Great Dane

Other names: Danish, Deutsche Dogge, German Mastiff

Great Dane

The Great Dane is the biggest dog in the world. It is difficult to go unnoticed by his side. His appearance is noble and his body is powerful. He is considered to be the Apollo of his species, as his presence and stature are remarkable. What’s more, his dedication to his family is proportional to his immense size. Very friendly among familiar faces, and especially with children, he remains suspicious of strangers. A very good watchdog, he is courageous and naturally dissuades with his mere presence.

Key facts about the Great Dane

Life expectancy :

3

15

8

10

Temperament :

Affectionate Playful Calm Intelligent

Size :

Origins and history

The Great Dane is of German origin. Its ancestors were the ancient "Bullenbeisser" (Bull catchers), who came from the Saupacker (sow-catcher) breed in the middle-ages. They were all big game dogs hunting for deer, wild boar and bear. Their build was midway between the powerful English-type Great Dane and the Greyhound. However, until the First World War, this breed was called "Great Dane" because it was widespread in Denmark. In 1920, the name "German Mastiff" was adopted to remind that among the Great Dane’s ancestors were the massive fighting dogs of the Alains, an ancient nomadic people of Iranian descent, who came to Germany.

Physical characteristics of the Great Dane

    Adult size

    Female : Between 28 and 33 in

    Male : Between 31 and 35 in

    Weight

    Female : Between 99 and 154 lb

    Male : Between 110 and 154 lb

    Coat colour

    Black
    White
    Blue
    Red

    Type of coat

    Very short

    Eye colour

    Brown

    Description

    The Great Dane is a proud dog with a powerful and elegant look. Since it is the world's biggest dog, it has a sturdy and well-built body. His appearance is noble and his proportions are balanced. There is strong sexual dimorphism between males and females.

    Good to know

    The biggest dog in the world was a Great Dane called Zeus. Unfortunately, he died at the age of 5 in 2014. He measured nearly 44 inches, which is more than 110 cm at the tourniquet. When he stood on his hind legs, Zeus could reach the height of 7 feet and 4 inches, which is to say, more than 2,10m.

    Temperament

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      Affectionate

      Very close to his social group, he can sometimes even be clingy. He is very affectionate towards his masters and would give his life to protect them. This dog adores it when his masters take care of him and his tenderness and demonstrations of affection are limitless.

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      Playful

      Enthusiastic and alert, especially when he spends time with his masters, the Great Dane puppy is particularly playful. This trait will decline with age but this giant dog will always be ready for a game.

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      Calm

      Certainly one of the most peaceful dogs there is. The Great Dane is patient, discreet, and a calm Olympian.
      Its large size can scare potential adopters, but this dog knows how to go unnoticed despite its build.

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      Intelligent

      This mastiff is very intelligent; and understands quickly as long as one takes the time to teach him properly. He has very precise observation skills and analysis capabilities. In terms of education, his desire is to please and delight his master encourages him to quickly execute the various indications he receives.

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      Hunter

      Initially, the Great Dane was used for hunting games. In the Middle Ages, he accompanied men to hunt boars, bulls, bears or deer. Therefore, he retains a certain predatory instinct - but it is not excessive or unmanageable. Nowadays, this dog is valued for his good personality and noble stature.

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      Fearful / wary of strangers

      This giant dog may be very friendly with his regular entourage; however, he keeps a certain reserve when in the presence of strangers. He analyses with great objectivity the potential danger of the person he has in front of him. He will always place himself between what he considers a possible threat and his master.

    • 33%

      Independent

      The largest dog in the world is brave, but he is anything but independent since he relies heavily on his master. If he feels that he can trust his owner, he considers him to be his go-to and will avoid contradicting him.

      Behaviour of the Great Dane

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        Tolerates solitude

        The Great Dane does not like solitude. He will not be able to remain alone for a whole day without feeling bad. This dog needs to be accompanied and he needs to feel a reassuring and familiar presence to feel well.

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        Easy to train / obedience

        The Great Dane is a docile and obedient dog if the education he receives is both firm, gentle, and coherent. He will absolutely not accept physical or even psychological violence.

        This dog will never be stubborn but can quickly capitulate if he feels any animosity on behalf of his master.

        His education will need to be initiated from an early age to guarantee the safety of all once this giant dog has reached his adult size and weight.

        Proper walking on a leash should be particularly prioritized and any type of elevation must be banned.

        You should use positive reinforcement training, while maintaining a certain degree of firmness and consistency in the various learning processes in order to achieve the desired results.

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        Barking

        The Great Dane has a strong bark but he uses it very little. Indeed, his mere presence and impressive build are enough to deter potential intruders.

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        Tendency to run away

        His co-dependent temperament along with his instinct for protecting his own does prevent the world's largest dog from running away in search of adventure. Since he is very attached to his social group and protective too, he prefers to stay with his family members rather than elope.

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