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20 large dog breeds (with pictures!)

Author: Alexandra Wrigley

If you’re looking to bring a large dog breed into your home, let us help you with a top 20 list of them.

There are just so many great dog breeds that we can’t include all of them. So take note that this list is just 20 fantastic dogs, but there are many others large breeds out there.

Saint-Bernard

saint bernard large dog

The Saint-Bernard originated from the Western Alps and was first discovered in Italy and Switzerland. Its large size allowed locals to use it as a working dog and a guard dog. This breed can grow up to 62-90cm/24-35inches and weigh between 50-90kg/110-198lbs.

It either has a shorthaired or longhaired coat which has a combination of colors. It can either be red & white, brown and yellow, reddish-brown splash, reddish-brown mantle and more.

This is a calm and gentle breed, which is good with all types of people, even with children. However, due to its size, the Saint-Bernard should still be supervised in playtimes.

Tibetan Mastiff

tibetan mastiff laying down

Just like the name suggests, the Tibetan Mastiff originally comes from Tibet and is commonly used to herd animals, protect Nomads, and guard monasteries. The Tibetan Mastiff can grow up to 61-71cm/24-28 inches and can weigh between 34-73kg/75-160lbs.

It has a double coat that is thick and does not shed that often. This breed’s coat comes in a range of colors such as brown, black, blue-gray, red gold, black & tan, and more. It tends to have a highly intelligent personality but is also stubborn.

Due to its former breeding purposes, the Tibetan Mastiff can be aggressive and act as a guard dog.

Samoyed

samoyed big dog

The Samoyed is a large breed that dates back over 1000 years! It was specifically created for the Samoyed tribe in Siberia. Samoyeds lived between Russia and Siberia, and their purpose was to help herd reindeer.

This breed is renowned for its distinct double layered fluffy white coat and its pointy ears. A Samoyed can grow up to 55-65cm/22-26 inches and weigh between 25-35kg/55-77lbs.

The Samoyed has a friendly personality and loves humans! Similarly, it tends to get on well with other dogs if socialized from an early age.

Afghan Hound

afghan hound big dog

It is believed that the Afghan Hound originated thousands of years back and was first used as a hunting breed in Afghanistan. However, little evidence remains to support this. The first official documentation of this breed was in the 19th century when European soldiers brought this breed to Europe. The Afghan Hound can grow up to 63-74cm/25-29 inches and can weigh between 25-30kg/55-66lbs.

This large dog breed is renowned for its silky and straight coat designed to protect it from the cold. It comes in a range of colors from black, blue, cream, white, red, cream, silver, and more. Likewise, it can either be a solid color or have a mixture of markings.

It’s a highly confident breed, incredibly loyal and is very fast.

Belgian Shepherd

belgian shepherd large dog breeds

This large breed originates from Belgium, and its purpose was to hunt and herd sheep. It slowly evolved and today it is used as a police dog, guide dog, therapy dog, and more. The Belgian Shepherd can grow up to 56-66cm/22-26 inches and grow between 20-30kg/44-66lbs.

It has a double coat with a dense underlayer and harsh overcoat. Due to its heavy coat, you can expect lots of shedding! Therefore if you’re someone who suffers from a lot of allergies, this is not a good breed to own as the Belgian Sheepdog is not hypoallergenic.

On the contrary, it has a great personality; it’s smart and very obedient. This means it will pick up commands easily, but sometimes its temperament will surprise you. It can be an aggressive breed, which needs to be managed from an early age.

Boxer

boxer running dog

The boxer descends all the way from Germany, and its first existence was recorded in the 19th century. Its purpose was to help butchers, bait bulls and control cattles. Today the boxer is very much a domesticated breed that serves as a family dog but it can also be used as a police dog. It has a fearless nature, is full of energy, playful and perfect for any home with a family.

Even though the Boxer has a fighting history, it his hardly aggressive if socialized from an early age.

It can grow between 53-63cm/20.8-24.8 inches and can weigh between 25-32kg/55-70lbs. Finally, the Boxer can have an athletic body with a sleek coat that comes in fawn, mahogany, brindle, light tan colors and it has many markings. 

