while getting Herb's eyeglasses repaired at a local mall, we struck
up a conversation with the young man assisting in the repair. He
had noticed our T-shirts, adorned with Boxers, of course, and inquired
whether we had Boxers. We advised him we did and he proceeded to
ask me to describe what I liked about Boxers and why I felt the breed
was so special. He was intent on getting a dog for the family and had heard Boxers
were good with children and usually made good family dogs
Because of the limited amount of time he had to spend with us, I
could only give him a brief account of our breed's "special" qualities
After returning home, I
decided to put my description of our breed down on paper. I hope it will make a good
handout when you talk to others interested in being "owned" by our
Boxers are a special breed and until a person has been a companion to such a dog, one
cannot really understand the depth of their devotion. They are sincere in their preference
for human companionship over the company of other animals. Unlike other breeds of dogs who
can fend for themselves for the majority of the day, Boxers require our fellowship. They
can exist in a household with other animals, but they prosper with human contact. This
knowledge is key to living, and living well with a Boxer.
The Boxer is not a breed to be left in the backyard and excluded from the home. They do
not thrive well in extreme weather, be it heat or cold. The Boxer's temperament is
designed to live in the house with the family as a member of the family. A warm bed in
winter, a cool spot away from the summer's heat are a basic requirement. A good diet,
fresh water, a good health-care program, and regular grooming (compared to other breeds,
the Boxer is truly low maintenance in this aspect) will lead the Boxer to repay you
his/her keep in ways you could never imagine.
Children are especially coveted by the Boxer. I have always believed that the
Boxer's child-like spirit is very much like the "small humans" they
so adore. Boxers require the exact same portions of love, discipline and freedom
to grow to their full potential. Living in a household with children and Boxers
is very rewarding. It is also a quest we cannot take carelessly. Remember, both
children and Boxers will reflect our failures as well as our triumphs.
A Boxer will succeed in a household without children, as long as the "parent"
has the ability to dispense those necessary portions of love, discipline and freedom.
Therefore, just like some people are never meant to be parents, some people are not meant
to be Boxer owners. A prospective Boxer companion should understand and be prepared for
this "parenthood." Like children, the Boxer can adapt to any lifestyle as long
as the "parent" in his/her life remains loving and dependable.
The responsibilities for children and dogs of any breed are the same. Some
people will probably consider my opinion of our breed foolish. Some believe dogs or other
animals do not perceive human emotions of love, hate, fear, happiness, sadness, shame or
guilt. Animals are, in some eyes, meant to walk the earth in their natural state devoid
of human companionship. We should simply admire them from a distance. Obviously, they have
never lived with a Boxer. One only has to look into the eyes of the Boxer, the mirror of
their soul, to know they feel and exhibit all our human emotions. Boxers, like children,
know how to use all of them to their own advantage.
I have lived with other breeds in my 50-plus years; the last 29 years I have spent
exclusively with Boxers. The Boxer is, by far, my favorite. Sporting dogs, hounds, herding
dogs, terriers and other dogs have shared my life from time to time -- none have
strengthened my life like the Boxer. Their uncanny ability to adjust to whatever life
sends their way has been my deliverance on many occasions. They can find humor when there
is no laughter. They can see heartbreak and offer comfort even when there are no tears.
They can sense danger and react with amazing calm. There are times when we must face our
fears; Boxers are fearless when they know they are loved and they trust those who love
them. The surest way to break a Boxer's heart is to break that trust. Only when there is
no trust do they allow their fear to show. Take a good look into the eyes of a Boxer
coming through a rescue program if you get the chance, you will know immediately what I
mean. The character of the Boxer that sets them apart from other breeds in heir ability to
forgive the most insufferable treatment; they are always willing to five humans a second
chance to renew their trust in us.
You do not gain this position or respect that comes with it by force. You gain the
Boxer's respect with a firm but thoughtful approach. An approach that should be laced with
a generous amount of humor. To some, the Boxer may appear as a "class clown" and
in many ways they fit that description well. However, as in most cases, the class
clown is simply testing the waters seeking to find his own confidence. A Boxer
will do more for a smile than any other breed I have known. A heavy hand only
leads to a heavy heart. A heavy heart can destroy the Boxer's spirit.
Give a Boxer plentiful doses of sunshine and fresh air. They enjoy a job in the
park or a swim in the lake. They are an "all around" dog and they can be as active or an
inactive as you please. A Boxer can lounge on the couch with the best of the "couch
The secret is to include them. Being a part of the family is the Boxer's primary
goal in life. If you do, you will have less trouble with the excavations in the
back yard, or the flowerbed, the chewed furniture or shoes. Remember, a bored
Boxer is a "busy"
Boxer. Keep your Boxer "busy" in constructive endeavors and the destructive
tendency will be better contained. Use a crate if you do have to leave the dog
alone. The do enjoy periods of being left alone, as do we. The time spent safely
in his/her crate is quickly forgotten when the dog sees you. Returning to an
unblemished house brings a smile to your face and that's a perfect way to greet
Don't consider the Boxer just a dog you would like as a pet. You will be making a new
friend and a new family member. The fact that the Boxer is canine is irrelevant. We all
know a lasting friendship, like fine wine, just grows better with time. The Boxer does not
deal well with restriction, either in physical or emotional form. The most important thing
you can spend on your Boxer is time. The profits you will receive are immeasurable. If you
cannot spend the quality time necessary, spend your restricted time and money on another
Having a Boxer in your life results in boundless adventures.
Hold tight to the lead and prepare for the journey of a lifetime.