Big Dogs: The Ultimate Guide to Choosing the Perfect Breed for Your Home

May 4, 2023
Annette Thompson

Big Dogs come in all shapes and sizes, from small Chihuahuas to giant Great Danes. But when it comes to size, one class of canines stands above the rest: dogs bigger than average.

These large breeds are impressive in stature and have unique characteristics that make them special companions for those who own them. In this article, we’ll explore what sets these larger-than-life pooches apart from their smaller kin and why they’re so beloved by pet owners worldwide.

Great Danes

Great Danes are a large breed of dog known for their size and regal bearing. Standing at an average height of 30 inches, they can weigh up to 200 pounds! That’s more than twice the weight of popular breeds like German Shepherds and Golden Retrievers. This makes them one of the largest domestic dogs, making them incredibly impressive compared to smaller breeds.

Their size is due to variations within their lineage; Great Danes have been bred to be larger and taller over centuries of selective breeding practices. An interesting fact about them is that the tallest living dog was a male Great Dane named Zeus who measured 44 inches tall – the same as a 4-year old child!

While these giant-sized companions will require extra space and exercise, they make wonderful pets that bring joy into any household.

The loyal nature of this breed has made it a favorite companion animal for many families around the world. They are gentle giants that show immense love for their owners through loyalty and affectionate behavior such as cuddles or playtime activities.

Though not all individuals reach the same size, Great Danes remain one of the most iconic examples of canine beauty and strength today.

Irish Wolfhounds

Irish Wolfhounds are one of the biggest breeds of dogs, and they have a very long history. According to breed standards, an adult Irish wolfhound should stand between 30-32 inches tall at the shoulder and weigh up to 120 pounds or more, depending on age and gender. They were originally bred in Ireland for hunting large game such as wolves, bears, and deer.

The ancient history of this breed is quite fascinating. It is believed that these dogs have been around since 700 BC when King Cúchulainn owned an especially large hound named “Crúbach,” which means ‘curved back.’ Additionally, many Celtic legends feature stories about brave warriors owning giant hounds who fought alongside them in battle.

Today, Irish Wolfhounds make wonderful family pets due to their intelligence and gentle nature.

Here are some things you need to consider before adding one of these big, beautiful dogs to your home:

  1. A proper diet – These dogs need plenty of exercise with high-quality food that meets all their nutritional needs.
  2. Grooming – Regular brushing helps keep their coats healthy while preventing matting and tangles from forming.
  3. Training – Start early as it’s important for any dog but especially essential for larger breeds like the Irish Wolfhound so they don’t become too difficult to manage later in life.

Saint Bernard

Saint Bernard are one of the largest breeds of dog in existence. They can reach up to 27 inches tall and weigh over 140 pounds. This breed is often characterized by its large size, thick coat, and long muzzle with droopy jowls.

There are two distinct types or breeds of Saint Bernard: the ‘Hospice’ type, named for the hospice near which they were bred; and the ‘Working’ type, developed more recently as a rescue dog.

The Hospice St. Bernard has a slightly longer coat than its Working counterpart, while both varieties have strong legs and an imposing stature.

Regarding training challenges, owners must be patient because these dogs require significant time to learn new commands. Additionally, due to their large size and strength, they may need extra guidance when learning basic obedience exercises such as walking on a leash or coming when called.

Positive reinforcement techniques always work best when teaching this breed good manners and proper behavior. Overall, if given consistent direction during training sessions combined with plenty of love and attention from their humans, Saint Bernards will make loyal companions for many years.

Newfoundland Dogs

Newfoundland Dogs are a large breed of dog that has been used for centuries as working dogs. They are powerful, loyal, and intelligent animals that make excellent family pets due to their friendly disposition and calm nature.

