Great Danoodle

Linda Simon
Dr Linda Simon (MVB MRCVS, University College Dublin)
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Also known as the Great Daneoodle or the Danepoo, the Great Danoodle is a larger than life designer dog with a gentle temperament and an in-built desire to please their owner. While not as tall as the Great Dane, they still grow to impressive heights and have limbs that are remarkably long and muscular. Their wavy coat, similar to its Poodle parent, can look a little shaggy when allowed to grow out – a trait that only adds to their charming appearance.

Biddable and quick to learn, owners should see quick results in training sessions. These big dogs do not need a huge amount of exercise, but do enjoy the chance to be outdoors. Inquisitive, handsome and good-natured, they are certain to be one of the most popular pooches in the local dog park!

About & History

Though it’s true that the Great Danoodle may sound more like a famous magician from the 19th century, it is in fact an emerging breed of ‘designer dog’ that has been engineered by mixing the large Great Dane with the ever-popular Poodle. This is quite a rare hybrid dog that is not commonly seen and only exists in small numbers. It has likely only been in existence for a decade or two and we expect to see its population size increase slowly but steadily.

The Great Dane

The Great Dane is renowned for being the world’s tallest dog, which is quite a prestigious title indeed. Unfortunately, being so tall has meant that many Great Danes have short lifespans and suffer from a number of size related medical conditions, including joint disease and heart disease. The Great Dane is an ancient dog that has existed for over two thousand years, though the original Great Dane would have been shorter and more in proportion than its modern day counterpart.

Their ancestors include the English Mastiff and the Irish Wolfhound and they were traditionally kept as hunters, pursuing large prey, including boar and deer. They were also allowed to sleep in the bedrooms of their owners, offering protection from any night-time intruders.

The Poodle

With their sparkling personalities, gentle temperaments and undeniable good looks, it is little wonder that the Poodle is the number one breed of dog used in the creation of designer dogs. Though technically the Miniature or Toy Poodle could be used to breed a Great Danoodle, it is the Standard Poodle that is generally used due to their size.

Poodles are best known for their athletic, elegant bodies and intelligence, having been used in the past to hunt in water and retrieve prey. The Poodle most likely descended from the Barbet – a French breed with a similar curly coat. They enjoyed great popularity within France in the 1700s and were owned by royalty and aristocrats alike. Poodles make excellent show dogs and have won ‘Best in Show’ at Crufts on no less than six occasions.


It is no easy task predicting what a cross-breed will look like, as there can be a great deal of variation with some inheriting more of their Poodle parent genes and others taking after their Great Dane parent in appearance. As a general rule, Great Danoodles are quite tall, measuring from 56cm to 76cm and will weigh anything between 31kg and 45kg. They often retain the elegant silhouette of the Poodle and carry themselves with pride.

They have a large skull with a long muzzle and dark pensive eyes that give them a somber appearance. Their floppy, triangular ears hang to the side of their face, rarely reaching past their chin. Their limbs are long and straight and they should have a good abdominal tuck-up and a long tail that may curl at the tip.

The coat of the Great Danoodle comes in all sorts of different types and may be straight, wavy or curly. Most have a fur length that is short or medium. Coat colours are wide ranging and include: white, black, grey, blue, fawn, cream and silver. Though dogs can have solid coats, many will have multi-colour coats with different patches and markings.

Character & Temperament

A confident dog with a laid-back personality, the Great Danoodle is a breed that enjoys interacting with people and is always keen to please, happiest when their owner is happy. Their intelligence means that they can make a well-trained and sensible house companion that will listen attentively to any cue given. Most can be taught to live happily alongside children and other dogs but it can be difficult to stop them chasing certain pets. such as rabbits and cats, so it can be best to keep them away from these smaller animals.

While the Great Danoodle is usually relaxed within their own environment, they do make good watch dogs and will make their owner aware of any new arrival with a powerful, guttural bark. They are rarely hostile and are too sweet-tempered to make it as guard dogs.

Affectionate and kind with not only their own family but practically anyone who shows them attention, these dogs enjoy having company and dislike being left alone for too long. In fact, if left to their own devices for long periods of time, the Great Danoodle may well develop separation anxiety and start to chew things up, causing a mess when no-one is home. In order to combat this, owners should make a big effort to ensure there is normally someone at home.


With brains to spare and a real eagerness to do what is asked of them, the Great Danoodle makes a wonderful training partner that learns quickly and is very responsive. Quick to master basic cues, owners will find that they can soon move on to more complex training techniques and can expect their dog to be able to participate in a wide range of canine activities, including Flyball, Frisbee and Agility.

The intelligence of the Great Danoodle can be a double-edged sword as it means they are prone to boredom if not mentally stimulated. They need plenty of attention and require training sessions that are challenging and not repetitive.


Owners should always try to educate themselves on the particular health conditions that their dog is prone to and should ensure to buy their puppies from reputable breeders who use screening tests and breed sensibly, rather than simply for profit.

Bloat (GDV)

While it is not yet fully understood why some dogs develop bloat and others do not, there is definitely a link between having a deep, narrow chest and falling ill with a twisted stomach. Vets also suspect that eating a meal and then exercising can contribute to the condition. When a dog’s stomach twists and fills up with food and gas, they will quickly become uncomfortable and will pace around the room, panting and retching.

Owners will notice that their abdomen is expanding and becoming visibly ‘bloated’. Immediate veterinary intervention, which will include stabilisation of the patient and a procedure to remove the gas and untwist the stomach, is essential for the survival of any patient.

Hip Dysplasia

Poorly formed hips have a genetic component so it is now understood that adult dogs with hip dysplasia should be neutered and should certainly not be bred from. Hip Dysplasia leads to progressive mobility issues and pain and greatly impacts an animal’s quality of life.

Dilated Cardiomyopathy (DCM)

DCM is a heart condition that affects the cardiac muscle and results in weak contractions and a poor movement of blood around the body. The enlarged chambers of the heart are not efficient and the valves will gradually become leaky.

Dogs go on to develop heart failure and fluid accumulation within the body. Sadly, it is not uncommon for dogs to pass away suddenly from this condition due to abnormal heart rhythms.

Exercise and Activity Levels

With moderate to high exercise requirements (depending on the individual), most will be content with a daily hike in the local park and several play sessions during the day. Caution is advised when exercising growing pups, as over-exercising can lead to joint issues down the line.


The coat of the Great Danoodle is a low-shedding coat but there are never any guarantees when it comes to fur and some may lose more than others, especially during warm weather. Their coat should be brushed twice weekly to remove any tangles and/or debris. Their floppy ears should be cleaned out once weekly if prone to wax, which can be done with an ear cleaning liquid and some cotton wool.

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