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Nicole Cosgrove

June 18, 2021

Labradane dog resting on grass

The Labradane is a mix of the Labrador Retriever and the Great Dane. He is a giant mixed breed also known as a Labrador Retriever/Great Dane mix. This hybrid dog should live for between 8 to 12 years and has talents in watchdog, guarding and obedience. He has the enthusiasm and bounciness of the Labrador packaged into a Dane’s size and is quite the adorable dog as long as you have room for him!

The Labradane is a great dog for an active family who live in a big house and have a large yard as he needs room to be able to move around without knocking things over. Training will be key to help control him as his size means he could just use brute force to get his way! He is super friendly, enthusiastic about everything and his love of you, the family and life is contagious. He will certainly reward you with his devotion if you offer him your love and affection.

Here is the Labradane at a Glance
Average height 24 to 34 inches
Average weight 100 to 180 pounds
Coat type Short, dense, shiny
Hypoallergenic? No
Grooming Needs Low to Moderate
Shedding Average during shedding seasons, light other times
Brushing Daily when shedding season, twice a week at other times
Touchiness Moderately sensitive
Tolerant to Solitude? For short times, can suffer from separation anxiety if for long periods
Barking Rare to occasional
Tolerance to Heat Moderate to good
Tolerance to Cold Moderate to good
Good Family Pet? Excellent
Good with Children? Very good with socialization though better with older children due to size
Good with other Dogs? Very good with socialization
Good with other Pets? Moderate to good. Needs socialization but still may not be a fan of cats!
A roamer or Wanderer? Low to average
A Good Apartment Dweller? No, far too large
Good Pet for new Owner? Good to very good if ready to handle the size
Trainability Easy to train, should learn quickly
Exercise Needs Very high
Tendency to get Fat Above average
Major Health Concerns Development issues, bloat, bone cancer, surgical issues, heart problems, OCD, eye problems, epilepsy
Other Health Concerns Hip and elbow dysplasia, skin problems, cold tail, ear infections
Life Span 8 to 12 years
Average new Puppy Price $250 to $550
Average Annual Medical Expense $485 to $600
Average Annual Non-Medical Expense $575 to $700

Where does the Labradane come from?

This is not a purebred but a hybrid. Mixed breeds have been around for as long as dogs have, but usually they were the result of accidental breeding and some look down on them for being mutts. In the 1990s a trend began though to deliberately breed two purebreds to create a mixed breed. Called designer dogs by some, the intention with those breeders who care about their work was to create dogs with the best of both parents. However there are no breeding standards with these dogs, a lot of bad breeders and puppy mills produce puppies just to profit from this trend, and you cannot really predict what aspects a mixed dog has from their parents. Even in one litter the offspring can vary in looks and personality. To get a feel for what goes into them we can can take a look at the parents since a lot of designer dogs have very little information put there about where and why they originated.

The Great Dane

The Great Dane’s ancestors can be found on artifacts from ancient Egypt dated as old as 3000BC, and in Babylonia and in Tibet. It is thought that the Assyrians brought their dogs too these places when they were trading with them. They were also then traded to the Greeks and Romans who bred them with other Mastiff like dogs. They were once called Boar hounds as their purpose was to hunt boar and other large animals. In the 1500s their name changed in some areas who began to call them English Dogges. Elsewhere in Europe though they were called various names. In the 1700s a visiting Frenchman to Denmark saw the Danish version of the dog and called them Grand Danois and the name stuck despite the Danes having nothing to do with the breed’s development. It was German breeders who took the aggressive and large dog and bred him into a dog who was much more gentle with a sweet disposition.

Today when bred by good breeders the Great Dane is one of the best, gentle and sweet natured dogs you can find. He is affectionate, great with children and eager to please making him easy to train which is important with his size. He loves the company of people and will always be where there are others or at the center of family activity. He is friendly even to strangers but he does still have a strong protective side and should he think you are a threat he will respond. You may have to early on dissuade him of the notion he can be a lap dog as he loves to cuddle!

The Labrador Retriever

The Labrador Retriever is a Canadian dog by origin coming from Newfoundland. Bred in the 1700s to help fishermen retrieve fish, hooks, lines and offer companionship at home with the family, he was then called St John’s dogs. Visitors to Canada saw his excellent nature and work ethic and brought him to England around the 1830s to be used in hunting. It was here they were first called Labs. By the late 1800s the dog was actually gone from his native land due to breeding regulations that were to strict. However he still thrived in England which is what saved the breed. While he came over to the US before World War I it was actually after World War II that he came more popular and he eventually became the most popular dog to have. His popularity can also be seen in Canada and England.

Today the Labrador Retriever still has a very strong work ethic and is used in areas such as search and rescue, drug detection, explosive detection, hunting, therapy, assistance as well excelling in dog show competitions. He is a sweet dog, outgoing, very friendly, clever and eager to please making him easy to train. He has a lot of energy and enthusiasm so training is important to control his natural bounciness. He needs a lot of physical and mental stimulation. While some Labs can be laid back some can get quite rowdy.


