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Hi all, so my future roommate (August) has been debating between a few dog breeds for awhile now. When he told me what he wanted in a dog, he basically described a lower-drive doberman, but did not want to go the doberman path due to breed restrictions etc. The other breeds on his short list also fell blame to this, and dalmations due to health, scarcity, etc. I had immediately suggested a boxer, but the only boxers he had been around were poorly bred and not trained, which gave the impression of them being 'dumb'. I too have only spent a large amount of time around 'pet' boxers from bybs. The local vet at my barn had a once showing Boxer stud, but he got hit by a car, and the breeder/owner offered him to her because he has a 12" scar down his back due to the injury. He is a very impressive dog, both to look at and temperament wise, and is far from the unfocused extremely silly boxers I've been around.

After more research, he did decide that the boxer was for him. I did manage to convince him to either rescue or get one from a reputable breeder, and he is now willing to spend $1000. However I'm hoping he'll be more willing to raise this amount from the right breeder etc. As far as Zeus is concerned, he's never lived with another large dog. He's always been around small dogs and puppies, that he basically ignores (unless playing at the park). He is also very laid back, and very mellow. I feel like having a higher energy dog around might actually make him a little perkier. The dog will also be a female btw, he surprisingly already was prepared to buy a female dog, so it did not take any 'same sex aggression' debates. He is a student, who spends a lot of time at home, and was raised with australian shepherds. I guess I have a few questions regarding this.

As for contacting a breeder,when I was looking for a local holter for rent, I came into contact with our local Boxer club. The club is very active in showing, agility, health, etc and their are about 10 reputable breeders in the group. Considering I have already spoken to a few of these people, should I be apart in initiating contact? Considering they know how serious I am about health, training, competition, etc, would this benefit his chances knowing that the dog will be with me as well? I am the type of roommate that takes care of my roommates dogs including socializing, training, etc, so I plan on being involved.

Also, health wise, the breed seems to have similar problems as the dobie, and the cardio problems are a major concern. Anyone with first hand experience?

I would also love anyone's advice, experience etc in working with this dog and their differences in living with them and dobermans.

Thanks!
 

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I've never worked with/trained a Doberman, so I can't really compare, but I can give you some firsthand boxer experience :)

First things first, they typically take a long time to mentally mature. Think puppy brain for years. Most that I've met (and especially Lillie) are very affectionate, but protective when they think they need to be. Expect a dog that needs to be trained not to jump/pull/etc. very early on. Also expect a rough play style and a dog that will be very vocal during playing, and also loves to "talk back" to the humans. Most boxers absolutely love children naturally, so that's a plus. They really are the clowns of the canine world - they'll do anything to make you laugh. Lillie is very submissive toward other dogs, but this definitely isn't the case with a lot of boxers - personality is extremely varied. Cancer is a huge issue and I check Lillie for lumps & bumps every day when I brush her (but I'm a bit more paranoid than most).

If you have any specific questions, feel free to shoot me a message!
 

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I had my male doberman, Jazz and then added a female rescue boxer to my household. My dobe and boxer became best buds. They both loved rough house playing and had similar energy levels so it was a perfect match. They slept together and played together. I have to admit that my boxer isn't the sharpest knife in the drawer. But she is a rescue and likely wasn't from stellar breeding. But she is very goofy and silly and is VERY affectionate. Unfortunately I lost my dobe 6 months ago, but I'm hoping to get another male dobe puppy this summer if all goes well. Got applications in with two very good breeders, so fingers crossed! I think boxers are awesome, he's made a great choice - he won't be disappointed.
 

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Boxers also have a lot of cardio, so it's good you're stressing to him that he find a breeder who does complete health testing. I'd also want to see longevity in the pedigree--another breed with a lot of cancer and plagued with some health issues.

I've liked the Boxers I've been around. The short nose would preclude fitting in with my own outdoors lifestyle, so you might ask him about that, if he plans on a future hiking/jogging partner.
 
