43 Best Large Dog Breeds – Gorgeous Big Dogs, More to Love!

Best Large Dog Breeds

There are large dog people, and there are individuals who prefer a smaller pooch. Small pups are easy to carry and bring along, but there’s something magical about the large dog breeds, too. There’s more to love, and you always feel safe walking with a big doggo.

It’s important to determine which is better for your family and lifestyle. If you have an apartment, a big dog breed may feel claustrophobic there or may make your home feel smaller.

If you really want a big woofer and make sure they get outside to stretch their legs, you can still have one if you have enough space in your apartment.

Let’s take a look at some glorious big dogs.

Large Dog Breeds

Here are some common lovable large dog breeds and some you may never have heard of:

1. Bernese Mountain Dog

large dog breeds

Bernese mountain dogs are gorgeous floofs that are intelligent, loving, friendly, playful, and good with kiddos and dogs. They are gentle giants, very sweet, eager to please, and happy to walk, run, play, or relax with their people.

A Bernese can weigh 70-115 pounds and live 7-10 years. The Bernese mountain dog needs moderate exercise and to be brushed every other day and loves cold weather. They are one of the largest dog breeds.

2. Labrador Retriever

big dogs

Labrador retrievers are known for being sweet and friendly, so they make great family pets and service dogs. They are also smart, loving, playful, and good with dogs and kiddos. They have lots of energy and need daily exercise.

A Labrador retriever’s weight is generally 55-80 pounds, and they live to 10-12. The Labrador retrievers hail from Canada.

3. German Shepherd

big dog breeds

German shepherds are great guard dogs, wonderful with children, highly intelligent, loyal, and loving with their families. German shepherds are athletic and confident. The German shepherd dog has a lot of energy and needs exercise and/or play.

The German Shepherd loves playing fetch because it combines their agility, intelligence, and work ethic. A German Shepherd weighs 50-90 pounds, lives 7-10 years, and sheds a lot. They make wonderful family members and are great additions to families.

4. Chinook

giant dog breed representative species

The Chinooks are cuddly and friendly canines that are good with children and pups, but they bark a lot. The American Kennel Club (AKC) calls them devoted, smart, calm, and patient pets. Their weight is 50-90 pounds, and they live to 12-15.

5. Golden Retriever

best big dog breeds

Golden retrievers are very popular because they are snuggly, trustworthy, great with kids and pups, playful, devoted, extremely friendly, smart, and adorable. Swimming and fetching are in the Golden DNA.

The Golden retriever weighs 55-75 pounds and lives to be 10-12. The Golden retriever is a favorite in America and great for families.

6. Giant Schnauzer

medium to large dog breeds

The American Kennel Club (AKC) describes Giant Schnauzers as alert, loyal companions, and trainable. They are also loving, playful, good watchdogs, tireless, and extremely smart.

As former guard dogs, they need training, exercise, and socialization. Giant Schnauzers, like miniature ones, shed and require brushing a couple of times each week. They weigh 55-85 pounds and live 12-15 years.

7. Hovawart

cute big dog breeds

Hovawarts are beautiful dogs, snuggly, pretty good with children and dogs, smart, friendly, playful, and protective. Hovawarts work in search and rescue and as therapy and service dogs.

They do require training but are very sweet. They are faithful but stubborn. Hovawarts weigh 65-90 pounds and live 10-14 years.

8. Boxer

types of dogs big

According to the American Kennel Club, Boxers are active, bright, and fun-loving companions. They are cuddly, playful, protective, fearless, smart, loyal, good with kids, full of energy, and need mental stimulation. They need to walk/run or engage in rigorous play daily.

Boxers weigh 65-80 pounds and live 10-12 years. The Boxer thrives doing work and is suspicious of strangers, so they make a great watchdog.

9. Weimaraner

best big dogs

The Weimaraner is loving, playful, tireless, protective, smart, good with kids, and needs mental stimulation. They love exercise and are obedient. Their weight is 55-90 pounds, and they live 10-13 years.

10. Pitbull Terrier

med to large dog breeds

Pitties are American Staffordshires, and the American Kennel Club calls them good-natured, confident, and smart. They are also snuggly, friendly, brave, loyal, trustworthy, strong and protective. Staffies are usually good with kiddos and dogs when trained and socialized.

They need exercise to stimulate their minds. Their weight is 40-50 pounds, and they live 12-16 years. We love adorable pitbull mixes.

