Dalmatian vs Great Dane: What Are 8 Key Differences?

Written by Jennifer Gaeng
Published: March 31, 2022
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Before bringing a new dog into your home, it’s critical to research any breed you’re considering. Many admirers of large dogs are torn between the Great Dane and the Dalmatian. Both dog breeds have some similar characteristics. They are, nevertheless, fundamentally distinct in many ways. This post will discuss eight significant distinctions between Dalmatians and Great Danes. We will examine themes such as appearance, personality, and health.

Dalmatian vs Great Dane: A Comparison 

The major differences between Dalmatians and Great Danes are size, appearance, and life expectancy.
DalmatianGreat Dane
Height19 – 23 inches28 – 32 inches
Weight45 to 60 lbs.110 to 175 lbs.
Coat typeShort, Soft, SmoothShort, Fine, Dense
ColorsWhite with Black or Brown Markings; Other Known VariationsFawn, Blue, Brindle, Merle, Black, Harlequinn, Mantle
TemperamentLoyal, Smart, AloofGentle, Intelligent, Loving
TrainabilityHighly TrainableAbove Average
Life Expectancy12 to 14 Years8 to 10 Years
Health ProblemsAllergies, Seizures, Bladder StonesCardiomyopathy, Hip Dysplasia

Key Differences Between Dalmatian And Great Dane

close up of a Great Dane

Great Danes are significantly taller than Dalmatians.


The key differences between Dalmatians and Great Danes are size, appearance, temperament, and life expectancy. Although Dalmatians and Great Danes share a similar build, both breeds are easily distinguishable. These two breeds do not belong to the same breed group and have numerous variances. Dalmatians, for example, belong to the non-sporting group, but Great Danes belong to the working group. Let’s look at some further intriguing distinctions.

Dalmatian vs Great Dane: Height

Dalmatians stand between 19 and 23 inches tall, whereas Great Danes stand between 28 and 32 inches tall. The chests of the Great Danes are larger than those of Dalmatians. Great Danes are taller than Dalmatians, making them one of the tallest dogs in the world.

Dalmatian vs Great Dane: Weight

Dalmatians weigh approximately 55 pounds on average, while Great Danes weigh between 110 and 175 pounds. Great Danes have the weight advantage.

Dalmatian vs Great Dane: Coat Type

The coats of both breeds are short and soft. Great Danes have a coat that is smoother, while Dalmatian coats are often finer and denser in texture. Grooming is simple for both the Great Dane and the Dalmatian breeds.

Dalmatian vs Great Dane: Appearance

Many people are unaware that Dalmatians can have both black and brown markings on their skin. The AKC also recognizes white and lemon, orange and white, and black and tan combinations. They are typically born all white and begin to develop their spots within their first few weeks of life.

The seven major recognized colors for Great Danes are black, brindle, fawn, blue, merle, harlequin, and mantle.

Dalmatian vs Great Dane: Temperament

The Dalmatian is known for its smart, sweet, yet aloof personality,


There are several notable differences in temperament between these two popular dog breeds. For example, Dalmatians tend to be quiet, obedient, gentle, and loving, but they can also be hyperactive and aloof. Dogs of the Dalmatian breed can have wildly differing temperaments.

Great Danes have a more laid-back demeanor than other breeds. When it comes to interacting with children, Great Danes have been found to be more successful than Dalmatians. Great Danes are massive canines and require lots of space to spread out and relax.

Dalmatian vs Great Dane: Trainability

You may train Great Danes using positive reinforcement methods such as food rewards and praise if you do so consistently. Dalmatians are intelligent and eager to please, making them a breed that is highly trainable. Many Dalmatians have found success in obedience and agility competitions because of their eagerness to learn new skills.

Dalmatian vs Great Dane: Life Expectancy

Dalmation (Canis familiaris) - Dalmatian on a walk

Dalmatians can live as long as 12 to 14 years with proper care.

©Beth James/Shutterstock.com

When it comes to life expectancy, Great Danes come up short with an average life expectancy between 8 and 10 years. Dalmatians have a much longer lifespan, between 12 and 14 years.

Dalmatian vs Great Dane: Health Problems

Allergic skin irritation, bloating, and hip dysplasia are all frequent in Great Danes. Cataracts and non-tumorous skin growths are also common.

Allergies, seizures, and urinary stones are some of the health issues that some Dalmatians face. They also have a higher rate of deafness than any other dog breed.

Wrapping up Dalmatian vs Great Dane

These dogs certainly differ in their sizes, colors, temperaments, and orientation. If you prefer being around loving, affectionate, and massive canines, the Great Dane is an excellent fit for you. Alternatively, if you prefer a dog with an iconic appearance and an elusive personality, the Dalmatian might be the dog for you.

Great Danes are known to do have a better demeanor among children. However, both Dalmatians and Great Danes enjoy spending time with youngsters, and both breeds are known for their gentle and patient dispositions.

Either way, Dalmatians and Great Danes are excellent options if you are searching for a companion dog. They’re a terrific choice for families because of their intelligent and sociable demeanors, along with their devotion to their families.

The photo featured at the top of this post is © Al_Er/Shutterstock.com

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About the Author

Jennifer Gaeng is a writer at A-Z-Animals focused on animals, lakes, and fishing. With over 15 years of collective experience in writing and researching, Jennifer has honed her skills in various niches, including nature, animals, family care, and self-care. Hailing from Missouri, Jennifer finds inspiration in spending quality time with her loved ones. Her creative spirit extends beyond her writing endeavors, as she finds joy in the art of drawing and immersing herself in the beauty of nature.

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