Doberman

doberman on grass

Originally from Germany, the Doberman used to be a working dog. It was first bred to help tax collectors collect their taxes and watch over people. This breed is renowned for its intelligence, stamina, and muscular physique and it needs a lot of exercise.

Its height can range from 63-72cm/25-28 inches and 35-45kg/77-99lbs. You can get the Doberman Pinscher in black, fawn, white, and red colors. This breed is quick to respond to commands, alert and obedient.

German Shepherd

german shepherd big dog breeds

Another dog that originates from Germany is the German Shepherd! This dog first came into existence in the late 1800s, and its purpose was to protect flocks and herd sheep.

This large dog breed has a lifespan of 9-13 years and is highly athletic. It can weigh between 22-40kg/48-88lbs and can grow between 55-65cm/21-26 inches. If you plan to buy a German Shepherd, expect it to have an extremely loyal personality and a guarding nature.

It can be aggressive towards other animals, so you have to socialize it first to reduce this risk. It also has a double coat that sheds a lot through the year so it is not a good breed if you suffer from many allergies. Its coat color comes in black & tan, black, sable, grey, red & black, and black & silver,

Giant Schnauzer

giant schnauzer

You would not believe this, but the Giant Schnauzer also originates from Germany! There are just so many great breeds that come from there. This dog first came into existence in the 17th century and was spotted in the Bavarian Alps. Its purpose was to be a working dog to help drive cattle to the market, serve as a guard dog, an innkeeper and a watchdog.

Today the Schnauzer is a common household animal and a police dog. It is renowned for its composed and playful personality. Similarly, it is a loyal and a fantastic family dog; this means if you have children or senior citizens in your home, the Schnauzer will fit in well.

Due to its muscular structure, it requires a lot of exercice, around 40 minutes minimum a day. This large dog can grow up to 60-70cm/24-28 inches and weigh between 25-48kg/55-110lbs.

Golden Retriever

golden retriever large dog

The Golden Retriever is one of the world’s most popular breeds! It is a gorgeous dog that originates from Scotland and was once a dog bred to hunt ducks and birds. It was also a dog which was owned by many aristocrats. Today, this breed is a family dog and is known for its playful personality.

The Golden Retriever has a water repellent coat that’s dense and thick. It can vary, being either thick or wavy. Plus, it can come in either a golden or cream color. A Golden Retriever can grow up to 53-61cm/21-24 inches and weigh between 25-36kg/55-79lbs.

Unfortunately, due to its large size, the Golden Retriever is prone to many health problems and is at risk of getting certain cancers.

Old English Sheepdog

old english sheepdog list of large dog

This breed came into England around the 1800s, and its purpose was to move livestock, pull carts, and wagons. This dog is renowned for its courageous, adaptable and sociable personality. Compared to other breeds, this canine has an easygoing personality and can adapt to any sized house, from an apartment to a mansion.

It has a double coat; on the outside, it’s dense and rough; underneath, it’s soft. This is a heavy shedding breed that can have dirt accumulate in its fur easily.

Similarly, the Old English Sheepdog can have its coat coming in blue or grey colors. It can grow up to 51-61cm/20-24 inches and weigh between 27-45kg/59-99lbs.

Siberian Husky

large siberian husky

The Siberian Husky first came into existence from the Chucki people in eastern Siberia. In 1908 the Siberian Husky came to Alaska with a purpose to be sled dogs for racing. Today this animal is primarily used as a household pet. This breed is known for its outgoing and loyal personality, which means that you must dedicate a lot of free time to playing with it if you want to own one. This dog also requires a lot of exercise.

Its height can range from 51-60cm/20-23 inches, and they can weigh between 16-30kg/35-66lbs. A Husky’s coat is a thick double one and it sheds a lot. Its colors can be grey, white, black, gray & white, red & white, and black & tan.

Dalmatian

dalmatian big dog

This large gorgeous dog can grow up to 54-62cm/21-24 inches and weigh between 24-32kg/35-71lbs. It was formerly used for hunting and serving as a carriage dog. The Dalmatian is renowned for its iconic spotty coat, a white coat with black spots. Similarly, it has floppy ears and gorgeous straight tails.

