Great Danes are known for their impressive size, but when do these gentle giants stop growing? In this straightforward guide, we break down the growth stages of Great Danes, providing essential insights for owners to ensure their pets thrive.
Great Danes typically stop growing around 18-24 months. This will include their overall height and weight. Most will reach their full height by 18 months, but continue adding muscle weight through their second year.
|Full-Grown Great Danes
While much of their growth will be completed around 18 months, they may still be filling out some of that giant structure.
So, their weight may fluctuate a little more after the 18 months due to the developing depth of their chest and breadth of their body.
Discover the timelines, care tips, and expert advice you need to support your Great Dane through their growth journey. Let’s dive into the world of Great Dane development and find out when these remarkable dogs reach their full size!
Table of Contents
Height Growth Schedule for a Great Dane
While other larger breeds may be known for their wide frame and massive features, the Great Dane is known for its length, elegance, and height.
The average heights and weights listed above for males and females are standard guidelines or averages. Keep in mind that these numbers can be higher or lower.
For example, according to Guinness World Records, the tallest dog recorded in the world was Zeus. Zeus was a Great Dane from Michigan who measured a staggering 44 inches tall and 155 pounds.
While there are plenty of dogs that outweigh Zeus, he stood tall above them all. But of course, along with size, he shared another Great Dane trait—being a sweet, loveable pooch.
That is the good news–no matter how big these dogs get, they are kind, affectionate, and nonaggressive. The bad news is you may need to go buy a new California king-size bed if you want them to be able to sleep with you comfortably.
Height is easiest to begin recording after their first two months. So, while you will track their weight during this time, it is easiest to hold off on height until six weeks – two months.
Below is a Great Dane height chart that will help to give you guidelines on their growth throughout their first year.
|1 Year Old
As you can see, some Danes may have already reached their full height by the time they are one year old. They may not have fully developed everything structurally on the inside, though. There can be smaller shifts in their height as these bone structures fully solidify as adults.
Don’t be overly concerned if your Dane is a little behind or a little ahead of these guidelines. There are plenty of healthy Danes out there that don’t fall perfectly within them.
The most important thing is to monitor their size while also paying attention to their behavior and activity patterns.
If you notice they are behind or ahead of the ball when it comes to their size, along with some odd behaviors, it may be time to check in with your vet.
How Height is Measured in a Great Dane
As we mentioned, measuring the height of a tiny pup can be a bit tricky. Accuracy is not always easy. When they are that small, it is more important to track their weight. But once they begin growing in height, you will want to monitor that as well.
There are always questions regarding what the height truly is.
It is a common misconception that they are measured from the bottom of their paws up to the tips of those signature, perky ears.
But the proper way to measure height is from the bottom of their paws to their withers, which is the highest peak on the dog’s shoulder blades.
For dog shows, they need exact numbers so they will use wickets, aka aluminum measure sticks, that allow them to measure the dogs easily and accurately.
The American Kennel Club sells them on their website for smaller dogs. But you can also look to a simple search at Amazon to find some taller aluminum measuring sticks that will work for your gentle giants.
But for the casual Dane owner who would just like to make sure they are progressing as they should, here are some simple steps to get an accurate reading at home:
- Have the dog stand against a blank wall. If your dog isn’t one for standing still, you may ask to have a helper nearby or some treats in hand to encourage them to stay put.
- Use a carpenter’s level across the dog’s withers. You want this to be placed across the withers at the highest point on the shoulders of the dog.
- Rest the level against the wall and move it until the bubble is in the direct center to show it is even.
- Mark the wall with a small dot from a pencil and let your Dane move away (and most likely run around the house for a bit after this exercise).
- Now, you can use a measuring tape from the floor to the mark on the wall, and you will have their height.
The reason for doing it this way is so there is no guesswork. You can try to use a measuring stick or tape right up against the dog, but there will always be a margin of error when you try to figure out where the top of the withers are since the stick will be up along the side of the dog’s body.
