If you are looking for a “high” energy, fun dog that won’t only be an excellent guard dog but also a good dog you can have around your kids, chances are, you’ll want to take a good hard look at the Boxer Breed. However, despite the Boxer being a great “family” dog, he may not be the right “fit” for everyone because of his size and energy levels. This is why, in this article, we wanted to take a moment and discuss some of the Pros and Cons of owning a Boxer so that if you do decide to purchase a Boxer puppy six months from now, you won’t be disappointed with that decision!
So, without further ado, let’s dive right into it.
Boxer Dog Breed Fast Facts
Country of Origin: Germany
Original Purpose: Companion Dog, Sporting Dog
Height: 21.5 to 25 inches tall
Weight: 50 to 70 pounds
Life Span: 8 to 10 years
Dog Breed Classification: Working Dog
Origins of the Boxer Breed
The Deutscher Boxer, or the German Boxer that we know and love today, is the result of an effort that German hunters made in the 1830s to create a “super” hunting dog. They decided to breed the “bull-baiting” dogs. Generally, large Mastiff/Bulldog mixes with local “terriers.” The desire was to create a challenging and agile dog like a “Bullmastiff” with the tenacity of a terrier.
That is precisely what they got, unlike larger/slower parents; the Boxers combined the “best” of both breeds, quickly securing their place among hunters and the “bull baiting” establishments throughout Germany. Now, we should probably explain what “bull baiting” was. This was a practice whereby a dog, in this case, a Boxe,r would be tasked to “fight” or “herd” a bull to slaughter or castration.
In cases where…
The bull was being led to slaughter; it was believed that the “beef” would taste better if the bull was “baited” before the massacre. In cases like these, the Boxer would be encouraged to bite a bull’s nose and hang on while the bull thrashed around in pain/anger.
Sounds horrible, right?
We here at IndulgeYourPet think so, but back in the early 17 and 18th centuries, this was considered quite entertaining. Fortunately, the practice was outlawed in the middle 1830s, but sadly, that was still 200 to 300 years later!
The good news is that…
By this point in time, when “bull baiting” lost its appeal, the Boxer had already established himself as being more than just a “fighting” or “baiting” dog. By 1895, the breed was generally accepted as a “separate” breed from its parent. It ultimately became one of the first German police and military dogs, providing further evidence of the German people’s trust in this fine animal.
Boxer in America
The Boxer was brought to America in the early 20th century and was quickly “officially” recognized by the the American Kennel Club (AKC) shortly afterwards in 1904. Surprisingly, the Boxer was not an “overnight” success within the United States when he was first brought here. In the early 1900s, being “German” in the United States wasn’t such a “good” thing. And this prejudice extended to anything “German,” including dogs!
But that wasn’t his fault, after all! This is why it was only a matter of time before the Boxer eventually made it “big” in the US. Eventually, shortly after the Allied victory in World War II, the Boxer finally started to get the credit he deserved within the US and even started to become “featured” by magazines such as Life and Esquire (Which was a huge deal back then).
Despite the apparent difference in size (one being much more prominent while the other much smaller), the Boxer is often compared with other popular breeds, such as the Great Dane and Bulldog, which is why we here at IndulgeYourPet like to refer to Boxers as a “Goldilocks” breed for those who can’t decide because in our opinion, their not too small and their not too big…
“They’re just right!”
They also seem to appear dissatisfied, a bit weary, and perhaps worried about something. But this “grim” expression shouldn’t worry you because this is simply something he puts on for “show,” as he is naturally a pleasant, happy, graceful breed. He has a square jaw, a proud demeanor, and an athletic walk. In our opinion, they also have the most significant expression of “confusion” of any dog.
And what we mean by this is that…
When you, their own, do something that doesn’t make any sense, you’re Boxer is going to give you this sweet look saying…
“Did you mean to do that?”
It should also be noted that the Boxer is a large dog weighing up to 70 pounds or more. He has this very noticeable black mask on his face, and while female boxers may be a bit smaller than the male, they are also pretty significant.
The Boxer coat…
Comes in shades of tan and brindle. You can also get white boxers from certain breeders, but that’s not a popular color with these dogs. White Boxers are sensitive to the sun and at risk of sun cancer. The good news is that grooming is easy for the Boxer. He has a short coat and does shed, but there is nothing to be concerned about. Just some light brushing every week or so should be enough.
Personality and Temperament
The Boxer is a funny, sweet, friendly, and happy dog loyal to his human family. He is also very understanding and perceptive (which means you’ll get that “look” from your Boxer a lot!). It’s almost like he knows what you are thinking. He is a brilliant dog and great with kids. But he can get bored when he doesn’t get enough exercise, so if you do decide to adopt a Boxer, you’re going to want to be sure to take them on plenty of walks or be sure that you have a yard or park where you can take him to get his exercise.
Boxers are calm and relaxed around strangers and seem to get “too” aggressive or shy, and because they are so large, most folks with bad intentions aren’t likely to give you any problems even though you’re Boxer is a sweetheart! The Boxer is a real fighter who will go to any length to defend his family against an attack. He is brave, courageous, and intelligent and will typically have the “uncanny” ability to discriminate between the “good guys” and “bad guys.” He is also an excellent companion dog…
You will love taking him out on a walk or playing with him. And while he is an active dog and requires a lot of exercise, he is just as comfortable watching your favorite TV shows with you, sitting beside you on the couch (that is, of course, after he has had time to play!)
“Ok, by now, it should be obvious that we here at IndulgeYourPet love this dog breed.”
But is he the one for you? Of course, you couldn’t get a better dog than the Boxer. But there are so many wonderful dog breeds out there, and Boxer is by no means the only great dog you will find. There is something good and excellent about every dog, which is why it’s important to remember that the Boxer is a big dog. So, if you don’t take the time to train them properly, what you’re going to have at the end of the day is a large, unruly dog that likes to run and jump all around. Or, in other words, you’ll have a “wrecking ball” living with you.
So… A Word on Boxer Dog Training your Boxer
The Boxer is so clever that he can learn virtually any trick, and because he is eager for your affection, they generally make good students, which is excellent! You want to ensure that your training includes things they will be interested in, including agility training, obedience training, and a particular focus on teaching them to avoid “herding” everyone they meet. Also, make sure your Boxer wears a muzzle when you take him out, especially when they are young and just a puppy.
Potential Health Concerns
The Boxer is generally a healthy dog, but there are always exceptions. For this reason, you’ll want to be sure and ask your breeder to produce a CHIC Certification and proof of DNA testing that shows that he comes from healthy parents. Because here’s a list of health problems a Boxer could develop…
- Spondylosis Deformans
- Aortic Stenosis
- Bloating or Gastric Dilatation Volvulus
- Hypertrophic Osteodystrophy
And the cost of the treatment for most of these ailments can vary from $500 to $3,500…
“That’s NOT cheap!”
This is why we here at IndulgeYourPet also recommend that any new pet owner take a moment and see what it might cost to purchase a pet insurance policy for your new animal.
Now, will a pet insurance policy be suitable for everyone?
No, probably not. But until you fully understand what these policies “will” and “won’t” cover and how much these pet insurance policies cost, how will you know if one might be right for you?
For more information on who we feel currently offers the “best” pet insurance policies out there, we would encourage you to check out our Best Pet Insurance Policies article.