The ancestors of the Boxer go all the way back to 2000 B.C. and the ancient Assyrians where they were used in war. Modern dog breeds that are descendants from these dogs are put in the category called Molosser, named after the city of Molossis in Epirus, which is now Greece and Albania. If you would like to see what other dog breeds are Molosser breeds, see this page on Wikipedia: Molosser
The modern boxer was developed in Germany in the late 1800s. They come from an extinct dog breed called Bullenbeisser (also known as German bulldog) that were bred with the Old English Bulldog. The Bullenbeisser was a hunting dog for many centuries.
The first Boxer club was formed in Munich in 1895, and the Boxer was officially recognized by the American Kennel Club in 1904.
The Boxer is a medium-sized dog breed. Males are larger than females with males being 65 to 80 pounds, 23 to 25 inches tall, and females 50 to 65 pounds, 22 to 24 inches tall. Their average life expectancy is 10 to 12 years.
Boxers typically have had their tails docked when they are 3 to 5 days old before the cartilage forms and have their ears cropped. Some countries have now made docking and cropping illegal as it is unnecessary, painful, and cruel.
Boxers worked initially as bull baiting dogs and butcher’s helpers. During World War I, they worked as messenger dogs, pack carriers, and guard dogs. After World War II, they became popular all over the world as guard dogs, show dogs, and companion dogs. They currently also work as service dogs, therapy dogs, police dogs, and guide dogs for the blind.
They are intelligent, energetic, and playful dogs and make excellent family dogs.
I used to have a Boxer and she got along with everybody. Her name was Molly. She grew up with my many other pets and she wanted to be friends with all of them. Molly was also the most gentle dog I’ve ever known. Playing was her favorite and she wanted to do it all the time. She would growl and show her teeth, pretending she was mean and scary, but she would never use her teeth on you. Instead, she’d use her gums and she was always so gentle!
My Eclectus parrot would climb down from his cage onto the floor to play with her, and they had a funny game they would play. Molly would growl and sound very mean, wiggling and jumping all over the place (like Boxers do). She would never hurt him though. The only part of her that ever touched him was her tongue. The game was that she tried to lick him and he tried to grab her tongue with his beak.
Boxers need lots of exercise and play time every day. They like to be with their people all the time and not left alone all day. They make a really great family member and companion.