A breed of courageous, alert, intelligent dogs with a cute and affectionate disposition, the Boxer is a hunting breed belonging to the Molosser group, having its roots in Germany. Muscular and sturdy with an agile and graceful gait, these dogs are marked with a well-proportioned clean head, square muzzle, strong jaws, powerful bite, dark brown medium sized eyes with an intelligent and alert expression, wrinkled face, high set, cropped ears that become raised when it is alert, and a high set tail carried in an upward posture.
|Other names||German Boxer, Deutscher Boxer|
|Coat||Shiny, short, smooth, held tightly to its body|
|Color||Brindle, fawn, white (prone to deafness in either one or both the ears) with markings of fawn, brindle, white as well as a black mask.|
|Group||Molossers, catch dogs|
|Average lifespan||10 to 15 years|
|Size (How big do they get)||Medium|
|Height of a full grown Boxer||Male: 22 to 25 inches; Female: 21 to 24 inches|
|Weight of a full grown Boxer||55 to 70 pounds|
|Litter size||6 puppies on an average|
|Behavioral traits||Energetic, high spirited, curious, playful, alert, brave|
|Good with children||Older ones|
|Climate compatibility||Intolerant to extremes of temperature|
|Shedding (Do they shed)||Minimal|
|Competitive Registration Qualification/Information||AKC, FCI, CKC, NZKC, KC (UK), UKC|
Though the ancestors of the Boxers are said to be the Assyrian war dogs which existed as early as 2500 B.C., the breed of the recent time has been developed from the Bullenbeisser, which is extinct as of now. The Bullenbeisser had been used by the German nobles for hunting big games such as bears, wild boars, and bison. However, as the importance of the nobles diminished by the first half of the 19th century, these dogs too lost significance. They obtained a fresh lease of life on being bred with mastiff-kind dogs imported from Britain which were comparatively smaller in size. The modern Boxer, however, grew to be an elegant and sleek breed serving as watchdogs, cattle dogs, police dogs, guard dogs, war dogs, and service dogs. Though the American Kennel Club had acknowledged the first Boxer in the year 1904, its popularity enhanced in the 1950s when Bang Away, a Boxer who won at the Westminster Dog show attained fame. At present, the Boxer is 10 of America’s most popular dogs.
It has been said that the breed’s tendency of playing by getting up on its hind limbs as well as boxing using its paws, has earned it the name Boxer. However, this notion has been contradicted by many, and other theories have also been circulated in this regard.
The Boxer has an exciting disposition indeed as it is the most faithful and loyal companion a master can ask for. His clownish antics in the form of twisting, jumping and doing somersaults would leave everyone in the household amazed and entertained.
Do not get surprised if you see your Boxer breaking into a cute dance by twisting its body in semi-circles just like a kidney bean, which it mostly engages in when excited.
Out of excitement, it could often let out a vocalization, commonly sounding like a “wo-wo”, particularly when it needs something and trying to draw your attention regarding the same.
They are exceptionally patient and gentle towards kids, though older children in the family are better suited to handle this rambunctious dog which could knock down the little ones in pursuit of play.
However, this loving, cheerful dog possesses an alert, watchful nature and could be highly reserved and wary at the sight of an unknown face into their domain. You get to see an aggressive side of these high-spirited dogs only when they are out to protect their family from any harm, making them excel as great watch and guard dogs. Their strength along with immense determination and courage make them be used as military and police dogs for search works. Their affectionate nature and intelligence also make them useful in therapy as well as guide dogs for the visually impaired.
Most of them do well with other canines as well as cats particularly of brought up with them. However, some Boxers could get aggressive with other dogs mainly of the same sex, while a few may begin to chase a cat if they happen to see one.
Note: They are unable to withstand extreme heat (short muzzle) or cold (short coat), hence do not keep them out when the temperature is too high or low.
Note: Avoid giving your Boxer the drug acepromazine since this may hurt their health.
In Stanley Coren’s The Intelligence of Dogs, the Boxers rank 48. Hence training them would not be a mammoth task though a firm and wise trainer is required to handle them well.
Boxers weighing 10-25 pounds require one and a half to two cups of dog food on a daily basis that should increase by its weight. Good quality of dog food containing about 50% meat, 10% carbohydrates and 50% vegetables is essential for these active, energetic breeds. If you are also combining homemade food to their daily kibble make sure it comprises of turkey, lean chicken, fish, and lamb, though in moderate amounts. Avoid giving it junk food or those cooked with spices and onions as that could hurt its health. They are susceptible to dental problems, hence while giving them dry dog foods, choose the ones which are larger and is a little difficult to chew. In this way, it would aid in the removal of plaque.