Here’s what you need to know about caring for Newfoundlands:

  • Caring for Newfoundlands
  • Exercise: Newfoundland Dogs require daily exercise to remain healthy. Long walks or hikes on a leash will help keep them physically fit and mentally stimulated.
  • Grooming: Their thick coats require regular daily brushing to prevent tangles and mats from forming. Regular baths are also recommended to maintain their coat’s natural oils and cleanliness.
  • Health care: Routine vet visits can help catch any health issues early before they become serious problems. Vaccinations should be kept up-to-date, along with flea/tick prevention measures.

There are three primary breeds of Newfoundland Dogs – the Landseer, the Black Labrador Retriever, and the St John’s Water Dog.

The Landseer is known for its white body markings against a black background while the Black Labrador Retriever has a solid black coat. The St John’s Water Dog has a variety of colors including brown, red, grey, tan, cream, silver, white, blue merle, tricolor (black & white), brindle (white & brown), and even yellow!

All three types share similar temperaments but there may be subtle differences depending on which type you choose as your pet.

No matter which breed you select as your companion animal it’s important to remember that all Newfoundlands require plenty of love and attention from their owners in order to stay happy and healthy over time. With proper care these beautiful big dogs can live long lives full of joyous moments spent with family members by their side.

Great Pyrenees

The Great Pyrenees is a majestic sight to behold – its striking white coat, regal demeanor, and formidable size making it an unforgettable presence.

As the largest of all dog breeds, this breed has become increasingly popular due to its gentle nature and loyalty. But with such immense power comes great responsibility – these dogs require consistent training challenges and exercise needs that not everyone can meet.

Large in size but even bigger in heart, Great Pyrenees are often referred to as ‘Gentle Giants.’ This nickname could not be more appropriate; despite their intimidating looks, these animals have incredibly loyal personalities that make them perfect companions for families or individuals alike. However, they do have strong prey instincts which must be taken into consideration when introducing them to other animals or people.

Proper socialization is key to curbing those impulses while also teaching them the basics like sit, stay and come on command.

Training a Great Pyrenees doesn’t end there – they need daily physical stimulation as well as mental exercises to keep them sharp and healthy. They benefit from long walks, hikes through wooded areas, playing chase around the yard, or even swimming if available.

Without proper exercise each day their behavior may become destructive or anxious so providing enough outlets for playtime is essential for ensuring good health inside and out!


Bullmastiffs are an iconic breed of large dogs. They were originally bred by English gamekeepers in the 19th century to be used as guard and hunting dogs on estates. Today, Bullmastiffs are still known for their size and strength, but they have also been selectively bred to possess good temperament qualities.

The breeding standards for Bullmastiff’s typically involve selecting for desirable traits such as intelligence, a strong desire to please its handler, and courage. These characteristics can help make the animal suitable for working with families or performing various tasks it is trained for. Training methods should emphasize consistency and reward-based reinforcement instead of punitive correction when teaching new behaviors or commands. Following these guidelines will ensure that you get the most out of your pet’s capabilities without causing any undue stress or anxiety to your dog.

Some other important considerations when owning a Bullmastiff include proper socialization from an early age, providing enough exercise and space to roam around freely, making sure it has access to fresh water at all times, feeding a nutritious diet according to its needs, scheduling regular checkups with a veterinarian, and giving plenty of love and affection!

Here is a list of items to keep in mind:

  • Breeding Standards
  • Training Methods
  • Socialization & Exercise Requirements
  • Nutritious Diet & Access To Water
  • Regular Veterinary Checkups
  • Adequate Love & Affection
  • Proper Grooming & Hygiene Habits


Rottweilers are an iconic breed of dog, renowned for their size and strength. These large dogs have a long history as powerful and loyal protectors, with records dating back to the Roman Empire in the first century A.D. Today, Rottweilers remain popular family pets around the world due to their friendly and devoted personalities.


The physical characteristics of Rottweilers make them ideal for guard duty and herding animals but can be intimidating to strangers or those unfamiliar with the breed. They typically grow up to 27 inches tall at shoulder height and weigh between 80-135 pounds when fully grown. While these impressive features may cause some health concerns that come with owning such a large animal, proper care and diet can help mitigate any potential issues.

