25 Of The World’s Largest Dog Breeds You’d Wish You Own

Posted by on February 4, 2015

In the past, big size and strength were often desirable factors to breed into dogs, making them feared protectors and efficient hunters. Consequently, there have been many giant dog breeds created in the world over the centuries. There is no universal height or weight at which a breed is officially classified as a giant dog breed but some groups define giant breeds as those heavier than 100 pounds (45 kg). Their height and weight can vary greatly though, some breeds are stout and heavy while others are tall and lean. The heaviest dog ever recorded was a St. Bernard named Benedictine who weighed an incredible 366 pounds (166 kg). However, despite their threatening body proportions, most of the biggest dog breeds often tend to be mildly tempered, relaxed animals and make excellent family pets. If you are thinking about becoming the owner of such a dog, check out these 25 of the world’s largest dog breeds you’d wish you own.




Sometimes dubbed “gentle lion“, Leonberger is a giant dog breed whose name derives from the city of Leonberg in Germany. As for the body proportions, males average at 29.5 inches (75 cm) tall at withers and 140–150 pounds (64–68 kg) weight, females usually stand about 27.5 inches (70 cm) tall and weigh approximately 115 pounds (52 kg). The Leonberger is easily recognizable thanks to his generous, water resistant, double coat. These robust dogs are normally very loyal, intelligent, playful, and kind, which makes them ideal family pets. Unfortunately, their average life expectancy is about 7 years.


Tosa Inu


Originally bred in Tosa (former Japanese province) as a fighting dog, the Tosa Inu is a rare, robust breed. These dogs vary considerably in size. The Japanese breed generally weighs between 80 and 135 pounds (36 and 61 kg), while the non-Japanese breeders have focused on dogs that weigh from 130 to 200 pounds (60 to 100 kg) and stand up to 32 inches (82 cm) at the withers. The breed started from the native Shikoku-Inu, an indigenous dog weighing just about 25 kilograms (45 pounds) These dogs were crossed with large European dog breeds, such as mastiff, St. Bernard, Great Dane and bull terriers with the aim to breed a larger, more powerful dog.


Bernese mountain dog


Originally kept as a general farm dog that accompanied herders in the Bern region, Switzerland, the Bernese mountain dog is a large, heavy breed with a distinctive tri-colored coat, black with white chest and rust colored markings. The height at the withers is 25–27.5 inches (64–70 cm) and weighs up to 125 pounds (57 kg) for males, females are just slightly smaller. The temperament of individual dogs may vary but generally, Berneses are calm, self-assured and docile dogs, friendly to children as well as to other pets.




Bred as a guard dog, the Boerboel is a large, sturdy dog breed from South Africa. Their proportions are formidable – these dogs can be over 27 inches (70 cm) tall and weigh up to 220 pounds (100 kg). Boerboels are very obedient and intelligent dogs with strong territorial instincts. They are loyal, particularly great with kids and tend to be protective of their family and territory.


Anatolian shepherd


Anatolian shepherd dog is a breed which originated in Anatolia (Turkey) and was further developed in America. The breed could be as old as 6,000 years. Anatolian shepherds can stand over 31 inches (80cm) tall and weigh 150 pounds (68 kg). However, due to their thick coat, they look even larger and heavier than they actually are. The breed was developed to be independent and forceful, responsible for guarding its master’s flocks without human assistance over vast areas, therefore, socializing the dog as a puppy is necessary. They often live up to 11 years, which is 3-4 years longer than other breeds of their size.