A mantle Great Dane may be intimidating to look at because it belongs to one of the biggest dog breeds in the world.
However, once you look past their sheer size, you will find Great Danes are gentle giants at heart and some of the friendliest animals you may encounter. In fact, Scooby-Doo and Astro from The Jetsons, two of the most famous dogs in cartoons, are Great Danes.
Mantle Great Danes are just like their solid-colored counterparts, but they have distinct markings that make them even more interesting and unique. Here are some great things to know about them.
What Is a Mantle Great Dane?
A mantle Great Dane is a type of Great Dane, which is a dog breed that originated from Germany.
Also known as the German Mastiff, a Great Dane is regal-looking with its majestic height, muscled body, and glossy short hair. Mantle Great Danes differ from regular Great Danes with the color combination of its coat.
Mantle Great Danes are a black and white version of the Great Dane. They have a predominantly black coat throughout their bodies with white spots surrounding the neck and chest. They often look like they are wearing black blankets, and the markings are similar to a Boston Terrier.
They can stand around 25 to 35 inches tall, and although females being on the relatively shorter end, they are still considered the tallest dogs in the world. Healthy mantle Great Danes can weigh between 110 to 175 pounds.
Mantle Great Dane Color Combinations
While most mantle Great Danes are black and white, alternate combinations come up when other colors of the Great Dane have white mantles on their necks and chests.
These occurrences result in ‘blue mantles’ with steel gray coats, ‘merle mantles’ that have a predominantly light gray coat with black spots, and ‘fawn mantles’ in which the fur is brown.
It’s important to note that these color combinations are not truly mantle despite the similarities in their markings. They are classified instead as mismarked.
Additionally, these combinations are officially registered in the American Kennel Club (AKC), but they are not considered standard colors and cannot be shown in conformation shows.
The Mantle Great Dane
Blue Mantle Great Dane (mismarked)
Merle Mantle Great Dane (mismarked)
Fawn Mantle Great Dane (mismarked)
Do Kennel Clubs Recognize the Mantle Great Dane?
The AKC officially recognizes the mantle Great Dane, describing their standards as ‘black and white with a solid black blanket over the body.’
Further criteria include a black skull with a white muzzle, a white chest, white forelegs and hind legs (whole or partially), and a white-tipped black tail. Other preferences, though optional, are a white blaze, a full white collar, and a small white marking in its blanket.
Other color combinations besides the black have their respective registration codes under the AKC but are not considered standard and therefore cannot enter conformation dog shows.
RECOMMENDED READING: American vs. European Great Dane: What’s the Difference?
Are Mantle Great Danes Rare?
As one of the standard colors of a Great Dane, mantle varieties are frequently bred for showing. While solid-colored Great Danes are more common, mantle Great Danes are not considered rare.
However, the patterns on mantle Great Danes may vary from one another. That makes it rare to have two of them look exactly alike.
Mantle Great Dane Genetics: How to Breed a Mantle Great Dane?
A mantle Great Dane may result from breeding two mantles or a mantle with a harlequin, which is another type of the Great Dane. A harlequin has a predominantly white base color and black patches all over its body and is often mistaken for a dalmatian.
Interestingly, breeding two harlequins yields greater chances of mantle Great Dane puppies than harlequins.
Mantle Great Dane Temperament: Do Mantle Great Danes Make Good Family Dogs?
Mantle Great Danes are known as gentle giants for a reason. Despite being one of the biggest dog breeds in the world, they are mild-mannered and known for being very friendly towards people and other animals. They rarely get aggressive unless they are not socialized properly.
They can also be very playful and affectionate, making them a great addition to a home. They will thrive in average-sized or large families as they’re very sociable and crave companionship.
Since they’re such big animals, obedience training is a must at an early age, so they don’t go out of control, especially when they’re taken outdoors.
However, owning a mantle Great Dane requires a bit of upkeep. Though their coats are short and easy to clean, they have a tendency to drool all over, so you have to clean up after them frequently to maintain a clean household.
Mantle Great Dane Health Issues: Are Mantle Great Danes Healthy Dogs?
A downside of having large dogs is a shorter lifespan, and mantle Great Danes are no exception. They live on an average of 8-10 years, though regular exercise and a healthy diet may significantly improve their lives.
It’s also important to be aware of health issues that are common to mantle Great Danes. Being aware of them early on may help in caring for them, so they stay with you longer.
Here are five ailments that are often seen in mantle Great Danes:
- Hip Dysplasia: A condition that refers to an abnormality in a dog’s hip socket, which can cause arthritis and lameness; this is often genetic, especially in large dog breeds, although it may also be affected by environmental factors. It can be prevented or alleviated by maintaining a healthy weight proportionate to the dog’s size, regular exercise, and medication.
- Gastric Dilatation and Volvulus (GDV): Also known as canine bloat, this ailment often develops in dogs with deep chests, mantle Great Danes included. A dog’s stomach can get enlarged with so much gas, often accompanied by erratic behavior. It can become fatal when the stomach gets twisted, and the dog is not rushed to the vet on time.
