Large Dog Breeds

Reviewed By Tom •  Updated: 09/20/22 •  7 min read
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Large Dog Breeds

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Dogs come in a wide range of sizes and varieties, from toy-sized to giant-sized dogs. Many people have a preference for the size of dog they’d like to adopt. And it’s no surprise that large dogs are often high on the list for some pet parents!

Large dog breeds can be the perfect choice for you and your family. If you’re looking to adopt a large dog, read on! We’ve put together a list of large dog breeds and hope you find your fur baby on this list. Let’s get started!

Our List of Large Dog Breeds

1. Afghan Hound

The Afghan Hound is a large dog breed that originally came from Afghanistan. The dogs are thought to date back to pre-Christian times, though others believe the dogs are a more ancient dog breed. They were originally developed to hunt large prey in the desert and mountains of Afghanistan. For this work, the dogs needed to run fast and long distances.

Today, Afghan hounds still love to run, though they’re no longer used for hunting. They make wonderful family companions, though the dogs can be aloof at times. They’re also independent and free-thinkers. You might say the dogs have some cat in them!

Even though they can be independent, Afghan Hounds still want plenty of love. They can be affectionate with their families and can be mischievous.

The dogs are also known for their beautiful long, flowing hair. They need plenty of brushing and grooming to keep it that way!

Afghan Hounds usually weigh between 24 to 26 inches tall and weigh 50 to 60 lbs. They have a life expectancy of 10 to 12 years.

2. Black Russian Terrier

Not many people have heard of the Black Russian Terrier, the next dog on our list of big dog breeds. The dogs were bred by Soviet Army scientists who were looking to create an amazing working dog. They wanted a dog that was well-suited to harsh winters. They were intended to work with soldiers to guard the borders. The result of their breeding program was the Black Russian Terrier.

This is a dog breed that’s highly observant and protective. They’re also large, agile, courageous dogs that are very powerful, with a strong instinct to protect and guard. While the perception of these dogs may be that they’re tough, Black Russian Terriers want to be with their humans and tend to stay close to them. They need plenty of attention and love. This is a dog who waits at the door for you to come home each day!

Black Russian Terriers are also highly intelligent and may be able to outsmart their pet parents at times! The dogs train easily, though they can have a somewhat stubborn nature. They excel at obedience, agility, and other dog sports.

If you’re looking for a family dog that will protect you and your family, loves to play and be with you most of the time, this may be the dog for you!

The Black Russian Terrier usually stands between 26 to 28 inches tall and weighs between 80 to 140 lbs. They have a life span of 10 to 11 years.

3. Chinook

The Chinook is the next dog on our list of large dog breeds! These dogs were developed by Arthur Walden, who bred a farm dog (breed unknown) with a Husky. Walden was a dog driver in Alaska who brought the sport to New England.

One of the puppies from the first litter was named Chinook (named for the warm winds that come to Alaska and melt snow). From there, the breed became legendary when Admiral Byrd was planning his expedition to Antarctica in 1928. The original dog named Chinook was part of this team.

Unfortunately, the Chinook dog breed has become extremely rare these days. However, breeders are trying to revive the breed. The dogs are famous for their stamina and strength when pulling, though they’re most often companion dogs today. They are highly athletic (no surprise there!) and very loving dogs. If you’re looking for a jogging or hiking friend, this might be the dog for you!

One note—some Chinooks love to dig and create a comfortable place to lay. This is an inborn trait of the breed. So, if you have a prized garden or backyard, you may want to consider a different dog breed.

The dogs are known for their gentle, even temperaments and are not known for being aggressive. They need to live indoors with their families and also need a backyard to run in. Chinooks are highly intelligent and learn quickly, though they require consistent training.

The Chinook usually stands between 21 to 27 inches tall and weighs between 55 to 70 lbs. They have a life expectancy of 12 to 15 years.

4. Greater Swiss Mountain Dog

Next on our list of large dog breeds is the Greater Swiss Mountain Dog! This is considered one of the country’s oldest dog breeds. Experts believe these dogs are descended from Mastiff-like dogs who came to the Swiss mountain with the Romans. The ancestors of the Greater Swiss Mountain Dog were bred to herd, guard, and pull carts.

Greater Swiss Mountain Dogs are not well known outside of Switzerland. However, they are unique, large dogs that are sure to grab attention! These large dogs make a wonderful watchdog and have a deep, loud bark sure to intimidate any intruder. Even so, these dogs are very gentle and loving with their families. And they get along great with kids. However, because Great Swiss Mountain Dogs are so big, they need plenty of room. They do best in larger homes that also have large, fenced backyards.

This is a dog that also excels at dog sports such as agility, obedience, drafting, herding, and much more. They’re also used as therapy dogs and help with search & rescue teams.

Greater Swiss Mountain dogs are large dogs that make a great family companion. But they do need lots of space. So, if you live in an apartment, you may want to consider a different dog breed.

The Greater Swiss Mountain Dog usually stands between 23 to 28 inches tall and weighs between 85 to 140 lbs. They have a life expectancy of 7 to 9 years.

5. Spanish Mastiff

The last dog on our list of large dog breeds is the Spanish Mastiff. This is one large dog! The Spanish Mastiff originally came from Spain, where they were bred to guard flocks and protect shepherds in the mountainous regions of the country.

The dogs are calm and somewhat aloof. And they are very loyal to their families. Spanish Mastiffs make great guard dogs. They’re also pretty quiet and only bark to alert you of danger. When these dogs bark, you know it! Spanish Mastiffs have a deep, loud bark that is sure to keep intruders out.

These are very large, highly intelligent dogs that love to snuggle and need plenty of love. However, they can also be somewhat aloof. They’re also independent thinkers and love some time to themselves. Spanish Mastiffs do get along great with kids.

One note—this is a dog breed that needs plenty of structure and routine each day. They also do best with a strong pet parent who takes the lead position in the family. Otherwise, the Spanish Mastiff will take over as the leader!

Spanish Mastiffs usually stand between 26 to 35 inches and weigh between 140 to 220 lbs. They have a life expectancy of 10 to 12 years.

Summing It Up

So, there you have it! This is our list of large dog breeds. We purposely chose breeds you may not be familiar with and hope you’ve been able to find your next fur baby on the list!

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Tom has always loved to write since he was little - he wanted to be either a writer or a veterinary doctor, but he ended up being a professional writer while most of his works are based on animals. He was born in San Francisco but later moved to Texas to continue his job as a writer. He graduated from the University of San Francisco where he studied biotechnology. He is happily married and a soon to be father!