Boxer: The Ultimate Breed Guide | 2020
Boxer is a medium sized dog breed with short and tight fitting coat. The upbeat and playful boxer dog breed has been among the America’s most popular dog breed for a quite long time. This high energy dog is square jawed and muscular, with a powerful forward thrust.
Boxers are categorized as AKC's working group. Boxers tend to have the temperament needed in a guard dog. They need love and affection and prove to be great companions dogs. If you are looking for a high energy, friendly, and easy to groom dog, then boxers are the perfect breed for you. Let’s have a look at boxer dog breed characteristics, origin, breed standards, care, grooming, physical requirements and health tips.
Boxer Breed Characteristics
Boxer is a powerful and compact dog. It is an intelligent and loyal pet with a playful temperament. All boxer dogs are different just as all human are different. We have listed below boxer dog breed characteristics. This is meant to be a general guideline for boxer’s traits and characteristics.
Boxers have moderate adaptability. It has an average rating of 3 out of 5 stars when it comes to their overall adaptability. Here are some of the factors that count for moderate adaptability level of boxers.
When it comes to adapting to an apartment, boxers turn out to be a great pet. They hold 4 out of 5 for apartment living.
Boxer is a suitable dog for novice owners. It possesses 3 stars out of 5 for first time parents.
Boxers are sensitive dogs with a sensitivity level of 4/5 stars. They are independent and assertive dogs who need your love and care. They find it difficult to tolerate noisy and chaotic household.
Boxers are highly playful dogs and don’t like to be left alone. They have 1 out of 5 stars for tolerance for being alone. This breed is prone to worry or even panic when left alone by owner.
They have low tolerance for cold weather with 2 out of 5 stars cold weather tolerance.
Boxers are extremely intolerant of hot weather with 1 out of 5 stars for tolerance for hot weather. Care must be taken to prevent them from getting overheated.
All around Friendliness
Boxers have an average rating of 4 out of 5 stars when it comes to their overall all around friendliness.
They shower the whole family with affection. They hold 4/5 stars affection for family members and show warmth and friendliness.
Boxers are kid-friendly dogs with a 4/5 stars when it comes to be gentle with children.
They moderately extend their kindness and friendliness to other dogs and pets. They have 3/5 stars for friendliness towards fellow dogs.
Boxers have a tendency to befriend strangers or interact with them. They have 5/5 stars friendliness level and greet guests happily.
Health and Grooming Needs
Boxers don’t need regular professional grooming. They have an average health and grooming needs rating 3/5 stars. Below are the details.
If you own a Boxer dog, you need to be prepared for some level of dog hair in your house. They hold 4/5 stars rating on amount of shedding.
Boxers don’t leave wet spots on your clothes when they greet you. With a drooling potential 2 out of 5 stars, boxer proves to be a desirable dog especially for neatniks.
Boxers are really easy to groom and hold 5/5 stars for ease of grooming. You don’t need to worry much about regular brushing and bathing.
With 2/5 stars regarding general health, boxers tend to have a weak immune against diseases.
They tend to put on weight easily. You need to limit treats and make sure they get enough exercise. They hold 4 out of 5 stars when it comes to potential for weight gain.
Boxers are medium sized dogs with a 3/5 stars rating for size. They are the perfect sized dogs for any living space.
Boxers have an average rating of 3 out of 5 stars when it comes to their overall trainability.
Boxers are quite easy to train because they approach training with an attitude to learn. They have a 4 out of 5 level for easy to train criteria.
Boxers have high concentration level and have an intelligence level of 4 out of 5 stars.
Boxers don’t have a tendency to nip, chew, and play-bite. So, their potential for mouthiness is 2 out of 5 stars.
They have a moderate inborn desire to chase. They are rated at 3 out of 5 stars for their prey drive.
These dogs have a moderate tendency to bark. With a 3/5 stars rating for tendency to bark or howl, they are suitable when you have neighbors nearby.
Boxers have a moderately prone to wander and have 3 out of 5 star tendency of wanderlust potential.
Boxers are high energy dogs and they need a certain level of daily activity. They have a rating of 5/5 stars when it comes to their overall physical needs.
Boxers are high energy dogs with 5/5 star energy level and are always ready and waiting for action.
These dogs do everything with vigor and score 5 out of 5 on intensity levels.
They need daily vigorous exercise and hence have 5 out of 5 stars energy needs. They are good for outdoorsy and active people. Their average exercise requirement is greater than 40 minutes per day.