Featured Download: Grab a copy of our free weight and height tracker as a free download by using the form here. It’s perfectly formatted to be easily printed off!
Weight Growth Schedule for a Great Dane
Depending on how old your Great Dane puppy is when you bring him/her home, you probably won’t be able to use a standard scale that you use for yourself.
When they are very little, they may not even register on a standard human scale, and once they are bigger, they will not be able to fit onto the small surface area.
But this is no reason to not track the weight carefully during their first few months and through their full size.
Similar to tracking their height, there may be some variances. Your Dane may not fall into these numbers perfectly, and that’s okay.
Improper weight can quickly get out of hand, though. So being diligent in your tracking is an important step to your Dane’s health journey. You should become familiar with the negative impacts that being obese can end up having on your dog over time.
PetMD has a great article regarding some of those negative, long-term effects. While obesity in animals is a serious condition, so is being malnourished or underweight.
Here is a Great Dane weight chart to help you determine healthy weights for your Dane pup as they reach their full weight:
|1 Year Old
Note: For more information about caring for a Great Dane, please make sure to consider my book “The Great Dane Puppy Handbook“.
Understanding What Affects Dane Growth
All dogs will grow at their own rate and will be dependent on different factors. Two of the main factors are proper nutrition and exercise.
During these 18 months of growth and development, there are plenty of things you need to be doing to keep everything on track.
Great Dane Feeding Schedules
While your Great Dane is still growing, it is important to understand how much food they should be consuming each day and what the nutrient breakdowns should look like.
The first place to start is by speaking with your vet. While all Great Danes share similarities in traits, health concerns, and growth, there may be specific nutrients your Dane is lacking or doesn’t need as much of.
Your vet will be able to recommend the best brands and types of dog food to support healthy growth. You will want to ask questions about nutrient intake for protein, fats, fiber, and if any supplements are necessary.
Here are some general guidelines for how much they should be eating at each stage of growth:
|Cups Per Day
|How Many Meals Per Day
While your Great Dane is very small in the 2-month range, you want to focus on more meals throughout the day in smaller portions.
You don’t want to overwhelm their digestive system with too much food at once. After that, you can begin shifting into a twice-per-day routine.
Great Dane Growth Should be Rapid, but Steady
An extremely important piece in the growth of your Great Dane is the rate at which it is happening. While we understand how quickly it happens, we also need to understand it should be gradual.
You can see it from the charts that explain what weight and height they should be at during certain phases. But it is worth circling back to emphasize that it should be steady.
If you notice growth has become stunted or excelled, look at your Dane’s behavior and see if anything else seems off. They may just be slow/fast on the growth spurts.
But it can also mean there is an issue within their development that can be fixed through nutrition or several other methods, depending on the core reason.
If you’re concerned about the growth and development of your Great Dane, always consult your vet.
Keeping Your Great Dane Healthy
While your Great Dane grows and develops within their first 18 months, the most important thing you can do is pay attention to him or her.
Be aware of their behaviors, track their progress, keep an open line of communication with your vet, and do your research to be sure you are helping their miniature bodies grow into the towering statures they will eventually become.
At What Age Do Great Danes Stop Growing
Great Danes are one of the largest dog breeds in the world, and their growth timeline is unique compared to other breeds. Understanding when Great Danes stop growing is crucial for owners to ensure their pet is healthy and growing correctly.
Great Danes typically stop growing around 18-24 months. This timeline includes their overall height and weight. Most Great Danes will reach their full height by 18 months, but they continue adding muscle weight through their second year. While much of their growth will be completed around 18 months, they may still be filling out some of that giant structure.
During the first six months of life, Great Danes grow rapidly, gaining about 10 pounds per month. After six months, their growth rate slows down, and they gain weight at a slower pace. By the time they reach their first birthday, they will have reached about 80% of their adult height.
