Boxers?????

Discussion in 'The Dog Breeds' started by Halee.R, May 23, 2012.

  1. Halee.R

    Halee.R New Member

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    Okay, I'm starting to research Boxers now. I find them to be very beautiful dogs. :) They look like they are pretty good watch dogs, but yet are a happy go lucky affectionate type of dog.

    My questions are, Are these dogs okay with a novice? Some websites are saying too that these dogs have TONS of energy and want to run 24/7, while other say they need moderate amount of exercise and have moderate energy. Which one is true??? I've also looked up some reviews about Boxers, and some owners say these dogs have a bad stubborn streak and will "shut down" when it comes to training, while other owners say they are VERY eager to please and are easily trainable. So I'm confused.......Do Boxers have a high energy level or moderate? And are they easily trainable, or hard to train????

    Do any of you guys have experience with Boxers? What are these dogs like?? I don't have much experience with training dogs and for exercise, I prefer a long walk. Would a Boxer fit any of my needs?? :)
     
  2. olliethemutt

    olliethemutt New Member

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    I had a boxer for about 10 years. They are such a stunning breed. With Rocko....when he was a pup he was VERY active (and very naughty) and VERY ready to please. He was a breeze to train new things. As the years past and he got older, he got way less active and VERY stubborn. I would be outside with him and call him in (he would just stand there) he would flick his ears back and completely ignore me. -_- He wasn't what I would call a "guard dog" he would bark at people when they were at the door, but other than that...he didn't do much LOL I think if someone were to come in the house and give him a bone he would let them do as they please.. haha. Rocko was always up for a walk..but after about a mile or so he would start dragging and I would literally have to pull him back..LOL (then again he was 7-8 years old)..when he was younger he could run for days without a problem. He was very adaptable too..we could bring in other dogs and change things around and he adapted to change very well.

    I hope this helps! I know not all dogs are the same...but he seemed to fit the description pretty well. Very active when young and a stubborn lazy old man later in life lol
     
  3. ihartgonzo

    ihartgonzo and Fozzie B!

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    Boxers vary GREATLY depending on what kind of breeder they are from. Unfortunately, like most popular breeds, there are many awful Boxer breeders out there producing unstable dogs. I have met wonderful, sweet, laid back Boxers from show lines. I have met uncontrollable, jumping, clawing, insane Boxers from backyard breeders. And everything in between.

    In general, I find that most Boxers jump on people - they were bred to jump up and use their paws, hence the name "Boxer". So if that's something that bothers you & you aren't willing to put in time/consistency, that might be an issue. A lot of Boxers at my work (dog daycare) will literally jump on you and claw your face up, which is one of the reasons it's the least favorite breed of most of my co-workers. Some are very suspicious of people, will snap at you, and I would say about half are dog aggressive - all of the DA/HA Boxers I have met are very obviously badly bred dogs with horrible conformation. We also get Boxers who are perfectly well-behaved, gentle and sweet, whose owners clearly got them from good breeders and put in the time to socialize and train them.

    I don't feel that Boxers are a good breed for the typical novice dog owner. They can be very stubborn and willful, like any bully breed. They are VERY energetic and need to be exercised daily... this is an active, working dog! However, if you're a novice who genuinely has the time, patience and motivation to be very consistent and pro-active about training and daily exercise, you'll probably have a great dog. It would be a good idea to search for reputable breeders who show & work their dogs, on your state's Boxer club website. Go to shows, meet dogs and their breeders, and learn about the breed hands on. Looks is only one of a million reasons to choose a dog to take in for the next 15 years! You could also contact your local Boxer rescue and look into adult dogs in foster homes, who already have foundation training and known temperaments.

    If you want a lazy, low-key dog who requires little training, I do not recommend a Boxer.
     
  4. Aleron

    Aleron New Member

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    I've never owned a Boxer but I have a lot of Boxer experience. One of my bosses has Boxers that I spend two days a week or more around (they're 8 or 9 now and I've known them since they were puppies, also knew her previous Boxer), we had multiple Boxers at daycare, I've worked with a local Boxer person's dogs for them (training/socialization), showed a Boxer a few times and have seen quite a lot in classes over the years. And they've ranged from well bred to very poorly bred.