Rottweilers are intelligent dogs that require consistent training from a young age to ensure they become well behaved members of society. This helps owners avoid common behavioral problems like aggression or overprotectiveness that can arise if not properly socialized early on in life. With time spent playing activities like fetch or hide-and-seek, Rottweiler puppies will naturally develop into obedient adults capable of providing years of faithful companionship.

Overall, Rottweilers are powerful yet loving guardians worthy of admiration for their considerable strength, loyalty and protective instincts. As one of the oldest breeds in existence today, it’s no wonder this majestic canine is still considered one of man’s most beloved four-legged friends throughout many parts of the world.

Siberian Huskies

Siberian Huskies are one of the biggest breeds of dogs, with an average weight for a full-grown male ranging from 35 to 60 pounds. They were originally bred as working sled dogs and their thick coats allow them to withstand temperatures that can reach -50°F or lower!

When it comes to exercise needs, Siberian Huskies require more physical activity than most other dog breeds; they need daily runs or long walks in order to stay healthy and happy. Since these dogs were bred for endurance and strength, it’s important that owners are able to keep up with them during their outings, otherwise a bored husky might find trouble on its own.

Grooming requirements for this breed include weekly brushing (more often if shedding season is coming) in order to remove any dirt or debris trapped in the fur, monthly trimming of nails, cleaning/brushing teeth regularly and routine checkups at the vet. It’s also recommended to bathe your pup every 3 months using shampoo specifically designed for dogs with thick fur.

Here’s a list of grooming items you’ll need:

  • A brush suitable for double-coated breeds
  • Pet nail trimmers
  • Toothbrush and toothpaste made specially for pets
  • High quality dog shampoo

To keep your husky looking beautiful and healthy year round requires dedication but providing regular care will go a long way towards building trust between owner and pet. Plus, being involved in all aspects of its life helps strengthen the bond between both parties too!

Alaskan Malamutes

Alaskan Malamutes are the largest of all domesticated dog breeds. They have a strong, well-built body with thick fur and long legs that make them perfect for cold climates. These dogs have an independent nature but also crave companionship from their owners. With proper training and socialization, they can become loyal family members.

Alaskan Malamutes possess many unique breeding traits; these include a broad head, almond shaped eyes, small ears set low on the skull, and a curled tail over their back. It’s important to note that Alaskan Malamutes shouldn’t be confused with Siberian Huskies as they look very similar in appearance

Given their size and strength, it is essential to provide ample exercise opportunities for this breed. Daily walks or hikes should be encouraged so they can stay active and healthy throughout life

In addition, having multiple toys around means your Alaskan Malamute will always have something fun to do when you’re not around! Keeping them stimulated both mentally and physically ensures happy pet ownership experience.

With adequate care and attention, owning an Alaskan Malamute can bring joy into any home. Whether it’s cuddling up together at night or taking off on outdoor adventures during the day, there’s no doubt that this majestic breed has plenty of love to give its lucky owner.

Anatolian Shepherd Dogs

Anatolian Shepherd Dogs are truly giants of the canine world. At up to 28 inches tall, they tower over all other breeds in both size and strength. With a history stretching back thousands of years, and breed genetics that have been carefully maintained through centuries of selective breeding, it’s no wonder these dogs have become so beloved around the world today.

The Anatolian Shepherd is an ancient dog breed with roots extending as far back as central Turkey from whence it hailed originally. This powerful herding guardian was traditionally used by nomadic shepherds for protection against predators such as wolves and bears, making them incredibly loyal and brave guard dogs even today.

Their thick fur coat allows them to resist extreme temperatures while their large paws provide excellent grip on rough terrain.

These gentle giants make great family pets due to their calm but alert demeanors; however they require plenty of exercise, mental stimulation, and socialization in order to thrive in domestic life, especially when living with smaller animals or children. Ultimately though, there’s no denying that this iconic breed has earned its place among some of the most impressive canines out there!


