Great Dane

The Great Dane is great in size, heart and nobility. Ignore the latter part of the name, though. This giant breed is not of Danish origin but was developed in Germany, where it was used to hunt big game, patrol estates and as a war dog. Today, the Dane is a dependable, even-tempered breed that is nicknamed the Apollo of dogs because of its handsome outline and aristocratic bearing. Males measure 30 inches or more at the shoulder, females about 2 inches less; thus, they are best suited to a large home with a yard. The short, smooth coat may be brindle, fawn, blue, black, mantle (black with white trim), or harlequin (white with black patches). Weekly brushing keeps it in shape. High-set ears may be cropped to a point or natural, in which case they fold about on a level with the skull. Danes are slow to mature and have special nutritional needs during the critical growing months. They enjoy a run outdoors but should never be exercised strenuously immediately after feeding. The breed adapts well to city or country living. Great Danes enjoy children, but they can inadvertently step on or knock over a toddler, so supervision is important. They make excellent watchdogs, their size and deep bark capable of scaring off the most determined intruder.

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Breed Details

Country of Origin:
Large Dog Breed
Brindle (gold with black cross stripes in a chevron pattern), fawn, blue, black, harlequin (white with irregular black patches) or mantle (black and white with a solid black blanket shape over the body).

Short, thick, smooth, and glossy.


Brush weekly.

Life Expectancy:
7 to 8 years
AKC Group:
Working Group
UKC Group:
At least 28 to 30 inches at the shoulder
Proportionate to height
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