- Osteosarcoma: Giants dogs such as the mantle Great Dane are more susceptible to osteosarcoma or bone cancer. Although it is often genetic, it is more common in dogs that weigh above 80 pounds. The tumor in their bone can be painful and render them inactive and lame, accompanied by appetite loss.
- Panosteitis: Panosteitis is an inflammation in the long bones of the legs. This often develops in puppies of giant canine breeds, starting at around five months old. It usually self-resolves before the dog is two years old.
- Dilated Cardiomyopathy: Mantle Great Danes, being a large dog breed, is at risk for developing dilated cardiomyopathy or an enlarged heart. This condition decreases the heart’s ability to pump blood, which will eventually lead to heart failure.
Mantle Great Dane Price: Do They Cost More Than Other Great Danes?
In general, an AKC-registered Great Dane puppy may cost between $1,500 to $3,000. The prices vary according to several factors, including the pedigree, gender, and especially the coat’s color.
Since the mantle Great Dane is a standard variety, it may cost the same as other Great Danes when they are readily available, though prices may go up in places they’re rarer.
You can also adopt a puppy from your local animal shelter for free or for a minimal fee. However, you might not be able to choose a mantle Great Dane specifically unless one is already waiting for a forever home there.
Owning a mantle Great Dane requires a lot of financial commitment even past the initial purchase price. As they are giant dogs, you also have to buy everything made for their size. Here are some things you need to prepare when you have a new mantle Great Dane:
- Dog food and treats
- Food and water bowls
- Collar with a dog tag
- A crate or a bed
- Flea and tick prevention
- Chew toys
- Grooming essentials
- Obedience training sessions
As with any other new dog, expenses will be higher in the first year. A mantle Great Dane puppy will set you back at least $1,000 in the first year, then at least $500 in subsequent years.
Places to Find Mantle Great Dane Puppies for Sale
If you’ve decided to bring home a mantle Great Dane puppy, the Great Dane Club of America (GDCA) has a directory of reputable breeders. From here, you can find one close to you and visit their litters.
The GDCA also has a directory of rescue organizations all over the United States where you can get Great Danes.
Other places to find mantle Great Danes include:
- AKC Marketplace – A directory of breeders all over the USA who have AKC-standard Great Dane puppies, including mantles, for sale.
- Rose Great Danes – A kennel of AKC-registered Great Danes based in Colorado, USA. Having raised Great Danes since 1995, they breed mantles, harlequins, and merles.
- Sunny Farm Danes – A small hobby breeder of AKC-registered Great Danes since 2007. Based in northern Michigan, they release only 1-2 litters a year.
- Old Mission Great Danes – Another breeder based in Michigan, they breed champion dogs that have been exhibited and won awards in AKC and UKC conformation shows.
Frequently Asked Questions
Do Mantle Great Danes Shed?
Contrary to popular belief, short-haired dogs like the mantle Great Dane do shed, although they do so minimally all year round, particularly in the spring season.
For this reason, they are very low maintenance when it comes to grooming. Even then, it’s crucial to brush their coats at least once a week and keep their nails filed down.
How Many Great Dane Colors Are There?
The AKC, the biggest registry of purebred dogs, considers nine colors to be the breed standard for Great Danes:
- Black & White
Here are some of the standard colors of the Great Dane:
Additionally, they recognize eight colors and have designated registration codes, though these colors cannot be shown in conformation shows.
- Blue & White
- Blue Brindle
- Chocolate & White
- Chocolate Brindle
- Mantle Merle
What Is the Rarest Color for a Great Dane?
Among the many beautiful colors of the Great Dane, white is the rarest. Though the AKC officially recognizes it, white Great Danes are more prone to health issues and congenital defects, including blindness, deafness, skin cancer, and atopic dermatitis.
These defects are often the result of improper breeding between two Great Danes that carry the merle gene, which is a common mistake when breeding two harlequins.
While healthy white Great Danes can be produced, most reputable breeders exercise caution in breeding them, which results in their rarity.
Final Thoughts: Is the Mantle Great Dane Right for You?
A mantle Great Dane would make a great pet. Its even temperament belies its giant size, and you’ll find a loving and playful dog that will be a faithful companion for years to come. The black blanket over a white look makes it look distinctive, so you’re sure no other dog looks precisely the same.
Bringing home a mantle Great Dane requires a lot of preparation and commitment. It’s essential to have enough room for the dog to move around and get regular exercise to stay healthy and lessen the risk of common health issues.
Obedience training and socialization are necessary to keep your pet under control, especially when you take it out for walks.
As a sociable canine, it naturally craves companionship and will thrive in a family that can give it the attention it needs. It’s easy to maintain its looks, but it will require some looking after to keep your household clean since it tends to slobber.
When raised well and cared for, a mantle Great Dane will reward you with loyalty and affection that will make it a memorable family pet to have.