You may have heard the term ‘Great Doodle’ before when referring to this particular mix, one that combines the Great Dane and the Poodle. Sometimes referred to as a Danoodle, Danedoodle, or a Danepoo, this particular hybrid showcases the best possible traits of both the Great Dane and the Poodle in a big, lovable package.
Despite their larger size, however, these dogs can be quite gentle when compared to dogs of similar size. This may explain why these particular hybrids are enjoying such a rise in popularity recently while also explaining why they are so consistent in their behavior.
To better understand what Great Doodles are all about, we should first delve into their origins and availability. Needless to say, people breed these hybrids more often these days on account of their peculiar features and due to how well they adjust to family life.
Table of Contents
What Is A Great Doodle?
This interesting hybrid spawns from two respectable dog breeds – the Great Dane and the Poodle. While the Great Dane has a history going back for thousands of years and can be traced back to the ancient Assyrians, the Poodle was first bred at some point in the 14th century to help with hunting and retrieving waterfowl.
In many ways, both the Great Dane and the Poodle have been used for hunting at some point or another, so a hybrid between the two is bound to share many of their traits. In this regard, you will find both of the parent breeds to be good listeners and willing to obey commands at a moment’s notice.
Although the Great Doodle looks unlike any other dog in regards to physical characteristics, you can expect the dog to be very similar to the Poodle in its behavior. At the same time, the dog tends to be larger than a Poodle on account of its Great Dane heritage.
Given the fact that it is a mixed breed, you can expect the Great Doodle to take more after one of its parents depending on gene strength. One thing is for certain with these types of dogs, they are all larger than your average pooch, although with a bit of range.
Bear in mind that when we talk about a Great Doodle as a general term, we only refer to hybrids achieved by mixing a Dane with a Standard Poodle. If the dog is a result of mixing a Dane with any mixed-breed Poodle, then the results may differ to some extent.
Height & Weight
You need to understand that although these are large dogs by nature, their actual height can range between 28 to 32 inches in height. This mostly depends on which parent they take after, as Great Doodles that take after the Dane are bound to be taller than those that take after the Poodle.
In regards to weight, these dogs can weigh anywhere between 90 and up to 175 lbs depending on which parent they take after. It is also known that males tend to grow larger than females, both in terms of height and weight, so you can expect a bit of range there as well.
Coat & Colors
On average, a Great Doodle will have a medium coat of hair, a coat that can either be the curly and corded coat of a Poodle or a short, smooth coat like the Great Dane. It seems to be impossible to determine how a litter of pups will turn out beforehand in regards to coat type in this respect.
As for the color, an average Great Doodle will either be yellow-gold, black, white, blue, gray, silver, apricot, brown, or cream depending on genetic markers. In some cases, some of these dogs can be born with black markings although this is quite rare by most standards.
Great Doodle Personality & Temperament
You need to understand that despite the size, a Great Doodle can be expected to be rather friendly and people-oriented. This is because both of the parent breeds are known for their affinity for humans and their inherent desire to please.
Due to their size, the dog is likely to make a small problem worse just by being clumsy, which is why careful training and socialization are advised from a very early age. Even so, it is unlikely for the dog to engage in aggressive behavior if presented with other options.
It is also important to remember that because of how people-oriented these dogs are, they need constant companionship from family members or a dog sitter. Failure to provide the dog with adequate companionship may result in separation anxiety and thus, in causing the dog to be unruly and anxious.
Considering the rich history of both the Poodle and the Great Dane, you can expect a Great Doodle to possess quite a hunter instinct. This means that it will sometimes give chase after animals and even humans if not properly trained and socialized.
Mind you, they might also chase smaller animals just for the fun of it, even if the dog doesn’t have any behavioral issues to speak of. This seems to be coded into their DNA, which is understandable considering that both of the parent breeds have a history of being used as hunting dogs.
As mentioned before, the dogs are also likely to suffer from anxiety on account of how sociable they are around people. For this reason, they might also become a little too territorial, especially if other dogs get a little too close for comfort.
It needs to be said that by most accounts, the Great Doodle is quite a gentle giant. So unless something goes amiss in its training, the dog is almost guaranteed to be friendly and kind. This, of course, also depends on how well you socialize the dog as a pup.
You also need to understand that because of how people-oriented the dog is, it might get overwhelmed by anxiety and giddiness from time to time, especially when seeing a friendly face. Because of the dog’s large size, this might lead to unexpected scratches and small injuries, especially if the dog interacts with children or vulnerable adults.
