Type: Guardian Dog Height: Males: 22.5 - 25 inches; Females: 21 - 23.5 inches.
Weight: Males: 65 - 80 lbs.; Females: 50 - 65 lbs.
Colors: Fawn, brindle with or without white markings on the face, chest, on the insides of the forelegs and on the feet. They can have a black mask over their face and eyes. Sometimes puppies are born almost all white, but it is not as common.
Coat: Short, shiny, smooth and glossy. The coat is easy to maintain.
Boxers origins stem from as far back as the sixteenth century in Europe. His ancestors are thought to involve mastiff-type dogs called Bullenbeissers (translating to "bull-biter"), English Bulldogs, Great Danes, Boston Terriers, French Bulldogs, and some type of terrier. The general consensus of the Boxers' genetic makeup is that around the 1830s, German hunters created the Boxer from mating a small Bullenbeisser (mastiff-type breed) female to a native, possibly Bavarian, male dog, by which the two produced a female who was then mated to an English Bulldog. Boxers were first used as hunters to the Germans and Nederland residents to hunt boar and deer. Later in Germany, the breed was used in bull baiting and the popular sport of dog fighting. When dog fighting was banned in Germany in the mid-nineteenth century, the Boxer was then put to use as a guard and for controlling cattle at slaughterhouses. This may have been where the Boxer received its current name, being called "boxl" in the slaughterhouses. Another theory states that the name "Boxer" was formed due to their use of front legs when in the fighting ring, resembling a boxer. In 1895 the Boxer breed was exhibited in Munich, by then making a reasonable standard by which to judge, and in 1904 was registered by the AKC. After World War II these dogs became more popular in the United States, and has since received steadily rising praise. Boxers were among the first to become military and police dogs. Although originally bred and raised in a bull-baiting and fighting environments, over the years they have been refined to have a non-aggressive temperament, which certainly shows.
Description: The Boxer is a medium-sized, squarely built canine of good substance with a short back, strong limbs, and short, tight-fitting coat. Boxers should have a broad, blunt muzzle and an expression of alertness. Their faces resemble that of a Bulldog, and their tails are usually docked for show. Ears are sometimes cropped for show as well, but they naturally have drop ears. Boxers should have a fenced yard to roam in, but will do well in a city environment if walked daily. They do not do well in the heat, but adapt to most other aspects of living environments. The Boxer is considered a "people dog" adapting well to other dogs and children. They are a popular breed all over, retaining their puppy-like tendencies well into old age. Boxers love to play, do well with children, and are youthful at heart. They are obedient, loyal, and learn quickly. Boxers can make excellent guard dogs, as they were used for that purpose in the past and today. They should never be aggressive, but rather even-tempered and loving towards their family, thus making the Boxer an ideal family pet.
(For more detailed background, see Bullenbeisser)
Friedrich Roberth and his Boxer, 1894 The Boxer is part of the Molosser group, developed in Germany in the late 1800s from the now extinct Bullenbeisser, a dog of Mastiff descent, and Bulldogs brought in from England. The Bullenbeisser had been working as a hunting dog for centuries, employed in the pursuit of bear, wild boar, and deer. Its task was to seize the prey and hold it until the hunters arrived. In later years, faster dogs were favored and a smaller Bullenbeisser was bred in Brabant, in northern Belgium. It is generally accepted that the Brabanter Bullenbeisser was a direct ancestor of today's Boxer.
In 1894, three Germans by the name of Roberth, Konig, and Hopner decided to stabilize the breed and put it on exhibition at a dog show. This was done in Munich in 1895, and the next year they founded the first Boxer Club, the Deutscher Boxer Club. The Club went on to publish the first Boxer breed standard in 1902, a detailed document that has not been changed much to this day.
The breed was introduced to other parts of Europe in the late 19th century and to the United States around the turn of the century. The American Kennel Club (AKC) registered the first Boxer in 1904, and recognized the first Boxer champion, Dampf vom Dom, 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 the Boxer became popular around the world. Boxer mascots, taken home by returning soldiers, introduced the dog to a much wider audience and it soon became a favorite as a companion, a show dog, and a guard dog.
Boxer early genealogy chart The German citizen George Alt, a Munich resident, mated a brindle-colored bitch imported from France named Flora with a local dog of unknown ancestry, known simply as "Boxer", resulting in a fawn-and-white male, named "Lechner's Box" after its owner. This dog was mated with his own dam Flora, and one of its offspring was a bitch called Alt's Schecken. George Alt mated Schecken with a Bulldog named Dr. Toneissen's Tom to produce the historically significant dog ''Mühlbauer's Flocki. Flocki was the first Boxer to enter the German Stud Book after winning the aforementioned show for St. Bernards in Munich 1895, which was the first event to have a class specific for Boxers.
The white bitch Ch. Blanka von Angertor, Flocki's sister, was even more influential when mated with Piccolo von Angertor (Lechner's Box grandson) to produce the predominantly white (parti-colored) bitch Meta von der Passage, which, even bearing little resemblance with the modern Boxer standard (early photographs depicts her as too long, weak-backed and down-faced), is considered the mother of the breed. John Wagner, on his The Boxer (first published in 1939) said the following regarding this bitch:
"Meta von der Passage played the most important role of the five original ancestors. Our great line of sires all trace directly back to this female. She was a substantially built, low to the ground, brindle and white parti-color, lacking in underjaw and exceedingly lippy. As a producing bitch few in any breed can match her record. She consistently whelped puppies of marvelous type and rare quality. Those of her offspring sired by Flock St. Salvator and Wotan dominate all present-day pedigrees. Combined with Wotan and Mirzl children, they made the Boxer."