Great Dane Breed - Dog & Puppy Information & Characteristics

If you are looking for a dog breed that is a family companion and a great guard dog, consider choosing a Great Dane! Just as the name suggests, these dogs make for truly great pets. Great Dane dogs are highly affectionate towards their adoptive families and even get along well with other pets. However, these gentle giants cannot truly adapt to apartment life due to their size. Great Danes also do not adapt to extreme hot or extreme cold and thrive in a moderate climate.

Despite being of a large size and having an imposing appearance, Great Danes are counted among the most affable and gentle breeds. They even get along well with children. In fact, their current temperament is a direct contrast to their direct ancestors who were bred to hunt wild boars.

Key specifications of a Great Dane dogs

If you are planning on adopting a dog from this breed, here are some basic details you ought to know about a Great Dane’s lifespan and other physical attributes.

Weight45 to 90 kg
Height26 to 34 inches
Lifespan7 to 10 years
CoatSmooth and short

Physical appearance of Great Danes

Great Danes are truly giants among canines. Their large size can truly make heads turn! These magnificent dogs have a short and smooth coat, which can have either of these shades:

  • Black
  • Fawn
  • Blue
  • Brindle (tawny with marks of another color),
  • Black and white (in either harlequin, mantle, or merle patterns)

If you want to get a Great Dane, you may want to know what purebreds look like. Purebred Great Danes have the following physical traits:

  • A tall, muscular, and athletic build
  • A large head
  • Big ears that usually droop low
  • A long tail which can even knock down things when wagged

Great Dane personality traits

As mentioned earlier, Great Dane dogs are highly affectionate and soft-hearted. They are also very loyal and protective of their families. They also won’t bark unless they feel the need to alert their families of something. These dogs are also very high on playfulness and energy. In order to express their playfulness to their heart’s content, they need a lot of space. They also get along really well with children and other pets.

Do Great Danes need training?

A Great Dane is generally very eager to please and this nature, in turn, makes these dogs easy to train. Even though they are friendly and soft-hearted, they do need obedience training, which can be best performed with a reward of dog treats in their training. Moreover, it is best if you teach a Great Dane puppy to socialize with humans and animals as early as possible. This way, they will grow up to be friendly dogs.

How  to care for a Great Dane?

Here are a few important details that you need to know about caring for a Great Dane.

  • Health issues

    One of the biggest threats that the Great Dane dog breed faces is a gastric condition called Gastric Dilatation-Volvulus (GDV). It causes bloat in a dog’s stomach and can be fatal. If you plan on adopting a Great Dane, you will need to discuss this issue with them. A few other tests that you will need to get done include eye check-ups, a test for hip dysplasia, a cardiac exam, and a thyroid check-up.

  • Grooming

    Great Danes have short and smooth coats which require weekly brushing. They shed once or twice a year. They also do not need regular baths unless they have had a fun day in puddles and mud. 

  • Physical activity

    Great Danes have a high energy level and need regular exercise. They love going on walks and runs with their owners. You can also give them outdoors time by letting them play in a garden or at the beach. However, do ensure that your fences are high enough that dog does not leap over them.

  • Nutritional requirements

    It is recommended that Great Danes be fed several small portions of dog food throughout the day rather than being given two big meals. This is to avoid bloat and GDV. If you are in doubt about what to feed your pet, you can ask your vet for a Great Dane food chart which might prove helpful.

A brief history of Great Danes

The Great Dane is believed to have originated from Germany. Proof of the Great Dane’s existence in ancient times have also been found in Russia, Poland, Tibet, and ancient Egypt. It is believed that European Royals bred these dogs in the Middle Ages to hunt wild boars that roamed forests during those times. Due to this reason, the Great Danes were once also called Boar Hounds. It was in the 18th century that the breed got its name linked to Denmark, despite having its origins in Germany. The credit for that goes to Georges-Louis Leclerc, Comte de Buffon, a French naturalist, who called the dog ‘grand danois’. Over the years, the dogs of this breed saw a great change in their responsibilities – from boar hunters, they became protectors and later, companion dogs.

Looking for more information on different dog breeds? Head to our breeds category page and get important details about each breed.

FAQs on Great Dane dog breed

Great Danes get along with other pets exceptionally well. However, to ensure that your dog grows up to socialize well with other pets, it is best to train them at an early age.

Great Danes are counted among the best family companion dogs. The dogs of this breed possess qualities such as loyalty, affection, and protectiveness towards their family, making them ideal pets.

Great Danes thrive on attention and affection from their humans and do not cope well when left alone at home. They may suffer from distress and anxiety if left alone for a long period.

Great Danes are quite easy to groom since they only have a single coat with short and smooth fur. They also do not require regular baths unless they have become particularly dirty. These dogs generally shed once or twice a year and during this period, need regular brushing.

Great Danes do not have the tendency to bark a lot, unless they need to alert their owners of something.

Buy Online Now