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Top 11 Largest Dog Breeds

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key point:

  • Larger breeds can range in weight from 70 pounds to over 200 pounds.
  • These large dogs originated from all over the world: East Asia, Turkey, Newfoundland, Italy, Ireland, Caucasus, Germany, Alps, Spain and Great Britain.
  • Not surprisingly, these large dogs were bred as hunting and guard dogs.

Which dog breed is the heaviest? Some dogs stand taller than others, while others appear muscular or heavy-boned. Then a dog appeared who tipped the scales above all others. These giant dogs are listed as the heaviest dogs in the world. While the origins of giant breeds vary, most have a history as working dogs. The heaviest dog breeds are used to guard livestock, watch homes, haul heavy loads, or take part in rescue operations. Over the years, these breeds have grown to gigantic sizes, becoming the giant dogs we know and love today.

In this article, we'll discuss the 11 heaviest dog breeds. Measurements will be based on American Kennel Club (AKC) and Canine Federation International (FCI) metrics. We will determine the ranking based on the breed's average weight, not maximum weight. However, we will still cover cases of unusually large specimens, especially near the end of the list. Here is a list of the 11 heaviest dogs in the world.

#11: Tibetan Mastiff

The most expensive dog breed - Tibetan Mastiff
The Tibetan Mastiff is a large guard dog from East Asia that is able to survive harsh conditions.

© Tatyana Kuznetsova/Shutterstock.com

The Tibetan Mastiff is a large breed from East Asia. Despite its name, it is not a true mastiff, nor is it directly related to the mastiff. They often guard Tibetan monasteries, hence the name. Throughout Tibet, India, Mongolia, Nepal, Bhutan, and Pakistan, herders use these dogs to protect their livestock from predators. Males weigh between 90 and 150 pounds, while females typically weigh 70 to 120 pounds. These dogs wear long double coats in a variety of colors, from black to tan, red, and gray. The Tibetan Mastiff is a hardy breed that can survive harsh climates and conditions. Originally bred as night sentries, they tend to sleep during the day and remain active at night. Known to be stubborn and intelligent, they need to be trained in obedience from an early age; otherwise, they can overwhelm their owners.

#10: Kangal Sheepdog

Largest Dog Breed: Anatolian Shepherd Dog
Anatolian Shepherd Dogs were bred to protect the herd from wolves, bears, and jackals.

©CharlitoCZ/Shutterstock.com

Also known in the United States as the Anatolian Shepherd Dog, the Kangal Shepherd Dog is a large dog breed from Turkey. The breed remains popular in its native Sivas, where herders keep it to protect their livestock from large predators. Male kangaroos weigh between 110 and 150 pounds, while females weigh between 80 and 120 pounds. Kangals have long, short coats and are most often seen in fawn or sable. In recent years, kangaroos have been introduced to countries such as Namibia and Kenya. In these countries, herders continue to use the breed as working dogs to protect animals from lions, cheetahs, and other big cats. The Kangal Sheepdog has a fearsome reputation, and many specimens have inherited a strong protective instinct. Therefore, they need an experienced trainer to help keep their independent nature in check.

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#9: Newfoundland

Largest Dog Breed: Newfoundland
Newfoundlands are heavy working dogs bred for water rescue.

© iStock.com/Dixi_

Newfoundlands are heavy working dogs from Newfoundland, Canada. Originally bred by fishermen in the area, they excel at water rescues due to their webbed claws and excellent swimming abilities. Male Newfoundlands typically weigh between 130 and 150 pounds, while females range from 100 to 120 pounds. However, some specimens can grow to be exceptionally heavy, with some Newfoundlands weighing as much as 180 pounds like the gigantic Boomer. Often confused with the Labrador, the Newfoundland has a long, shaggy double coat and a thicker build. They come in a variety of colors, but black is still the most common. Known for their loyal and calm disposition as well as their strength, they make excellent family dogs. However, their penchant for water and mud makes them difficult to handle and clean up.

#8: Neapolitan Mastiff

Neapolitan mastiff sitting outdoors
The Neapolitan Mastiff is a close relative of the Cane Dog, but is heavier than its smaller cousin.

©Christian Mueller/Shutterstock.com

A close relative of the smaller cane dog, the Neapolitan Mastiff is a true member of the mastiff family. Originally bred in the mid-20th century, the Neapolitan Mastiff traces its ancestry back to the ancient guard dogs of central Italy. Males typically weigh between 130 and 150 pounds, while females range between 110 and 130 pounds. However, the gigantic specimen weighed up to 220 lbs. The Neapolitan Mastiff has a wrinkled face and jaw and is usually black or gray in color. Although they require little grooming, they show a tendency to drool excessively. As a result of their training as guard dogs, they often display distrust toward strangers, and many have inherited their natural protective instincts. While they don't require much exercise, obedience training is a must due to their large size.

#7: Irish Wolfhound

Largest Dog Breeds_Irish Wolfhound
The Irish Wolfhound is the largest of the hunting dogs, weighing up to 160 pounds.

©Canon Boy/Shutterstock.com

The Irish Wolfhound belongs to the sighthound family and they hunt based on their keen eyesight and speed. Known for their size and strength, the Irish Wolfhound is one of the tallest dogs in the world. Besides their height, they also claim to be one of the heaviest dogs. Males weigh at least 120 pounds and often reach 160 pounds or more. Although females are smaller, they weigh at least 105 pounds and can grow to 130 pounds. In addition to their role as a chaser, Irish wolfhounds were used by herders to protect livestock from wolves. These dogs wear a rough, straight double coat and the most common colors are gray, fawn, black and white. Known for their quiet and intelligent nature, Irish Wolfhounds are often friendly with people, including strangers.

