Black Great Dane – All you Need to Know

What is a Black Great Dane?

The Black Great Dane is a fairly commonly seen color within the Great Dane family. Fawn is the most common color seen on a Great Dane. It is also the most commonly thought of as popularised in the cartoon Scooby Doo. Black itself is a dominant gene located in the K Locus this means that only one copy of the gene needs to be passed on. Breeding a dog with this gene with any other color will give a chance of roughly just under 1 in 2 to produce a Black puppy.

The Great Dane is believed to have been around for over 400 years and to have originated from Germany. Due to their large size they were often used to protect large estates as well as carriages. They are known to be the largest of all dog breeds standing up to 32 inches tall at their shoulder. When jumping up on their hind legs they are often taller than most people, this unsurprisingly makes them not the best dog for anyone uncomfortable around dogs.

Despite their large size they are known to be fantastic family dogs. They are often referred to as gentle giants and are known for being careful around small children. As with all dogs it is important to begin training from puppyhood. This should involve both training at home and introducing to lots of other friendly people, as well as puppy training classes and lots of puppy play so they are comfortable with other dogs.

The Great Dane can also be Black in a number of different ways. The most commonly seen is with small white markings usually on the underside of their body. They can also have Black interwoven into their coat through the Brindle effect.

Black and White Great Dane

When referring to a Black Great Dane and Black it is often a Black and White Great Dane they are referring to. This is where the majority of the coat is Black with smaller white markings. There are different ways in which a Great Dane can achieve a Black coat. The most common is through the Dominant Black gene in the K Locus which usually leads to this color scheme.

The Black and White Great Dane is a fairly common occurrence and unfortunately suffers for Black dog syndrome. This is where they are in less demand from owners this means they are often the cheapest color to buy. They do however make great pets to have as there is no difference in temperament and due to being a recognised color they do not come with any unnecessary health concerns.

All Black Great Dane

The All Black Great Dane is a lot rarer to see than a predominantly Black Great Dane. These are usually produced in a different way to the other Black dogs you will have seen around. Whilst the Black color is often found through the K Locus and the Dominant Black trait this isnt the case for the All Black Great Dane. The All Black Great Dane is usually seen due to the Recessive Black trait.

How Big do Black Great Danes get?

Famously known for their large size and referred to as the biggest dog they are able to grow to some truly incredible sizes. They stand at around 32 inches to their shoulder and when standing straight around 44 inches to the top of their head. They are also around 48 inches long and can weigh up to 175 pounds. heavier than the average human.

The largest Great Dane ever recorded however is Zeus. He stood at 44 inches to his shoulder making him 40% taller than the average Great Dane. In addition to this when stood on his hind legs he reached a height of 7 foot 4 inches dwarfing almost everyone. Despite his huge size Zeus was a loving family dog. He even worked as a therapy dog and would often visit the local hospital with his owner to bring joy to those who were ill.

Black Great Dane Health Issues

Great Danes like most dogs can suffer a range of health issues with many related to their large size. Below we outline some of the more common afflictions.

Hip Dysplasia 

This leads to a reduced range of movement in the hind legs along with a reluctance in jumping, running and climbing stairs. Ensuring they stay at a healthy weight and are fed a high quality diet will help delay the onset.

Gastric Dilation Volvulus (GDV)

This is largely associated with eating large meals rather than several smaller meals. Studies have shown that dogs which are fed one large meal a day are more likely to be afflicted. In addition it has been observed that foods high in oils such as sunflower or animal fat can be a contributing factor. Whilst this illness can be life threatening in the worst of cases there are additional ways to reduce the risk. Elevated feeding is recommended as a way to reduce this pressure in addition to several meals a day.


Great Danes can be prone to allergies like most other dog breeds. This will usually display in red/raw patches often around their paws. Also it can show through watery eyes, ear infections or sneezing. If you suspect allergy issues it is best to discuss with a vet around possible treatments.

Heart Disease 

Great Danes can be prone to Heart disease, the best way to reduce this risk is through breeding. It is important to find out the medical history of any puppies parents as this will be the best indicator of risk.

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