How fast can a Great Dane run?

How fast can a Great Dane run
Photo by Nathalie SPEHNER on Unsplash

Great Danes are a very loyal, family-friendly dog breed that are incredibly graceful despite their large size and to strangers, can come across as very intimidating dogs, but this couldn’t be further from the truth. Danes have a history of hunting deers, wild boars, bears and other animals during the middle ages in Europe, however, are now considered very affectionate, family dogs.

Great Danes are brilliant at lots of things, but one area that they excel in is running very fast.

In fact, Great Danes are able to run so fast that they are considered one of the fastest dog breeds in the world, which makes them the perfect dog breed for anyone that loves to run short distances in their spare time.

But how fast can a Great Dane run, for how long and what can be expected from this magnificent breed? 

Let’s get into the details of everything you need to know about a Great Dane’s running speed.

How fast can a Great Dane run?

Here’s everything you need to know and you may be shocked, Great Danes are very fast!

Great Danes are one of the fastest dog breeds in the world and can easily hit speeds of 25 miles per hour, however, Danes who are specifically trained for sprinting can hit speeds of up to 30 miles per hour.

Miniature Friends

This running speed makes them a very fast breed and can only outpaced by other faster dogs, such as a Greyhound and Whippet, so they will certainly have no problem out racing most other dog breeds.

Great Danes are one of the fastest dog breeds in the world and can easily hit speeds of 25 miles per hour, however, Danes who are specifically trained for sprinting can hit speeds of up to 30 miles per hour.
Infographic of How fast a Great Dane can run by Miniature Friends

Below is a video from skimoriver01 on YouTube, showing their Great Dane running 30 mph – very impressive! This just demonstrates the power and speed behind this extraordinary breed.

How long can a Great Dane run fast for?

Speed isn’t the only area where a dog needs to excel in order to run at incredible speeds for long periods, it’s also important for dogs to have exceptional endurance to maintain their speed for a good amount of time.  

Even though Great Danes are considered very fast runners, they aren’t made to run long distances at high speeds, so you can expect them to accelerate quickly but shortly after, lose momentum and slow down. Their maximum running speed can only be maintained for a short amount of time (50-60 seconds).

Great Dane picture
Photo by Mirzat on Unsplash

Despite this, when compared to other dog breeds, like the Bulldog, Dachshund or Chihuahua, Great Danes can cover longer distances than them due to their sheer size. As they are one of the tallest dog breeds, they have long legs that help them cover impressive distances in a short amount of time.

What makes the Great Dane so fast? 

If you have seen a Great Dane run before, whether that’s in a public field, a beach, or on a race track, you’ll know that it’s a sight worth seeing and is a truly impressive breed. This often makes dog lovers wonder what makes this breed run so fast.

Great dane running
Photo by Brad R on Unsplash

Well, the answer to that question is hidden in their massive size. Being one of the largest dog breeds, Great Danes naturally have very long and strong legs. These marvels of nature produce all the required energy and momentum that make Great Danes one of the fastest dog breeds.

But having long and strong legs is not the only factor that makes Great Danes so fast. Their impressive muscle structure also plays a prominent role as these muscles provide the required concentration and relaxation of legs that push them forward at high speeds.

As well as this, Great Danes possess very sleek bodies and narrow noses that make them highly aerodynamic. This serves to reduce air drag during their sprints which further helps them reach speeds of up to 30 miles per hour.

How to help your Great Dane run as fast as they can

If you want to help your Great Dan unleash their full apotential on the race track, or in a countryside field, there’s a few things that you can do to help keep them in shape.

Keep them in good health

Just like human athletes, if you want your Great Dane to perform their best, then you will have to provide them with special, top-notch quality dog foods. 

Great Danes require extra amounts of proteins and other nutrients to maintain their bodies, and any generic dog food is not a great fit for meeting all those nutritional needs. Moreover, owners should keep treats and table scraps far away from their Great Danes so that they don’t end up eating too many carbohydrates and fats.

It’s also important, as with any dog, to exercise them regularly to maintain healthy bones, stamina, mental health and fitness levels.

