Why Do Great Danes Shiver So Much? 11 Issues To Know!!!

Taking care of Great Danes can be quite challenging, although they are wonderful dogs, they can be quite prone to shaking. Finding out the reason is quite challenging. 

So, why does your Great Dane shiver so much? Well, your Great Dane could be shivering as a symptom for some kinds of illness, such as brain diseases, hip dysplasia, kidney failure, etc. On the other hand, your dog could be shaking due to non-fatal reasons as well. 

To help you understand I listed down several reasons. Moreover, I also mentioned what you can do to stop your Great Dane if they shiver so much while dreaming or due to eating something overly cold, etc. 

Related Reading: Why Do Basset Hounds Shake a Lot?

Why Do Great Danes Shiver

Do Great Danes Often Shiver While Having Any Health Problems?

Great Danes are quite vulnerable to all forms of diseases and illness, and shivering can be in fact a critical sign regarding the depleting health of your Great Dane. If you see your dog shiver then you must instantly be cautious regarding it, and see a vet as soon as possible.

Great Danes are quite susceptible to Primary Orthostatic Tremor, and one of its most obvious signs is the shaking of the legs and your dogs’ reluctance to lie down. Your canine could be suffering from several other perilous diseases as well such as Addison’s Disease, hypothyroidism, panosteitis, etc.

Shaking is actually quite a vital sign, so you should never disregard it. Your Great Dane can shake due to nonhazardous reasons as well, but, nevertheless, you should still take your dog to the vet. 

4 Prime Issues: Why Do Your Great Danes Shiver A Lot?

1) Cold – One of the most feasible reasons could be that your Great Dane is in fact shivering due to the chilly and frosty weather, in that case, make sure to take your Great Dane to somewhere warm.

2) Seizures – Seizures are more common on Great Danes than one can think, and if you see your dog as unresponsive and visibly shaking then your dog could possibly be having seizures, and for that, you must take your dog to the vet immediately. 

3) Old age – Dogs just like humans get feeble as they age, and a very obvious sign of that is shivering, if you have a senior Great Dane then it is highly possible the reasons behind the shivering is age. 

#1 Is Your Great Dane Suffering From Primary Orthostatic Tremor (OT)

Primary Orthostatic Tremor is quite common in Great Danes, especially the ones who are older than 18 months. This disease primarily affects the legs of your dog, you can understand the symptoms as your dog is more likely to have intense quivering while standing up.

By observation, if you notice such severe tremors then consult the vet as soon as possible, as untreated tremors will gradually exacerbate the health of your Great Dane. 

Symptoms of Primary Orthostatic Tremor (OT) in your great dane:

  • You can notice that the tremor will be more focused on the hind legs when your Great Dane is trying to sit.
  • The tremor will be more apparent in the forelimbs while your dog is trying to eat. 
  • Your dog’s balance will become more unstable.
Great Dane In Ground

#2 Is Your Great Dane Dealing with Older Age and Pain?

With age, your Great Dane will become more feeble and it is then your dog needs more attention and care, for that you need to realize when your dog is hurting due to old age the bones become more fragile, and several other health problems arise. 

  • If your dog is limping while walking
  • No longer jumping up beds and other furniture
  • Showing difficulty while getting up from a sitting position
  • Refusing to walk up or down the stairs

#3 Does Food Poisoning Causes Your Great Dane Shivering?

Food poisoning can indeed cause your Great Dane to shiver, if your dog somehow intakes a toxic or poisonous food substance such as chocolate, dates, or any other toxic substance then shivering might be one of the primary symptoms along with diarrhea and puking. In this case, take your dog to the vet as fast as possible.  

  • If your dog is shivering 
  • If your dog has diarrhea
  • If your dog has been vomiting 
  • If there is blood in feces
  • Showing a lack of appetite

#4 Other Medical Conditions:

If you do not remain then you will miss the elusive symptoms of your dogs, Great Danes are susceptible to various kinds of diseases and a lot of them can be very difficult to detect, so it is important to know about some of the most common diseases. 

Addison’s Disease:

Addison’s disease is quite a severe disease where the adrenal glands do not produce the pivotal hormones that are requisite for your dog, without these hormones your Great Dane might even meet his demise.

Bloat-Gastric Torsion:

Bloat primarily happens when your dog’s stomach is pervaded with gas or food, this may often put a strain on the internal organs of your dog. If your dog is swollen, is acting restless, or is constantly collapsing then this may be the cause. 

Hip Dysplasia:

Hip Dysplasia is a condition where the hip of your Great Dane has a dislocated hip, this primarily happens when the ball does not fit smoothly with the socket, and due to this the joint weakens over time ultimately causing irrevocable damage.


Hypothyroidism is a condition where the secretion of thyroid hormones is aberrant which causes a deteriorated metabolism. This could happen due to the failure of the thyroid gland, so a veterinary appointment is crucial. 


A condition more commonly found in bigger breeds, Cardiomyopathy is a condition where the heart muscles have been severely weakened. If untreated, this can definitely cause heart failure in your Great Dane.

Wobblers Syndrome:

Wobblers Syndrome which is also known as spondylomyelopathy is a condition of the neck that is most common in bigger and larger breeds. These dogs suffer from a stiff spinal cord that could lead to severe neck pains. 


It is an inflammation that affects the surface of the bones of your dog. There is no saying how many bones it may affect, and it may result in the immobility of the legs. This is primarily very common in big dogs. 