    So these are my thoughts on Boxers :)

    They are wildly, over exuberant as puppies and young adults. Hyper would be a good word and during that time, they definitely need a lot of physical activity. There's a reason we had a lot of Boxers at daycare ;) They are also extremely physical in their play. They enjoy body slamming you (the harder the better!), leaping at you, grabbing you with their mouth, etc. It is very easy to get them overly excited and bring out these behaviors. They have hard heads and interactions with them can be painful if improperly choreographed LOL This wildness does tend to even out a bit by time they're 3 to 5 (years, not months LOL) but even my boss's dogs who are definitely older for Boxers are not hard at all to get wound into a body slamming, mouthing, barking frenzy.


    I'd say the truth is somewhere in between. Most I have known have not been even remotely soft dogs, definitely not dogs who shut down easily. Actually quite the opposite - most have been the sort of dogs who rarely get hurt feelings about anything. I think about every Boxer I've known has been extremely food motivated and most like toys too, so the potential is definitely there for training. I think many of them don't necessarily take well to being forced to do things though. Not so much that they shut down but they can try to resist as hard you can try to force. I wouldn't say stubborn as much as strong willed. IME they are not as biddable as my herding breed dogs are. They are devoted to their owners but don't have the sort of built in focus and desire to work for you. They're ,more dogs who need to learn that working with you is the best way for them to get what they want.

    Boxers are goofy dogs but quite a few I've known also have had some pretty serious guarding instinct. Like there is no way a stranger could safely walk into their house or yard. A couple were very..."weird" about non-family members handling them in certain ways or behaving in certain ways. One of the daycare Boxers bit the daycare owner in the face once because she bent over him. He was the sort of dog who would get mad if you stared at him or tried to hug him too. He lives with another Boxer from the same breeder who's the total opposite, seems to have no guarding instinct at all. One of the Boxers I worked with for the show person was very similar, happy, goofy, silly dog out and about and if he knew you but very serious guard dog at home.

    Other things to keep in mind about Boxers would be same sex aggression is pretty much the norm in them. Not all are same sex aggressive or SSA with all same sex dogs but most serious Boxer people expect them to be and plan accordingly. With dog-dog play, most dogs not familiar with Boxers seem to very much dislike the breed's play style which is extremely rough, pouncing, hitting, body slamming, etc. They can very easily become daycare or dog park bullies or ruin play experiences for other dogs. Because of the Boxers at daycare, Jagger hates pretty much every Boxer - even girls. As they mature, some become less tolerant of group play situations.

    Health is not a strong point with the breed. A large number of them seem to develop some sort of heart issue during their life. This can range from minor to the dog dropping dead from cardiomyopathy. Unfortunately I've even known it to happen with cardio tested dogs. I believe they are prone to cancer as well. The long time Boxer breeder I know said that you're lucky with a lot of them they make it to 10. Of course, I've known very old Boxers too so they don't necessarily always have short lifespans.

    Hope that helps!

    ETA: The most laid back Boxers I've come across have mostly been pet bred. The really ADD ones (dogs who can't find food in your hand in front of their face because they are too excited about the food) have all been pet bred. The show bred ones I've been around the most have been absolutely wild, especially as youngsters. I'm sure like anything, it varies depending on lines and individuals.
     
  5. PatchworkRobot

    PatchworkRobot New Member

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    I've never owned a boxer but I've worked with plenty, I love them.

    98% of the time they're a happy, goofy, loving, fun dog. They have always been easy for me to train. They've also always had boundless energy (even the 9 y/o I knew).
     
  6. Halee.R

    Halee.R New Member

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    Hmm, so most Boxer have alot of energy?? I was more looking for a more laid back moderate amount of energy type of dog. So I'm guessing a Boxer wouldn't fit that???

    To be honest, I guess I'm not the person who wants to train their dog all day long, entering in agility, Schutzhund etc. Yes I am willing to do some training, but not as much as some people do. I want a dog for a pet, alerting me of anything amiss, and will make intruders think twice before entering.

    Problem is, every dog i look into either is, too strong willed, needs too much exercise, or needs too much grooming. I really like the Newfoundland, but I'm not quite sure I could handle all the shedding, grooming, and drool. Besides that, I REALLY like them.
     
  7. Aleron

    Aleron New Member

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    There are laid back Boxers out there but as a whole, IME the breed seems to be pretty active.

