Boxer dogs, most recently popularised through the 2016 John Lewis Christmas advert, can make wonderful family pets. Searches for Boxer puppies have increased dramatically on the Kennel Club’s Find a Puppy website since the advert aired. But how much do you know about the breed and whether it would be right for your lifestyle?
At a glance
Temperament and character
The Kennel Club’s Boxer breed standard describes the breed as ‘lively, strong, loyal to owner and family, but distrustful of strangers.’ It also describes the breed as ‘obedient and friendly at play but with guarding instinct’. Overall, they are ‘equable, biddable, fearless and self assured’.
If you are looking for an affectionate, lively, playful family pet, the Boxer is a good fit. But you need to be prepared that with this energy and spirit comes the requirement for you, as the owner, to make sure that they get the exercise they need to burn off this energy and are properly trained and socialised. They are a large and strong dog, so be aware of this. Like any dog, the Boxer requires a good deal of commitment to care for properly and anyone serious about getting a Boxer should be prepared to put in the time and energy to give it a good home for the entirety of its life, which is usually over ten years.
Boxers can drool a lot and are messy eaters, so be prepared for this if you are overly house proud.
Are they good with kids?
Boxers are generally very good with children but they are bouncy, and tend to not look where they are going, so this needs consideration if you have young children.
Can they be left alone?
They will not be happy left alone for hours, as they are a real family pet, and need the company of their humans. They are not suitable for people who are out at work all day.
Find out more
You can meet Boxers and the experts who know all about living with the breed, in addition to around 200 other breeds of dog, at the Discover Dogs area of Crufts, taking place on 9-12 March 2017 at the NEC Birmingham.
You can find out more about the Boxer’s Breed Standard, health information and more here.
Still interested in getting a Boxer? Make sure that you buy responsibly. Kennel Club Assured Breeders ensure their dogs have had the appropriate health checks and are well cared for, to give them the best start in life. All breeders on the scheme are visited by the Kennel Club, which has UKAS accreditation to certify breeders on the scheme, to ensure they are doing the best by their dogs. There are also thousands of rescue dogs that need good homes and the Kennel Club Breed Rescue directory has a list of Breed Rescue organisations that specialise in Boxer dogs.
Find Assured Breeders of Boxer dogs here and Boxer Breed Rescue organisations here.
Boxers have a number of breed clubs dedicated to them, made up of experts in the breed who are happy to offer information about their character, care requirements, details of responsible breeders and much more. Find a list of Boxer breed clubs here.