You could also like: 15 spotted dog breeds (with pictures)

It is a great house dog, loving and calm, but sometimes it can go aloof. Similarly, it has lots of high energy and requires a lot of mental and physical stimulation. If you don’t have the time to dedicate to a Dalmatian, this dog can easily develop self destructive behaviors.

Black Russian Terrier

black russian terrier large dogs

The Black Russian Terrier is an iconic breed that first caught the attention of humans in the 1940s-1950s; the USSR used it as an army dog. While it came from Russia, it is now popular worldwide, and this dog is often kept as a guard dog, sporting dog, and family pet today.

It has a stunning black double thick coat which is 2-4 inches in length and wavy. Its height can range from 64-72cm/25-28 inches and weight between 36-68kg/79-150lbs. Due to its large structure, this large dog is an incredibly agile breed that needs a lot of exercise. You should mix it up with runs, hikes, swims, and more.

Irish Wolfhound

irish wolfhound running

Originating from Ireland is the Irish Wolfhound. It originally used to be a war dog that would help pull men off chariots and horses. In addition to this, this dog used to hunt wolves, deer, and boars. Today it is an obedient family dog and it has a gentle nature. Don’t be deceived by its calm personality, though; it still requires a lot of exercise!

You should exercise this dog around 40 minutes minimum a day and it should live in a home with a fenced yard. This breed can grow up to 32inches/81 cm tall and weigh between 47-81kg/105-180lbs. Its coat colors can come in white, black, fawn, grey, red, and brindle.

Rottweiler

rottweiler walking

If you’re looking for a large, fearless dog, then you might want to get a Rottweiler. This dog came from Germany and was used to drive cattle. Today, it is a household pet that acts as a guardian. It is a confident dog that doesn’t warm to people straight away. It has a strong work ethic and can become aggressive if it feels threatened. The Rottweiler has a medium length coat that comes in a black, tan, or mahogany color. Similarly, it can grow up to 56-69cm/22-27 inches and weigh between 35-60kg/77lbs-132lbs.

Labrador

labrador standing

Originating from Newfoundland is the Labrador that first came into existence around 1800. It eas brought to Newfoundland by English fishermen. Its purpose was to serve as a working dog breed to help fishermen with their nets, retrieving fish, and getting ropes. Today the Labrador is a lovable pet with a kind and gentle personality. It can come in a range of colors, such as yellow, chocolate, and black. Its height is 55-62cm/22-24inches and it can weigh between 25-36kg/55-80lbs.

Irish Water Spaniel

irish water spaniel big dog breed

The Irish Water Spaniel was used for hunting waterfowl such as ducks, geese, and pheasants. Today this breed is more commonly known for a curly coat that has a liver color. The Irish Spaniel can grow up to 51-59cm/20-23inches and weigh between 22-26kg/48-57lbs. This dog is known for its inquisitive nature and agility. It’s a great family dog that requires a lot of exercise.

Border Collie

border collie running jumping

Out of many dog breeds, the Border Collie is often argued as the smartest of them all. This dog came from the U.K and was used to herd sheep. Today it still does that but also doubles up as a household pet. It has lots of energy and it is highly intelligent. Therefore, it requires a lot of stimulation and jobs to keep it engaged. It is not aggressive and loves to shower any family member with affection.

Its coat is water-resistant, medium length, and can come in white, black, red, gold, chocolate, brindle, gold, and more. The Border Collie can grow up to 53cm/21inches and weigh between 18-28kg/39-61lbs.

Chow Chow

chow chow standing

The Chow Chow came from the Han dynasty and served as a watchdog, used to guard cattle and hunt. Today, it is renowned for its lion like mane and deep muzzle. It has a double coat that comes in various colors from cream, blue, black, and red. A Chow Chow can grow up to 46-51cm/18-22inches and weigh between 24-35kg/53-77lbs. It has an independent personality and can be a bit reserved around strangers.

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