    People may cringe at this but you can always get a Newfie and keep it in a short trim to make the coat more manageable. Of course, that doesn't do much for the drool and the drool is considerable LOL

    What about a Smooth Collie? Definitely good watch dog potential but will welcome guests into the home without an issue. Tri-color or merle Smooths don't look like Lassie one bit and especially Tri markings seem to put the general public in the mind of Dobes, I was often asked if my Rough Tri was part Doberman.
    [​IMG]

    Definitely ok dogs for first time owners. Moderate energy level, would be up for being active when you were but make good house dogs. Trainable and overall good companions. They might be a bit friendly for you but most aren't Golden or Lab friendly and honestly, dogs predisposed towards being friendly are so much easier that it might be a good compromise to consider. They do shed a couple times a year but don't require professional grooming and it wouldn't be near the maintenance that a Newfie would be. The Collie Club of America has a lot of good info: http://www.collieclubofamerica.org/meet_the_collie2.html
     
  8. *blackrose

    *blackrose "I'm kupo for kupo nuts!"

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    I personally don't find Boxers to be outstanding in the amount of energy level they have - but I'm also used to Labs. If you're willing to do two long walks a day and general play sessions around the house throughout the day, I think you'll be just fine. Boxers don't need miles of jogging or intense training sessions to be satisfied. But if you are looking for a couch potato dog that you don't want to take on walks daily or play with around the house...then yes, a Boxer likely wouldn't be a good fit.

    And I second the Smooth Collie suggestion.
     
  9. Halee.R

    Halee.R New Member

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    Thank you for mentioning this breed! :) So far, they are fitting everything I want in a dog. :) I'm still going to do quite a bit of research on them though. :D
     
  10. HayleyMarie

    HayleyMarie Like a bat outa' hell

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    What about a standard poodle. I know the grooming requirments can be a little crazy, but what I've noticed about them is that they can make an awesome watch dogs. And I don't think their energy level is through the roof.
     
  11. Southpaw

    Southpaw orange iguanas.

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    Boxers are very active dogs, most "mellow" out at 2-3 years old but they are called eternal puppies for a reason.

    I'm at work so can write more later tonight but yeah...if you want a mellow dog, boxers are not the breed. Unless you do an adult rescue so you know their requirements.
     
  12. Saeleofu

    Saeleofu Active Member

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    I haven't read everything up to this point, but I saw boxers and smooth collies mentioned...and I have one of each :D

    My boxer is dog-reactive, wary of strangers, and has a very high prey drive. He's generally an asshole to every other dog, but he LOVES Logan (my smoothie), and can be around other dogs, so long as he's monitored and not matched up with another dog that's an asshole. I was dogsitting 11 dogs last year, and he got to the point where he could be let loose to play with them all, even all of them at the same time. Despite his prey drive, he ADORES small dogs - but he can't be around cats. He's been in with the chickens before and chased them a bit, but didn't hurt them. He was quite a hyper dog when he was younger (I got him at around a year, he was a stray, so his background is unknown). Now at age 5 he's incredibly mellowed out, but he does get active when he's outside or when we go somewhere. He's got some anxiety, but it's mostly a result of his hypothyroidism (which is incredibly common in boxers) than anything else. He's overall a fantastic dog, and he is my heart dog. He was *my* first dog, but I was not a dog novice when I got him - I was raised with dogs, mostly GSDs but also some others. I has dog training and handling experience, had worked in a vet clinic for a couple years( which is how I ended up with him), and I knew what I was doing. Now, boxers have SO many health and possible temperament problems, that if I were to get another one it would have to be from a breeder I really trust, a breeder who breeds for longevity, health, and temperament and does Early Neurological Stimulation and make sure it's socialized very well. The reason I don't have another boxer is because I could not find a breeder that met my criteria. He doesn't bark much, in fat he hardly ever barked until I got my collie. He will alert bark if there is a legitimate reason, but that's about it. He's content to just chill the vast majority of the time, he's extremely cuddly, and he's freaking adorable ;)

    My smooth collie is very outgoing, he loves EVERYTHING - dogs, cats, chickens, people, you name it. He's never met any living thing he didn't like. He sheds more than my boxer, but still not as much as the GSDs. He's got the most stable temperament of any dog I've ever been around - when he took his ATTS temperament test, he got scores mostly around the middle, which is where I want them for his job as a service dog. He an be a giant goof ball, but when he's working he gets very focused. He's not as agile or drivey as Gavroche - or at least, he has better self-control than Gavroche (my boxer). He has no problem being around strange dogs, cats, small animals, new people, etc. He was EXTREMELY active as a young dog (I got him around a year old from a fantastic breeder), and he needed to do something every single day (MINIMUM of a fairly long walk, ideally much more than that - biking, playing, loads of training etc) or he'd go nuts and bark his head off. As he matured, he needed less and less activity. Now as long as he gets to go out and play for a bit or watch the chickens for a while ,he's perfectly content to chill the rest of the time. His barking has backed off a lot lately, but there was a time when I used a spray collar on him to stop the barking. It worked wonders for the barking, though, and he no longer needs it (I may put it on again if I ever move into an apartment). He's a soft dog compared to my boxer, and spray is definitely enough of a correction for him (unscented spray, even - the citronella scented stuff gives me a headache). Anyway, he's just a really fun dog, though he did take a lot of work as a youngster. He's my ideal dog in pretty much every sense. However, keep in mind I got him from a good breeder who breeds for temperament and working ability, did Early Neurological Stimulation, socialized the crap out of him, and started training him in SAR work before I ever got him. I can't really say how much of a difference between my dogs is from breed differences and how much is from how they were bred and raised.

