Great Danes are well known for being one of the world’s tallest dogs – they are often referred to as “the” tallest dog. But what about weight? How much does a Great Dane weigh? While you might expect a Great Dane to top the charts in weight too because of its great height, Great Danes actually have a lot of competitors when it comes to the question, “Which dog breed is the heaviest?”
So, how much does a Great Dane weigh? Fully grown, male Great Danes weigh between 140-200 pounds, while females typically weigh 100-140 pounds.
That may sound like enough to earn top spots in the heaviest dog breeds category, but other breeds such as Tibetan Mastiffs, English Mastiffs, Irish Wolfhounds, Saint Bernards, and Newfoundlands, French Mastiffs, Neopolitan Mastiffs, and Dogue de Bordeaux tend to give Great Danes a run for their money.
While the Great Dane is exceptionally tall (males typically stand between 30-32 inches at the shoulder while females stand between 28-30 inches), it is also a very slim breed in body type.
This is one of the characteristics breed afficionados love about Great Danes – the breed combines height with elegance and grace, not to mention the fact that it is an excellent all-around family pet.
What’s the deal with Mastiffs?
Mastiffs feature prominently on lists of the heaviest dogs because they have been bred to be massive, muscular animals. They are also one of the oldest breeds of dogs and were first brought to mainland Europe by Roman soldiers who saw their ferocity in battle in England and wanted to pit them against lions for entertainment back home.
English Mastiffs are one of two major breeds thought to have been used to develop the Great Dane we know and love today. However, while even the largest Great Danes will top out around 200 pounds, English Mastiffs typically weigh 230 pounds, and can weigh more than 250 pounds.
More on Great Danes and English Mastiffs
Although both breeds count themselves part of the giant breed category, they exist on opposite ends of the spectrum. Great Danes are tall and long, like basketball players, whereas English Mastiffs are large, wide, and heavy, like rugby players. Their difference in weight influences the slight differences in their needs as giant dogs. For example, Great Danes tend to be more energetic than English Mastiffs and have often been described as goofy or clumsy. English Mastiffs are a bit more low-key, although both breeds require the same 30–60-minute range of exercise per day as adults.
Great Dane Growth Chart in Pounds
Great Dane puppy weight
Great Dane puppies may be some of the cutest animals on earth. Their absurdly large paws and clumsy, sweet demeanors explain their popularity as a household pet, but don’t be deceived! These are animals that pack a two-part dependency punch because in addition to requiring a near-constant human presence, their diet also requires constant supervision as puppies.
Great Dane puppies will grow as much in their first year of life as a human will grow in their first fourteen years. Because their growth is so consolidated, the longevity of Great Danes will be greatly influenced by how well owners accommodate their prolonged growth phase. If you purchased your Great Dane puppy from a breeder, they should be able to provide you with a height and weight estimate based on the parents and previous litters. You can then take this information back to your veterinarian and use it to create a personalized feeding plan for your pup.
Choosing a high-quality food and breaking the meal into 3-4 smaller meals throughout the day are two basic components to raising a healthy Great Dane. These puppies will hit their major growth spurt somewhere between 3-6 months of age, during which time they will grow as much as two inches a week and pack away anywhere between 2,500 to 3,000 calories. (It should also be noted that Great Danes are not very budget-friendly dogs.)
On average, a six-month-old Great Dane will weigh between 65 and 100 pounds and stand somewhere between 26-30 inches tall. To ensure that your puppy is growing at a reasonable rate, your veterinarian should help you develop a feeding plan based off which you can monitor your Great Dane puppy’s growth.
Great Danes are particularly prone to developing hip dysplasia and other joint problems and diseases, such as Wobbler’s syndrome. Wobbler’s syndrome is a disease affecting the neck vertebrae. It occurs when there is too much pressure between vertebrae and the spinal cord and spinal nerve roots become compressed, causing the Great Dane to adopt an oddly uncoordinated gait. While Wobbler’s syndrome is treatable, it will always require medication and may involve surgery, both of which are costly and will likely eliminate your Great Dane from showing prospects if that was your intended plan.
These risks can be mitigated by providing a high-quality dog food specially created for large and giant breeds and by conducting background research on other aspects of your puppy’s needs, such as exercise.
