The Great Dane is often referred to as the king of dogs. By looking at him, it's easy to see why.
A giant, dignified dog of sweet and gentle nature but also of mighty power, the Great Dane is an old breed. And even though Dane means Danish, the dog was developed in Germany at least 400 years ago, where his purpose was to hunt down the wild boar, a ferocious and tough beast. Now the Great Dane's job is to be a devoted and wonderful friend.
Because he is large, he needs a lot of space and exercise. In the house, he's calm and well behaved. Another important fact is that this big fellow eats plenty of food.
The Great Dane is a quick learner in obedience school, and needs the training because he's strong enough to pull his owner behind him. He won't do that if he's trained to walk properly. He wants to please.
Excerpts from the Standard
General Appearance: A majestic, dignified, elegant dog. Powerful, smooth, and strong.
Size, Proportion, and Substance: Height--male, 30 to 32 or more inches at the withers; females, 28 to 30 or more inches.
Great Danes come in six colors: brindle (gold with black stripes); fawn (gold with black on the face); blue (a blue-gray steel color); black; harlequin; or mantle. A harlequin is a clown whose costume is all black-and-white diamond shapes. A harlequin Great Dane is mostly white, with black patches over most of his body. The neck should be white. A mantle Dane is black with white markings. Great Danes' ears may be cropped or left to fall naturally.
Excerpted from The Complete Dog Book For Kids © 1996, John Wiley & Sons, Inc.