Great Dane Colors: Rarest to Most Common

Great Dane Puppy with Blue Eyes
© MPH Photos/

Written by Alan Lemus

Updated: August 27, 2023

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Originating from Germany, the Great Dane is a breed that combines the elegance of nobility with a powerful presence. These “gentle giants,” with their imposing size and mild temperament, boast an array of different coat colors that add to their charm. Their lifespan, while relatively short at an average of 8 to 10 years, is filled with loyalty and gentle companionship. Their coat colors range from the rare White and Grey to the most common and iconic, Fawn. 

12 Great Dane Colors: Rarest to Most Common
An overview of 12 colorings that are common to Great Danes.

This article dives deep into the varied world of Great Dane colors, exploring each color in detail. From the unusual Fawnequin to the universally recognized Fawn, we unravel the diverse spectrum of these majestic dogs’ coats. As we delve into each color, we hope to deepen your understanding and appreciation of the Great Dane breed. The color of a Great Dane’s coat might be just one aspect of its allure, but it’s an aspect rich with fascinating variations and details.

1. White Great Danes

White great dane

Pure white Great Danes are extremely rare, as most have some other colors on their fur.

©I, Lilly M / CC BY-SA 3.0 – Original / License

White Great Danes bear a coat of pure, snow-white fur. This color results from a rare genetic combination, giving these dogs a unique and striking appearance. The snow-white fur also extends to their eyebrows and whiskers, providing a uniform color across their bodies.

Common Characteristics of White Great Danes

White Great Danes share characteristics with other Great Danes, such as a gentle nature and a love for play. They stand tall and exude elegance, capturing the hearts of many dog lovers. However, they’re also unique in their own ways. For instance, their pure white coat may make them more susceptible to sunburn, requiring extra care during sunny days.

How Rare Or Common Are White Great Danes?

White Great Danes are extremely rare. They’re not a standard color in the breed, as per the American Kennel Club (AKC). Their rarity stems from the specific genetic combination required to produce a white coat. For this reason, a white Great Dane is a truly unique sight to behold! While there are some with different color patches, a pure white great dane is very rare.

2. Grey (Silver) Great Danes

Blue Great Dane puppy

Silver Great Danes are similar in color to this Blue Great Dane puppy.

©Brian Uhreen / CC BY 2.0 – Original / License

The Grey, often termed Silver, Great Dane exhibits a unique coat color. Their fur holds a distinct hue akin to the gleam of a polished silver coin. From snout to tail, this elegant color defines their appearance, resulting in an awe-inspiring sight.

Common Characteristics of Grey Great Danes

Grey Great Danes possess the same charm and regality typical of the breed. Their silver coat, though, adds an extra layer of fascination to their appeal. Despite their majestic appearance, they remain friendly and protective companions. It’s essential to note that their stunning coat may require regular grooming to maintain its luster.

How Rare Or Common Are Grey (Silver) Great Danes?

When it comes to frequency, Grey Great Danes fall on the rarer side of the spectrum. They aren’t as common as other colorations, such as Fawn or Black. However, they’re not as scarce as their White or Albino counterparts. The sight of a Grey Great Dane is certainly special, given its relatively unique coat color.

3. Fawnequin Great Danes

Beautiful example of a Fawnequin Great Dane named Dash

A beautiful example of a Fawnequin Great Dane named Dash.

©KrisInDallas214 / CC BY-SA 4.0 – Original / License

Fawnequin Great Danes present a distinctive coat color pattern. Their coat consists of patches of fawn color on a white background, reminiscent of a fawn-spotted quilt. Each Fawnequin Great Dane has a unique distribution of fawn patches, making every one of them a one-of-a-kind canine.

Common Characteristics of Fawnequin Great Danes

Despite the unusual coat color, Fawnequin Great Danes maintain the breed’s typical friendly and protective nature. Their unique Fawn and white coloring adds a dash of individuality to their character. Owners of Fawnequin Great Danes should pay special attention to their skincare, as the lighter coat color could make them more susceptible to sunburn.

How Rare Or Common Are Fawnequin Great Danes?

Fawnequin Great Danes are quite a rare sight, making them an extraordinary variation within the breed. Their distinctive Fawn and white patchwork pattern is less commonly seen than solid coat colors such as Fawn or Black. The relative rarity of Fawnequin Great Danes adds to their charm and appeal.

4. Harlequin Great Danes

Harlequin Great Dane

Harlequin Great Danes have beautifully spotted fur.


Harlequin Great Danes boast a unique, vibrant coat color pattern. They showcase a white base coat scattered with irregular black patches, reminiscent of a jigsaw puzzle. The splashes of black against the stark white give Harlequin Great Danes a distinct and striking appearance.

Common Characteristics of Harlequin Great Danes

Despite their flamboyant coat, Harlequin Great Danes embody the breed’s inherent warmth and gentleness. Their eye-catching coat pattern adds to their charm and charisma. Caring for a Harlequin Great Dane’s coat does require some attention, given their predisposition to certain skin issues.

