The Daniff is a mixed breed dog — a cross between the English Mastiff and Great Dane dog breeds. Lovable, intelligent, and protective, these pups inherited the best qualities from both of their parents.
Daniffs go by several names, including Mastidane, English Daniff, and Great Daniff. Despite the growing popularity of this designer breed, you can find these mixed breed dogs in shelters and breed specific rescues, so remember to adopt! Don’t shop!
These big, adorable pups are a mix of two giant breeds, so they’re best suited for a home with a backyard, and they love interacting with people. They’re very smart and playful pups, so they need to be occupied with plenty of toys and sufficiently exercised. They’re also very protective of their families, and their loyalty and intimidating size make them excellent guard dogs! If you’re looking for a gentle giant with lots of affection to give, then this might be the dog for you!
Some dogs are simply easier than others; they take to training better and are fairly easygoing. They’re also resilient enough to bounce back from your mistakes or inconsistencies.
Dogs who are highly sensitive, independent thinking, or assertive may be harder for a first-time dog parent to manage. You’ll get your best match if you take your dog-owning experience into account as you choose your new pooch.
If you’re new to dog parenting, take a look at 101 Dog Tricks and read up on how to train your dog!
Some dogs will let a stern reprimand roll off their backs, while others take even a dirty look to heart. Low-sensitivity dogs, also called “easygoing,” “tolerant,” “resilient,” and even “thick-skinned,” can better handle a noisy, chaotic household, a louder or more assertive owner, and an inconsistent or variable routine. Do you have young kids, throw lots of dinner parties, play in a garage band, or lead a hectic life? Go with a low-sensitivity dog.
Some breeds bond very closely with their family and are more prone to worry or even panic when left alone by their owner. An anxious dog can be very destructive–barking, whining, chewing, and otherwise causing mayhem. These breeds do best when a family member is home during the day or if you can take the dog to work.
Dogs with thick, double coats are more vulnerable to overheating. So are breeds with short noses, like Bulldogs or Pugs, since they can’t pant as well to cool themselves off. If you want a heat-sensitive breed, your dog will need to stay indoors with you on warm or humid days, and you’ll need to be extra cautious about exercising your dog in the heat.
All Around Friendliness
Some breeds are independent and aloof, even if they’ve been raised by the same person since puppyhood; others bond closely to one person and are indifferent to everyone else; and some shower the whole family with affection. Breed isn’t the only factor that goes into affection levels; dogs who were raised inside a home with people around feel more comfortable with humans and bond more easily.
See Dogs Less Affectionate with Family
Being gentle with children, sturdy enough to handle the heavy-handed pets and hugs they can dish out, and having a blasé attitude toward running, screaming children are all traits that make a kid-friendly dog. You may be surprised by who’s on that list: Fierce-looking Boxers are considered good with children, as are American Staffordshire Terriers (which are considered Pit Bulls). Small, delicate, and potentially snappy dogs such as Chihuahuas aren’t always so family-friendly.
**All dogs are individuals. Our ratings are generalizations, and they’re not a guarantee of how any breed or individual dog will behave. Dogs from any breed can be good with children based on their past experiences, training on how to get along with kids, and personality. No matter what the breed or breed type, all dogs have strong jaws, sharp pointy teeth, and may bite in stressful circumstances. Young children and dogs of any breed should always be supervised by an adult and never left alone together, period.
Friendliness toward dogs and friendliness toward humans are two completely different things. Some dogs may attack or try to dominate other dogs, even if they’re love-bugs with people; others would rather play than fight; and some will turn tail and run. Breed isn’t the only factor. Dogs who lived with their littermates and mother until at least six to eight weeks of age and who spent lots of time playing with other dogs during puppyhood, are more likely to have good canine social skills.
Stranger-friendly dogs will greet guests with wagging tails and nuzzles; others are shy, indifferent, or even aggressive. However, no matter what the breed, a dog who was socialized and exposed to lots of different types, ages, sizes, and shapes of people as a puppy will respond better to strangers as an adult. Remember that even friendly dogs should stay on a good, strong leash like this one in public!