    If you want to discuss the differences between boxers and collies more, feel free to PM me any time!
     
  13. Southpaw

    Southpaw orange iguanas.

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    Okay.

    High energy, yes. Especially when young. They are CAPABLE of going a million hours a day, but that doesn't mean they NEED that. When I bring Juno to daycare, after a 10-12 hour day all the staff will tell me "I don't think she ever sat down!" If they are given an activity, they will do it, and they'll do it 110%. She is beginning to mellow out now at 3 years old, and most days a (stimulating) 30 minute walk is enough to keep her satisfied. I say stimulating because I used to be strict about keeping her at my side during the walk... now I'm busy and walks are pretty much her only form of exercise, so she gets the whole length of the leash and gets to stop and sniff and pee on whatever she wants. A slow walk by my side would not even come close to putting a dent in her energy level.

    IMO they are easy to train. I think the stubborn part comes from the fact that, most of them are not going to work for a simple "good dog!" and a pat on the head. They need a strong motivator, ie treats or play. Juno is a piece of cake to work with, she loves training and is so focused and learns new concepts very quickly. But that is because she LOVES food, so she is happy to work with me as long as she gets that in return (in the beginning stages - eventually once something has been trained solidly enough, I expect her to just do it). Some people just don't like training with rewards other than praise, or some people just don't know what it is that motivates their dog the most. And that's when you get "stubborn." My experience with Juno is that they do best with positive and upbeat training - she can tell when I am frustrated with her, and then she does essentially shut down and stops working with me. Some call that stubborn, I just call it being in tune.

    She is good with dogs, big and small, and cats. She has on leash reactivity but IMO that is my fault and could have been prevented when she was a puppy.

    I wouldn't exactly say to a novice dog owner, "hey, get a boxer!" but they're not that difficult. I'm basically a novice. I mean I've had dogs before and I grew up with a boxer before getting Juno, but Juno is MY first dog, the first dog I've raised myself and the first dog I've done any training with. We survived.

    But they are fun, sweet, loyal dogs. I have a hard time imagining my house without one. And for the record, my boxer does not jump on people :p
     
  14. Nemek

    Nemek New Member

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    Nemek lusToutes

    There may be noticeably a bundle to know about this. I assume you made certain good factors in features also.
     
  15. Halee.R

    Halee.R New Member

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    The energy level is my only drawback. Everything else, I could handle.

    Since you say Boxer puppies tend to have loads of energy, would it be a good idea to adopt an older one?? I have no problem with adopting an older dog, I just have it in my head that if you adopt an older dog, they don't tend to warm up to you and bond with you as strongly as a puppy would.
     
  16. *blackrose

    *blackrose "I'm kupo for kupo nuts!"

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    I actually think adopting an older dog (say, around three years or so) would be PERFECT for you. You know exactly what you are getting temperament wise, coat wise, size wise, and activity level - plus, if you adopt from a rescue, more often than not the dogs have had some basic training and are typically started on crate and house training, if not completely trained already.

    Adopting an older dog doesn't hurt their bond with you at all. My boyfriend adopted his dog, Cynder, when she was around two or three years. That dog's world revolves around Mike. He is the center of her universe and everybody else is either tolerated or considered, just a bit, to be a part of the family because they are a part of Mike's family.
     
  17. Saeleofu

    Saeleofu Active Member

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    ABSOLUTELY get an older dog! I got both my boys around a year old. I personally wouldn't mind if I never had to raise a puppy. I really love getting dogs as adults. It doesn't hurt the bond at all. Both my boys are very bonded to me - Gavroche is my heart dog, even. As I write this they're both pressed against me in bed snoozing :)
     

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