Great Dane Appearance
Average height to the withers: Males should not be less than 74cm (30 inches) and females not less than 71cm (28 inches).
A true gentle giant, the Great
Dane has a playful, easy nature which can give way to bouts of
silliness both as a pup and as an adult. This can cross over into
clumsiness and given the size of this breed accidents can occur,
especially with smaller children. This is something that would rarely
happen in aggression as the Great Dane has one of the most genuine
temperaments of all dogs. They are also usually well behaved with other
animals and dogs.
The average life span of this breed is around 10 years. The breed is susceptible to hip dysplasia and bloat. Bloat is a medical emergency that can cause horrible pain and proves fatal in an estimated 40% of all cases. It is a gastric dilation of the stomach caused by an unusual accumulation of gas/liquid. This can be dangerous enough in its own right, but sometimes it leads to a second stage called volvulus, which is a stomach twisting or torsion. This shuts the stomach off from the rest of the body and prevents any of the accumulated gas or fluid within to escape. The stomach continues to expand, setting off a catastrophic series of events that in most cases can only be averted with emergency surgery.
As a short-coated breed, the Dane needs little grooming but may get cold in winter, so should not be left outdoors for extended periods. The Great Dane can seriously impact the family budget. This dog needs larger dishes and beds, more food, a higher dose of medicine and usually costs more to insure, for example. Bigger usually means more expense, so a prospective owner needs to think carefully before making the decision to get a Great Dane.