Big Dog Breeds
With a fully grown weight of 50 pounds or more and a standing height about two feet or more, the big dog breeds, or large dog breeds, are sizable. Below is an exhaustive list of the big dog breeds.
Despite the word wolf in its name, these powerful hounds make for great family pets. Hailing from Ireland, these are the largest sighthounds in the class. We wouldn’t suggest challenging one of these to a sprinting contest, unless you can somehow run faster than 40 MPH.
Originally a working dog in the Western Alps in Switzerland and Italy, this gentle giant was originally bred back in 980 AD by monks. They crossed the Tibetan Mastiff with a Great Dane. What you get is a calm, low-energy Saint Bernard who is extremely patient with kids. Don’t expect them to go out of their way and play Monopoly with them though, they will mostly keep to themselves.
Sleek and elegant, tall in stature, these extremely large animals (over 100 pounds) were developed from Mastiff-type dogs. They are gentle by nature but can be protective when they need to be. Many times, large estates would use these dogs as their guard dogs.
Possessing an ancient heritage dating back 5,000 years, the English Mastiff has a calm demeanor suitable for families. It is suggested you wait until the little ones are a little older for this breed, due to its sheer size. They are cool, calm, and collected.
A very smart and all purpose worker, the German Shepherd is an athletic, muscular worker that’s relatively easy to train. Their heretic tendencies have them leery of strangers. For that reason, it is best to bring them up from young in a family setting, especially with younger children.
A mix between the Tibetan Mastiff and the now-extinct American Black Wolf, the Newfoundland dog has a dignified appearance, but a sweet, family-oriented soul. They’ve settled down since their blue-collar days hauling nets and transporting wood, as they were originally bred to do.
Hailing from Switzerland, this jack-of-all trades dog from the Sennenhund-type dog family did everything on the farm from herding cattle to pulling carts to watching over the family. They can be It’s best to socialize this breed while they are young to best develop all the calm, sensitive love they share as companions.
Highly protective of those it loves, they are extremely distrustful of strangers. With a solid, muscular build, this short muzzled dog originated in England in the mid 1880s. It is known as the “Gamekeeper’s Night Dog”.
This extremely powerful dog has a cascading thick white coat. They were bred in the Pyrenees Mountains of France to keep wolves away from sheep and other farm animals. They were also used as cart pullers and pack dogs. They protect their families and are wonderful with families. That said, its best that your children are well behaved.
A longstanding guardian of livestock, this native of Turkey sports a short coat and athletic build. Moonlighting as a companion to the shepherds, this breed can make for a good family dog in the right conditions.
Bred for it brute strength and inexhaustible conditioning and endurance, this large breed is a native Arctic breed descending from the arctic wolf and named after the Inuit tribe called the Mahlemut.
This Scottish retriever is among the most popular breeds in the US. They are loving and friendly characters that have a love of life that is infectious. They are great family pets, as their patience and trustworthiness is second to none.
So long as they are socialized early on, they can make great family pets. Treat the Doberman Pinscher with respect and they will happily reciprocate. This medium to large breed has a signature look – with tall pointy ears and a long muzzle.
This even tempered, devoted breed might have a short lifespan (5-8 years), but they make the most of their time. With a pasttime of pulling carts and moving heavy items from place to place, these 130+lb dogs can be wonderful family companions, in the right households.
America’s most popular dog breed, the Labrador Retriever is an outgoing, even tempered dog that is as notably proficient in the field and retrieving waterfowl as they are at stealing the hearts of their family. Their demeanor and trusting, gentle ways make them a good choice for families of all sizes and age ranges.
These large dogs have a big double coat that makes them look even bigger. They are intelligent and aloof, tenacious and stubborn. Both due to their size and temperament, choose wisely here if you are thinking about this animal in a family setting. They certainly can be great, but in the right settings.
Originally bred for the Russian army after WW II, these dogs are immensely powerful and courageous. This breed is loyal and loving to their family while remaining skeptical of strangers. These traits make them great guard dog and service dog.
An Italian breed of Mastiff, this hard working dog was versatile. While capable of hunting large game and herding large livestock like cattle, they are actually quite even tempered, reserved and loyal. They like room to run around and keep true to their active roots.
This South African, Mastiff-type breed is largely used as a guard dog. While obedient and loyal to their family, they remain dominant and territorial to outsiders. A large dog, with even bigger muscles, this breed was developed in the 17th Century as an intelligent working dog.
This big-game hunting dog was originally bred in the 19th century. They are extremely powerful and stubborn dogs who have a tendency to be somewhat aloof. The “Silver Ghost” is a good family dog option, just be mindful of little kids, as they are larger dogs.
Once known as the “African Lion Hound”, this South African sighthound and scent hound is dignified while still being sensitive. Its signature mohawk-like patch of fur that stands up on its back is unmistakable. They make for excellent guard dogs.