Check them regularly for any abnormalities

Give your Great Dane a check over every once in a while, this could be while they are asleep, or while you are giving them a hug. It’s important to give any dog a good thorough look over every once in a while, and as eager as you may be to take them for a run, it’s vital to give them a check to make sure they are all well.

This could be a quick check of their bones or skin at home, or a more comprehensive look into their blood work at a local veterinarian practice. This will help give you a full and complete picture of their health and how they are doing before exhausting them on the race track, or in the local park.

If you notice anything out of the ordinary or are concerned about something you have spotted, it’s worth taking them to a veterinarian for a check to be on the safe side. If there is an issue present, you should not expect your Great Dane to run, as this could cause pain and longer-term complications, especially if it’s bone related. If they are all well and good, then they can safely start their training.

Take them for regular runs to maximise their potential

As with any athlete, training takes time and consistency is key, therefore, if you are looking to improve your Great Danes running speed, or are looking to make sure they are as athletic as they can be, you should be taking them for regular running sessions.

At a minimum, a Great Dane should be walked for at least 30 minutes to an hour every day, but instead, this could be a running session for your Dane.

This should be in a safe environment away from any danger, such as an open field away from roads or a local park, so they can focus on their running.

Have a consistent schedule

Great Danes can be very stubborn dogs, so it’s important to have a consistent exercise schedule. We recommend creating an exercise plan for your Dane and stick to this. As an example, Monday to Friday could be walking days, however, Saturday could be the day you both go for a running session.

Having a schedule will help you stick to the routine, as you know what you need to do on what days, but also, your dog will be expecting it as well. As with anything in life, having a schedule will help you feel more inclined to do the activity. If you don’t have one, you risk letting motivation and other life decisions get in the way, and this can quite easily eat into precious running time with your Great Dane!

Provide them with the right diet

Given their large bodies and aerodynamic build, Danes require additional amounts of proteins in their body to maintain their strength, so it’s important to feed them the correct diet, even if it means spending an extra few pennies at the shop.

Great Danes can weigh more than 100 pounds as they are very large dogs, and when one is seen in public by someone for the first time, they are often surprised at how big they really are. Sometimes pictures don’t do them justice. Given their weight, it’s super important to feed them the correct meal every day, as they are very heavy eaters.

Veterinarians recommend feeding your Great Dane with foods that have at least 12% of fat and 23% of protein, and as a result, may incur additional costs, as premium dog foods tend to have higher protein and fat content. We suggest spending extra to buy a good, reputable brand that has good reviews, and produce quality dog food.

Do Great Danes make good running partners?

Yes, Great Danes make excellent running partners, given their high levels of energy and physical physique. They are able to achieve a very fast running speed and can quite easily go for short runs with you. Great Danes are very big dogs but it’s important to note that even though they are built very well, they are unable to achieve their top speed for very long, so you should keep the runs short to begin with.

Picture of a Great Dane
Photo by Nathalie SPEHNER on Unsplash

As a starting point, we suggest taking your Great Dane on a short run with you if they are at least one years of age, this could be around a local field, or park. If they handle it well, you could look to increase the distance, but don’t force them to run or put pressure on them, as they may not be able to keep up. This will help your dog build the stamina required for longer runs.

Conclusion: How fast can a Great Dane run?

Great Danes are able to run up to speeds of 30 mph, with the average speed being 25 mph, and this makes them very fast runners. They also make excellent running partners for short distances.

However, despite the Great Danes’ fast running speeds, it’s important to note that they are unable to run at their maximum speed for very long, as they lack endurance and therefore, are only able to reach their top speeds for a short period of time. 

Given their big size and physical physique, they require a diet high in protein and fat, and excellent sources of this come from chicken, lamb, beef and fish, so it’s important that they receive a combination of nutritious meats as part of every meal.

But don’t underestimate the Great Dane, they can run very fast and will certainly outrun you (and most other breeds) on the beach!

Have fun and good luck!

How fast can a Great Dane run?
How fast can a Great Dane run by Miniature Friends
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