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This message is to hopefully help educate as well as spread the word that there are a few HORRIBLE Great Dane Breeders in Ontario. They continuously breed MIS-MARKED Danes such as Fawnequins, Blue Fawnequins, Chocolates etc. It makes my blood boil just typing those MADE-UP colours out.
I am a 35 year old female who has owned 2 Danes previous to the 5 month old puppy we just had dropped on my husband and I on Easter weekend 2020. I have owned a few dogs in my lifetime and now hobby as a farmer, where I raise calm & cuddly animals of all degrees.
I got my first Dane in 2007 from a lady who at that point lived out in Honey Harbour, Ontario. I had always wanted a Great Dane ever since I was a kid, but my parents wouldn't let me have such a big dog so the first thing I did when I moved out of my parents was get a dane puppy. My ex and I found that puppy on a local selling app and we ended up buying a female from that breeder. We showed Mikka the puppy nothing but love, stability and basic training that any puppy would receive from a well-rounded home. At about 4 months old, I started having a harder time controlling her. She would see other humans walking down the sidewalk and start going crazy. I tried no-pull harnesses, gentle leaders etc to try to help with her excessive pulling and aggression while walking. Nothing helped. At this point I had no idea that colour breeding was so EXTREMELY important to the genetic make-up of Great Danes. That she was basically doomed from the time the sperm reached her mothers uterus. Which in turn had given this puppy a genetic make-up to have unstable mental processing. Which was the reason this Great Dane of mine became an aggressive, uncontrollable monster.
Unknowingly to all the genetic fundamentals of Great Dane breeding I made a bad decision when a girlfriend of mine reached out to me inquiring about breeding my girl to their male. He was from the states, he was exactly how a dane was supposed to present himself. Quiet, loyal, non-aggressive etc. We ended up breeding my female with her male and were blessed with 9 healthy puppies. 1 of which I ended up keeping, another my cousin bought from me. Those 2 puppies ended up carrying more of the genetic code from their father Lex, as they were a more calm dog, less aggression, no health concerns etc. Of the other puppies 1 went to my girlfriend and her husband, who ended up having to re-home that puppy, because it was like Mikka uncontrollable & aggressive. I had tried my best to keep in contact with the puppies owners, 2 others had contacted me saying their puppies were uncontrollable. I had one puppy die at the age of 5 from a stomach condition. It was at this point that I started to do some more research into Great Danes and found out the biggest piece of information I knew nothing about. If you have some time to invest, research colour genetic coding of Great Danes. After finding what I did in my research I began to understand why Mikka my first Dane was so uncontrollable. Why the puppies in the litter I had had instabilities.
I ended up having to re-home Mikka at the age of 3.5 years, 8 or so months after I had the litter of puppies, because she was out of my league. Kolton was the name of the puppy I kept. He had some skin issues but that is more relevant to his Blue colour being a dilute than the genetic coding my 2 vets think. He died on February 26th 2020. My heart will never be the same.
To continue on with my rant, I met my Best Friend in 2013 I believe. She had 2 Great Danes from the same breeder. Lola was her first Dane. She was classified as a Fawnequin. Lola at the age of around 5 months developed H.O.D. or Hypertrophic Osteodystrophy. At that time that disease was fairly new to veterinarian's as a whole. She was directed to put Lola down as it is an EXTREMELY painful disease with little hope for ever having a normal, quality of life. My best-friend, stubborn as I, refused that and spent 6-8 months carrying her precious Lola, outside for every pee & poo break, spent hours a day on rehabilitating her Lola's legs. Not to mention the costs the she incurred for pain meds, antibiotics etc. She did an amazing job, and got Lola back to standing and eventually able to run again. Her legs were never to be straight again. My best friend had someone reach out to her about re-homing a Dane. This Dane was on the aggressive side, did not like a whole list of things. If you know one thing about Dane people, you know that their hearts are always open to Danes and the fact the my best friend had decided to persue a chapter of her life into dog training. So she took on this Dane named Charlie. She with the use of Sportdog & E-collars was able to curb the aggression and integrated Charlie into her household. On November 26th 2016 we entered into our local Santa Claus Parade with some farm animals and she had brought her prized Charlie. It was then that his legs swelled up and got hot. Within 2 weeks Charlie had been to the vets numerous times, with a white blood cell count of basically nothing. He was diagnosed with bone cancer and died within 2 months. His bones has disintegrated to dust. The vet that was working with Charlie said that this without a doubt was a genetic cause. I forgot to say the Charlie was a mis-marked Harlequin. Everyone was devastated at his loss. 2 years later Lola being just over 7 years old, was having a really hard time moving, my best friend took her to the vet, they did the initial consult and said well we should do x-rays to see if we can see anything more. Turns out Lola's hips had disintegrated and her bones were dust as well. Lola was put to sleep.
So to conclude, there is now 6 puppies/dogs that have had unimaginable pain, bone loss, families with broken hearts, and a crazy amount of money trying to diagnose and treat them.
On Easter Monday, I had a fellow employee of mine, call us in a panic that his friend couldn't keep a dane puppy and was willing to drop it off at our place if we could take him. I had been shown pictures of this puppy a few weeks before, and from one glance of the picture I could tell that A) HE WAS A MIS-MARKED DANE - BLUE FAWNEQUIN and B) his legs look exactly how Lola's did. This said Dane puppy actually worked out really well, with our 4year old Walker Hound and our 4month old Bloodhound puppy. At this point I was educated enough to realize that this dog was doomed from day 1, his mother was a Fawnequin and father yet to figured out. Regardless of what his father is, this breeder ICE NATION Danes out of Sunderland, Ontario is PURPOSELY breeding mis-marked danes, to mis-marked Danes. She is preying on people like that guy that couldn't keep this dane puppy. Telling them that they are really rare, funny thing is, she states very clearly that H.O.D. is not covered under her health guarantee. Another funny thing, on the breeders contract that I was given alongside the other vetting information of this puppy is it says to look her up on Facebook. Well her site has been taken down.
PLEASE EDUCATE YOURSELVES, DO NOT SUPPORT UNETHICAL BREEDERS. Ask for a minimum of 4 ancestors to be proven that they followed colour breeding as the markings of a Great Dane are not only their top coat finishes, but the fundamentals of their genetic make-up. Quoted form the Canadian Kennel Club " Do not walk, RUN away from any breeder claiming to have a 'rare' coloured dane"
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