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Home > Dogs > Dog Breeds > Boxer Dog Breed Guide: Info, Pictures, Care & More!

Boxer Dog Breed Guide: Info, Pictures, Care & More!

white boxer at home

It is very difficult to find someone unfamiliar with Boxers. Boxers are one of the most recognizable dogs because of their unique appearance and playful nature. This breed is lovable and highly recognizable for good reasons, and they have been this way since the reign of the Assyrians in 2000 BC.

Today, the modern Boxer is known for its playful, loving, and affectionate demeanor. They are also highly intelligent and alert, making them a perfect choice for Guide Dogs as well. Of course, they aren’t completely easy to train and take care of. Most notably, training requires a lot of hard work, and the breed requires a lot of exercise.

Breed Overview


21 – 25 inches


55 – 70 pounds


9 – 13 years


White, fawn, brindle

Suitable for:

Active families, homes with yards


Playful, active, affectionate

Still, Boxers are a great breed for many reasons. You can learn whether a Boxer puppy is right for you by reading this article. In this guide, we will tell you everything you should know beforehand before selecting a Boxer. Although this breed is great for many, it certainly is not great for all.

Let’s keep going to learn whether a Boxer puppy can fit into your home, or if you should select a different breed entirely.

Boxer Characteristics

High-energy dogs will need a lot of mental and physical stimulation to stay happy and healthy, while low-energy dogs require minimal physical activity. It’s important when choosing a dog to make sure their energy levels match your lifestyle or vice versa.
Easy-to-train dogs are more skilled at learning prompts and actions quickly with minimal training. Dogs that are harder to train will require a bit more patience and practice.
Some dog breeds are prone to certain genetic health problems, and some more than others. This doesn’t mean that every dog will have these issues, but they have an increased risk, so it’s important to understand and prepare for any additional needs they may require.
Some breeds, due to their size or their breeds potential genetic health issues, have shorter lifespans than others. Proper exercise, nutrition, and hygiene also play an important role in the lifespan of your pet.
Some dog breeds are more social than others, both towards humans and other dogs. More social dogs have a tendency to run up to strangers for pets and scratches, while less social dogs shy away and are more cautious, even potentially aggressive. No matter the breed, it’s important to socialize your dog and expose them to lots of different situations.


Boxer Puppies

boxer puppies walking on grass
Image Credit: Ricantimages, Shutterstock

Finding a Boxer puppy from a reputable breeder can be a bit expensive. When you’re looking for a Boxer, make sure you are searching for ethical and reputable dog breeders. Reputable breeders will ensure that the Boxer is healthy and often comes with pedigree certification.

After you find your puppy, you will have to pay for puppy supplies, veterinary care, and unexpected needs too. Most importantly, you will need a license, shots, collar, leash, and other necessities required for all dog owners. You may also want to pay for things like getting the dog spayed, neutered, or microchipped.

Be ready to commit plenty of time to exercise with your dog and provide enough mental stimulation to avoid boredom in your dog. Early socialization and training are essential for Boxers, but keep in mind that after training, Boxers might still tend to be dominant around other dogs.

German boxer on a leash
Image Credit: Michaela Ludwig, Pixabay

Temperament & Intelligence of the Boxer

Boxers are highly playful, affectionate, and intelligent. This temperament and intelligence make them perfect for active families, including those with children. If you’re getting a Boxer as a puppy, you will especially want ample time to train it correctly.

Are These Dogs Good for Families? 👪

Boxers are great dogs for the family. They love people, and they especially love to play with their owners. Even though this dog can be big, they tend to be really gentle and playful around children. This makes them a perfect breed for families.

Of course, early socialization is key for getting a Boxer who is suitable for children and other family members. Boxers can be shy, whereas others can be aggressive. Early socialization acclimates them to family members and strangers.

Even if you socialize your Boxer from an early age, it is still important to socialize any playtime between young children and Boxers. Even if the Boxer is trustworthy, the child may accidentally do something that dogs perceive as aggressive or annoying. Supervise playtime to ensure everyone is safe and happy.

Does This Breed Get Along with Other Pets?

One downside of Boxers is that they are not the best breed in terms of dog socialization. Although Boxers tend to love people, they can be dominant and aggressive around other dogs, especially dogs of the same sex. Early socialization can help to keep this behavior at bay, but it does not work with all.

More so, Boxers are not a great breed in terms of getting along with other animals. Boxers have an instinctive desire to chase and kill. This can prove fatal to small animals, such as cats. This trait is even more difficult to train away. It’s best to avoid bringing a Boxer into a household with small animals.

You can introduce Boxers into a household with other dogs if you are careful about how you do it. Dogs of opposite sex tend to get along well. You can also pair a Boxer with a very nonaggressive or nondominant breed, such as a Beagle. Once again, early socialization is key for the dogs to get along.

boxer dog closeup
Image By: Pixabay


Things to Know When Owning a Boxer:

Owning a Boxer can be a lot of hard work, especially where exercise and training are concerned. Other than that, Boxers are relatively easy to take care of in terms of food and grooming.