This isn’t to say that the dog is known to cause harm, quite the contrary. You will notice that it may take some time, but that it will most certainly learn to refrain from getting too excited, especially if you reinforce that behavior verbally over time.
Is A Great Doodle A Good Family Dog?
Most certainly. Provided that you take the time to properly train and socialize the dog, you can expect no real issues in the long run. That said, it is a fairly large and physically imposing dog by most standards, so any outburst the dog may have is sure to leave a mark.
Due to how much space the dog needs on a daily basis, you will also find it necessary to take the dog for a walk more often than other, smaller dogs. If you do manage to get its exercising needs in check, however, you will be pleased to discover that this gentle giant makes an excellent family dog.
Caring For A Great Doodle
The Great Doodle is a decent watchdog by nature and tends to bark from time to time when strangers are nearby. In this respect, you need to make sure that you have the right environment for the dog to thrive in, as it requires constant supervision.
A Danedoodle also requires a high-quality dry dog food diet in order to maintain a healthy figure. With these types of dogs, there is always a risk of overfeeding them or that they develop digestive issues as a result of sub-standard food.
A Great Doodle requires a relaxed and temperate exercise routine, the type that you can guarantee it won’t put too much strain on the dog’s long bones. On average, you should take the dog out for a walk 2-3 times a day and make sure that the walks do not involve too much running.
It might seem counter-intuitive considering the dog’s heritage but it does seem that this particular hybrid doesn’t do well in an active family. That said, make sure that the dog spends enough time outdoors either playing or training.
Grooming & Shedding
The grooming requirements of a Great Doodle depend largely on which parent the dog takes after. If the pup inherits the Great Dane’s short coat, grooming can be kept to a minimum. If, however, the dog takes after the Poodle, then a daily brush down is required to keep the fur from matting.
Speaking o which, Great Doodles that inherit the Poodle’s coat tend to shed moderately throughout the year. In this respect, you can choose to trim the coat to reduce the dog’s brushing/grooming needs. Even so, you still have to deal with the dog’s nail clipping and bathing, which may prove difficult sometimes with such a large dog.
Feeding & Diet
This is a large dog that requires a healthy diet and everything that goes with it. You are advised to feed the dog a diet revolving around dry food, just as long as the food has a high-calorie content and can be mixed from time to time with kibble.
You are advised to never feed the dog more than twice a day and to keep human food to a minimum. You may, of course, indulge in giving him the occasional treat from time to time but remember that large breeds are very prone to obesity if strict feeding patterns are not followed on a schedule.
Known Health Problems
It is common for hybrid dogs to inherit health issues from their parent breeds and the Great Doodle is no different. Among them, this particular mix can suffer from joint dysplasia, epilepsy, patellar luxation, bloating, skin issues, Von Willebrand’s disease, or Cushing’s disease.
For the most part, however, the Great Doodle is known to suffer from very few health risks if properly taken care of and if it’s kept on a healthy diet. Not just that but it is less likely for a hybrid to develop serious health issues than a disease-prone purebred.
How To Train A Great Doodle
I mentioned the dog’s territorial instincts earlier and this is definitely something you will need to consider when training the dog. Ideally, you want to start when the dog is fairly young and to employ as much positive reinforcement as possible.
It is also very important that you focus on the dog’s tendency to give chase to small animals as this may cause it to harm other pets by accident. At the same time, refrain from encouraging the dog to manifest any aggressive or potentially territorial behavior.
Quick Breed Summary Table
|Size||28 to 30 inches|
|Weight||90 to 170 lbs|
|Lifespan||8 to 13 years|
|Color||Silver, blue, white, cream, brown, or yellow-gold|
|Coat||Short and smooth or curly and corded|
|Shedding & Grooming||Little to moderate depending on heritage|
|Temperament||Friendly, intelligent, territorial|
|With Other Pets||Not that great with smaller pets|
|People Skills||They love being around people|
|With Children||Require supervision around small children|
|Exercise Needs||Daily walks 2-3 times a day|
|Food||High-calorie dry food twice a day|
|Known Health Problems||Eye problems, epilepsy, or bloating|
All Things Considered
Because of how large a dog the Great Doodle is, you should probably not get one if it’s your first time owning a dog. If you do, however, have experience handling dogs, then rest assured that the Great Doodle makes for an excellent companion if all its needs are met.
As long as you can see to the dog’s exercise, feeding, and grooming needs, you are guaranteed to gain a trusty companion and protector. After all, Great Doodles are people-oriented dogs by nature and love to spend time around people they like.