- More than 2 hours per day
- Size of home
- Large house
- Once a week
- Coat length
- Under 10 years
- Vulnerable native breed
- Town or country
- Size of garden
- Large garden
Despite the name, the origins of the breed lie in Germany where its ancestors were heavier in type and used as hunting dogs, hunting in packs for wild boar. Some breed enthusiasts still believe they are a sighthound and could be classified in the Hound group. Certainly the hunting instinct is still there, although the breed is now taller and more elegant than its ancestors. He has a degree of nobility which has led him to be described as the Apollo of dogs. Despite the size, the Great Dane makes a wonderful family dog: he has dash and daring but is also kind and loyal to his family.
Images for this breed
The Working breed group
Over the centuries these dogs were selectively bred to become guards and search and rescue dogs. Arguably, the working group consists of some of the most heroic canines in the world, aiding humans in many walks of life, including the Boxer, Great Dane and St. Bernard. This group consists of the real specialists in their field who excel in their line of work.
Breed standard colours
Breed standard colour means that the colour is accepted within the breed standard and is a traditional and well-known colour in this breed.
Breed standard colours in this breed include:
Non-breed standard colours
- (NBS) Merle
Colour is only one consideration when picking a breed or individual dog, health and temperament should always be a priority over colour.
'Other' means you consider your puppy to be a colour not currently known within the breed and one that does not appear on either the breed standard or non-breed standard list. In this instance you would be directed through our registrations process to contact a breed club and/or council to support you on identifying and correctly listing the new colour.
Whether you’re thinking of buying a puppy, or breeding from your dog, it’s essential that you know what health issues may be found in your breed. To tackle these issues we advise that breeders use DNA tests, screening schemes and inbreeding coefficient calculators to help breed the healthiest dogs possible.
More about health
Important health schemes and tests
We strongly recommend that all breeders, both assured breeders (ABs) and non ABs, use the following (or equivalent) schemes, tests and advice.
- Breed club - Heart testing (cardiomyopathy)
- Bitches not to produce a litter under 2 years of age
- Hip dysplasia screening scheme (BVA/KC)
- Check inbreeding calculators
Other health schemes and tests available
- DNA test – IMGD - part of The Kennel Club's CombiBreed package* (see below). Find a list of tested dogs
*CombiBreed - simple to use and easy to organise all-in-one DNA tests for breeders
The DNA tests listed above marked with an asterisk (*) are included in our CombiBreed health test package. This includes:
- IMGD (Inherited myopathy of Great Danes
Assured breeders receive a 10% discount.
Find out more about our CombiBreed health packages.
Find out about a particular dog's results
Please visit our Health Test Results Finder to discover the DNA or screening scheme test results for any dog on The Kennel Club's Breed Register.
You can also view the inbreeding coefficient calculation for a puppy's parents, or for a dog you're thinking of breeding from.
Have any questions about health in your breed?
If you have any concerns about a particular health condition in your breed then you may wish to speak to your vet or you could contact your breed health co-ordinator.
Breed health co-ordinators are individuals working on behalf of breed clubs and councils who are advocates for the health and welfare of their chosen breed. They acts as a spokesperson on matters of health and will collaborate with The Kennel Club on any health concerns the breed may have.
To contact your breed health co-ordinator please email
Particular points of concern for individual breeds may include features not specifically highlighted in the breed standard including current issues. In some breeds, features may be listed which, if exaggerated, might potentially affect the breed in the future.
There are a number of The Kennel Club's rules and regulations that may prevent a litter from being registered, find out about our general and breed specific breeding restrictions below.
More about breeding
There are not currently any additional breed specific restrictions in place for this breed.
Visit us at Discover Dogs
Unsure of which pedigree dog to choose? Visit Discover Dogs where you can meet hundreds of pedigree dogs and speak with experienced owners/breeders.
Use our Find a Puppy service
The Kennel Club's Find a Puppy service provides contact details for breeders who have puppies available. Let's help you find your new best friend.
Get the best lifetime pet insurance
At Kennel Club Pet Insurance, we want you to focus on getting the best possible treatment for your dog without worrying about the cost.