Food & Diet Requirements 🦴

Boxers can eat anywhere from 2 cups to 5 cups of food a day. Puppies and smaller Boxers will need 2 to 4 cups a day, whereas adult large males will likely need 4 to 5 cups a day. The exact amount of food you feed your Boxer will depend on its size and level of activity. You can ask your veterinarian how much food they recommend for the Boxer.

Only feed your Boxer high-quality dog food that is made from animal protein. It should also include very little carbohydrates and fillers.

Portrait of boxer on white background
Image Credit: lenkadan, Shutterstock

Exercise 🐕

One of the more difficult parts of having a Boxer is that it requires a lot of activity and exercise. These dogs need at least one hour of heavy exercise a day, if not more. A simple stroll in the park will not do for a dog of this type.

It’s best to walk briskly or jog with Boxers to keep them in good health. Additionally, give them a big backyard with a fence so that they can run around and play on their own. Supervising playtime between children and the Boxer can be a great way to get the dog’s energy out.

Training 🎾

Another area where Boxers are difficult is in training. Boxers are really intelligent, meaning that they can pick up on tricks and commands pretty fast. The issue is that Boxers are constantly on the move. Because of this, it can be difficult to get their attention to train them in the first place.

One area of training that will not be difficult is housebreaking them in. Boxers are an incredibly clean breed of dog, meaning that they pick up on bathroom manners really quickly. It’s other commands that you might have more difficulty with.

The best way to train a Boxer is to start at an early age. It’s much easier to train a puppy Boxer than a full-grown adult. Additionally, use a lot of positive reinforcement, such as treats and praise. Do not use negative reinforcement because this can scare the dog and make it aggressive.

Boxer at the beach
Image Credit: Marco-willy, Pixabay

Grooming ✂️

Because Boxers need a lot of exercise and training, you are probably breathing a sigh of relief to hear that they don’t require a lot of grooming. This dog has a really thin coat that is not coarse. It also does not shed very often. This means that you will not have to brush or bathe the Boxer unless it gets into something it shouldn’t.

Health and Conditions 🏥

Boxers are considered relatively healthy dogs, but there are elements to be aware of. Some are more serious than others.

Minor Conditions
  • Ear infections
  • Cuts and scrapes from playing
Serious Conditions
  • Aortic stenosis
  • Arrhythmogenic right ventricular cardiomyopathy
  • Deafness

Serious Conditions:

Purebred Boxers are particularly susceptible to heart disease, such as aortic stenosis and arrhythmogenic right ventricular cardiomyopathy. More so, deafness is an issue for Boxers. White Boxers especially experience deafness more than others. Anywhere from 20% to 40% of white Boxer puppies are born deaf in one or both ears, though it’s unclear why.

Minor Conditions:

Minor conditions are typically caused by excessive play. Boxers can hurt their paws or cut themselves because of how lively they get. They can also get ear infections, though this is less common than in other dogs.

Male vs Female

Boxers are a breed that certainly have differences based on their sex. Like many other breeds, males are bigger. Their temperament can differ as well. Males are much more playful and willing to play with children, whereas females can be a bit moodier and quieter. Males are more aggressive when it comes to territory, and females are easier to train.

With this in mind, a male Boxer is best if you want a Boxer that will play with your children, whereas females are best if you want an easily trainable Boxer that isn’t as territorial.


3 Little-Known Facts About the Boxer

1. Boxers have ancient roots.

Boxers are one of the most popular breeds today, and they seem to have been a highly popular breed for many years. Experts believe they have ancestors that trace back to 2000 BC around the time of the Assyrians. These ancestors were used in wars.

As time went on, the descendants of the Boxers were used for hunting bears, dear, and boars. This caused them to be highly popular in continental Europe. In fact, it is in Germany that the Boxers we know today were bred. From there, Boxers spread all over the world.

2. Boxers are frequent service dogs.

When most people think of Boxers, they often think of aggressive dogs that they can’t trust. Although this is true for individual Boxers, it is not true for the whole. In fact, Boxers are frequently used as service dogs because they are alert, intelligent, and kind.

More specifically, Boxers are typically used as Guide Dogs for the blind. They also are used by people who suffer from epilepsy. These dogs are intelligent enough that they can alert in the case of an oncoming seizure.

3. They are a favorite among celebs.

Boxers are popular among many people, including celebrities. For example, Humphrey Bogart and Lauren Bacall both loved Boxers. The celebrity pair received a Boxer, named Harvey, as a wedding gift. You can actually see Harvey in many of the pairs’ publicity photos. During their marriage, Bogart and Bacall also acquired two more Boxers, named Baby and George.

female boxer dog on sand
Image Credit: Photobac, Shutterstock

divider-dog paw


Boxers are a great breed if you want a super playful big dog for you and your children. Boxers are a great family dog because they are loyal, affectionate, playful, and great around children and adults alike. Everyone in the household will love having this type of a dog in their home – except the cat!

That being said, do not get a Boxer if you do not have the time or space to give it all the affection and exercise it needs. Remember, Boxers need a whole lot of playtime to stay happy and healthy. This dog is also not great if you already have other pets in your household.

Although Boxers require a lot of exercise and can be a bit difficult to train, they really are a great breed if you are willing to put in the work. Their playful and affectionate nature is a joy to be around, making them a great addition to any home with a large (and empty) backyard.

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Featured Image Credit: Pixel-Shot, Shutterstock

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