Health And Grooming Needs
If you’re going to share your home with a dog, you’ll need to deal with some level of dog hair on your clothes and in your house. However, shedding does vary greatly among the breeds. Some dogs shed year-round, some “blow” seasonally, some do both, and some shed hardly at all. If you’re a neatnik, you’ll need to either pick a low-shedding breed or relax your standards. To help keep your home a little cleaner, you can find a great de-shedding tool here!
Drool-prone dogs may drape ropes of slobber on your arm and leave big, wet spots on your clothes when they come over to say hello. If you’ve got a laid-back attitude toward slobber, fine; but if you’re a neatnik, you may want to choose a dog who rates low in the drool department.
Some breeds are brush-and-go dogs; others require regular bathing, clipping, and other grooming just to stay clean and healthy. Consider whether you have the time and patience for a dog who needs a lot of grooming, or the money to pay someone else to do it.
Due to poor breeding practices, some breeds are prone to certain genetic health problems, such as hip dysplasia. This doesn’t mean that every dog of that breed will develop those diseases; it just means that they’re at an increased risk.
If you’re adopting a puppy, it’s a good idea to find out which genetic illnesses are common to the breed you’re interested in. You may also want to ask if your shelter or rescue has information about the physical health of your potential pup’s parents and other relatives.
Some breeds have hearty appetites and tend to put on weight easily. As in humans, being overweight can cause health problems in dogs. If you pick a breed that’s prone to packing on pounds, you’ll need to limit treats, make sure they get enough exercise, and measure out their daily food servings into regular meals rather than leaving food out all the time.
Ask your vet about your dog’s diet and what they recommend for feeding your pooch to keep them at a healthy weight. Weight gain can lead to other health issues or worsen problems like arthritis.
Dogs come in all sizes, from the world’s smallest pooch, the Chihuahua, to the towering Great Dane, how much space a dog takes up is a key factor in deciding if they’re compatible with you and your living space. Large dog breeds might seem overpowering and intimidating, but some of them are incredibly sweet! Take a look and find the right sized dog for you!
Easy-to-train dogs are more adept at forming an association between a prompt (such as the word “sit”), an action (sitting), and a consequence (getting a treat) very quickly. Other dogs need more time, patience, and repetition during training.
Many breeds are intelligent but approach training with a “What’s in it for me?” attitude, in which case you’ll need to use rewards and games to teach them to want to comply with your requests.
Dogs who were bred for jobs that require decision making, intelligence, and concentration, such as herding livestock, need to exercise their brains, just as dogs who were bred to run all day need to exercise their bodies. If they don’t get the mental stimulation they need, they’ll make their own work–usually with projects you won’t like, such as digging and chewing. Obedience training and interactive dog toys are good ways to give a dog a brain workout, as are dog sports and careers, such as agility and search and rescue.
Common in most breeds during puppyhood and in Retriever breeds at all ages, mouthiness means a tendency to nip, chew, and play-bite (a soft, fairly painless bite that doesn’t puncture the skin). Mouthy dogs are more likely to use their mouths to hold or “herd” their human family members, and they need training to learn that it’s fine to gnaw on chew toys, but not on people. Mouthy breeds tend to really enjoy a game of fetch, as well as a good chew on a toy that’s been stuffed with kibble and treats.
Dogs who were bred to hunt, such as Terriers, have an inborn desire to chase–and sometimes kill–other animals. Anything whizzing by, such as cats, squirrels, and perhaps even cars, can trigger that instinct. Dogs who like to chase need to be leashed or kept in a fenced area when outdoors, and you’ll need a high, secure fence in your yard. These breeds generally aren’t a good fit for homes with smaller pets that can look like prey, such as cats, hamsters, or small dogs. Breeds that were originally used for bird hunting, on the other hand, generally won’t chase, but you’ll probably have a hard time getting their attention when there are birds flying by.
Some breeds sound off more often than others. When choosing a breed, think about how often the dog vocalizes with barks or howls. If you’re considering a hound, would you find their trademark howls musical or maddening? If you’re considering a watchdog, will a city full of suspicious “strangers” put your pup on permanent alert? Will the local wildlife literally drive your dog wild? Do you live in housing with noise restrictions? Do you have neighbors nearby? Then you may wish to choose a quieter dog.