11. Doberman

best large dog breeds

The Doberman pinscher is alert, loyal, fearless, cuddly, playful, friendly, protective, smart, full of energy, and good with children and families. The Doberman pinscher needs to use their mind and shed a bit.

If you’re looking for a sweet dog who will scare away anyone you want to get rid of, this is the pooch for you. Their weight is 60-100 pounds, and they live 10-12 years. Doberman pinschers are just wonderful.

12. Samoyed

cute big dogs

If you want a protective dog that looks like a fluffy stuffed animal, the Samoyed could be for you. The American Kennel Club describes them as loving, good with kids, friendly, playful, good watchdogs, and smart.

They bark a lot and need vigorous exercise to stimulate their mind. They weigh 35-65 pounds and live 12-14 years. Samoyeds are one of the most expensive dog breeds.

13. German Shorthaired Pointer

what are large breed dogs

German shorthaired pointers are snuggly, protective, smart, friendly, playful, full of energy, and good with kiddos. They need to stimulate their mind, love running, swimming, and agility courses, and are known for their power, speed, and endurance. The German shorthaired pointer weighs 45-70 pounds and lives 10-12 years.

14. Standard Poodle

types of large dogs

The American Kennel Club (AKC) calls the Standard poodle active, proud, one of the smartest breeds, cuddly, good with kids, friendly, playful, protective, and tireless. They need mental stimulus and a groomer, and they like to bark.

Poodles are athletic and low in allergen. They are wonderful companions that weigh 40-70 pounds and live 10-18 years.

15. Airedale Terrier

large dog breed

Airedale Terriers are friendly, courageous, strong, clever, bold, determined, alert, and stubborn. They are calm and good with kiddos, and they love sports and family activities. They protect their families. Airedales weigh 50-70 pounds and live 11-14 years.

16. Alaskan Malamute

pictures of dog breeds

The Alaskan malamute illustrates that the only thing better than big pups is big fluffy pups. They’re snuggly, protective, smart, and tireless. The Alaskan malamute needs mental and physical stimulus because they were sled dogs. Alaskan malamutes are one of the big fluffy dog breeds, yet shed less than you’d think.

Mals are playful, gentle, friendly, and great with kiddos if you train them. Their weight is 75-85 pounds, and they live to 10-15.

17. Irish Wolfhound

pictures of large breed dogs

According to the American Kennel Club (AKC), the Irish Wolfhound is dignified, brave, calm, loving, protective, and can be good with dogs. The Irish Wolfhound used to hunt wolves but are house hounds now.

They are one of the largest dog breeds. Not surprisingly, the Irish Wolfhound originated in Ireland, weighs 105-120 pounds, and lives 5-8 years.

18. Afghan Hound

pictures of large dog breeds

If you’re looking for glamour, the Afghan is an elegant hound dog breed. Afghans were actually hunting dogs in Afghanistan, India, and Pakistan whose fur was long to protect them from other animals and harsh vegetation.

They are tireless, silly, and fun, but they do require some grooming. They weigh 50-60 pounds and live to be 12-18 years old.

19. Mastiff

dog breed big

The Mastiff is gigantic and weighs 120-230 pounds. Very big dog breeds don’t live that long, so their longevity can be 6-10 years. The Mastiff is lovable, snuggly, good with kiddos, protective, calm, dignified, and smart. They are suspicious of strangers, and they drool. The Mastiff is one of the best large dog breeds.

20. Scottish Deerhound

pictures of big dogs

The American Kennel Club (AKC) calls The Scottish Deerhound dignified, gentle, polite, cuddly, not aggressive, and they like other dogs. They weigh 75-110 pounds and live 8-11 years. They don’t shed much because their coat is wiry. They are very tall — 32 inches at the shoulder.

21. American Staffordshire Terrier

beautiful big dogs

American Staffies are loving, friendly, protective, smart, good-natured, trustworthy, muscular, and confident. American Staffordshire terriers are aware of their surroundings and always ready to do whatever their humans are doing.

They are people pleasers. Staffies weigh 40-70 pounds and live 12-16 years. They don’t shed much.

22. Newfoundland

pretty big dogs

Newfies are patient, sweet, devoted, snuggly, good with kiddos and dogs, muscular, friendly, and protective. Their only flaw is that they drool, but they are so gorgeous that people overlook it.

Newfies weigh 100-150 pounds and live 9-10 years. They are one of the best large dog breeds and have been called the Nanny Dogs because they are so good with children.