Like the other Belgian sheepdogs, the Belgian Tervuren is very smart. Their long russel mahogany fur has them distinguishable from afar. This medium sized dog is obedient and territorial of those it holds dear.
This large sized breed from Germany once worked the fields, pulling heavy carts and herding the flocks. They are devoted to their families but can become quite aggressive to strangers and or threats. CountryLiving says the PSI of their jaws is 328. That’s a lot of pressure. To give context, the pressure in your tires is most likely around 38.
A descendant mastiffs, bulldogs, and even a terrier, the Boxer is known for their signature square head and short muzzle. Their medium to large frame is all muscle. They can make for good family dogs, so long as you socialize and train them at a young age.
Aloof and distinguished, this reagle breed sports a silky coat that keeps it both warm and undeniably debutante. This sighthound isn’t afraid to rough it, as it used to pursue leopards and gazelles. Perhaps this past is what gave it such self-confidence.
A stubborn breed through and through, they have an uncontrollable urge to bark at most anything that might pass them as they lounge on the front porch. They are a robust, energetic breed, with the patience to match, which makes them great family dogs if you have children.
This large Hungarian working dog is as good in the field as they are companions. They are independent and intelligent, but also very protective, patient and kind. Once can trace their lineage back through ancient Hungarian texts.
The Siberian Husky is a medium-sized working dog, specialized to brave the cold with its double thick coat, hauling sleds. They are largely friendly and outgoing and do well in a family setting.
If there’s a dog who could pass the SATs, this one would be a good bet to place your money. This intelligent breed carries an air of self-confidence. They are highly protective of their ‘flock’, be that a flock of sheep or their family.
Leery of strangers and mostly intolerant to other animals, this breed needs to be trained well to champion the good aspects of their temperaments. They are fiercely loyal to their owners and thrive on human companionship.
This large dog breed from the Hound Group has some of the best smelling senses available. Their skills have been utilized to track deer and boar. More recently, their marque skill has been used for tracking people. Powerful and dignified, this hound is impressive.
The Bombara, the CO, the Caucasian. Going by many names this large livestock dog is an alert and dominant dog in the field. When socialized young, they make for good family dogs. They have been known to turn aggressive when they perceive a dangerous threat.
Touting excellent swimming skills, Poodles are easily the most popular water dog. They’re highly intelligent and eager to train. Poodles have kindly temperaments making them an ideal pet for families with children.
Largest of the Schnauzers, this hypoallergenic – powerful and loyal – breed are kind and loving. Their size along makes them not the best choice for families with small children. That said, with older children who are respectful to animals, this breed makes for a great family dog.
This large, white Hungarian sheepdog has gorgeous corded fur that look like long dreads. Unlike other breeds that need help in that area, the Komondor has it naturally occur. They are an accomplished herding dog, keeping predators like wolves and coyotes away from the flock.
This large working dog from the Swiss Alps has an iconic look. Even if you’re not a dog person, you would recognize this breed. They are good natured dogs that can run a farm if you need them to.
These medium to large sized hunting dogs are powerful and athletic in the field, be that upland game or in the water. Their energy levels and exuberant personalities make them not the best choice for families with small children.
The flashy red coat of the Irish Setter hallmarks its signature look. They are high spirited and high energy in both the field and the home. Make sure to have a plan to get their energy out and they’ll appreciate it.
With max speeds up to 45 MPH, this sighthound can really get moving. Known for speed, it’s why people bred them to race and why bus companies happily link their name to this breed. They are noble and independent, intelligent and affectionate.
As a breed that can be anything from a police dog to a family pet, these dogs can adapt to their surroundings. Their intelligence and drive need to be placed somewhere to keep them from getting bored.
A long and limber, sleek sighthound from Russia, this breed hunts in backs – agile enough to go after rabbits and strong enough to take down wolves. This regal breed will need room in its environments to stretch its legs. Did we mention they can run 35 MPH?
This large herding dog hailing from France is intelligent and obedient while remaining fearless. While extremely loyal and faithful to their owners, they have a tendency to be more aloof with strangers, as is the case with most herding dogs.
With a name translating to “yard-watcher”, this medium to large breed knows how to keep things under control. They are watchful and active. On the home front, these dogs are loving and familial.
This Spitz type dog from China is a thick set dog, square in its profile. Its thick double coat is sure to keep it warm in the winter. They mostly keep to themselves as they are aloof and wildly independent.
This large dog breed from the plains of Central France was a multipurpose farm dog – handing everything from driving livestock to guarding the homestead. They are highly intelligent with a commanding pressence.
If you’ve every watched the Disney movie where there were 101 of them, or looked at any Fire Station posters, you’ve undoubtedly come across a Dalmatian. Their limelight might suggest that they are even tempered, but that couldn’t be further from the truth. Their popularity has declined over the decades due to their high maintenance and fragile temperament.