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Zeus the Great Dane—the tallest dog in the world—dies at the age of three

Zeus, the infamous Great Dane awarded the 2022 title of “tallest dog” by the Guinness World Records, has died. The majestic pup, who stood at an impressive 3 feet, 5.18 inches tall, perished from pneumonia. According to USA Today, the illness came on the heels of surgery for bone cancer.

World’s tallest dog diagnosed with bone cancer

Zeus, who hailed from Bedford, Texas, was only 3 years old at the time of his death on Tuesday. His passing followed several health struggles. First, in August, doctors diagnosed Zeus with bone cancer. Then, they recommended amputation of his right front leg.

Zeus’ dog mom, Brittany Davis, started a GoFundMe during the pup’s health struggles to pay for vet bills. Her goal was $8,000. She raised $12,000.

So, on Sept. 7, Zeus underwent surgery.

“He did so well,” Davis said in an update after the procedure. “He’s awake from the anesthesia and on a bunch of pain medicine. He will stay for the weekend, but he’s doing very well, and everyone loves him already.”

Dog experiences post-surgical complications

VIDEO: Great Dane is the World's Tallest Dog - Guinness World Records
Guinness World Records

However, only three days later, doctors called Davis. They told her Zeus was exhibiting complications.

“They noticed he didn’t want to eat and was more lethargic,” Davis wrote in an Instagram post. “He had a slight fever last night, which has cleared, but he’s still lethargic. He also has some bluing around his mouth.”

Veterinary staff did blood work and chest X-rays. They diagnosed the dog with aspiration pneumonia, meaning the pup had bacteria and fluid in his lungs. A round of antibiotics did not work.

Though Zeus “fought hard,” unfortunately, “the pneumonia was just too much,” Davis wrote.

Thankfully, she was able to hold Zeus as he crossed the rainbow bridge. Zeus was pronounced dead on Tuesday morning.

“Our baby boy is gone. Our hearts are broken,” Davis wrote.

Despite the outcome of the surgery, the dog mom expressed gratitude that Zeus had “the absolute best doctors.”

“He is not in pain anymore,” Davis wrote. “He is resting peacefully.”


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