Standing at the pinnacle of canine diversity are the tallest dog breeds - magnificent giants that rule with their sheer size and grandeur. Among them, the Great Dane is often a star attraction, its towering stature rightfully earning it a remarkable reputation. Yet, this majestic breed merely sets the stage for a diverse range of large canines, each with its unique charm, attributes, and needs.

This insightful exploration will take you beyond their intimidating height to shed light on their heartwarming gentleness, compelling histories, and traits that make them more than just 'large'. With 'tallest-dog-breed' as our guiding keyword, we will navigate the landscape of these colossal companions, uncovering fascinating aspects about their lineage, health, and overall character.

Prepare to embark on a journey that ventures into the captivating world of the tallest dog breeds, where size is matched by the remarkable spirit and loyalty these gentle giants possess.

We love dogs of all shapes and sizes just the same, but we have a soft spot for those gentle giants! Let's take a look at the tallest dog breeds.

What Is The Tallest Dog Breed?

It will probably come as no surprise that the tallest dog breed is the Great Dane! The Great Dane is recognized as the largest dog breed (in terms of height) by the AKC. Though they aren't the heaviest, Great Danes stand at around 28-30 inches tall but are often even taller.

Tallest Dog In The World:

The tallest dog in the world is Zeus - a Great Dane who clocked in at 44 inches tall! Sadly, these gentle giants trade in longevity for size and while the average Great Dane lives to be 6-8 years old, Zeus passed away at age 5.

Other Tall Dog Breeds:

While Great Danes take the cake for the tallest dog breed overall, many other contenders are much taller than your average pup! These breeds include:

Neapolitan Mastiffs - 26-31 inches tall

Scottish Deerhounds - up to 32 inches tall

Irish Wolfhounds - up to 32 inches tall

Dogue de Bordeaux - 23-27 inches tall

Newfoundland - 27-30 inches tall

English Mastiff - up 30 inches tall

Saint Bernard - 25-30 inches tall

How To Measure A Dog's Height:

While we measure our height from the top of our heads to our toes, measuring a dog's height is a little different. A dog's height measurement is taken from its withers (or the highest point in the dog's shoulder blades) to the bottom of its feet. To measure your own dog's height:

  1. Stand your dog against a wall - sitting and laying down won't work here!
  2. Feel for your dog's withers - this is the highest point on your dog's shoulder blades. With short hair dogs, you may be able to identify it just by looking at them, but for dogs with long hair, you may need to feel under their fur for it.
  3. Place a level (or any long, even, flat item) across your dog's withers, with one end of the level on the wall next to them. Mark where the level hits the wall with a pencil or piece of tape.
  4. Use a ruler or measuring tape to measure the distance from the floor to the mark on the wall - this is your dog's height!

Pros Of Owning A Tall Dog:

  1. They are gentle giants! Extra large dog breeds are not as fragile and sensitive as smaller dogs are, making them great for families with kids because they can put up with the roughhousing that young children might put them through.
  2. Big dogs are easier to train - typically, owners of big dogs have even more incentive to stick to training schedules than small dog owners, simply because small dogs are easier to maintain! Plus large dogs in general tend to have better manners than smaller breeds.
  3. They don't need as much exercise as you think! Of course, all dogs need some exercise, but their extra large size means they need a little less than medium size breeds. Their large bodies put a lot of stress on them, so too much exercise can be bad in the long run - so if you're looking for a cuddle buddy rather than a running partner, tall dogs are for you!

Cons Of Owning A Tall Dog:

  1. They have a shorter lifespan than small-breed dogs. But even though they're not around quite as long, they'll spoil you with extra love and devotion to make up for it!
  2. They need space! You don't need a mansion, but these extra-large dogs will probably feel a little cramped in a small apartment. If you're going to adopt a large dog, make sure you have enough space to keep them comfortable. You can also assume that they'll be able to reach your counters with no problem! So be sure to plan.
  3. Costs - the bigger the dog, the more they'll need! This goes for food, medicine, vet procedures, and more. Be prepared to spend more on a large dog than you would on a small dog.

Final Thoughts

There are many breeds of dogs that can grow to be quite tall, but it is important to remember that size is not the most important factor in choosing a pet. It is crucial to research and educate oneself about a breed's temperament, exercise needs, and health issues before making a decision.

All breeds, big or small, have their unique personalities and characteristics that should be taken into consideration. Additionally, owning a large dog comes with its own set of responsibilities such as providing proper training, exercise, and space. With the right care and attention, a tall dog can make a loving and loyal companion for many years to come.

For additional pet-parenting tips, head over to's Off Leash blog.

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