Brain Disease:

Big dogs like Great Dane can be quite susceptible to inflammatory brain diseases, one of the primary reasons why this happens is due to an immune system incursion on the brain tissue of your dog, which might result in many neurological problems. 

Chronic Kidney Failure:

Kidney failure can be common in senior dogs due to their weakened kidney, on top of that if your dog has any untreated disease then that might result in blood flowing into the kidney of your dogs, which might be fatal. 

Great Dane in Snow

7 Other Possible Issues: Why Do Great Danes Shiver So Much?

Shivering is one of the most common symptoms in Great Danes, here are seven other reasons why Great Danes can shake. 

#1 Does Your Great Dane Get Distemper?

Canine distemper is a very dangerous contagious virus that affects your dog from other dogs or other animals in general. If untreated it can cause inflammation and other neurological issues.

symptoms of distemper in Your great dane:

  • Vomiting
  • Fever
  • Excess drooling
  • Difficulty in breathing 
  • Prolonged coughing

#2 Is Temperature or Specially Cold Weather Can Make Your Great Dane Shiver?

Great Danes unlike other dogs do not have a very high cold tolerance, they do not comprise the fat layer required for arctic dogs to be cold tolerant. So, if you see your Great Dane shivering due to the cold weather, instantly get your dog to someplace warm because shivering due to the cold is an adverse sign.

Just because Great Danes are big dogs, it does not mean they can handle the cold, that is why you should be aware of the temperature your dog is in because if you do not make sure your dog is in a warm environment then your dog will visibly shake. 

#3 Is Your Great Dane Suffering from Nausea?

Nausea can be quite common in dogs, and it can primarily happen if your dog is suffering from a bad stomach ache. Your dog feeling nauseous is because your dog is feeling or having some form of discomfort, so being nauseous is a sign of your dog having some other bigger health problem

Symptoms of Nausea in your Old Great Dane Dog:

  • Drooling 
  • Lack of appetite
  • Dehydration
  • Coughing and heavy breathing
Great Dane In Snow Hill

#4 Is Your Great Dane Too Excited?

Although this is not a bad thing, your Great Dane might shake from intense happiness, or if he is extremely excited. Dogs are prone to wagging tails if they are excited, but immense happiness can make them seem more out of balance.

If your dog is shaking due to excitement then there is no need to worry as your Great Danes health is not in any form of danger. Usually, in these kinds of situations, your dog will stop shaking after a while, give them time till they calm down and then they will stop shaking. 

#5 Is Your Great Dane Dealing With Fear and Anxiety

Recognizing the mood of your dog is crucial, if your dog is overly excited or anxious, it could be pretty detrimental for your dogs’ health.

Not only must you recognize when your dog is anxious but you must also understand the cause behind why your dog is anxious because without knowing why your dog is anxious you can not find solutions to this.

If your dog is whimpering, or is hiding under the bed/any furniture, or is trembling, then it is highly possible your dog is currently extremely anxious, and you must find out what is the cause behind this. 

#6 Does Your Great Dane Shiver After Eating?

If you’re certain your dog is not suffering from any other issues but is constantly shivering after eating, then it could be possible because your dog had eaten something cold.

This can primarily happen if your dog ends up eating something like frozen meat, or something cold from the fridge. In this case, make sure to feed your Great Dane something warm.  

#7 Does Your Great Dane Shiver When Sleeping?

Another reason why your Great Dane could be shaking but is usually harmless is when they are sleeping, if your dog is shaking while sleeping then most like they are dreaming about something.

Usually, you have nothing to worry about because there is nothing wrong with their health, this is something very common among dogs.

If the shaking only persists when they are asleep then there is nothing to worry about, but if it continues to persist when awake as well then you should take your dog to the vet for a checkup. 

How To Stop Your Great Dane Dog From Shivering?

Your Great Dane could be shaking for all sorts of reasons, to stop your Great Dane from shaking you need to understand the reason behind why your Great Dane is shaking. 

  • If your dog is shaking due to any health-related reason then you should take him to the vet as fast as possible,
  •  But if he is shaking due to the cold then you should take him to someplace warm. 
  • Your dog could be shaking for some non-health-related reasons as well, such as during their sleep or if they are too excited, usually if that is the reason then they will get back normal after some while. 

Do Great Danes Often Shiver, Shake, or Tremble?

Great Danes are prone to a lot of diseases where the common symptom could be shaking, so if your Great Dane is sick then they could be shaking or shivering.  

Why does Great Dane shake frequently?

  • Your Great Dane could shake their legs due to a tremor
  • Great Danes can shake and then hide due to anxiety or fear
  • Great Danes can shake in their sleep due to dreams
  • Great Danes can shake a lot if they are immensely excited

Why does Great Dane tremble randomly?

Great Danes can tremble randomly for countless reasons, some can be very detrimental for the health, while others are harmless

  • They can shake if they are nauseous or sick
  • They can tremble if they have any form of spine disorder
  • They can tremble if they indulged in something toxic. 
Great Dane In Hill

Over To You

Great Danes are fantastic breeds but they could be shaking and trembling for countless reasons, did you find out why your Great Dane is constantly shaking?

Which fact helped you the most from this list? Is there any fact here that surprised you? Did you try all the methods mentioned here?

Do you think I missed any important key points? If so, then please share with me in the comments section.

Further Readings:

Hypoadrenocorticism In Dogs

Related Topics:
1. Why Does Your Cane Corso Smell So Bad?
2. Why Does Your Basset Hound Shake So Much?
3. Why Does Your Cane Corso Cry So Much?

Leave a Comment

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *