Pet Profile: Great Dane

By Valdette Muller| October 20, 2017 | Blog

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Known as the worlds largest lap dog, the Great Dane is a regal and “Gentle Giant”.

Great Danes are among the world’s tallest dog breeds, standing in at 71 to 92 centimetres tall. They also come in 6 coat colour varieties including Black, Blue, White and Black, Fawn, and Brindle.

The Irish Wolf Hound is on average a taller breed of dog than the Great Dane, but does not compare to the Great Dane’s ability to rise up. This is why the word records for tallest dogs are consistently awarded to Great Danes.zeus

The tallest Great Dane and tallest of all dog breeds ever recorded is known as Zeus.

Zeus passed away at the age of 5 in 2014. He Measured an incredible 111.8 cm from foot to withers, Zeus the Great Dane was estimated to the same size as an average donkey.


The breed has genetic connections to the Mastiff family and is believed to have been first bred in Germany at least 400 years ago, as the breed we know today.

As this dog originated in Germany, no one really knows why the dog was called the great ‘Dane’ since it did not a Danish dog nor has any origins in Denmark.

In the medieval times of Europe, the dog was said to have magical powers and was a seen as a good source of protection in the home against evil forces.

The breed was originally bred to hunt wild boar and deer in Germany, but the hunting and killing instinct has since been bred out of the breed.


No longer hunters, the breed has traded that lifestyle in for the couch. You will find that many Great Danes enjoy being couch potatoes and lounging is one of their favourite activities.

The Great Dane is the perfect family dog. A well-bred Dane is one of the best-natured and most sought after dogs around.

Great Danes are gentle, sweet, and affectionate pets who love to play and are known to be relaxed around other pets and children.

As a breed they are easy to train, which shows their desire to please their owners or family members.69d10d7384e1e52aec7d8cc96dbb6f88

They enjoy spending time with their family and tend to be quite social when they want to be. They are known to become extremely attached to their owners.

Because of their large size, Great Danes need training. A Great Dane can become a handful if not shown boundaries or taught behavioural training.

Health and care

The Great Dane needs lots of space to run and exercise their joints and long limbs. It is important to regularly give them walks or runs to stretch so that they can strengthen their leg muscles and help support their weight.

Some may think they look like they could be clumsy as a dog breed with their long and lanky legs, but they are surprisingly graceful when they run or walk.

Great Danes are great with kids but be sure not to encourage children to ride them like a pony. This puts more pressure on their limbs and back and is not good for them internally. A Great Danes’ limbs and back are already strained from their height and to be put through more strain will only result in more complications such as early signs of hip dysplasia and vet bills in the future.

Great Danes are short lived dogs and normally only live up to an estimated 9 years mostly because of their extreme size and internal problems that surface when they get older.

Great Danes are known for their many health problems. They are the only breed of dog known to get the internal condition called ‘Bloat’. Bloat can happen when a Great Dane with a full stomach of food engages in heavy activity, such as running directly after eating. Great Danes stomachs are not attached to their rib cages like most dog breeds and can be jolted or flipped around inside, even become twisted by the intestine which can cause terrible blockages in the intestinal track. This is dangerous and can become fatal. 

To avoid ‘Bloat’ you should allow your Great Dane to rest for at least 45 min to an hour before letting them play outside, run or do any type of exercise.

The lifespan of the Great Dane may be shorter than the average dog, but lovers of this breed will tell you that any amount of time with a Great Dane is well worth it and an unforgettable experience!



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