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Boxer Dog Appearance
The Boxer is easily recognized by the distinctly square shaped head and chiseled features. They carry broad, thick skulls with short muzzles and large, kind eyes that convey their curiosity and fun loving nature. Boxers also have a slightly extended lower jaw, resulting in an under-bite appearance. At full growth, a Boxer will stand 22-25 inches tall and weigh in between 55-70 lbs. Healthy Boxers will usually live to be about 10-12 years old with proper care. These sturdy dogs display compact muscles and a short back, which further enhances their dense square-shaped build. Boxers have short-haired coats that lie tight to the body and are easily kept smooth and shiny with minimal grooming. The coats typically are in shades of fawn and brindle with white markings. These markings are usually present on the face, neck, paws, and extending down the chest and underbelly. Completely white boxers are not uncommon, but are more prone to health problems such as sunburns, skin cancers associated with sun exposure, and deafness. Boxers have had their tails and ears cropped throughout their history, but this practice is merely for show and is becoming illegal in many countries.
Boxer Dog Grooming
With tight, short coats and the grooming habits of a feline, Boxers require very low maintenance grooming. Their short coats do shed, so daily brushing will help minimize the amount of excess fur. A soft bristle brush will help remove the excess fur and improve the Boxer’s shine. It isn’t uncommon to see a Boxer bathing like a cat after eating or playing. While they do help keep themselves clean, an occasional bath will help keep them feeling fresh and smelling clean. Their strong paws have tough nails which should be clipped regularly to avoid painful overgrowth and breakage. Some owners prefer to use a nail grinder, similar to a nail file, to help keep nails trimmed down. It is also important to clean the Boxer’s ears, especially if they are not clipped. Their fuzzy, floppy ears can become infected if not properly cared for.
Boxer Dog Temperament
The muscular and imposing appearance of the Boxer is directly at odds with their lovable and clownish personalities. With one of the longest puppyhoods, Boxers aren’t considered fully mature until 3 years of age. They are intelligent, friendly, and loyal to their families. Boxers are also extremely patient and gentle, which makes them great family pets. While distrustful of strangers, a Boxer will not attack unless they perceive a threat to their family. They are well known for getting along with children and smaller dogs and animals, but sometimes have difficulties getting along with larger dogs. Similar to other dogs, Boxers simply need proper socialization to learn how to behave around non-threatening strangers and animals. They have boundless energy and their exuberance is evident in their play and exercise. They need to be actively engaged mentally and physically to burn off their excessive amounts of energy. A bored Boxer will turn to destructive and harmful behaviors such as chewing, digging, and licking. They do have a headstrong streak which could make training difficult, especially if they are being taught with harsh techniques.
Boxer Dog Training
Their levels of intelligence make training easier on both dog and trainer, but the headstrong nature of the Boxer may present a challenge. Training techniques that are reward based will work best with Boxers while harsh tactics can cause the Boxer to quit cooperating. They also respond best to short, varied training commands since repetitive tasks will bore them and bring that headstrong streak front and center. Boxers are excellent problem solvers and need to be taught boundaries in order to prevent them wreaking havoc on their environment. Obedience training is best when started early in puppyhood, especially with the Boxer’s wild bouts of excitement. These dogs thrive on companionship and positive training will help bond them to their owner as well as provide them mental stimulation.
Boxer Dog History
The Boxer belongs to the Molosser dog group and was bred primarily to be a working dog. This breed originated in the late 19th century in Germany and is the result of breeding the Bullenbeisser (now extinct) with Bulldogs from Great Britain. Their high levels of intelligence and characteristics of loyalty made them excellent watchdogs and were one of the first breeds used in Germany for police training. During World 1, the Boxer was utilized in military work and were messenger dogs, pack carriers, and guard dogs. The breed was popularized after the war when returning soldiers brought Boxers home. They soon became a fast favorite and are companions as well as show dogs.
German Boxer. Deutscher Boxer