Boxer is a highly playful dog with 5/5 star potential for playfulness.
Vital Stats about Boxer Dogs
Boxer is an intelligent and loyal pet with a high need for companionship and exercise. They are not happy when regularly left home alone. Let’s have a look at vital stats of Boxers:
History of Boxer
The Boxer’s ancestors, German Bullenbeisser, can be traced back in the 19th century. Bullenbaiser is an extinct dog breed that is a descendant from Mastiff and Bulldog and was used as a hunting dog. They were later used by farmers and butchers for guarding and controlling cattle.
The loyal and intelligent Boxer that we know today was first bred by a Munich man named Georg Alt. This breed was first put in a dog show in 1984 by three Germans and they later founded the first Boxer Club. The breed later became popular in Europe and around 1903, it was imported to the United States for the first time.
After 1940, the breed started becoming popular in United States and soon became a favorite pet, show dog, and guard dog. The American Boxer Club (ABC) was formed in 1935 and was accepted by AKC in the same year. Since that time onwards, Boxers have remained one of America’s most popular breeds.
In 1948, Fred Wheatland of Victoria imported the first Boxer in Australia in 1948 from England. The first American Boxer was brought into Australia by Rena Gerardy of Sydney in the 1950s. The Boxer has long been one of Australia’s most-loved breeds and favorite pets. They have ranked in the top 10 most popular registered dogs for the past decade. Boxers in Australia are primarily companion dogs but have been used in the past as guard dogs.
In Australia, you can adopt a Boxer from the Boxer Rescue Network Australia (BRNA), a charity organization that re-homes Boxers in need of new families. Liz and Miles Gunter of “Guntop Boxers” in New South Wales are two of Australia’s top breeders. They have owned and loved the breed for more than 30 years. New imported Boxers have continued to improve and strengthen the blood lines that are already in Australia.
The Breed Standard: Boxer
ANKC has official standard for each dog breed. Let’s have a brief look at Boxer dog breed standard which falls under group 6 (Utility) breed:
General Appearance: The ideal Boxer is medium-sized and square-built dog. It has short back, strong limbs, and short, tight-fitting coat.
Substance: Sturdy, with balanced musculature. Boxer males are larger boned than females.
Bite and Jaw Structure: The Boxer bite is undershot, the lower jaw protruding beyond the upper and curving slightly upward.
Back: Boxer’s back is short, straight, muscular, firm and smooth.
Coat: Short, shiny, lying smooth and tight to the body.
Color: Fawn and brindle; with or without white flashing and black mask
Gait: Boxer’s gait is powerful, firm yet elastic. It is smoothly efficient, level-backed, ground covering and stride free.
Disqualification: Boxers that are other than white and brindle color. Boxers with white markings exceeding one-third of the entire coat.
Care for Boxer Dogs
If you own a boxer or are thinking about owning a boxer, you need to know how to take care of your dog. It is important for your dog’s health and happiness. We are sharing some really useful information about Boxer’s diet and nutrition, grooming, exercise and training.
Diet and Nutrition
Good diet and nutrition is important for your boxer’s health. To support their energy level, their diet should meet their nutritional requirements. They need diet that is high in protein and calories. Boxers also need some essential minerals and vitamins like calcium. It is also important to keep a feeding schedule and offer a proper amount of food.
You need to be mindful of what you choose to feed your boxer. Boxer go well and stay healthy on high quality dog food, either commercial or home-made. Commercial food is convenient for owner and ensures proper nutrition. Dog food should be appropriate to your boxer’s age and size.
Many dog food brands have formulas designed for the size of your dog. The boxer is a medium breed dog, so consider working with your veterinarian to determine the best diet to make sure your pet remains healthy. If you want to switch your dog food, make sure to follow a proper transition process.
Feeding guide for Boxers:
Grooming a boxer is an easy task and a great way to bond with your dog. Boxers are naturally clean and have very little odor. This breed is known to be seasonal shedder and require little grooming. Here are some grooming tips and techniques for your boxer:
Bathe your boxer when necessary with a good dog shampoo. Frequent baths are not necessary unless it gets dirty. Use clean and warm water, and then towel dry.
Clean the ears as needed with a solution recommended by your veterinarian
Trim the nails every couple of weeks or as needed. Start trimming your boxer’s nails when your dog is very young. The boxer will become used to it.
Boxer’s short, shiny coat requires very little grooming. Brush your boxer with a rubber curry brush weekly to remove dead hair.