How Rare Or Common Are Harlequin Great Danes?

Harlequin Great Danes fall on the rarer side within the breed. Their distinctive black and white patchwork is less frequently seen than the more common solid coat colors. The unique coloration of Harlequin Great Danes certainly makes them a standout within the breed.

5. Blue Great Danes

Portrait of a large blue Great Dane

Great Danes are often considered to be playful and loyal gentle giants.


Blue Great Danes are adorned with an unusual coat color that holds a captivating allure. They don a solid blue hue, varying from a light silvery shade to a deep, dark steel blue. The blue coat color is one of the purest among Great Danes, contrasting their impressive stature.

Common Characteristics of Blue Great Danes

Character-wise, Blue Great Danes retain the breed’s signature gentleness and affection. They combine their splendid coat color with a playful and loving temperament, winning hearts wherever they go. It’s worth noting that their blue coat, while undeniably stunning, can sometimes be prone to skin issues and should be cared for with diligence.

How Rare Or Common Are Blue Great Danes?

In the realm of Great Danes, Blue Danes stand as a relatively rare variety. While they are not as uncommon as the White (Albino) or Grey (Silver) Great Danes, they certainly aren’t as prevalent as the more common Fawn or Black. The rarity of Blue Great Danes lends to their unique charm and appeal.

6. Merle Great Danes

Merle great dane looking back at some sound

Typically, a Merle Great Dane will have a light grey coat with darker gray splotches.


Merle Great Danes display a striking coat color pattern. Their base coat is predominantly light (often white or cream) with patches of darker color, usually black or grey. This pattern creates a marbled or mottled appearance, leading to a visually captivating coat.

Common Characteristics of Merle Great Danes

Merle Great Danes hold true to the breed’s inherent gentleness and loyalty. Their distinctive coat color adds an intriguing aesthetic dimension to their overall appeal. Their lighter base coat may require some extra attention, particularly in terms of sun protection, to ensure their skin stays healthy.

How Rare Or Common Are Merle Great Danes?

Merle Great Danes are relatively common within the breed. Although they aren’t as frequently seen as Fawn or Black Great Danes, their unique coloration is well-recognized and appreciated by Great Dane enthusiasts. The distinct marbled coat of a Merle Great Dane adds a fascinating visual complexity to these gentle giants.

7. Mantle Great Danes

Large Mantle Great Dane

Mantle Great Danes give the impression of having a mantle draped over their bodies.

©Fido Factor from USA / CC BY-SA 2.0 – Original / License

A specific coat pattern characterizes mantle Great Danes. Their body is primarily black, while their muzzle, chest, neck, belly, and the insides of their legs are white. This combination gives the impression of a black blanket or “mantle” draped over a white base coat, hence the name.

Common Characteristics of Mantle Great Danes

Mantle Great Danes embody the breed’s characteristic warmth, loyalty, and protective nature. Their dramatic black-and-white coat offers a visually striking contrast that enhances their imposing size. Although their coat is hardy, routine grooming is recommended to maintain its luster and health.

How Rare Or Common Are Mantle Great Danes?

Mantle Great Danes are relatively common within the breed, and their coloration is one of the officially recognized patterns by the American Kennel Club. Their distinctive “mantle” pattern makes them easily recognizable and adds to their appeal in the world of Great Danes.

8. Black and White Great Danes

close up of a Great Dane

Black and white Great Danes are much more common than other colors.


Black and White Great Danes have a coat that features a mix of both colors. This combination can manifest in different ways, such as solid black bodies with white markings or predominantly white bodies with black spots or patches. The contrast of black and white gives these dogs a distinct and attractive look.

Common Characteristics of Black And White Great Danes

Black and White Great Danes exude the same gentle demeanor and loyalty common to the breed. Their contrasting coat color adds an additional element of appeal. While their grooming needs are straightforward, owners should pay particular attention to their skin, especially the lighter areas, to prevent issues like sunburn.

How Rare Or Common Are Black And White Great Danes?

Black and White Great Danes are fairly common within the breed. Their coloration varies quite a bit, leading to a broad spectrum of appearances even within this color category. Each Black and White Great Dane is truly unique, thanks to the individual patterning of their black and white coat.

9. Piebald Great Danes

An adult female Pie Bald Great Dane sitting on green grass with sunlight shining on her.

Each piebald great dane has a unique pattern all its own.

Image: Arthur Villator, Shutterstock

©Arthur Villator/

Piebald Great Danes exhibit a distinct coat color pattern. They feature a white base coat with patches of any other solid color randomly distributed. This patchy appearance creates a unique, almost artistic visual appeal, with each Piebald Great Dane displaying a unique pattern.

Common Characteristics of Piebald Great Danes

Like other variations of the breed, Piebald Great Danes embody the characteristic kindness and loyalty of Great Danes. Their unusual coat patterns add an element of individuality to their appearance. As with other lighter-colored Great Danes, owners should exercise caution with sun exposure to protect their skin.

How Rare Or Common Are Piebald Great Danes?