The Anatolian Shepherd Dog, a large breed of dog, is often used as a guard dog and livestock protector. This hardy canine is known for its independent nature and athleticism when it comes to herding animals.

However, the Mastiff offers an even bigger size and strength than the Anatolian Shepherd Dog. Mastiffs are widely considered one of the largest breeds of dogs, reaching heights up to 30 inches or more in some cases. They have been bred for centuries by English nobility according to specific standards that emphasize loyalty, courage, and power.

Their diet consists mainly of high-protein meats supplemented with vegetables and grains. Though Mastiffs may be intimidating due to their sheer size, they are surprisingly gentle creatures who make loving family companions if given proper training from puppyhood.

With regular grooming and exercise routines along with strict adherence to dietary requirements for this giant breed, owning a Mastiff can bring many years of joy into your life.


The Komondorok is a breed of canine that towers above all the other breeds. These massive dogs are easily mistaken for small ponies, as they can reach heights up to 30 inches and weigh in at an imposing 100 pounds! Their thick white coats give them their unique appearance and make them look like living mops.

Komondors have been bred by shepherds in Hungary for centuries according to strict standards to guard livestock from predators. They were also known historically as royal guards and guardians of property.

The most important trait that should be taken into account when breeding these dogs is temperament; they must be courageous and vigilant while remaining gentle with people they know well. This makes them excellent family watchdogs who will protect your home without aggression towards visitors or strangers.

These majestic creatures require considerable grooming requirements due to their long coat, which needs regular brushing and combing to prevent matting. Additionally, because of the amount of exercise this breed requires, it’s essential to provide ample space for running around so that they remain healthy and happy.

  • Breed standard: Temperament & Courageousness
  • Grooming Requirements: Long Coat & Brushing/Combing Regularly
  • Exercise Needs: Running Around & Ample Space
  • Health Considerations: Regular Vet Visits
  • Socialization Training: With People & Strangers Alike

Portuguese Water Dogs

Portuguese Water Dogs are a breed of medium-sized dogs that can be quite large. They weigh between 35 to 60 pounds and stand at 20 to 23 inches in height, making them one of the bigger breeds. With their thick coat and webbed feet, they were bred for water work but make great companions as well.

Exercising requirements for this breed is important because of its size and energy level. A daily walk or two should do the trick along with some playtime whether it’s fetching balls or swimming in a pool or lake. Keeping them active will help ensure good behavior and reduce destructive behaviors due to boredom.

Grooming needs for these dogs require brushing about once a week since they have long wavy fur that doesn’t shed much. Bathing should only occur when necessary as too frequent shampooing could dry out their skin and cause irritation. Regularly check ears, eyes, teeth, nails and paws to keep your pup healthy and comfortable which includes trimming the hair on their feet if needed.

Overall, Portuguese Water Dogs make wonderful canine family members who love spending time with people while displaying an affectionate nature towards those around them. Their intelligence means they pick up training quickly so they may need more mental stimulation than physical exercise though both are important parts of keeping them happy!


The Portuguese Water Dog is a hearty and active breed, requiring plenty of exercise. Its size and energy make it an ideal companion for outdoor activities such as swimming and hiking. However, its thick coat requires regular grooming to keep the dog looking its best and comfortable in all weather conditions.

In contrast, the Kuvasz has a much different set of needs when it comes to care and maintenance. Despite being larger than most other breeds, this ancient Hungarian guard dog does not require a significant amount of physical activity or mental stimulation on a daily basis due to its laid-back nature. But unlike the Portuguese Water Dog’s easy-care coat, the Kuvasz will need frequent brushing to prevent matting of their long white fur. Furthermore, trimming may be necessary every few months depending on how often they are brushed.

Overall, both breeds have distinct requirements that should be taken into consideration if you’re thinking about adopting one. The Portuguese Water Dog needs lots of exercise but minimal grooming; whereas the Kuvasz doesn’t need too much physical activity but more attention to its grooming needs.

