The world’s biggest dog, a 7-foot great Dane named Freddy, might just be able to lay claim to another world record. The giant canine reached his eighth birthday on May 17 and is now believed to be the oldest living great Dane on record.
“Freddy was actually the runt of the litter,” the dog’s owner Claire Stoneman, from Weeting in Norfolk, England, told Caters. “[N]ow he’s got a Guinness World Record and is set to reach a second.”
Freddy measures well over 7 feet tall when standing on his hind legs and weighs a whopping 210 pounds (approx. 95 kg). The gentle giant, who is popular in his neighborhood, was treated to a celebration for what might very well be a milestone birthday alongside his younger K9 sister, Fleur, who comes from the same litter.
Claire’s birthday bash for her 8-year-old dogs included Freddy and Fleur’s favorite treats and cuddly toys, balloons, and even a doggy cake. Perhaps best of all, the party was attended by Freddy’s biggest fan, 7-year-old neighbor Erin Manley.
Second-grader Erin, who is growing up with dogs of her own, does not know life without Freddy. “She isn’t phased [sic] by his height at all and has always been close to him,” Erin’s father, Peter, explained. “He has always been a gentle giant and I knew he would be fine with her.”
“She cuddles up to him on the settee to watch television and he just towers over her,” Peter continued, “but they have a very sweet relationship.” Erin, her father explained, even calls Claire on the telephone to speak to Freddy; sometimes, Erin believes she can hear the dog mumbling, “I love you.”
A 7-foot 210-pound great Dane is not a low-maintenance house pet. Even with his record-breaking credentials, Freddy requires a lot of expert care and attention, including daily walks and large nutritious meals with lots of fresh meat.
“I tend to take them out for a walk early in the morning so we don’t get smothered by people,” Claire explained to Caters. “Everyone is always shocked by their size and some people are intimidated; they say it’s like I’m walking a horse down the street!”
The dogs’ typical daily diet, said Claire, is 2 pounds (approx.907 g) each of minced beef in the morning, roast chicken and kibble in the evening, and “a lot of dog treats” throughout the day. Freddy’s food consumption alone sets Claire back a hefty 500 pounds (US$623) every month.
The dog owner admitted that her record-breaking pooch is “extremely spoilt.”
Despite their size and voracious appetites, Claire maintains that both her great Danes are kind-natured and gentle. “[They] put their paws on you if they know you’re upset,” she said. “They love cuddling, and I sleep with them on two mattresses in the living room at night.”
Freddy claimed the title of World’s Biggest Dog in the Guinness World Records in 2016. His height was officially recognized as 7 feet, 6 inches tall when standing on his hind legs.
The world record keepers have not officially named Freddy as the World’s Oldest great Dane; however, representatives have confirmed that Guinness is not aware of any older dog of that breed.
According to Caters, Claire has imminent plans to apply for official recognition of Freddy’s milestone age.
“I’m very worried about Freddy and know that I’m lucky to still have him at this age,” she said. “I could never have children, so Freddy and Fleur are definitely my babies.”