Inspect your boxer’s teeth and gums and brush their teeth to prevent tartar buildup.
Check the eyes for redness and excessive discharge and make sure they are clean.
Boxer is a high energy breed and they expect to have an active lifestyle. For this, they need to exercise daily, whether structured or unstructured. This is also important for their happiness and wellbeing. Regular exercise can prevent health issues and keep them in good shape. If your boxer is overweight, give a balanced diet and a good amount of exercise.
So how much exercise a boxer needs? A lot!
The average exercise requirement for boxer is greater than 40 minutes per day. There are three main types of exercises and activities that you can provide your boxer dog:
High intensity activity like playing fetch, jolly ball, stair exercise, running
Mental stimulation like puzzle toys, chew toys, scenting and nose game
The exercise needs of boxer puppies are quite different. With their still developing bones and joints, the best exercise for boxer puppies is free play with age-appropriate toys.
This high energy and popular breed is known to be most trustworthy and intelligent. Here are some tips and techniques for boxer training:
Begin training early: Early socialization and puppy training classes are important in directing their energy in a positive way.
Use a reward system: Boxers respond well to positive reinforcement and it should be used as a tool during boxer training. Use the treats as reward during training sessions.
Spend extra time with your boxer, beyond the training sessions.
Start with basic commands like sit, stay, etc.
Consistency is the key: Be consistent with the rules you are setting for your dog.
Common Health Problems
Boxers are by and large a healthy dog breed but like many other breeds, it has certain health conditions. There are some hereditary health problems that can occur in this breed. Boxers have very low tolerance for extreme temperatures. There are some health conditions that may affect boxers:
Cancer: Boxers can contract cancer, but it mostly occurs in older boxers. Cancer is abnormal growth of cells that are localized on any part of boxer’s body that may spread aggressively. Its prevention is difficult because the causes are largely unknown. For early detection and care, you must be aware of possible signs of cancer.
Aortic stenosis: This is a genetic disease and can cause fainting and sudden death. This underlying heart disease is due to accumulation of fluid in and around the lungs or in the abdomen. This leads to inadequate blood and oxygen movement throughout the body from decreased heart function. The boxers with this condition should not be bred.
Dilated cardiomyopathy (DCM): DCM is one of the most common heart diseases in boxers. It usually affects the left ventricle and boxers may show fainting and sudden death. Dogs with DCM should not be bred.
Deafness: Loss of hearing has been reported in many boxers. It is associated with white coloring and may be seen in all-white or mostly-white boxers. Sometimes the deafness is due to degeneration of the nerves within the ear.
Hip dysplasia: Hip dysplasia is a genetic health issue. This condition is the result of abnormal development of hip joints (one or both), leading to instability and degeneration of the joints. It can cause mild or severe pain and arthritis.
Children and Other Pets
Boxers are playful and kid-friendly dogs. They have been proven as a great companion for kids. It is always recommended to first socialize boxers with children of the home. You should let kids play with boxer under supervision. Boxers’ attitude is hardly an issue when they are around children. Kids can participate actively in boxer’s training and boxer puppy grooming.
Boxers have good canine social skills and are moderately friendly with other pets as well. They can interact and associate with other pets. However, it is difficult to accurately predict whether or not the boxer will get along with other animals. For boxers, it is always best to pair them with dogs of the opposite sex.
Boxer Breed Organizations
Check out our list for the most reputable Boxer breeders of 2020 in Australia. If you are looking for a boxer as a pet, you can consider these breed organizations.
Roxbud Kennels- Boxers, SA
Bokson, Boxer, Perth WA
Rampid Boxers, Adelaide, SA
Wunya Boxers, SouthCoast, NSW
Boxer Rescue Groups
Check out our list for the most reputable Boxer Rescue Groups of 2020 in Australia. They can be helpful if you want to connect with other boxer parents based in Australia.
BRNA PetRescue- Boxer Rescue Network
Savour-Life Boxer Rescue Network Australia
Buying a dog as a pet is a major decision for a family and must be carefully considered and researched. It is always important for family as well as puppy to have the perfect match. Now you have learned a lot about boxer dogs. They truly are the perfect dog for any family. They tend to offer blind obedience and loves interacting with owners.
Do you want to have a companion to spend time with? What are you waiting for?
Grab your Boxer and then see the magic. It will make you happy with its vibrant energy, intelligence and loyalty. Give a loving home to your boxer; they just need your love and affection!