As any owner will tell you, Boxers are a fantastic dog! Their loyalty knows no bounds, and they have the ability to truly become your best friend. As an owner, however, it’s important to not only think about how your Boxer adds to your life, but also how you can add to their quality of life. Boxers are not a low maintenance dog. As such, you will need to actively monitor their health to make sure that they are happy and health. So today, let’s discuss what every Boxer owner should know about Boxer dog care!
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The Basics of Boxer dog care
If you haven’t put a lot of thought into your Boxer’s care, diving in now may seem daunting. However, you don’t need to worry! Caring for your Boxer dog is about persistence more than anything else. Remember, it is much easier to prevent a problem than it is to fix one. What that means is that you are better off making sure that your Boxer is healthy rather trying to cure them once they get sick. To that end, you will want to pay attention to the 5 pillars of Boxer health:
- Your Boxer’s mental health
- Their physical health
- Your Boxer’s exercise needs
- The grooming needs of your Boxer
- Keeping them up-to-date with shots and vet visits
By making sure you are on top of these 5 aspects, you can make sure that your Boxer lives a long and happy life!
Your Boxer’s mental health
While most people don’t think about their dog’s mental health, it is actually incredibly important. Your Boxer’s mental health will directly affect their physical health. In fact, the American College of Veterinary Behaviorists tell us that physically healthy Boxers can develop health issues because their mental health is not good. So, you can do everything right for your Boxer but still end up with health problems if your Boxer isn’t mentally okay.
Fortunately, Boxers are an optimistic dog breed that generally does not have problems with their mental health. The best way to keep your Boxer’s mental health sharp is to simply be a good companion to your Boxer. They are not an anti-social breed, and have a need for love and attention – Plenty of it! Boxers are not content as “House dogs” and will need to go on adventures with your to strengthen your bond. By loving your Boxer and giving them enough variety in their daily routines, you can ensure they will have good mental health!
Boxer Dog physical health
Once you’ve made sure your Boxer’s mental health is taken care of, you can start to address your Boxer dog’s physical health. While their are many different things can contribute to a dog’s physical health, you should only focus on the aspects that you can control. For example, you cannot control if your Boxer’s pedigree makes them more susceptible to cancer, but you can control what type of food you feed your Boxer.
In fact, the type of food you feed your Boxer will have the most direct impact on their health. Boxers are muscular dogs that require proper nourishment in order to stay health. While any dog food gets the job done, you will want to be picky about the food you choose to get the best options for your Boxer. In general, a quality dog food will:
- Have some sort of meat as the first listed ingredient. The first listed ingredient is the most used ingredient, if you see meat here, it is a good sign. Low quality dog food will use corn or rice as their most used ingredient, which has no nutritional value for your Boxer.
- Will not contain fillers. Just because meat is the first ingredient does not meat that the brand does not still use large amounts of grain in their recipe, known as “Fillers”. Most dog food without fillers will say “No fillers” right on the label.
- Will have added protein/vitamins. While not a necessity, it is always a good idea to look for dog food that has added protein or vitamins in their recipe. For Boxers especially, added protein will be a big deal. Otherwise, brands will added calcium or phosphorous are important for Boxers as well.
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Your Boxer’s Exercise Needs
Just like proper nutrition, proper exercise is vital for a happy and healthy Boxer. Because Boxers were bred as working dogs, they are very muscular and need to work out their bodies. This means that simple walks are not enough to keep your Boxer happy. Instead, they will need at least an hour per day of hard exercise, including running and jumping.
If you are a busy person, or are not particularly active yourself, it can be difficult to make sure your Boxer is properly exercised. However, there are still several exercises that can keep your Boxer healthy. For example, a simple game of fetch will allow your Boxer to run as hard as they want with relatively little effort on your part. The most important thing is to learn to work with your Boxer. After several exercising sessions, you will start to learn what gets your Boxer going and what is just boring for them. Pay attention to your Boxer’s behavior and adapt as you go!
Boxer Dog Grooming
When most people think of grooming their dogs, they only focus on brushing and trimming their fur. Of course, this part of Boxer grooming is small due to the fact that Boxers have a short, thin coat. However, there are many aspects of grooming that are still an important part of Boxer dog care. These include:
- Regular bathing. Despite their short fur, Boxers will sweat a lot, especially during the Summer months. It is important to keep their fur clean with monthly baths to prevent the build up of dirt, sweat, and germs. In addition, regular baths will keep your Boxer’s skin from becoming dry or infected.
- Regular teeth brushing. Boxers will love to chew on and play with their toys – And will especially love a game of tug-of-war! While this is not necessarily a bad thing, it can be if you do not properly care for your Boxer’s teeth. If your Boxer has weak teeth, they can easily chip or break while they are playing. To prevent this, you will want to make sure your Boxer’s teeth are brushed twice daily, if possible.
- Trimming their nails. This one is both practical and an important piece of your Boxer’s health. After all, you don’t want a Boxer, which is a hyperactive breed, to have sharp claws! It’s also important to keep their nails trimmed to prevent infection and to prevent your Boxer from injuring themselves.
Regular Vet Visits
The last, and arguably most important, aspect of Boxer dog care is making sure that they regularly visit the vet. As mentioned earlier, it is always easier to prevent a problem than it is to fix one. It is possible that your Boxer has an underlying health condition that is impossible to see, and that may not even be affecting your Boxer currently. A vet, however, will be able to recognize the signs of a health problem immediately, and can even do blood tests to ensure your Boxer is healthy.
The biggest benefit of regular vet visits is the peace of mind that they can bring. While it may be difficult to carve out the time needed for a vet visit, they are well worth it. By keeping on top of yearly vet visits, you can make sure that your Boxer isn’t developing a health problem that could seriously affect their life years down the road. In addition, a vet will be able to answer any non-health related questions you may have about your Boxer. By being informed, you can make sure that you are providing the best care for your Boxer dog!
Boxer Dog Care in a Nutshell
Once you understand the basics of Boxer dog care, keeping your Boxer happy and healthy becomes much easier. Remember, you will want to keep track of these 5 areas of your Boxer’s care:
- Mental health
- Physical health
- Regular, intense exercise
- Regular vet visits
Now, you should make a mental plan on how you will care for your Boxer on a daily basis. Of course, this does not have to be a plan that you perfectly follow every single day. However, it is easy to lose track of these aspects and end up with a much bigger problem on your hands. To prevent that, you must pay attention to your Boxer. By at least keeping these things in mind, and knowing that they are important for your Boxer dog health, you can be sure that your Boxer will have the best care available, and you can focus on the bond that the two of you have!
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