Giant dog breed
A giant dog breed has no universal height or weight classification, although some groups[who?] define "giant breeds" as those heavier than 50 kilograms (110 lb). Giant breeds grow rapidly, but take longer to mature into their full adult sizes than smaller dogs.
Advantages and disadvantages
Many giant breeds are mature, soft and relaxed dogs as adults and require less exercise than most smaller dogs, so they can make better pets for small living arrangements, such as apartments. Because they are larger animals, they are less likely to be intimidated by other people and thus are much more adaptable to meeting friends, family members, and children of owners. They are normally very calm and are great family dogs. If they sense a threat towards their owner, they will become very protective. They are, in general, stronger than other breeds and many giant breeds are well known for their working abilities.
Giant breeds often have health-related disadvantages when compared to smaller dogs and caring for them is usually more expensive than for smaller dogs. They eat more than smaller breeds and sometimes require specialty diets to tackle weight and joint management.
In addition to spending more on food, expenses overall may be more than for most breeds. Larger beds, collars, and toys cost more, as do grooming and kenneling very large dogs. There is also the issue of more expensive veterinary bills. For instance, anaesthetics and pharmaceuticals are charged by volume/mass, which is determined by the weight of the dog. Joint problems, such as hip dysplasia and arthritis, are common. Large breeds are also quite prone to osteosarcoma and susceptible to other debilitating bone and cartilage diseases. This is the result of a much higher growth factor—adult weight versus birth weight—and much longer growth period. Their life span is generally shorter than that of smaller dogs, often living only 6 to 10 years.
Notable giant dogs
- Giant George was a blue Great Dane previously recognised as the world's tallest living dog, and the tallest dog ever by Guinness World Records.
- Titan was an American male white Great Dane who was a holder of the Guinness World Records as the world's tallest dog.
- Zeus was a Great Dane from Otsego, Michigan, United States, famous for being named the world's tallest dog for the 2012 and 2013 Guinness Book of World Records.
- Zorba, an English Mastiff from the United Kingdom, weighed in 1989: 343 lbs (155.6 kg) and measured almost eight feet long from nose to tail.
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The following breeds are generally described as giant breeds:
- Akbash Dog
- Alaskan Malamute
- Anatolian Shepherd
- Armenian Gampr dog
- Bernese Mountain Dog
- Black Russian Terrier
- Brazilian Mastiff
- Bully Kutta
- Cane Corso
- Cão de Gado Transmontano
- Caucasian Shepherd Dog
- Central Asian Ovcharka
- Dogue de Bordeaux
- English Mastiff
- Estrela Mountain Dog
- Giant Schnauzer
- Great Dane
- Great Pyrenees
- Greater Swiss Mountain Dog
- Irish Wolfhound
- Kangal Dog
- Neapolitan Mastiff
- Presa Canario
- Pyrenean Mastiff
- Rafeiro do Alentejo
- Saint Bernard 
- Scottish Deerhound
- Spanish Mastiff
- Tibetan Mastiff
- Tosa Inu
- Fogle, Bruce (2000). "The Skeleton". The New Encyclopedia of the Dog. Dorling Kindersley. p. 47. ISBN 0-7894-6130-7.
- Mehus-Roe, Kristin (2005). "The Dog For You". The Original Dog Bible. BowTie Press. pp. 62–63. ISBN 1-931993-34-3.
- "Dog Health Issues - Giant and Large Breed Health Issues - Canada's Guide to Dogs". Retrieved 2 February 2016.
- Royal Canin Archived 2006-05-23 at the Wayback Machine.
- "Biggest Dog World Record". Retrieved 2 February 2016.
- "Is The Cane Corso Right For Me? - Cane Corso Association of America". Canecorso.org. Retrieved 2018-04-09.
- "Newfoundland Club of America: The Breed Standard for the Newfoundland Dog". Ncanewfs.org. Retrieved 2018-04-09.
- "FAQ – Saint Bernard Club of America". Saintbernardclub.org. Retrieved 2018-04-09.