It is essential to note that Great Danes are considered adolescents until they reach the two-year mark. During this time, they may still be filling out their frames and gaining muscle mass. Owners should monitor their pet’s diet and exercise to ensure they are not overfed and do not become overweight.
In conclusion, Great Danes stop growing around 18-24 months, with most reaching their full height by 18 months. However, they may still be filling out their frames and gaining muscle weight until they reach the two-year mark. Owners should monitor their pet’s diet and exercise during this time to ensure they are healthy and growing correctly.
How to Weigh Your Great Dane as a Puppy
As mentioned, your standard scale probably won’t accommodate your little pup. There are a variety of options for scales that will achieve accurate results.
A digital food scale
This is my favorite method for weighing a small puppy. While this clearly doesn’t last long for Great Danes, they look incredibly cute sitting on that food scale!
But…it’s also accurate and efficient for the smallest of puppies. These scales are designed to pick up on the lightest weights and will measure it down to the ounce in many cases.
Unfortunately, this approach will only work for a very short period of time, after which you’ll need to upgrade your approach!
A veterinary scale
If you want to look for some of the same equipment you will find at your vet’s office, you can find quite a few options through major retailers.
This is by far the easiest way to get an accurate weight reading for your ever-growing Great Dane puppy. At some point, they will simply get too heavy for the average scale, and too large to step onto a human one.
One can find this type of scale ranging from tens to hundreds of dollars. However, I’d recommend getting a decent one upfront rather than having to deal with several malfunctioning or dying on you. In particular, this is a great scale to consider (link to Amazon).
It’s large enough for your Great Dane to easily fit on and has a maximum weight capacity of 225 pounds (which is more than enough for most).
While there are ones with higher weight capacity and larger base, they cost several times more and frankly take up too much space in my opinion.
These are some pretty extreme options, but if your Great Dane is going to be entered into shows through the American Kennel Club or you want the most accurate option available, you may choose to opt for one.
Hold the Great Dane on The scale
If you want to cheat the system and find a way to weigh them without any additional equipment, you can always use this tried and true method. Keep in mind that this will probably only work up until a certain size unless you happen to be a bodybuilder.
Simply scoop up your pup and try to hold them as still as possible while you step on the scale. Be sure to keep them close to your core up against your body, and as still as possible.
Record that weight, and then jump right back on the scale by yourself and record the difference as their weight. This isn’t exactly American Kennel Club-approved, but it will certainly do the job of tracking your Dane’s weight to ensure proper growth.
Of course, this approach will only work up until a certain point. While you may be strong enough to hold your 100+ pound puppy it will be extremely awkward.
You also run the risk of injuring them while trying to keep them scooped up nicely at this large size. Remember, this isn’t the same as trying to grip a barbell in the gym!
Many of these methods will be dependent on your dog and how willing they are to sit for certain things. At the end of the day, you can also always head to your vet for weigh-ins.
They will typically take weight no matter what the dog is in for. If they are in for a quick vaccination, they may not put them on the scales, though.
If you want to get a proper reading while you’re there though, just ask them, and they will typically have no problems doing a quick weigh-in for you.
Frequently Asked Questions
What is the average weight of a full-grown Great Dane?
The average weight of a fully grown Great Dane varies depending on the gender. Males usually weigh between 140-175 pounds, while females weigh between 110-140 pounds. However, it is important to note that each individual dog is different and there are many factors that can impact a Great Dane’s weight.
When do Great Danes typically reach their full height?
Great Danes typically reach their full height at around 18 months of age. However, they may continue to fill out and gain weight until they are around 2-3 years old.
How can I estimate how big my Great Dane will be?
You can estimate how big your Great Dane will be by looking at their parents’ size. Great Danes tend to take after their parents in terms of height and weight. Additionally, you can consult a Great Dane growth chart to get a general idea of how big your dog will be.
Do Great Danes have growth spurts?
Yes, Great Danes do have growth spurts. They tend to have their largest growth spurts between the ages of 3-6 months and may gain up to 10 pounds in a single week during this time.