23. Rhodesian Ridgeback

big breed

Rhodies are even-tempered, dignified, cuddly, good with youngsters, protective, independent, and smart. They tracked lions in Africa and have a prey drive. Rhodies can be domineering and may not be a good choice for first-time dog owners. They need to be trained. Rhodies’ weight is 70-85 pounds, and they live 10-12 years.

24. Australian Shepherd

latge dog breeds

The Australian shepherd is playful, good with youngsters, tireless, exuberant, and need to stimulate their minds. The Australian Shepherd is very work-oriented and agile. The Australian shepherd is highly intelligent and needs to be kept busy because their instinct is to herd.

Aussies’ weight is 40-65 pounds, and Aussies live 12-15 years. Everyone loves Australian shepherds.

25. Saint Bernard

long dog breeds

The American Kennel Club (AKC) describes the Saint Bernard as playful, charming, inquisitive, loving, good with kiddos, protective, and smart. Unfortunately, they drool. Their weight is 120-180 pounds, as much as an adult human.

Bernies are beloved for saving people on the Swiss Alps. They live 8-10 years and are one of the best large dog breeds.

26. Greater Swiss Mountain Dog

big dog breed list

The Greater Swiss Mountain Dog is smart, snuggly, good with youngsters, friendly, playful, full of energy, faithful, strong, majestic, adorable, and protective. They are one of the best large dog breeds. Their weight is 85-140, and they live 8-11 years.

27. Basset Hound

dog breeds

Basset hounds are good with kiddos and other dogs. They are popular with their droopy ears, long body, and tiny legs. Bassets can be stubborn but are charming, loyal, and have a fantastic sense of smell. They also shed and drool a bit. Their weight is 40-65 pounds, and they live 12-13 years.

28. Collie

larger dogs

Collies are adorable and universally adored since Lassie began gracing our TV screens. Collies are cuddly, good with youngsters, devoted, graceful, playful, and smart. They are also athletic and loyal — one of the perfect family dogs. Their beautiful long coat doesn’t need daily brushing. Their weight is 50-75 pounds, and live to 12-14.

29. Anatolian Shepherd Dog


The Anatolian shepherd dog is protective, reserved, loyal, independent, dominating, muscular, devoted, responsive, intelligent, and patient. They are very tall at 27-29 inches high. Anatolians need strong owners to train them so they don’t think they are the alpha.

They are one of the livestock guardian dog breeds and guarded livestock from predators. Anatolians weigh 80-150 pounds and live to 11-13.

30. Belgian Malinois

dog breeds with pictures

The American Kennel Club (AKC) describes the Belgian Malinois as confident, incredibly smart, hardworking, strong, protective, full of energy, very trainable, and needing to be mentally stimulated.

Belgian Malinois want human contact and plenty of exercise and/or activities and are happiest when they have a job to do. The Mal weighs 40-80 pounds and lives 14-16 years.

31. Dalmatian

xxl dogs

Dalmatians are loving, playful, protective, smart, tireless, dignified, outgoing, and need to exercise their minds. They also shed more than they look like they would. Famous as firehouse dogs, they like to have a job. Their weight is 40-75 pounds, and they live 11-13 years.

32. Cane Corso

huge dogs breeds

Cane Corso translates roughly to “bodyguard dog” in Latin. They are fiercely protective, full of energy, trainable, willful, muscular, loyal, eager to please, and snuggly. Cane Corso owners need to establish dominance so the dog doesn’t take the alpha position. Big dog breeds should come from a reputable breeder and receive early socialization and training.

Cane Corso is one of the large breed dogs, and their weight is 100 to 110 pounds. They live to 9-12.

33. Belgian Sheepdog

dog breeds with pictures

The Belgian Sheepdog is protective, very trainable, versatile, tireless, watchful, loyal, serious, very intelligent, and enjoys mental stimulus. As herders, they work very hard and bond with their humans.

The American Kennel Club says of Belgian Sheepdogs, “These sensitive souls crave human companionship.” They served in World War I and II. Their weight usually falls between 45-75 pounds, and they live 12-14 years.

34. Irish Setter

dog picture

The Irish Setter is cuddly, likes youngsters and dogs, friendly, playful, full of energy, and smart. They are also active, graceful, swift, sweet, and outgoing. They were bred to be hunters and like to use their minds, so active families are a good fit for the Irish setter. They don’t shed too much. They weigh 60-70 pounds and live to 12-16.