Knowing this information beforehand can help owners provide proper care for either breed so that any new pup can get accustomed to their environment quickly and happily!


Leonbergers are a large breed of dog known for their kind, patient nature and impressive stature. Originating in Germany during the 19th century, Leonbergers were bred to combine the strength of a Saint Bernard, the intelligence of a Newfoundland, and the agility of a Great Pyrenees.

They have since become popular as family pets due to their loyal and affectionate personalities.

When it comes to health care requirements for Leonbergers, owners should be aware that they need regular exercise and grooming. This is especially important because these dogs can grow up to 32 inches tall and weigh over 170 pounds!

Additionally, Leonberger may suffer from hip dysplasia or eye disorders common among giant breeds; thus, routine vet visits are essential for keeping them healthy into adulthood.

With proper nutrition and exercise, Leonbergers make wonderful companions with plenty of love to give back to their families. These gentle giants bring lots of joy with their goofy behavior when young and sweet loyalty when older.

Though they require more upkeep than smaller breeds, owning one will surely bring years of happiness.

Frequently Asked Questions

What Is The Average Lifespan Of These Dog Breeds?

When talking about the average lifespan of different dog breeds, it’s important to consider their feeding habits and socialization needs.

The quality of food you feed your pup will affect how long they live, as well as regular exercise and positive reinforcement.

Breeds that require more physical activity tend to have a longer life expectancy than those who are more laid back in nature.

Proper nutrition combined with plenty of mental stimulation can help extend a pooch’s years on this earth.

Are These Dogs Good For First-Time Pet Owners?

Picking the perfect pup for first-time pet owners can be tricky. To ensure an ideal match, consider both training tips and space requirements when selecting a dog breed.

Training tips include knowing how to respond to basic commands like sit, stay, and come as well as potty training methods. It’s also important to factor in size; larger breeds may require more spacious living conditions than smaller ones do.

Overall, there are plenty of pups that make great companions for novice pooch parents!

What Kind Of Exercise Do These Breeds Need?

Exercising and properly socializing dogs is an important part of pet ownership, regardless of the breed.

For breeds that are larger like those discussed previously, they will need more exercise than smaller breeds and may require obedience training.

It’s essential to ensure these breeds receive enough physical activity as well as proper socialization needs in order to live a happy and healthy life.

Is There A Difference In The Amount Of Grooming Required For These Breeds?

When it comes to grooming, there is a definite difference in the amount of care required for different breeds.

While some may need minimal brushing and occasional baths, others require more frequent visits to the groomer or daily brushing sessions with breed-specific products.

Long coats will often require extra attention to keep them looking healthy and tangle-free.

It’s important to know what type of coat your dog has so you can use proper techniques and products when caring for their fur.

Are There Any Health Issues Specific To These Breeds?

It is often thought that larger breeds of dogs may have more health issues than smaller ones, but the truth is there are many other factors to consider.

Health issues specific to particular breeds depend on a variety of elements like genetics and lifestyle choices.

It’s important for owners to understand their pet’s individual socialization needs and training tips in order to help them maintain optimal physical and mental health throughout their lifespan.


Overall, bigger breeds of dogs can be a great choice for first-time pet owners. They are loyal companions and offer years of love and joy if properly cared for.

I’ve personally seen how much my own large breed dog has enriched my life; she’s the light of our home.

It is important however to research the specific needs of each big breed before committing to one as their size does come with some added considerations when it comes to health issues and exercise requirements.

With proper care and attention, these larger breeds will make exceptional additions to any family!

Ready to find your loyal and loving companion? Look no further than Bone Voyage Dog Rescue! Our selection of big breed dogs will make exceptional additions to any family. But before you commit to one of these furry friends, make sure to do your research on their specific needs. With proper care and attention, these bigger breeds will bring years of joy and love to your home. Adopt now and experience the light that a big breed dog can bring to your life!

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