Meet the Blue Great Dane- A tale of beauty & strength

Giant balls of fluff with personalities to match, Great Danes are dogdom’s gentle giants that never fail to impress. These dogs are not just jumbo-sized in stature, but also in heart and character. A favorite among those seeking a big, beautiful, and friendly furry companion, Great Danes are the epitome of tall, handsome, and strong. They are gentle giants with big hearts and friendly personalities, always ready for a snuggle or a play session.

The colors of Great Dane coats vary, but one, in particular, stands out: the stunning shade of blue. With a glistening steel-blue gray coat, the Blue Great Dane is a true work of art. They come in different shades, from steel blue (silver blue) to charcoal, slate, and dusty blue-gray. It’s the steel blue that’s most sought-after, as it meets the breed standard. Their hazel blue eyes, blue nose, and blue paw pads only add to their charm, making them truly one-of-a-kind.

When you lay your eyes on a Blue Great Dane for the first time, you’ll be enchanted by its beauty and won’t be able to look away. These majestic creatures are truly one-of-a-kind. Stay tuned for more. 

Blue Great Dane: Overview

Height28 to 35 inches
Weight100 to 120 pounds
Coat typeA short, smooth, and strong single coat
Coat colorSteel blue, blue-gray, charcoal gray, ash-colored, or slate
Price$1,000 to $4,500
Lifespan8 to 10 years

As an admirer of Great Danes, I must say that their appearance never fails to impress me. Their massive size, muscular build, long legs, and deep chests give them a majestic look that draws so many people to them. But it’s not just their physical appearance that makes them so captivating—their floppy ears and almond-shaped eyes convey a kind and lively intelligence.

There are various Great Dane colors, including fawn, black, mantle, brindle, merle, harlequin, and, of course, the eye-catching blue; which has become particularly popular among fans.


“What does a Blue Great Dane look like?” I hear you ask. 

The blue Great Dane can be described as having a dark gray hue with a distinctly blue or purple tinge. While the color may lean more toward grey, some often describe it as a deep steel blue, silver blue, or gunmetal grey (a blend of grey and silver blue). All these descriptions are true, as the blue Dane can range in intensity from a steely blue-gray to charcoal, slate, or even powder blue-gray. A puppy’s coat may start off with a lighter shade that darkens with age, but the opposite, where the coat fades to a pale blue shade (powder blue) is also possible.

The GDCA has a standard for blue Great Danes; it states that they should be steel blue with no white markings. While other variants (mismarks) may disqualify them in the show ring, they can still participate in other events such as agility, obedience, hunting, rally, field trials, and others. The show ring is just one aspect, and even if a Blue Dane doesn’t meet the standard, it can still be appreciated as a spectator.

  • Eye Color: Blue Dane puppies are born with bright blue to green eyes at birth, but some may change to hazel-green, yellowish, or light brown shades after 3 to 6 months while others keep their striking blue eyes into adulthood.
  • Nose color: Ranges from deep blue-gray to pale blue-gray matching the skin color.
  • Nail Color: Dark blue. Blue mantles and blue merles may have light-colored nails
  • Skin Color: The skin color matches the color of the nose, foot pads, toenails, lips, and eye rims. This can be deep blue-gray to pale blue-gray.

Color variations

  • Steel Blue (gunmetal gray): These Great Danes are a rich, deep silver-blue shade often with a bluish shimmer. They are often mistaken for black Danes
  • Powder Blue (blue-gray): This is a paler washed-out greyish-blush that appears dusted with powder.
  • Blue Merle (dilute merle): Blue merles have random and irregular blue patches with jagged/torn edges on a lighter base color creating a marbled or mottled appearance. 
  • Blue Harlequin (spotted blue): Blue Harlequins consist of a white base color with random and irregular blue patches and spots all over the coat. This coloration is caused by a complex interaction between the merle, harlequin, and blue genes. 
  • Blue Brindle (striped): Occurs on brindle Danes with blue instead of black stripes and irregular light stripes (chevrons) on a fawn, golden, tan, or cream background. Some have a blue mask (melanistic mask) covering the muzzle to the ears. 
  • Blue Fawn– This is a fawn (tan to golden brown) Great Dane with a blue-gray mask (melanistic mask. if present). You can also tell a blue fawn by the color of its bluish-gray nose and yellowish-to-bluish eyes. 
  • Blue Tan point (blue and tan): A tan point has tan to creamish markings in specific parts; above the eyes, cheeks, chin, throat, chest, underbelly, legs, and under the tail. The rest of the body can be any shade of blue from a dark silver blue to a paler blue-gray color. 
  • Blue Mantle (blue and white): Blue mantles have white trims on the nose, chest, legs, and tail. The extent of white marking can range from minimal to extensive. White spotting varies significantly from virtually no white to virtually all white. The rest of the coat can range from silver-blue to blue-gray or any shade in between. 