35. Belgian Tervuren

what is considered a large dog

According to the American Kennel Club, the Belgian Tervuren, a working dog from Belgium, is a workaholic, has a good sense of humor, and enjoys outsmarting their human.

Protective, alert, and courageous at heart, this breed thrives on mental stimulation and loves to engage in activities that challenge their bright minds. They need regular exercise, early training, and socialization, weigh 45-75 pounds, and live 12-14 years.

36. Rottweiler

medium to large dog breeds

Rottweilers are loving, cuddly, loyal guardians, playful, and very trainable. They are calm when trained and socialized at a young age. Rottweilers are one of the black dog breeds. They weigh 80-135 pounds and live for 9-10 years. Rotties date back to ancient Rome, where they were bred from Asian Mastiffs.

37. Borzoi

best big dogs

Borzoi was a Russian hunting dog that pursued wolves. They are energetic and need to use their minds. They are loyal, affectionate, regal, calm, strong, graceful, affectionate, and stubborn. Their sighthound DNA left them with a high prey drive. They need early training. Borzoi weighs 60-105 pounds and lives 9-14 years.

38. Great Dane

big pet

Great Danes are affectionate, sweet, playful, friendly, patient, courageous, goofy, dependable, protective, good with youngsters, adaptable, energetic, and need to stimulate their minds. The Great Dane is a gentle giant.

They are 32 inches high and taller than most people when they stand. They are one of the large dog breeds; their weight is 110-175 pounds, and they live to 7-10.

39. Otterhound


Otterhounds, originally bred to hunt otters, are energetic, strong, affectionate, smart, friendly, great swimmers, waterproof, and have an impressive sense of smell. They bark a lot. Otterhounds weigh 80-115 pounds and live 10-13 years.

40. Siberian Husky

Siberian Husky

Siberian Huskies are affectionate, good with youngsters and dogs, lovable, friendly, playful, smart, energetic, and need to use their minds. They are also barkers who shed a lot. Siberian Huskies need lots of exercise. Their weight is 35-60 pounds, and they live to 12-14.

41. Chinese Shar-Pei

bug dog breeds

The Chinese Shar-Pei is a unique mix of traits: affectionate yet independent, smart and loyal, with a regal and strong presence. They’re intelligent guardians, friendly to their family but reserved around strangers.

They remain calm until they feel threatened. They are an excellent watchdog. Their short coat means little grooming. Their weight is 45-60 pounds, and they live 8-12 years.

42. Beauceron

big elegant breed dogs

The Beauceron is a blend of loyalty and gentleness, obedience and protection, brimming with vitality, power, and grace, all wrapped up in a dominant character. They must be trained at a young age. Beaucerons also shed a lot. Their weight is 70-110, and they live to 10-12.

43. Chesapeake Bay Retriever

good big dogs

The Chesapeake Bay Retriever combines brains and brawn, blending affection, intelligence, and remarkable strength with an undying energy and a protective nature. However, they need to exercise their mind and also need to be trained so they know who’s in charge. They weigh 55-80 pounds and live to 10-13.


What Are the Common Health Issues Faced by Large Dogs?

Cherry eye, hip and elbow dysplasia, arthritis, cardiomyopathy, hypothyroidism, bloat, entropion, ectropion, dilated cardiomyopathy, and wobbler syndrome are some of the common health issues.

What Is the Average Life Expectancy of a Large Dog Breed?

Their average life span is 8-12 years.

What Is the Largest Dog Breed?

The Mastiff is the largest of the giant dog breeds.

Are Large Dogs Expensive?

Food, treats, spay/neuter, toys, medication, and other expenses can make large breeds more expensive than small dog breeds.


Big dogs are lovable and protective, and some are willful. Early training and socialization are vital. It’s important to find a canine that fits your lifestyle.

Elise Margulis
Elise Margulis is a talented animal writer and a devoted pet parent residing near Manhattan in a cozy suburb. With a Chow mix and a rescued Siamese as her loyal companions, she's been animal-obsessed since childhood. Penning informative articles on pet nutrition, health, and animal welfare, she's also an avid advocate for adoption and animal rights. When she's not writing, she serves as the editor of two local online news sites. Working from home with her fur babies, she advocates adoption and animal welfare through volunteering and social media. A true animal lover and vegetarian for over 31 years, she's on a mission to raise awareness and make the world a better place for all creatures.

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