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#6: Caucasian Shepherd Dog

Russian Bear Dog standing outside the field.
Also known as the Russian Bear Dog, the Caucasian Shepherd Dog is a strong and protective breed.

© Julia Shepeleva/Shutterstock.com

Also known as the Russian Bear Dog, the Caucasian Shepherd Dog represents a truly massive breed. They originated in the Caucasus region, most notably Georgia, Azerbaijan, Armenia and southern Russia. Herders raise them to protect their livestock from predators such as wolves and bears. Today, they continue to work as watchdogs in homes and prisons, and are still popular among bear hunters, which is where they got their name. Males weigh at least 110 pounds and grow to 170 pounds. However, some males may weigh over 200 pounds. Meanwhile, females weigh at least 99 pounds. Due to their history in hunting and as guard dogs, the Caucasian Shepherd Dog is ranked as one of the most protective and aggressive breeds in the world. Additionally, they have one of the strongest bite forces of any breed, measuring between 550-700 psi.

#5: Leonberg

Largest Dog Breed: Leonberger
The Leonberger is a heavy breed from Germany known for its large frame.

©Peter Josto/Shutterstock.com

Leonbergers are giant mountain dogs named after the German city of Leonberg. Primarily used as water rescue dogs, Leonbergers are known for their large, muscular frames. Males weigh between 120 and 170 pounds, while females typically weigh between 110 and 135 pounds. That said, large males can easily weigh over 200 pounds. Leonbergers have a long, luxurious double coat with a thick mane around the neck. They come in a variety of colors, but are usually yellow, red, reddish-brown, or sandy with a black mask. Because of their social and sensitive nature, they make great family dogs and adapt well to the presence of children. However, due to their larger size, they still require proper training and control.

#4. great dane

Largest dog breed: Great Dane
The Great Dane is one of the tallest and heaviest breeds.

© Jose Arcos Aguilar/Shutterstock.com

One of the most recognizable breeds in the world, the Great Dane is one of the tallest and heaviest dogs in the world. In its native Germany, the Great Dane dates back to the Middle Ages, when nobles used them to hunt deer and other large game. Males typically weigh 140 to 175 pounds, while females range from 110 to 140 pounds. However, particularly tall Great Danes can easily weigh much more, reaching a maximum of 240 pounds. They are usually fawn or brindle, but other colors include the black and white Harlequin Danes and the blue and gray Meldanes. Despite their size, many owners consider Great Danes to be gentle giants. They love physical attention and can respond to their owners with quiet affection.

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#3. saint bernard

12 Christmas Animals From Around The World - Saint Bernards
A St. Bernard named Benedictine holds the record for the heaviest dog ever.

© Rita_Kochmarjova/Shutterstock.com

The Saint Bernard is a large rescue dog that hails from the Western Alps of Italy and Switzerland. Originally bred in the mid-1600's, Saint Bernards are known for saving people from avalanches and other alpine accidents. Males typically weigh between 140 and 180 pounds, while females range between 120 and 140 pounds. That is, they can get heavier. For example, a gigantic St. Bernard named Benedict was listed as the heaviest dog ever, weighing in at a staggering 315 pounds. Although they can grow to enormous size, Saint Bernards generally inherit a gentle and passive temperament. They tend to get along well with people and other dogs, although they can be a danger to small children due to their large size.

#2: Spanish Mastiff

Spanish Mastiff poses next to a rock in the park.
The Spanish Mastiff is only slightly lighter than its English cousin.

© Alberto Duran Photography/Shutterstock.com

Mastin Espanol's Spanish Mastiff is a large working dog from Spain. Originally bred as guard dogs and livestock guardians, the Spanish Mastiff is one of the tallest and heaviest dogs in the world. Males can weigh up to 200 pounds, while females weigh at least 140 pounds. While the most common coat color is fawn, they may also appear brindle, black, or red. Spanish Mastiffs have a calm, dignified nature, although they may appear aloof or distrustful of strangers. Also, they can be aggressive towards other dogs. Due to their large size and powerful bark, they make excellent watchdogs and guard dogs. Although they require rigorous training, they respond well to positive motivation, especially when food is involved.

#1. english mastiff

Heaviest Dog: English Mastiff
The English Mastiff is the heaviest dog in the world.

©iStock.com/forisana

On average, the English Mastiff is the heaviest dog in the world. English mastiffs, known simply as mastiffs in their native England, can grow to gigantic sizes. Males typically weigh between 150 and 230 pounds, while females range between 120 and 170 pounds. That said, English Mastiffs typically weigh around 200 pounds, with the heaviest English Mastiffs reaching a whopping 330 pounds. The English Mastiff is usually fawn in color and wears a distinctive black mask. They were nearly extinct in the mid-20th century, with only 12 purebred specimens remaining after World War II. Thankfully, the breed has bounced back and is now wildly popular around the world. Despite their size, owners generally praise the English Mastiff for its noble and generous temper.

world record! Meet the Heaviest Dogs in the World

According to the Guinness Book of World Records, the heaviest dog ever lived was an English mastiff named Zorba. In November 1989, the gigantic Zorba was recorded as weighing 330 pounds, taking away St. Bernard's Benedictine title. In addition to breaking scales and setting weight records, Zorba is also very tall. At 37 inches from floor to shoulder, the Zorba is 7 inches taller than a typical mastiff. In terms of length, the Zorba measures 8 feet 3 inches—that's about the length of a king-size bed!

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featured image

Tallest Dog: English Mastiff
Not only is the English Mastiff one of the tallest dogs, it is also one of the heaviest.

© iStock.com/DevidDO


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