There are plenty of people who love the tiny dog breeds, but there are lots of large breed enthusiasts, too. While it’s mistakenly thought that large breeds are aggressive and hard to handle, the opposite is actually true. The bigger the dog, the sweeter they tend to be. If you’ve been considering adding a giant to your family, here are some of the largest breeds out there.
Perhaps the most frequently thought of, this breed actually is considered the heaviest breed by the American Kennel Club. They aren’t the tallest, but they are the heaviest. The smaller English Mastiffs weigh 110 pounds, but the largest one on record was an astounding 343 pounds. His name was Zorba, and he was over eight feet long from the tip of his nose to the end of his nail. People who met him said he was the size of a small donkey! The current record holder is an English Mastiff named Hercules. He’s 282 pounds and his neck is 38 inches in diameter.
These massive gray beasts are one of the sweetest dogs you’ll ever meet. While they are quite brave and protective of their family members, they are more content to lay on the couch than they are to go on an attack. They are quite tall, with larger males growing up to 31 inches tall. Smaller females are “only” 170 pounds, but the larger dogs can get up to 200 pounds.
Tall and grizzled in appearance, Irish Wolfhounds ooze stately English charm. Originally bred to protect livestock from wolves, these dogs were made to be big and they don’t disappoint. Some Wolfhounds can be as tall as seven feet when they stand on their hind legs, and according to the American Kennel Club, they are the tallest breed. On average, they weigh about 110 to 120 pounds, but males can easily get to 150 pounds.
Considered the second tallest breed by the American Kennel Club, towering over other dogs at 34 inches tall. Their weight is impressive, too; females weigh between 100 and 130 pounds while males may weigh as much as 200 pounds. The largest Great Dane on record is a Dane in Arizona named Giant George. He’s 250 pounds and stands 3 feet, 7 inches at his shoulder. According to his website, he sleeps on his very own queen-sized bed and goes through 110 pounds of dog food every month!
Known for their drooling and loveable personalities, Saint Bernards can be gargantuan. Because they were bred for alpine rescues, they needed to be large, strong, and calm. A female Saint Bernard weighs around 150 pounds while males will get as large as 250 pounds. Benedectine was 357 pounds and holds the record as the World’s Heaviest Dog, beating out Zorba the English Mastiff for the record.
If you want a huge dog that also looks like a fluffy black teddy bear, then you should consider a Newfoundland. The average Newfie is between 100 and 150 pounds. The larger males can sometimes exceed 200 pounds, but the largest Newfie on record was 260 pounds and six feet from nose to tail.
This burnt-brown colored dog is “proud” and “self-disciplined”, making it an excellent choice for families with small children. They were originally used to protect livestock from predators, but now they’re used mostly as loveable pets. The typical Leonberger weighs between 120 and 170 pounds.
These dogs were bred to guard sheep, so their size was important for scaring away any potential dangers. They’ve very muscular and broad and grow to be quite tall (29 to 36 inches at the shoulders). Their mass makes them strong while their height makes them intimidating to predators. They can weigh between 90 and 150 pounds, but they’re typically around 130 pounds.
Dogue de Bordeaux
Also known as the French Mastiff, this breed has the largest head in proportion to their body of all of the dog breeds. These dogs are actually considered small for their breed at 120 pounds while the larger Bordeaux hover around 145 pounds.
Cane Corso Italiano
Cane Corsos look like a pit bull that’s bulked up on steroids. These massive, muscular dogs were used originally for hunting and as guard dogs in Italy. Even though they’re loyal and protective, they are also gentle and make excellent family dogs. They’re easy to train and don’t require a lot of exercise. They don’t grow as tall as English or Bull mastiffs, but what they lack in height they make up for in mass. Females are typically 88 to 99 pounds, and males are only a bit bigger at 100 to 105 pounds.
There are lots of large breed dogs to choose from for families who long for a giant in their living room. Besides requiring a large amount of food, the only other thing that these heavy dogs require is a whole lot of love.