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Home | Dog Breeds | Working Dog Breeds | Great Dane

Great Dane | Dog Breed Profile

Great Dane Dog Breed


  • Low energy level
  • Low exercise needs
  • Not very playful
  • Very affectionate
  • Shy towards other dogs
  • Shy around other pets
  • Very friendly around strangers
  • Fairly easy to train
  • Great watchdogs
  • Moderately protective
  • Low grooming requirements
  • Low tolerance to heat
  • Low tolerance to cold

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    Despite his great size, this dog breed is good with children, although he may be a bit much for a small child to keep their footing around. The Great Dane tends to be good with other family pets as well. He’s gentle and affectionate with a sensitive nature and he responds well to training. He’s well-behaved and a pleasure to keep as a pet.

    His appearance is a combination of elegance and power and he carries himself proudly. When the Great Dane runs he looks strong but graceful with effortless strides. This pleasant breed requires very minimal grooming due to his short, thick coat, but he does need daily exercise.

    • Cannot be expected to live outdoors
    • Health conditions that need to be tested for are his hips, heart, elbows, eyes and blood
    • Grooming needs include the occasional brush
    • The Great Dane is a very affectionate and friendly, playful animal that is fairly easy to train
    • Has a great relationship with family members, young and old, moderately protective but do make great watchdogs
    • The average size of a male is 130 to 180lbs and 35inches tall
    • The average size of a female is 100 to 150lbs and 31 to 33 inches tall

    Care & Health:

    Take your majestic-looking Great Dane for a walk on a leash or let him play in the yard to ensure he has a chance to burn off some energy every day. He may look it – but he’s not made to live outside. He’s happiest diving his time indoors with his family and outside in the fresh air.

    Be sure he has a soft place to sleep and be prepared for a bit of drooling.

    Major Health Concerns:

    – gastric torsion, CHD, cardiomyopathy

    Minor Health Concerns:

    – CVI (wobbler's syndrome), cataract, elbow dysplasia, osteosarcoma, OCD, HOD and occasionally glaucoma, vWD

    Test for:

    – hips, heart, elbows, eyes and blood

    Life Span:

    – 6 to 8 years

    Breed History:

    Although it has been speculated that the Great Dane may have existed over 3000 years ago, actual proof only dates back to the 1300s, when they were used as big game hunters.

    Their graceful appearance made them a welcome addition to large estates. Their popularity spread from Germany to England, and in the late 1800s the Germans decided the breed would be called the Deutsche dogge, still the name used today.

    Despite no proof that the dog has Dutch origins, the English kept the name Great Dane, and in the late 1880s they made their way to the US, quickly garnering the attention of many dog fanciers. Today they are a popular breed despite the challenges of such a large pet.

    • Family history is livestock dog, mastiff
    • Originally from Germany
    • First bred in the Middle Ages
    • Original purpose was guardian, hunting large game
    • Today they are used for companions
    • Also known as Deutsche dogge, German mastiff