Missing Great Dane - Napa, California

Our beloved black Great Dane, Griffin, has been missing since November 25, 2014. This big guy disappeared from his home in the Wooden Valley area of Napa, CA. Comprehensive efforts, including a facebook page ( have failed to bring home our beautiful boy. At this point in his journey, Griffin could be anywhere. That's why we need your help. To bring him home, we will need thousands of people joining in the search.

DESCRIPTION:  Our beloved black Great Dane is a neutered three-year-old. He is highly distinguishable by his white chest, long-cropped ears (left ear droops a bit) and white toe nails on his back paws. At the time of his disappearance from the Wooden Valley area of Napa, CA he weighed 180 pounds and was wearing a black nylon collar (silver ring) with nametags. He is not chipped, a hard lesson, but we do not consider this an insurmountable concern...we do believe, with thousands of eyes on his story from across the country, this amazing and well-loved family member will be returned.
Thank you for the love!

Lost Dog: Some Guidelines for Search and Rescue

by Alison White 

Recently,  I participated in the search and rescue of Moses, a Newfoundland dog that was lost while hiking. He was found after three days at the bottom of a 200 foot cliff and rescued safely by Washington State Animal Response Team (WASART). I'd like to share some takeaways from the experience and from talking to members of WASART. The purpose is to assist you should your dog be lost or need rescue.

Moses being given water by a member of WASART moments after his rescue

#1 - Animals and outdoor situations are unpredictable. Many owners aren't aware that dogs don't understand danger, or simply misjudge their dogs. Dogs don't all understand that certain terrain and situations are dangerous just because they are animals. Like people, dogs can also exhibit bad judgement. A leash is almost always a good idea.

#2 - Spread the word. When a pet is lost, use the power of networking and social networking to your advantage. The more people who know about your lost animal, the better chance you have of recovering them. Do all the usual things like checking shelters, but think outside the box. New services such as Seattle Pet Detectives use search dogs to find lost pets.

#3 - Do not attempt rescue yourself. If the animal is in a precarious place, call the animal search and rescue experts. Fortunately, we have an excellent organization for animal rescue in Western Washington, WASART. Learn about similar organizations in your area. One of the reasons these organizations exist is so humans don't get injured or die trying to rescue their animals. Earlier this year, WASART rescued another dog from the same location as Moses. Unfortunately, they also had to retrieve the body of his owner, who attempted rescue and fell to her death. 

 Just a few of the rescuers who helped Moses

Just a few of the rescuers who helped Moses

#4 - Everyone can help. This is so important! Don't feel like "there's nothing I can do." Dozens of people contributed to Moses' successful rescue. Some random, non-glamorous ways I helped: loaned the Search & Rescue (SAR) coordinator my phone charger, allowed my dog to be used to "size" the rescue sling, manned search headquarters at the trailhead and coordinated with SAR as they arrived. Other volunteers brought food, water, hot coffee, warm clothes, or shuttled information from the trailhead HQ to the rescue location. People who couldn't physically be there helped searchers, owners, and rescuers connect via phone, text, or email. Even if you just bring enthusiasm, emotional support for the owners, or help spread the word on Facebook, you are helping.

#5 - Stay positive and keep searching. Many pets are found weeks or months after they go missing. It can be difficult to keep a positive attitude when your pet has been missing a long time. Tap into whatever support system you have. Never give up, never surrender.

#6 - Don't judge, just help. Whatever your opinions, help the animal and the owners.

We are fortunate to be living in a time where the importance and value of search and rescue efforts for animals are given the emphasis they deserve.

If you would like to support the great work of WASART, you can visit their donation page.



Is a Great Dane the Right Breed for You?

 Photo by Stacie Knudtsen

Photo by Stacie Knudtsen

How big will a Great Dane get?
Big! Even a small Dane is large compared to most peoples’ standards. An average adult bitch will weigh between 100 and 140 pounds and be about 30 to 33 inches at the shoulder. An adult male will be larger, weighing in at about 140 to 200 pounds. He also will be taller, ranging from approximately 33 to 37 inches at the shoulder. A Dane will usually reach their adult height between 12 to 18 months of age. Danes are usually matured, or “bodied out” by 2 to 3 years of age.

How much do they eat?
An adult female will eat about 8 to 10 cups of quality dry food per day. A male will eat about 2 to 3 cups more. Many Dane breeders add meat to the diet of their adults; but never to puppies. Care must be used when feeding puppies, as a diet too “hot" can often cause bone and growing problems. Some older or altered Danes will only eat about 4 to 6 cups. per day. Danes should never have their ribs or backbone showing! The amount of food consumed will vary with the age, temperament and activity level of the Dane.

How long do they live?
Danes have an average life span of between 7 to 10 years of age. A ten year old Dane is an old dog. Quite often a younger dog will have a sprinkling of gray around the muzzle, giving the illusion he is older than he actually is. The condition of the teeth are generally a good indication of age.

Many people feel the short life span is a fair trade-off for the wonderful personality.

Choosing a Food for Your Great Dane

by Stacie Knudtsen and Kim Broenneke


When selecting food for your Dane, we suggest you look for the highest quality food, on which your dog thrives, that you can afford.

We recommend Danes under the age of 18 months be fed a food with 21-24% protein and 10-12% fat. Danes older than 18 months may need higher or lower levels of protein and fat, depending on their individual metabolism and how much exercise they get. A healthy Dane has firm stools, a shiny coat and ribs that are covered but can still be easily felt when running your hand over them.

As a guideline, good quality dog foods have:
• No corn or wheat
• No by-products
• No dairy
• No artificial colors or flavors
• No chemical preservatives added
• High quality meat meal (chicken, lamb, fish, duck....) derived from human-grade processing plants
• Nutrient dense with vitamins, minerals, fats and essential fatty acids
• Highly digestible and high energy, low fiber carbohydrates

Dane Outreach does not endorse any one brand of dog food or dog food company. There are many excellent foods available. Please take the time to do some research on several quality foods and pick the one that you feel your dog would do the best on. You might find it helpful to ask your Dane's breeder what food their lines do well on, as this may save you some time when picking the right food for your Dane.

An alternative to commercial dog food is a diet sometimes referred to as BARF (“Bones and Raw Food” or “Biological AppropriateRaw Food”). There are many benefits of raw with many believing it a sensible and healthy diet . The BARF diet takes a lot of study and understanding to properly implement. DO YOUR RESEARCH! Search the internet and read a couple of the books. But, be careful when doing your own research as  many sites and vets will say that feeding a raw meat diet is bad and dangerous. And we agree-- IF it is not done properly! However, the BARF diet is not just raw meat, but raw meat, raw bones (NEVER feed a dog cooked bones of any kind) and raw crushed vegetables. These things, together with some supplements, make up the foundation of the BARF diet.

When feeding a BARF diet, you must protect yourself, family and dog from infectious bacteria associated with raw meats and vegetables (just like you should be doing already in preparing your family meals).

Suggested reference material:

"The Ultimate Diet- Natural Nutrition for Dogs and Cats"
By Kymythy R Schultze, A.H.I.
(An easy to read and follow guide)

"Give Your Dog A Bone"
By Dr. Ian Billinghurst
(Billinghurst is the "father" of BARF)