The Labradane is a very friendly dog sometimes misunderstood just because of his imposing size. He is eager to please and clever and he craves attention and praise. He can be very protective of his family and territory. He gets on well with other animals and dogs and loves to have fun. He can be a little overly enthusiastic about everything like his Lab parent! He will want lots of cuddles and will be very expressive in his love for you. He is definitely not a dog that can sit around doing nothing all day, he has a lot of energy. Because of his attachment to his people he does not do well being left for long periods and can suffer from separation anxiety. He can be very entertaining too.

What does a Labradane look like

The Labradane is a giant breed weighing 100 to 180 pounds and being 24 to 34 inches tall. He has ears that flap over and are fairly long and a tail that is long and curls. His eyes tend to be dark so brown or black. He has a broad head, a deep chest but he is tall, lean and very athletic looking. His fur is straight, short and close to the skin. Common colors are white, golden, chocolate, black, blue, cream and brown.

Training and Exercise Needs

How active does the Labradane need to be?

When he is just a puppy you need to take care with his activity levels as his joints and bones are vulnerable at that stage of growth so anything too vigorous could cause damage. As he grows older he can do more. One or two 30 minute walks, some play time, a visit to the dog park, time in a large yard are all things the Labradane would enjoy. He cannot be kept in an apartment, that space is too small for his size and he needs access to a yard. He loves playing, jumping and bouncing around so a yard is somewhere to put him in between walks where he can let off some steam. When he is mature he can join you in jogging or running if you enjoy being physically active too. Be sure to also offer mental stimulation.

Does he train quickly?

He is an energetic dog sometimes boisterous so early training and socialization are important in calming him a little and having a means to command him when he gets too much. He is somewhat sensitive so gentle and positive training will be far more effective than harsh methods and scolding. He is inclined to listen, eager to please and intelligent so training should be quite easy. He may even need less repetitions than some other dogs. Make sure you set yourself clearly as pack leader and maintain that firmness and be consistent.

Living with a Labradane

How much grooming is needed?

He has low to moderate grooming requirements. He does shed so you will have to vacuum up after him and clear off your clothes. That shedding is light for most of the year but gets heavier during shedding seasons. When it is light once to twice a week brushing should be enough, when it is heavier daily brushing will help control the hairs. Bathe him as he needs it, this is a tricky thing to do with his size. Something like a walk in shower could work, a hose outside or find a professional groomers who have dog bath sections people can use. He will need his nails clipping too when they get too long. Other grooming needs include brushing his teeth at least three times a week and checking and wiping clean his ears once a week.

What is he like with children and other animals?

He is very good with children and other pets. However due to his size and bounciness it is a very good idea to have him socialized and trained early and to supervise smaller children with him in case they accidentally get knocked over. He is affectionate and loves to play with them. He will also be protective of them.

General information

The Labradane is able to adapt to most climates just not extreme cold or extreme heat. He should be fed small meals throughout the day to avoid bloat. He will need a total daily food amount of 4 1/2 to 6 cups of high quality dry dog food. If he is more active he may need even more. He does bark but it is somewhere between rare and occasional.

Health Concerns

As a giant breed he has a shorter life span than other smaller dogs at 8 to 12 years. He is usually quite a healthy dog but there is a chance he could develop a condition his parents can have problems with. This includes development issues, bloat, bone cancer, surgical issues, heart problems, OCD, eye problems, epilepsy, hip and elbow dysplasia, skin problems, cold tail and ear infections. To avoid having a sickly puppy or dog buy from good breeders who care and ask to see a health clearance for the each of the parents.

Costs involved in owning a Labradane

A Labradane puppy would cost between $250 to $550, larger dogs tend to cost less with designer dog. However those prices could change should he become more trendy, or depending on where you buy from and who you buy from. Sometimes you get some things included with the price such as deworming, shots started and so on. If your puppy does not come with that these are additional initial costs you will have to pay for. At the vets he will need blood tests, shots, neutering, micro chipping and deworming. He will also need a crate, collar and leash and some other basics to get you started. This will cost between $450 to $550. Medical costs each year for things like insurance, check ups, flea prevention and vaccinations will cost between $485 to $600. Other costs for things like treats, toys, food, training and license will cost between $575 to $700.


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Featured Image Credit: Claudia Naerdemann, Shutterstock

Nicole Cosgrove

Nicole is the proud mom of Baby, a Burmese cat and Rosa, a New Zealand Huntaway. A Canadian expat, Nicole now lives on a lush forest property with her Kiwi husband in New Zealand. She has a strong love for all animals of all shapes and sizes (and particularly loves a good interspecies friendship) and wants to share her animal knowledge and other experts' knowledge with pet lovers across the globe.

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