other large dogs, small dogs and cats so we can best
match them to each particular household.
Isn’t it better to bring in a puppy rather than an adult?
For most people, an adult is a better choice. Why? Puppies require a lot
of work and time that working adults do not have – housebreaking (an 8
week old puppy can only hold their bladder for 2 hours), obedience training,
extra feedings, etc. Puppies chew up stuff, grab hair, knock kids and objects
down and need some form of attention (play, food, potty) about every 2 hours
round the clock. Adults are easily housebroken, obedience trained, crate
trained and can easily settle into the ins/outs of a working household. Adults
usually are mild mannered and in control of their bodies and are content to
just hang out while the adults are away at work and kids are at school.
Will an adult rescued Great Dane bond with me and
Lets ask one of our previous adopters:
“I think that Mikko (aka Virgil) knows that
I rescued him from the unknown and placed him in a loving, safe and
comfortable environment. He pays more attention to
me than the Dane that I have raised from 8 weeks old.”
Do Great Danes shed?
Yes. More than a poodle, less than a lab. A good diet and regular
brushing is all that is needed to control shedding.
Are they good guard dogs?
A Dane can be a big deterrent to intruders. After all, who would come
into your home when a 100-170 pound dog is looking at them through the
window? But we know lots of Danes that have welcomed intruders crazy
enough to enter the house. They are not fierce or aggressive dogs. They have
been known to protect their humans when trouble arose, but don’t expect
them to protect your stuff.
“Shadow (aka Robert) once saved my daughter and
me from a crazy German Shepherd that tried to attack
us. Shadow did not get aggressive, he just stood
there flexing his muscles as the Shepherd tucked his
tail between his legs and ran away.” Betsy Fulton
What will a Great Dane do if I leave it outside alone for
long periods of time?
Eat your door, tear down your screens, dig up your plants, greet people
as they pass by your fence, need therapy. If you are looking for a breed
that can be left outdoors, this is not the breed for you.
How active are they?
An adult Great Dane’s activity level is moderate, usually preferring an
evening walk and/or a couple of play sessions per day. They spend much of their
time just lounging around the house.
“As you might expect from a Great Dane X [mix],
Dax’s favorite activity is snoozing, and only the bed will do.
He does have his moments of flurried activity though –
with his favorite toy, a rubber banana split that squeaks.
Well, it used to squeak.”
Will a Great Dane snatch food off my kitchen countertop?
Depends on how good of a cook you happen to be. They definitely are
tall enough to reach it and will do so if tempted (pot roast and cookies
are among the favorites). Keep dangerous food items (such as chocolate
and onions) out of the reach of Danes. Put your trash can in a closet or get a lid.
Will a Great Dane allow me to sit on my own couch?
Maybe. Their favorite trick is to wait until you sit down then they will
sit on top of you. They are lap dogs… or so they think.
“[Moe aka Chief] is housetrained beyond my
wildest dreams. Even bacon and roasts have been left alone
on the counter!!! If only I could get him to share the
couch, we’d be all set.”
Why won’t my Dane leave me alone while I’m trying to type?
The Dane is a wonderful companion animal, but they expect that you
will make a commitment to be their companion as well as the dog being
your companion. Though still considered a member of the working dog
class, they have abandoned their independence to become human’s best friend.
Will I have to take out a loan to own one?
Adopters will incur many additional expenses when
they adopt a Dane. The following necessities will require
additional financial output immediately before or after
adoption: Dane sized crate ($150.00-250.00); training
collar ($20.00); premium brand, low-protein dog food
($30.00-50.00 monthly); 6 month supply of heartworm
prevention from vet ($60.00-75.00). You may want to invest in a
raised feeding dish ($20.00 – $75.00).
Welcome to Matchmaker
Our Matchmaker program will link your family with available Danes
that are suitable for your family, lifestyle, activity level, etc. You will either
be asked to attend the next Meet & Greet event
or appointments will be set up for you to meet and visit with any Danes that are candidates for
your home. Keep in mind, you should not expect to choose a picture or description from the
website and immediately adopt that dog. The
website contains brief, but incomplete and not
always current information about each dog so it may
be that the particular Dane is not compatible or
is already in the process of being adopted. We do not take color, size or ear cropping into
consideration in our matching program as those features have no impact on the compatibility of the dog to the adoptive
home. If you are intent on a particular physical appearance we would be happy
to refer you to a reputable breeder who may be able to accommodate you.
We make every effort to match you with a Dane that will fit into your
family and lifestyle, as they will become lifetime members of your family.