Some breeds are more free-spirited than others. Nordic dogs such as Siberian Huskies were bred to range long distances, and given the chance, they’ll take off after anything that catches their interest. And many hounds simply must follow their noses–or that bunny that just ran across the path–even if it means leaving you behind.
High-energy dogs are always ready and waiting for action. Originally bred to perform a canine job of some sort, such as retrieving game for hunters or herding livestock, they have the stamina to put in a full workday. They need a significant amount of exercise and mental stimulation, and they’re more likely to spend time jumping, playing, and investigating any new sights and smells.
Low-energy dogs are the canine equivalent of a couch potato, content to doze the day away. When picking a breed, consider your own activity level and lifestyle, and think about whether you’ll find a frisky, energetic dog invigorating or annoying.
A vigorous dog may or may not have high energy, but everything they do, they do with vigor: they strain on the leash (until you train them not to), try to plow through obstacles, and even eats and drinks with great big gulps. These dynamos need lots of training to learn good manners, and may not be the best fit for a home with young kids or someone who’s elderly or frail. A low-vigor dog, on the other hand, has a more subdued approach to life.
Some breeds do fine with a slow evening stroll around the block. Others need daily, vigorous exercise, especially those that were originally bred for physically demanding jobs, like herding or hunting.
Without enough exercise, these breeds may put on weight and vent their pent-up energy in ways you don’t like, such as barking, chewing, and digging. Breeds that need a lot of exercise are good for outdoorsy, active people, or those interested in training their dog to compete in a high-energy dog sport, such as agility.
Some dogs are perpetual puppies — always begging for a game — while others are more serious and sedate. Although a playful pup sounds endearing, consider how many games of fetch or tag you want to play each day, and whether you have kids or other dogs who can stand in as playmates for the dog.
Dog Breed Group:Mixed Breed DogsHeight:27 to 33 inchesWeight:115 to 190 poundsLife Span:8 to 12 years
More About This Breed
- Daniffs are mixed breed dogs. They are not purebreds like their Great Dane or English Mastiff parents.
- The most common Daniff coat colors include fawn, black and white, brindle, and even two unique color patterns called merle and harlequin.
- Daniffs usually have very short coats and do shed, so they are not the best choice for those who suffer with allergies.
- Since the Daniff is such a large dog, they can easily knock down a small child unintentionally if they become rambunctious, so an adult should always be present. That said, Daniffs love to play with people of all ages.
- Many Daniffs get along fine with other dogs and cats, but must be socialized and well trained early on to ensure a happy and safe cohabitation.
- Training a Daniff puppy may come with some challenges. While this mix is very intelligent, they may also tend to be a bit stubborn.
- Daniffs can be just as lazy as they can be playful. Daily thirty minute walks and playing with a variety of toys will help to keep your dog happy and healthy.
The Daniff mixed dog breed is said to have originated in the U.S over the past ten to 15 years, but this designer breed is quickly growing in popularity.
Both parent breeds were historically used for protection but were also wonderful companion animals, as well, making this gentle giant an excellent mix of two breeds with great personalities, suitable for being both intimidating guard dogs and perfect family pets.
Even though the Daniff got their start as a designer breed, some have ended up in shelters or rescue groups. If this breed is right for you, make sure to check your local animal shelters and breed specific rescue groups.
As the Daniff is a relatively new mixed breed, there are a few variations in size. Both Great Danes and English Mastiffs are giant breeds, so you can expect to have a very large adult dog.
Most Daniffs range in height from 27 to 33 inches and can weigh in anywhere from 115 pounds to about 190 pounds, depending on the gender of the pup and the sizes of the parents. Males will tend to be on the larger side and females can be slightly smaller.
Many Daniff owners describe these dogs as lovable, protective of their families, and gentle giants. Although their sheer size alone may be off-putting for some, especially children, Daniffs will quickly warm up to you and want to do nothing more than cuddle.
Since both parent breeds were bred as guard dogs and to hunt large game, the Daniff’s prey drive is low, but the’re still the perfect guard dog. They tend to not bark until they need to alert their family of a stranger arriving at the house. If a new person does enter the home, the Daniff may be a bit apprehensive at first but will warm up to new people once they realize they are not a threat.
