Largest Dog Breeds

What is the biggest dog breed in the world?

While the Great Dane is frequently acknowledged as the tallest breed, it’s impossible to overlook the Irish Wolfhound and English Mastiff, which stand as formidable rivals. Depending on whether we consider height when they’re on all fours, the towering stance on their hind legs, or the sheer weight they carry, various breeds emerge as formidable contenders

In the realm of giant canines, the English Mastiff is often hailed as the breed with the biggest dogs. Adult Mastiffs typically stand at an impressive height of approximately 30 inches tall and when it comes to their weight, English Mastiffs generally weigh in between 120 and 230 pounds.

Zeus – What’s the biggest dog in the world?

The Guinness World Records awarded Zeus, a Great Dane, the title of world’s tallest male dog in 2022. Sadly Zeus passed away at the age of three in 2023 following a surgery to remove his front right leg related to cancer that was found. Zeus stood 41 inches tall when standing on all fours, and 7 feet, 4 inches when on his hind legs.

1. English Mastiff (27.5-30 inches, 120-230 pounds)

The English Mastiff stands as one of the distinguished large dog breeds. These remarkable canines can reach heights of up to 30 inches and tip the scales at a hefty 230 pounds. While Great Danes may hold the record for the tallest dogs, English Mastiffs once claimed the title of the largest, with a notable instance in 1989 when a colossal English Mastiff named Aicama Zorba, weighing an astounding 343 pounds.

Historically, their substantial size played a pivotal role as they were used as fighting dogs, for wolf hunting, and bear, bull, and lion baiting. Today, however, they have transformed into gentle giants, prioritizing their mellow, even-tempered, and loyal traits over their courageous and fearless origins. With their easy-going nature, English Mastiffs have become excellent family companions.

2 Great Dane (28-32 inches, 100-120 pounds)

Characterized by their deep love for family, a playful sense of goofiness, and a touch of endearing silliness as exemplified by the iconic Scooby-Doo whi is a beloved Great Dane! The Great Dane is often recognized as the largest dog breed in the Guinness Book of Records, at least in terms of height. Their origins lie in Germany as hunting dogs who were also capable of protecting the estates of wealthy nobles. The German name for the Great Dane, “Deutsche Dogge,” translates to “German mastiff.” Interestingly, before establishing their official presence in Germany, the ancestors of what we now recognize as the Great Dane were the result of a crossbreeding between English Mastiffs and Irish Wolfhounds.

While they might not hold the title for the heaviest canines, typically weighing between 100-120 pounds, Great Danes certainly claim their place among the tallest. On average, these majestic dogs reach heights of 28-32 inches, although it’s not uncommon for them to surpass even these impressive measurements. In fact, the world record for the tallest dog was held by a remarkable Great Dane named Zeus, whose towering stature reached an astonishing 44 inches.

3. Leonberger (25.5-31.5 inches, 90-170 pounds)

The Leonberger, nicknamed ‘gentle lion’, is a cross breed of the Newfoundland, Saint Bernard, and Pyreneans Mountain Dog with the aim of creating a majestic, lion-like dog. Originating in Leonberg, Germany, Leonbergers were deliberately bred to mirror the emblematic lions depicted in the town’s heraldic emblem by the mayor of Leonberg at the time, Heinrich Essen.

They fulfilled dual roles as both farm and guardian dogs, while also finding their place as cherished companions to the wealthy and nobles, surviving on the brink of extinction, with just five remaining after WWI and eight post WWII, they are now on the path to resurgence in both numbers and popularity. This particular breed typically reaches heights ranging from 25 to 31 inches and can tip the scales at a hefty 170 pounds. Yet, don’t let their imposing size fool you; they are truly gentle giants, known for their affectionate and family-oriented nature.

4. Newfoundland (26-28 inches, 100-150 pounds)

Newfoundlands or sometimes called ‘Newfies’ are part of the group of renowned giant breeds, most notably known for their love for water. This fervor for water play typically becomes apparent in puppies when they eagerly attempt to either climb into their water bowls or playfully tip them over, creating a delightful puddle for their enjoyment!

It’s no surprise that a Newfie’s purpose was originally to help fishermen. Their colossal, webbed paws granted them superb swimming abilities and exceptional traction on wet, icy, and slippery surfaces. These giant dogs possess the incredible ability to assist in tasks like retrieving heavy nets and lines from the water, pulling carts, and most significantly rescuing anything or anyone that may accidentally fall overboard.

Newfoundland dogs typically have a stature that ranges between 26 and 28 inches in height, and they can weigh up to a substantial 150 pounds. Their already imposing size appears even more substantial due to their heavy waterproof double coat, which provides them with essential warmth, even when immersed in icy waters.

5. Irish Wolfhound (30-32 inches and up, 105-120 pounds)

As their name implies, Irish Wolfhounds were intentionally bred for hunting and guarding purposes, originally employed in the pursuit and capture of wolves. Their lineage spans back to ancient times, possibly reaching as far as 7000 B.C., but today’s Irish Wolfhounds have evolved into tranquil and reserved companions, characterized by their intelligence and easygoing nature.

The Irish Wolfhound, often referred to as the gentle giant of the dog world, is truly a remarkable example of size and stature in the canine realm. This breed is renowned for its immense size, making it one of the largest dog breeds in existence.

The sheer scale of these dogs is astonishing, and it’s no surprise that they’ve earned the reputation of being one of the tallest breeds among all dog varieties. According to breed standards they stand typically between 30-32 inches, however males often reach towering heights of 34-35 inches and carry weights exceeding 120 pounds.

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