Great Danes are known for their naturally large dogs with big personalities to match. They are often referred to as the “horse breed,” with many of them growing to the size of about 30 inches at the shoulders and males weighing in the upwards of 120 lbs., while females can weigh about 100 lbs. Their sizes can vary, depending on their genetics, but there are a few Great Danes through the years, that made news with their overly large stance. One of these unusually large Great Danes that took the media by storm, was George the Giant Blue Great Dane.
George the Giant was a Blue Great Dane who was recognized as being the tallest dog in the world by the Guinness World Book of Records. What makes the size of this dog so amusing, is that he was actually born as the runt of the litter – a litter of 13 pups. He was featured on various TV shows due to his highly unusual size, and gained a lot of popularity in his hometown and around the country.
Great Danes are like big babies. They are typically kept indoors and love their families. Aside being thought of as horse dogs, they have affectionately earned the nickname, “Gentle Giants,” for being so gentle natured and loving pets. With a dog this large, you might think they have the potential to be aggressive and dangerous, but most Great Danes are very well socialized and the only type of worry you might have, would be their sheer size and the ability to knock you over when playing or getting excited.
George the Giant GD was born on November 17, 2005 and was owned by David Nasser. He was purchased when he was just seven weeks old. Despite being the runt of his litter, George made up for all that lost birth size as he grew into an adult dog. He wound up measuring 42 5/8 inches high at the midpoint of his neck, and 39 1/8 inch at his withers. His weight may astonish you. He grew much, much larger than the average 120 pounds for a Great Dane, and topped out at 245 pounds.
Because of George’s unusual, mammoth size, the world wanted to get a glimpse of this huge dog and was invited by Oprah Winfrey to make an appearance on her show. The owner accepted and they flew out to Chicago to be interviewed. On the flight to Chicago, it is said that George took up three rows of seats on the plane, all by himself. That’s a lot of space, which a big dog this size would understandably need, and he needed that kind of space at home, too. In fact, George the Giant was given his own Queen-sized mattress to sleep on at the foot of his owner’s bed.
People everywhere wanted to either snap a photo of George, or have their picture taken with him, when they saw him. He was quite the celebrity. Although most people were pretty accepting of George when they saw him, Nasser said there were only a few encounters where George was shunned due to his size, with one of them being at the dog park. George was not allowed in for fear that he would hurt the other, smaller dogs. But that was ok for George. He got plenty of play time and spoiling right at home with his family. To tote him around the owner’s home and property, George got first class transportation, riding around in a golf cart.
Great Danes tend to live about 10 years or so. They can suffer from hip dysplasia and a few other health ailments due to their size, however, George the Giant would only live to be 7 years old. He died exactly a month before his 8th birthday, on October 17, 2013, which was a very sad day for many people who had grown to know and love the big dog. Especially the Nasser family who had given George a place in their home and their lives.
The second largest Great Dane, Subsequent to George the Giant, was Zeus, who wound up dying just a year after George.