Piebald Great Danes are quite common compared to some other color variations. While not as prevalent as Fawn or Black, they are often seen and recognized within the breed. The unique color patterning of Piebald Great Danes adds to their appeal and sets them apart from their solid-colored counterparts.

10. Brindle Great Danes

Brindle Great Dane standing on a lawn

These Great Danes are extremely popular due to their resemblance to a




Brindle Great Danes sport a coat pattern that resembles tiger stripes. A base coat of Fawn is overlaid with streaks of black, creating a striped effect. The pattern and the darkness of the stripes can vary, but the contrast remains eye-catching.

Common Characteristics of Brindle Great Danes

Brindle Great Danes share the breed’s friendly, protective temperament, with their distinct coat adding to their majestic appearance. Despite the complex pattern of their coat, their grooming needs are similar to those of other Great Danes. A good brushing regimen helps keep their coat healthy and shiny.

How Rare Or Common Are Brindle Great Danes?

Brindle Great Danes are one of the more common color variants within the breed. They are well-recognized and popular due to their unique, tiger-like coat pattern. Despite this relative commonality, every Brindle Great Dane’s coat is a marvel in its own right, making each dog unique.

11. Black Great Danes

close up of Great Dane puppy in grass

Great Danes show dogs cannot have a single blemish in their fur, or they will be disqualified.

©Zanna Pesnina/

Black Great Danes showcases a solid, jet-black coat. The intensity of their color forms a stark contrast to their large stature, resulting in a truly impressive presence. Their black coat covers their entire body uniformly, further emphasizing the majestic outline of the breed.

Common Characteristics of Black Great Danes

Black Great Danes exude the characteristic kindness and loyalty of the breed, amplified by their striking black coat. Their uniform color, while seemingly simple, contributes to their regal persona. It’s worth noting that their dark coat can get hot in the sun, requiring some additional precautions during warmer weather.

How Rare Or Common Are Black Great Danes?

Black Great Danes are among the more common color variations in the breed. Despite their commonality, the depth and uniformity of their black coat make each Black Great Dane a sight to behold. Their presence is always impressive, whether in a dog park or at a dog show.

12. Fawn Great Danes

Great Danes

Due to their enormous size, Great Danes are one of the larger breeds that reach maturity at an earlier age.

©Jesus Souto/

Fawn Great Danes sports a light, golden coat that ranges from light tan to a deep gold color. They often have a black mask around the muzzle, adding to their dignified appearance. The consistent, light hue of their coat gives them a soft, warm look that is instantly recognizable.

Common Characteristics of Fawn Great Danes

Fawn Great Danes share the breed’s trademark friendly and protective nature. Their bright, golden coat enhances their already regal stature, making them a favorite among many Great Dane enthusiasts. Despite the lighter color of their coat, their grooming needs remain similar to those of other Great Danes.

How Rare Or Common Are Fawn Great Danes?

Fawn is the most common and iconic color for Great Danes. It is the color most associated with the breed and is widely recognized by dog lovers around the world. Despite its commonality, the golden glow of a Fawn Great Dane never fails to attract admiration.

Key Takeaways

Great Danes, with their towering stature and kind hearts, are truly a marvel of the canine world. Their coat colors only add to their charm, offering a broad palette ranging from the rare White to the much-loved Fawn. Each color carries its own allure, but all Great Danes share a gentle temperament and unfaltering loyalty, making them fantastic companions.

While the color of a Great Dane might initially draw your attention, it’s their overall health, temperament, and compatibility with your lifestyle that truly matters when choosing one as a pet. Each Great Dane, regardless of its coat color, is a unique individual deserving of love, respect, and the best of care. Whether you’ve fallen for the uniqueness of a Fawnequin or the classic beauty of a Fawn, remember: the bond you’ll build with your Great Dane transcends its coat color. It’s their loyal, loving nature that truly sets them apart.

Summary of Great Dane Colors: Rarest to Most Common

RankColorDescriptionDegree of Rarity
1White Great DanesAll white or albinoResults from a genetic combination making the rarest color of the breed
2Grey (Silver) Great DanesThe color of a shiny nickelOn the rarer side of the spectrum
3Fawnequin Great DanesWhite with fawn (light brown) spotsVery rare
4Harlequin Great DanesWhite with black spotsOn the rarer side of the spectrum
5Blue Great DanesSolid blue hueRelatively rare
6Merle Great DanesLight base with marbled black and gray markingsRelatively common
7Mantle Great DanesThe body is black, while the muzzle, chest, neck, belly, and insides of their legs are whiteRelatively common
8Black and White Great DanesSeveral combinations of black and whiteFairly common
9Piebald Great DanesWhite base with random darker patchesQuite common
10Brindle Great DanesFawn overlayed with black streaksCommon
11Black Great DanesSolid blackCommon
12Fawn Great DanesLight golden tan, often with a dark muzzleMost common and iconic color

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About the Author

Alan is a freelance writer and an avid traveler. He specializes in travel content. When he visits home he enjoys spending time with his family Rottie, Opie.

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