The Great Dane is a German dog breed popular for its huge size. The American Kennel Club recognizes seven patterns when it comes to the Great Dane’s coat: blue, black, mantle, brindle, fawn, merle, and harlequin. Harlequin has a white base color along with well-distributed and irregular black patches all over the body.
Physical Characteristics of a Great Dane
The Great Dane is an energetic and elegant dog breed. A Great Dane male weighs approximately 100-120 pounds and can attain a height of 32 inches. The female can reach the 30-inch height and can weigh about the same as the male. The massive head of the Great Dane is narrow and flat on the top with prominent eyes. The ears are cropped and drop forward to stand erect. The body is muscular with long and straight front legs and it has a tail of medium length with a thick base. The coat is sleek and short with a variety of colors with minimal shedding. These dogs have poor longevity and live only for six to eight years.
History of the Great Dane
This giant breed is popularly known as the Apollo of dogs. It has existed for more than four hundred years and came from mastiff-like dogs that were used for protection of country estates and for hunting wild boar.
During the 18th century, this breed was used to guard carriages and estates. They were also popular for different sports in the upper class. The Great Danes we know today were more likely developed during the 1800s. In the year 1880, the name Great Dane was banned by the Germans, and they were known as the Deutsche Dogge, meaning German mastiff. However, in English speaking countries, the breed continued to be known as the Great Dane. Primarily they were family pets and favorite among city dwellers for protection despite their giant size.
Physical Characteristics of Blue Harlequin Great Danes
Appearing pleasant and subtle, the blue eyes of a Great Dane are the most noticeable features. These dogs do not have a steel blue coat and have harlequin markings on their bodies. A Blue Harlequin Great Dane does not meet the Great Dane dog color standard. They fall into the category of flawed and imperfect Great Dane Line.
AKC Recognized Great Dane Colors
The color descriptions of the Great Dane breed is listed below, as described by the American Kennel Club standards.
As per the AKC standard, the color will be pure steel blue. White color markings on toes and chest are uncommon. These dogs are also famous for their striking appearance.
The color is golden yellow with a black mask. Eye rims, eyebrows, tail tip, and ears appear black. The deep gold yellow is quite common; however, black front dirty color, white markings at toes, and chest are also seen. This is a widely recognized color.
As per AKC standard, the color is black and glossy. White color markings on the chest and toes are often undesirable. Black coats shimmer in the sunlight and accentuate the musculature of the Great Dane.
The base of the coat is yellow gold and brindled with black, strong cross stripes in a chevron pattern. The mask and eye rims, eyebrows, tail tip, and ears appear black. The more intensive and distinct base color and brindling, the more preferred is the color. White markings on the toes and the chest, dirty colored brindles, and black-fronted are common.
This is the most recent color standard added. The coat is the same as that of the harlequin coat but with a gray base. Black and white spotting is common wherein spots of gray can vary. The coat pattern is variable with a mix of Mantle or the Harlequin.
The color is mostly white and black, with a black blanket that extends over the entire body. White muzzle and black skull, and the white-collar is common. Also, they sport partially or completely white hind legs and forelegs, white chest, black tail with white tip. A small white marking in a black blanket and a break in the white-collar is fine.
The Unofficial Colors of the Great Dane
For Great Danes, AKC has recognized certain colors, but there are many, unofficial colors too. Some of the most common colors described below.
White Great Dane
White is the least common color found amongst Great Danes and is the most susceptible to genetic problems. Merle to merle breeding can create white Danes. They are completely white, but the coat may have some markings.
The name signifies that it is a Harlequin with fawn color. The basic color of the coat is white covered with fawn torn patches. There can also be some variations in spots and colors. Merle and Brindle may also be included.
How Much Does Blue Harlequin Great Dane Cost?
This huge dog is more expensive than most breeds. Their cost ranges from a few hundred to thousands of dollars if you are purchasing from a breeder. Adoption is a less expensive option with a price ranging from $300-500. However, purchasing a Great Dane isn’t the only cost involved; one must consider food, as this bread can consume up to twelve cups of food daily, and their veterinary bills can be high. These large dogs also need larger spaces. Even with all of these possible issues, Great Danes can be great companions.