Training a Daniff puppy may come with some challenges. While this mix is very intelligent, they may also tend to be a bit stubborn. The most important thing to do is start training the new pup as soon as possible. Be firm, use positive reinforcement, and make sure everyone in the household is involved. It’s imperative to have a well trained Daniff since their large size will make them very difficult for an owner to control as an adult.
Daniffs are very friendly and can adapt to live just as happily in a household with a large family as they would in a one-person home.
The Daniff is a fairly healthy breed but is predisposed to conditions shared by both Great Danes and English Mastiffs. While most are generally healthy, some may be prone to some of these issues so it is very important to keep up with regular veterinary checkups.
Some of the more common health problems Daniffs suffer from include:
- Hip/Elbow dysplasia
- Heart issues
As with all dogs, you should take your pet in for regular veterinary checkups in order to keep your pup healthy and be able to detect any health issues as early as possible. Your vet will create a care routine for your dog.
Oral health is important for every dog and teeth should ideally be brushed daily. Larger breed dogs tend to have fewer issues with their teeth, so your veterinarian instruct you on how to brush their teeth properly.
Daniffs are prone to hip dysplasia and joint issues, so it’s very important to keep your pup at a healthy weight to avoid putting too much stress on the joints.
Daniffs can be just as lazy as they can be playful. Daily thirty minute walks and playing with a variety of toys will help to keep your dog happy and healthy.
It’s especially important to give plenty of toys that will occupy and stimulate your dog’s brain to keep them from getting bored, which can lead to destructive behaviors.
Since Daniffs have big, floppy ears, it’s best to check them daily to ensure that there isn’t any debris building up and clean them as recommended by your vet. Nail trims are recommended to be done once or twice per month, and if the owner can’t trim them by themselves, a groomer or veterinarian can help with this.
An ideal Daniff diet should be formulated for a giant breed with medium energy. They’re very energetic as puppies and require a great deal of food to accommodate their large size and fast metabolism.
They can be prone to bloat so make sure to watch your pup as they eat and make sure they don’t eat too quickly. It’s important to make sure your Daniff doesn’t become overweight, as it can put stress on their joints.
As with all dogs, the Daniff’s dietary needs will change from puppyhood to adulthood and will continue to change into their senior years. You should ask your veterinarian for recommendations about your Daniff’s diet, as there is far too much variation among individual dogs–including weight, energy, and health–to make a specific recommendation.
Coat Color And Grooming
Both of the Daniff’s parents’ coats offer many colors. While English Mastiffs typically come in colors such as fawn, brindle, or apricot, the Great Dane has several more. That being the case, the Daniff can come in several different colors and patterns, too.
The most common of these include fawn, black and white, brindle, and even two unique color patterns called merle and harlequin.
Daniffs usually have very short coats and do shed, so they are not the best choice for those who suffer with allergies. Seeing as the hair is so short, grooming is very easy and brushing is usually performed once or twice a week.
Because the Daniff has a shorter coat, they can’t tolerate very cold weather. They may need a large doggy jacket in winter. Even though their coat may be short, if the Daniff has the trait of a shorter muzzle like that of the English Mastiff, your pup should not be outdoors in hot weather for long periods of time, either, due to possible breathing issues.
Children And Other Pets
Since the Daniff is such a large dog, they can easily knock down a small child unintentionally if they become rambunctious, so an adult should always be present. Daniffs love to play with people of all ages but, again, their intimidating size makes it very important that children–and adults, too–must be aware of how strong these dogs are and know how to properly and safely interact.
Daniffs are outgoing and, if introduced and socialized with other pets while they are young, will do fine in a household with other dogs. It is very important to introduce your pup to other dogs slowly, especially if the other dog is smaller than the Daniff.
Many Daniffs get along fine with other dogs and cats, but must be socialized and well trained early on to ensure a happy and safe cohabitation.
It may be hard to find a breed-specific rescue for Daniffs because they are a mixed breed. However, you may want to try Great Dane or English Mastiff breed specific rescues, as they often care for mixes, as well. Rescues that cater to large or giant breeds might also be able to help. Here are some rescues you can try:
- Gentle Giants
- Great Dane Rescue
- Mastiffs To Mutts Rescue, Inc.