“There has been no more precious gift to come
to Gretchen’s life than Zena. Thank you so much for
so patiently helping Gretchen through the adoption
process.” Susan Steeger
“We have loved Moe aka Chief. Thank you for
selecting us for him” Sue
“Bridget has been with us for 6 months and it feels
like we have never been without her. She fits our family
great and I’d be lost without her. Thanks for everything!”
“Over the summer, Greg and I adopted an 18-month
old neutered Great Dane X male now named Dax and living happily in the country. Dax has proven
to be an excellent fit with our family and lifestyle.”
Ten Steps Towards Adoption
- Do your research! Breed and cost information is available on
our website, on linked websites, in your local bookstore, pet
supply stores, from your vet, and from our volunteers. Come to one of
our Meet & Greet events to talk to our volunteers and meet some
of the dogs to get a feel for the true size, temperament, and
characteristics of the breed.
- Complete the application form and mail or fax back to us.
Include your tax deductible nonrefundable application processing fee
which can be paid by check if mailing or via PayPal if you are
faxing an application to us. Be honest and feel free to include
supplemental explanatory information. Information on this form will be
verified. Incomplete applications will not be processed. All
questions must be answered.
- Wait for an email, letter or phone call notifying you that
your application has been approved. Processing can take 1-7 days.
You will receive a letter if it is not approved.
- A home visit will be scheduled and performed.
- Upon completion of steps 1 through 4 and final approval of
our board, you will be entered into the Matchmaker Program.
- If we determine that there are currently no suitable Danes for
you, please be patient. You will be placed on a waiting list and you
will be contacted when an appropriate dog is available. You
should feel free to call once a week to check in with us. Please note that
it may take several weeks before a suitable dog becomes available.
- Once you have visited with a potential match, you need to
notify us of your intent to adopt or not within 24 hours either by email or by voice message left at (817)
651-2336. There are often other families waiting for their turn should
you decide not to adopt the particular Dane.
- Only applicants with pre-approved applications and
completed home visits will be allowed to adopt a Dane at our Meet &
Greet events. Please check in at the GDRNT table upon arrival and
you will be directed to the Dane(s) that is a candidate for your
home. Watch the website for date/location of the next Meet & Greet.
We are sorry, but we are unable to hold a dog for families
participating in these events. If you are unsure whether you wish to adopt
that day, you are welcome to check in with us in a few days to see if
the dog is still available.
- We have a minimum adoption donation (see back cover for
current pricing). This donation goes towards spay/neuter,
heartworm testing, rabies vaccination, DHLPPC and Bordetella
vaccination, fecal testing, deworming, micro-chipping, first heartworm
preventive, id tag, leash and collar which every dog receives at time
of adoption. Many dogs require extra medical care including but
not limited to dewormings, flea/tick products, antibiotics, skin
scrapes, special food, bloodtests and heartworm treatment. Some dogs
require surgeries and the attention of specialists. These costs are
not included in the minimum adoption donations and are absorbed
by the rescue. At the time of adoption, we will let you know if the
dog you are adopting has incurred any other expenses while with us.
If you are able to make a supplemental tax deductible donation
to help cover those costs, it is greatly appreciated but is not required.
- This is not the end of the process. We will follow up on the
placement for months to come. This may include home visits,
which you will agree to in your contract. We will always be available
to help you through any issues that come up. Do expect an
adjustment period for you, your family, and your dog. Most dogs
will not immediately be comfortable, well behaved and
housebroken. It takes love, commitment and patience. We hope to see you at
our next Annual DaneFest.
Other Programs and Ways You Can Help
We have set up a special fund in memory of Chance, a Great Dane
whom we rescued from a Dallas shelter. Unfortunately, we were unable to save
him due to severe medical neglect. He was emaciated to the point of skin and
bones and his body could not fight the distemper virus he contracted. If only his
owner had provided him with the $10 vaccination and fed him, he may be alive
today. The purpose of this fund is to give aid to owners of Great Danes when faced
with an unexpected but temporary change in their life such as loss of job or home due to fire. This aid will help
provide vaccinations, heartworm prevention, spay/neuters and food.
We need donations for this fund.
Seniors for Seniors
This program involves matching Senior Great Danes with Senior Citizens in our community.
It aids those who have love, time and commitment to give but limited access to transportation
and those just needing an extra hand. We aid the
Senior Citizens by providing transportation for
them and/or their pet to the veterinarian for
routine medical care. Our volunteers also will
regularly check on both the dog and the adopter to
help with items such as nail trims, baths and to
carry those heavy 40 pound bags of dog food into
the house. We need volunteers who can commit to providing these services to one Senior Citizen in their area.
We currently have 2 Danes in training to be certified as therapy dogs.
We plan to outreach to the community by using these Danes as our
ambassadors to visit nursing home facilities and providing educational
programs on proper pet care to school aged children. Watch the website for
updates and ways you can help.