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From personal experience I can tell you Boxers have a ton of health issues from DCM to Spondalocis to Dysplasia. They can be prone to Cancer/Tumours and can suffer from cysts between their toes which make walking painful they also can have breathing problems.
They are usually chewy as puppies, so shoes etc should be kept well out of reach though from my friends experience they do not restrict themselves to just shoes, one of hers chewed her sofa. (Boxers are just like Dobes it would seem when it comes to trying to get them there dragons)
Not all Boxers are good with children, (I find it unwise to generalise) My old girl was patient with my grandkids however my friends girl was indifferent to them whilst her boy was keen on eating them.
They are a boisterous dog, they are incredibly strong and can easily pull over an adult if they are not given training they need lots of exercise.
You can get dumb ones, you can get smart ones.
They can be very protective of the house, (they are a Mastiff after all) and are protective of their chosen humans.
They are tough enough to play with a Dobe (as long as they do not have any health issues) and can run as fast and T-bone with as much gusto.

But they are incredible dogs and I would have another in a heartbeat.
 

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The short nose would preclude fitting in with my own outdoors lifestyle, so you might ask him about that, if he plans on a future hiking/jogging partner.
My old girl before her health started to fail, (she had Leishmania and had cysts then tumours) could keep up with us no matter how far or fast we walked. So in my opinion it is the health issues that slow a Boxer down rather than its conformation, especially if you go for the type of Boxer whose nose isnt squashed into the back of its skull.
 

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My old girl before her health started to fail, (she had Leishmania and had cysts then tumours) could keep up with us no matter how far or fast we walked. So in my opinion it is the health issues that slow a Boxer down rather than its conformation, especially if you go for the type of Boxer whose nose isnt squashed into the back of its skull.

Well, I'm assuming if he goes for a breeder who is breeding to standard, and doing all health testing, the dog will likely qualify as brachycephalic, so it is a concern, to take under consideration.
 
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I am on my second boxer. The first one lived to 10 1/2 years and died of cancer. He was a once in a lifetime dog. The 6 year old I have now isn't quite the same as my first but, both were really intelligent and very good with kids and other animals. Forgot to mention both were males. Mine were super protective of kids . They can play ruff at times but know when to be gental as well. They think they are lap dogs and are voistrous and are total clowns most of their lives.Other than draco getting cancer both were very healthy.My biggest complaint would be the drooling .I love the breed.
 

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What energy level is your roomie interested in? While I think Boxers in general may have less drive than Dobes, their energy level is usually off the charts bordering on hyper (similar to my Vizslas)
 
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Discussion Starter · #10 ·
He is interested in a 'medium' energy dog, however, like I said, the dog will almost certainly accompany me on my daily 3 mile walks and park trips. (When it is old enough to do the distance of course). That being said, due to his wishes, he will most likely be going towards the rescue route and adopting an 'adult'. Although still super energetic as adults, it will be an easier route for him to not jump straight into a boisterous boxer puppy. After realizing he can get a 'purebred' Boxer from a rescue (He had no clue there were purebred dog rescues outside of animal shelter, adoptapet etc), he has really been favoring the rescue route as to puppydom. His previous dogs have all been aussies so I do not believe the energy will be too overwhelming for him!
 

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I really like boxers. Most of the ones I've known have been sweet loving dogs. I have heard that they have just as much problem with female/female aggression as our breed has with male/male. So if your friend has a parent or family member/SO that currently has a female dog that's something to consider. They also appear to have as many health problems as dobermans do so it's awesome you're pushing him to find a good breeder or to rescue. If you go the rescue route you will probably want something similar to the same heart/health testing done on that dog after you get them as you would a doberman so you can be prepared for any problems that might arise and not be caught with your pants down so to speak as most rescues will probably come from less then stellar breeding that aren't health tested.
 

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I love Boxers- they are on my very short list of breeds I would own. I wish they didn't have the "dumb" thing stuck to them though. They are intelligent, but many just lack that focus that a lot of working breeds have. My mother-in-law has two, and yes they are very talkative, hyper and silly. Love 'em.
 

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From my experience Boxers do not have brilliant eyesight. They are not blind by any means but if they lose sight of you they tend to either panic and run around or plant their butts against a solid object and stay put until you come and get them. (my girl did the latter each and everytime).
They can be bossy and having had my female mastiff and boxer trying to tear each other limb from limb I can tell you they can be female aggressive.

If they were a healthier breed I know I would have another in a heartbeat, but alas the specimens we have both in Spain and the UK are riddled with dysplasia, spondalocis and heart problems which means it is impossible to find an individual without one or more of these problems. (these problems are not confined by the way to BYB's)
 
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