The Boxer or German Boxer is a medium sized to large sized, short coated, muscular dog that was developed in Germany, specificly Munich. The Boxer is in origin a fighting dog, later a guard and utility or family dog.
The breed early ancestors were mastiff type dogs, known as the large Molossian Hound. Further along the line, its predecessor was called the Bullenbeisser (now extinct). The Bullenbeiszer's roots go back to Belgium and these ancestors were known as great hunting and working dogs. Originally used to hunt wild boar and later used for working with cattle these dogs eventually diverged into different types, the smaller of which were called the Brabanter Bullenbeiszer.
What we know of as the Boxer today can be traced to the 1830s when a breeder crossbred the Brabanter Bullenbeiszer with a forerunner of the English Bulldog (old type), but the Boxer dog breed history really begins in the 1860s as breeders began to establish and develop guidelines for the breed. In 1895 the Boxer Club was formally formed and further improvements were made to the standards of the Boxer dog breed.
Although initially the Boxer dog breed was generally white, by 1925 white was not accepted as a proper color for the breed. In fact, the color of choice now is fawn and brindle and any dog with more than a third of its coat white will be disqualified in AKC events.
This dog breed came to the United States around the beginning of the 1900s, was registered in 1904. The first Boxer Champion (Dampf vom Dom) was recognized in 1915. During World War I, the Boxer was co-opted for military work, acting as a valuable messenger dog, pack-carrier, attack dog, and guard dog. It was not until after World War II that it become a popular dog breed (1940s). In 1949 a famous Boxer dog, Bang Away, won Best in Show at the Westminster and went on to win 121 more Best in Shows over the course of six years. Bang Away became a famous dog, appearing on the front of magazine such as Life and Esquire.
The breed became very popular became as a favorite companion, a show dog, and a guard dog in the United States at the time and continues to be one of the 10 most popular breeds as determined by the American Kennel Club.
Body: Boxers have a strong and athletic, square physique. The dry body is very muscular, both front and rear, back and neck. The back is broad, strong and muscular and should be as short and straight as possible, with slightly higher withers. The loins are short, broad and strong and the broad croup drops only slightly. The set tail is carried as if happy. Normally, in countries where it is allowed, it was cut at 8 to 10 inches. The deep chest reaches the elbows. Depth of chest is half the shoulder height of the dog. The ribs are well sprung but not shaped like a barrel. They range backwards for a good length. The sides are short and tight and the belly is tucked up. Boxers have long and oblique shoulders that should not look loaded. The solid and well turned legs are straight and parallel. The small feet are pointing forward and have well fitting and arched toes. Boxers have a pretty long, dry and muscular neck, that dissapears with in an elegant arch into their back. The start of the neck is clearly visible.
Head: the head is as dry as possible and has a domed skull that is neither flat nor round, nor may it be too broad. The cheek muscles are strongly developed but not protruding. The width of the muzzle would ideally approach the width of the skull. The main head groove is well marked but not too deeply between the eyes. The stop is sharply defined. The length of the muzzle should be approximately half the length of the skull. The tip of the nose is slightly higher than the root of the nose (slightly upturned nose). The lower jaw is curved and the firm chin protrudes slightly to the upper jaw, in such a way that the firm developed upper lips rest on the edges of the lower lips. The small and thin ears are set high and hanging flat against the cheeks. The eyes should not show any blind fleece. They have an undershot bite. If the mouth is closed, the teeth are not visible.
Height at Withers: the dogs have a shoulderheight of 57 up to 63 centimetres and bitches measure 53 up to 59 centimetres.
Weight: for dogs it's between 30 to 32 kg and bitches are between 24 to 25 kg.
Coat: they have a short and coarse coat that lays close to the skin.
Colors: these dogs come in two colors, fawn and brindle. The yellow may lie between pale and dark deer red. In brindle dogs, there are streaky, black markings on the bright ground color. The markings can be very light, but can also be so heavy that the dog almost appears to be black. Both varieties may be associated with white markings, but they may only cover less than one third of the dog. Boxers with half or completely white head are undesirable. A black mask is required for both colors. The eyes should be as dark as possible.
Character: Boxers have a strong character, are cheerful, honest and uncomplicated dogs with a gentle nature. They are very agile and lively, and in their spontaneity can also be quite stormy. So they are not that suited for people who appreciate their valuable belongings. They are attentive to what is happening in their environment and are very watchful, but no barkers. They have a stable and confident nature and are not easily impressed by anything. However, they are susceptible to moods at home and harsh words affect them deeply. They bond closely with their family. Their intelligence should not be underestimated.
Social Build: Boxers go exceptionally well with children, but young children must be protected against their rashness. A well-bred and well socialized Boxer gives little or no problems when dealing with dogs and other pets, although there are dogs that will not shy away from a challenge of a same sex dog. Boxer naturally monitors your home and family and does so enthusiastically, but their root is not that of suspicion. As they are thrilled to welcome acquaintances of the family.
Care: Boxers need relatively little coat care. It is enough to brush the coat once a week with a soft brush. In the shedding period, a rubber brush or rubber glove serves well to easily remove the dead hairs from the coat.
Education: This breed is intelligent and likes to make its boss happy. They learn pretty quickly if their owner behaves loving, clear and consistent. Harsh words and sentences are almost always unnecessary, but some firmness is needed, as these dogs are often smarter than their boss suspects. Make sure to begin a strict discouragement policy from the start in regards to the enthusiastic jumping towards people, the bigger and heavier they become the less appreciated it will later be.
Activity: Boxers are energetic dogs and they need lots of exercise. When the dog is grown, you can start running them next to your bike. Boxers love to play and romp with other dogs, but he also would galdly leave his basket to play a ball game with his boss and the children. They have virtually no hunting instinct and have no inclination to walk away far from their boss. Unleashed walks are as a rule conducted in a relaxed state, but make sure you know where you do this, you are responsible for your dog. Keep a safe distance with leashed dogs, that you do not know very well.
Usability: Boxers are great companion dogs for sportive families. They are suitable for virtually all branches of dog sports, from agility, flyball and obedience to advanced training.
Boxer Quotes / Trivia