Blue Coat Genetics (dilution)

The blue coat color in Great Danes is a result of a genetic mutation (genetic alteration), known as the dilution gene or “d” allele.

This mutation affects the production of melanin, the pigment responsible for the dog’s coat, skin, and other body parts. There are two types of melanin pigment: Pheomelanin (red/yellow) and eumelanin (black or brown). Both eumelanin and pheomelanin are affected by dilution, but pheomelanin is affected to a negligible degree and is less noticeable.

The mutation affects the gene melanophilin (MLPH), reducing the intensity of the melanin pigment eumelanin, which causes the black color to lighten to a blue-gray shade. The MLPH gene corresponds to the D-locus and is responsible for the normal transportation and distribution of melanin pigment. This mutation gets in the way of this pigmentation process, resulting in the production of less melanin pigment.

There are 3 known mutant variants of the MLPH gene; d1, d2, and d3. The d1 mutation is responsible for dilution in most breeds, followed by d2 and d3, which is yet to be detected in this breed. This mutation is a recessive trait, which means that both parents must have at least one copy of the dilution gene for an offspring to inherit two copies and be blue. The parents should either be blue or carriers of the dilution gene.

Non-dilution (capital D) is dominant to dilution, and any dog that is D/D or D/d at the D-locus will not be blue. Other genes and mutations that are yet to be fully understood may also be involved.

Other genes and modifiers may also be involved in dilution, and ongoing research aims to better understand this process.

Blue Great Dane Temperament

The temperament of a Great Dane, regardless of their color, is typically well-behaved, playful, affectionate, easy to train, friendly with other dogs, and good with children. They are affectionate, want to please their humans, and are loyal family pets that love to be around people.

However, they are giant dogs that require plenty of space and exercise. They should be socialized and trained from an early age to make them easier to handle, prevent aggression, and be gentle with small children.

Although color has no bearing on a dog’s temperament, how the dog is raised, trained, and socialized, and genetics shape the dog’s personality.

Finding a Blue Great Dane

Before getting a Blue Great Dane, it’s important to educate yourself about the breed’s characteristics, care needs, potential health, and behavioral issues. There are several options to find one:

  1. Finding a Breeder: Your best bet is getting in touch with reputable sources such as AKC, UKC, DRA, Great Dane Club of America, Great Dane Breeders and Owners Association, and NAPR for a list of recognized breeders. 
  2. Online Marketplaces: There are online marketplaces where sellers advertise their canines. Conduct thorough research on the seller before making a purchase, as not all sellers are reputable. It is not recommended to buy a puppy online, but initial contact can be made through the internet. 
  3. Meeting Other Owners: Attending dog shows or events such as Crufts (normally listed on official sites) provides the opportunity to meet breeders and owners, observe the dogs, and gain insight into the breed. Ask for referrals from other dog owners, veterinarians, or trainers for directions on decent breeders who are planning litters. 
  4. Adoption: Consider checking out local animal shelters and rescue organizations to see if they have Blue Great Danes available.

Obtain your charge from a certified and reputable breeder that performs health testing. Visit the breeder in person, and ask about their experience, health testing protocol, and references to previous buyers. Avoid any breeders claiming to have “rare” colors. 

During selection, prioritize the health and well-being of the dog rather than just its color. Pay attention to the pup’s ears, upper head, and back, which should be well covered with fur. If you notice bald spots, brittle and dull hair that easily breaks, or skin issues, it’s best to look elsewhere. The puppy should be healthy, energetic, and have bright, clear eyes.

 Blue Great Dane Breeders

Blue Dane Puppy price

A blue Great Dane can cost anywhere from $1,000 to $4,500 or more, depending on the breeder, pedigree, location, and so on. Dogs from champion lines or exceptional breeding tend to command a higher price. If you’re looking for a more affordable option, adoption may be the way to go, with fees typically around $150.

It’s also important to keep in mind that the cost of owning a Great Dane goes beyond just the initial purchase price. A mature Dane can weigh over 100 pounds, meaning that feeding and other expenses can add up quickly. 

Care needs

Before considering a Great Dane puppy, it is important to understand the responsibilities that come with owning one. They are high maintenance, need constant attention, and have expensive care requirements, including food, vet bills, grooming, and boarding.

  • Nutrition: To keep a Blue Great Dane healthy: feed a high-quality, balanced diet; with protein, fat, and healthy carbs with essential minerals, and vitamins. Give 2-3 daily portions and always have clean water available. Quality, natural, premium dog food, and elevated feeders are recommended.
  • Exercise: Puppies need low-intensity activities such as short walks, fetch, and games until they reach about 12 months as over-exertion could harm their growing joints. Increase to 45 min/day after maturity to prevent obesity and boredom. Include mental stimulation with puzzles and toys.
  • Grooming: Grooming helps maintain hygiene and builds a stronger bond. Brush coat twice a week to reduce shedding, distribute oils, and remove debris. Bathe once a month or when necessary and maintain ears, eyes, nails, teeth, and anal glands.
  • Training: Training should be positive and rewarding. Find what motivates your dog and use it as a reward for training. Establish yourself as the leader and socialize your dog by exposing it to various people, places, and animals. Training should start while they are still puppies.
  • Health care: Vet visits once or twice a year for worming medication, vaccines, and so on will keep the Great Dane healthy. To support healthy joints, consider giving glucosamine chondroitin supplements, costing around $80 a year. Always consult a vet before administering any medications.