Great Dane puppies will probably have one of two modes: hyperactive or passed out sleeping. Like all puppies, Great Danes are excitable, energetic, and love to play. If left unsupervised, they will rush from activity to activity before realizing they’re hungry, and then they will rush to gulp down food. Puppyhood is an important time to establish routine for your Great Dane, particularly because this breed is liable to develop an extremely dangerous gastrointestinal condition known as bloat.
Bloat occurs when the stomach fills with too much air or gas and becomes distended, putting the stomach at risk of twisting or flipping. Although the exact causes of bloat are unknown, it’s commonly held that exercising too vigorously before or after eating can increase the risk of developing the condition. Recently, the pros and cons of using a raised feeder have entered the discussion, although for many years raised feeders were considered definitively preventative measures owners could take to prevent their large and giant breed dogs from developing bloat.
A note on perceptions related to a Great Dane puppy’s size
A Great Dane puppy’s size may lead some to believe that they are suitable for high impact activities such as running or going on challenging hikes. The reality is that Great Dane puppies should not be taken on leashed runs until at least 18 months of age due to the risk the exercise poses to their still-developing skeletal frame. Even as an adult, Great Danes will only require a moderate amount (30-60 minutes total, spaced out over multiple sessions) of low impact exercise every day. If you are an extremely active person looking for a dog to accompany you on long distance runs or challenging hikes, the Great Dane is probably not the best match for your lifestyle.
That being said, if you are a hobby jogger and can tailor your outings to build up your adolescent or adult Great Dane’s stamina, jogging actually provides them with a more natural means of expressing their elegant gait since their legs are so long! If possible, jogging your Great Dane on trails will provide an excellent mix of soft impact, strengthening exercise.
With regard to overweight Great Danes, jogging or running is an absolute taboo until its weight has been brought back within a healthy range. The reason for this is related to the breed’s joint and bone sensitivity – they are prime candidates for developing hip dysplasia, which affects their hind legs and makes it difficult for the animal to get up and down. Over time, hip dysplasia will lead to arthritis and fully inhibit movement. While this disease is genetic, it can also be triggered by environmental factors.
Your Great Dane puppy will be fully grown in both size and weight between 18-24 months of age, and they will spend most of their second year filling out and building muscle. During this period, you can incorporate jogging, ability, or more rigorous sessions of frisbee and flyball into your Great Dane’s exercise regime. Whereas with puppies it is important to supervise their rate of growth and carefully monitor their weight, height, and food intake from week-to-week, when they reach young adulthood the focus shifts to preparing their bodies to carry their huge frames throughout their lives.
Strength training exercises also have the added benefit of reinforcing obedience training, which in turn strengthens communication and the bond between Great Dane and owner. In addition to the health issues Great Danes are predisposed to that were discussed earlier, they are also at risk of developing heart disease. Strength training is a way to reduce this risk. While on walks, owners can seek out stairs or hills that will enable their Dane to work out their back legs and keep their joints and hips strong. Being able to provide a large, secure yard for your Great Dane is also beneficial, but taking it on walks is the best way to meet its exercise, mental, and social needs.
Caring for your elderly Great Dane
A Great Dane is considered a senior when it reaches seven years of age. At this point, your Dane has been its full size and weight for some time, but now there are special considerations to take into account. Risk of bloat and other health conditions increases with age, and senior Danes are unable to romp and play as robustly as they once did.
Caring for a senior Great Dane is all about maintaining their routine and paying attention to the details. If your Great Dane is no longer burning the same amount of energy as before, it’s likely that you will have to decrease their food from the standard 2,500 calories so that they don’t become overweight. Being elderly and overweight is a recipe for joint problems or arthritis when it comes to large and giant breeds, and it also makes it more challenging for owners to keep them comfortable.
Providing comfort will be a key aspect to properly caring for your senior Great Dane. Even if they are eating and playing less, they will still weigh anywhere from 100-200 pounds, although a decrease in weight is not unusual in senior pets. Their size will always need to be considered.
If you have not used one up until this point, a raised feeder may be useful so that your elderly Dane does not have to stretch its neck down all the way to the floor in order to eat or drink. You may want to consider adding ramps onto couches or carpet runners along floors to support your aging Dane’s restricted mobility. As it becomes clear that your beloved pet may be in pain or one day unable to get up off its bed, consider purchasing a belly sling so that you are able to help your Dane onto its feet.
At this point, it will likely be time to discuss quality of life with your veterinarian and prepare to say goodbye. While this is the most challenging aspect of living with these magnificent animals, it will not take away from the wonderful years you had with such a devoted and loving gentle giant.