American Canine Association

Breeds

Breed Name: Great Dane


History

Dating back thousands of years ago, the Great Dane is one of the oldest dog breeds to still exist today. This breed is thought to of been created by crossing the Wolfhound bloodlines with the Greyhound and Old English Mastiffs. This breed was used for hunting, tracking, guarding and companionship. Today, the Great Dane is a very popular breed in the United States and can be seen with their human family members all over, just enjoying life!

Appearance

The Great Dane is an extra large breed dog with males and females measuring 29-34 inches on average and weighing 135-200 pounds in weight. This breed can be extremely tall and massive in size, though built long and lean. Their large, rectangular shaped head is accompanied by two triangular shaped ears, either folded down alongside of their face, or cropped and standing firmly on top of their head. A very large, rectangular shaped muzzle with loose skin hanging on either side, comes to a straight stop at their black to blue nose in color. This breed has two droopy, almond shaped eyes available in hazel to black in color, and sometimes even blue. Their tail is very thick and almost as long as they are; it tapers down to a point at the end and should remain low and upwards when relaxed. Their single layer, short haired coat is very close to their skin and available in black, brindle, fawn, blue, merle, mantle harlequin and chocolate.

Temperament

Contrary to popular belief, the Great Dane does require a good amount of physical activity daily. Many feel that they are lazy, giant dogs; though the Great Dane can be your giant couch potato, this breed loves to run and play within a properly fenced in yard daily, as they are a very playful breed. The Great Dane will never fully understand their size, and as many owners put it, "the Great Dane forever thinks he is a small puppy". This breed is extremely loving, affectionate, kind and gentle. They will bark when they feel there is threat or that they need to make you aware of something going on. This breed is good at traveling, however having the space for one to travel with you is another obstacle. This breed needs to feel as they are a part of your family, in order to be truly happy and content. This breed can be stubborn and difficult to train. Early socialization and training courses are highly recommended for this breed to encourage a solid foundation in your relationship with your new puppy. Great Danes are lovely with children they grow up with, extremely patient and accepting. Generally, this breed can do wonderful with all other pets within the home he or she grows up within as well. The Great Dane requires a calm, firm, and consistent owner who will remain "pack leader" at all times.

Grooming

This breed can drool and does shed. Daily wipe down or brushing will help control both of these factors and bathe when needed.

Special Notes

Please note that this breed is not meant for everyone. This breed grows very large, very fast. They require space to run and play within that is properly fenced in while outdoors. This breed is prone to bloat, heart issues and tail injuries. This breed does not live long, average life span is 5-7 years. Please fully educate yourself about the Great Dane prior to adding one to the family to ensure life long commitment both physically and financially. All dogs originate from wolves (Canis Lupus). Each breed of dog was originally created by mixing different breeds together in an effort to bring forth certain characteristics. Once a breeder has created acceptable “breed characteristics” within their bloodline and these “breed characteristics” have shown to be reliably reproduced in the offspring for three (3) generations, the bloodline may be upgraded from the category of “foundation stock” to “pure-bred”. The same “pure-bred” breed standards vary from different continents, countries, territories, regions, breed clubs, and canine pure-breed registries depending on the goals of their breeders. Dog DNA testing companies can have accurate results for a specific bloodline of a small colony of dogs. However, there are tens of thousands of different bloodlines in the world which have not yet been tested for marker baseline results by Dog DNA testing companies as of 2017. For this reason Dog DNA testing companies do not guarantee the 100% accuracy of their breed lineage results and will also show different marker results for the same pure-bred breed in different continents, countries, territories, regions, breed clubs, and canine pure-breed registries depending on the goals of their breeders.

© 2017 American Canine Association, Inc.