Recognition & Registration

The AKC and UKC recognize the Blue Great Dane as a valid color variation for the breed. Other registries such as DRA, and NAPR also recognize this coloration. 

The steel blue Great Dane is preferred, while lighter shades or “mismarks,” including those with white markings, are considered a fault. Any “faults” automatically disqualify the dog from the show ring. 

How to register a Blue Great Dane

Registering a dog with the AKC or UKC provides proof of its purebred status and opens up various opportunities, such as participating in club-sponsored events like herding, field, hunting, weight pull, rally, and agility. An owner can choose to register the puppy with one or more clubs. 

The litter must be registered by the breeder for a pup to be eligible for full registration. 

To register a Blue Great Dane, fill out the application form with information such as the breed, name, gender, color, markings, and date of birth. In some cases, additional information, such as DNA testing, may be required. Select the registration option and make appropriate payments. 

Once the registration is processed you will be issued with a permanent registration certificate in approximately 6 weeks. 

Note that registration is separate from licensing, which may be required by local ordinances. Depending on your location, you may be required to buy a license and attach it to your dog’s collar. 

Showing a Blue Great Dane

To show a Blue Great Dane, follow these steps:

  1. Research requirements: Know the rules for the show you plan to enter.
  2. Conditioning: Exercise and feed your dog regularly for peak performance.
  3. Grooming: Keep your dog clean, hydrated, and well-groomed.
  4. Training: Obedience training is a must. Consider working with a professional handler or taking a class on how to present the dog in the ring. The dog should also be capable of handling themselves in the ring and not get distracted by other dogs, loud noises, or strangers. Your dog needs to know to gait (move) and stack (stand still) properly in the correct position.
  5. Find a show: Sign up in advance for a show open to Blue Great Danes and bring the required documents. Your dog should meet certain standards to be eligible for showing.
  6. Presentation in the ring: Confidently present your dog and allow the judge to examine them. The dog needs to remain stacked as he is examined by the judge

Start early with socialization and training to help your dog get ready for a show. Enroll in a ringcraft class to learn the proper skills and gain socialization experience.

If you’re thinking about a show career for your Great Dane, it’s best to start early. It is never too early to start


Are blue Great Danes healthy?

There are diverse opinions on this particular question. Some individuals believe that dilution could potentially cause skin and coat issues, while others don’t. 

As in most things, the truth lies somewhere in between.  

Blue Great Danes, like all dogs, can experience health problems. While the dilute gene responsible for their blue coat color is not necessarily a cause of health problems, blue Great Danes may be susceptible to color dilution alopecia (CDA).

CDA can cause hair loss, hair thinning, bald patches, chronic skin infections, and itchy skin but is not life-threatening. Hair loss is due to the accumulation of pigments at the hair shaft, causing it to become brittle and break off as it grows through the skin. 

However, only a few blue Great Danes develop this problem, most do not. Signs may not show up until the dog is around 6 months old, but a Blue Dane can develop the condition later in life.

If you have a blue Great Dane, keep an eye on its coat condition and consult your veterinarian if you observe any signs of CDA.

Note: CDA can be managed with good coat care, including regular baths and supplementing the diet with fish oils and eggs. 

Is a Blue Great Dane rare?

Blue Great Danes are not as rare as some may think, although certain shades such as Blue Merle and Blue Harlequin are rarer. In any case, it would be best to avoid any seller that advertises their dog as rare.

Do Blue Great Danes have blue eyes?

Blue Great Dane puppies are typically born with bright blue eyes that change to amber (yellow) as they age. This change in eye color starts at around 12 months of age. Some puppies experience eye color change to shades of green, hazel, or light brown after 3 to 6 months, while others retain their blue eyes into adulthood.

However, Blue Harlequin and Blue Merle Great Danes may keep their blue eyes throughout their life.  

To Wrap Up

A Blue Great Dane is not just a dog, but a magnificent creation that demands respect, admiration, and responsible ownership.

To provide them with the proper care, exercise, and nutrition, one must understand their traits and create the right environment. Owning one comes with responsibilities, just like any other breed.

But with proper research, a reputable breeder, and a commitment to providing the necessary training and socialization, a Blue Great Dane can make a wonderful family addition for years to come.

Do you have anything to add or any burning questions? Share them with us in the comment section below. 

There you go, WooF!!