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Boxer Insane
I don't know much about the climate in your area however both my breeder and my vet stated that boxers should not be outside dogs. When I adopted Baxter from rescue I had to sign that he would be an inside dog. Boxers need human companionship. Maybe you could install a doggy door so it could have free run of inside and outside when it wanted :)


Completely Boxer Crazy
I agree with Jan. Boxers are NOT outside dogs! Short coated breeds such as the boxer simply don't have the stamina to stand extremes in temperature. What's more, their coat gets very thick and dull when they stay outside primarily. Even with a doghouse, I think its cruel to leave dogs outside all the time. Please read this article about outside dogs...I found it VERY informative!

"In my mind, there is nothing sadder than the outside-only dog. Dogs which are kept as outside-only dogs have a tendency toward developing behavior problems that are commensurate with the size of the dog -- they'll dig holes reminiscent of the Grand Canyon; they'll become obnoxious in their attempts to gain attention: barking, jumping on people; and they're much more prone to become territorially aggressive, as outside dogs. I've heard all the excuses, from people who keep their dogs as outside-only dogs... this article is aimed at exploding some of those excuses.

"My Dog Prefers to be Outside"

I've heard this many, many times, and have yet to meet a dog who felt this way. Once they're given access, taught manners so that they're comfortable, and given the choice... dogs prefer to be with their humans. Even when living in a pack of dogs, most dogs will choose human companionship over canine companionship -- they prefer to combine the 2.

Dogs are companion animals... they're very social, and prefer to be with their families. If you think your dog prefers to be outside, you're fooling yourself, and doing your dog a grave disservice. He won't meet his full potential as an outside dog... he'll never be that well-behaved, mannered family member you envisioned him to be when you got him... and chances are very good that he's developing behavioral problems (as well as health problems!) as a result. Far too many of the dogs we get in rescue have spent their lives as outside dogs. That's why we ended up with them.

"He's Too Rowdy!!"

Well, Rome wasn't built in a day. He can't learn manners, if he doesn't have the opportunity to learn manners. Think about it: could YOU have learned to drive a car, without getting behind the wheel? Just as you became an expert driver, he'll become an expert companion -- with lessons in companionship.

"He'll Destroy My House!"

Not if you set realistic expectations, and plan ahead. Plan for those times when you're not available to supervise, by providing activities and toys to keep him mentally and emotionally challenged, and physically fit. During those times when you can't supervise, use baby gates, crates, and half-doors to keep him confined to a space where he's less likely to get in trouble. Don't put him somewhere (like the bathroom), and close the door -- doing this will make the dog feel isolated, and can actually cause separation anxiety. If you don't want him on the sofa, don't allow access to the living room. If you don't want him on your bed, close the door so that he can't go into your bedroom. If he's a garbage-picker, put the garbage in a cupboard so that he can't get to it. Make it easy for him to succeed, and he will... and so will you.

"I Don't Want My House to Smell Like Dog!"

Then give him the option of being clean. Dogs love to romp and play, and they get dirty doing this... but it's not an inordinate amount of dirt, if they're groomed regularly and provided with a clean place to live. If they live in dirt, though, they'll always be covered in dirt. That's NOT how they choose to live... it's how they're FORCED to live.

If he's got a really "doggie smell", there could be lots of reasons for it -- and none of those reasons will be helped by keeping him from a clean environment. Skin allergies, food that isn't high-quality, thyroid problems -- even too-frequent bathing can cause odors, by continually stripping the skin of its natural oils, which causes the oil glands to over-produce. If your dog's skin is healthy, bathing him 3-4 times per year is enough to keep him clean -- unless he engages in an activity that makes him really dirty, like rolling in something icky. Other than that, routine brushing keeps the coat clean and healthy, and keeps the smell at bay.

"I Want Him to Guard the House!"

Then what better place for him to be, than IN the house? How can he guard the house, without having access to it? If you've got him chained to a tree, then he's only guarding that tree. This makes no sense, when you really think about it.

"It's Too Hot for Him, In the House!"

Allow him to become acclimated to the conditions inside the house, and I'll guarantee that he'll prefer being there. It will only take a week or so, for him to adjust. He may shed a little more, during this time, as his internal temperature control makes the necessary adjustments... then, he'll be comfortable, and he'll enjoy it. Saints cannot handle extremes in temperature -- if it's 95 degrees outside, BRING HIM IN. On the other hand, they also can't handle extreme cold, when they're not being active -- dogs can develop frostbite, just as humans do. Long-coated Saints are even more prone to this problem, because their coat causes the snow to "ball up" between their toes.

"He Marks Territory!"

Neuter him, and housetrain him. Neutering is an immediate end to the influx of testosterone. This stops territorial behavior. Behavior that's already been learned has to be UN-learned... but it's not a difficult matter to do this. Install a doggie door, and you'll both be happy. He won't have to learn a "signal" so that you'll know when he needs out, and you won't have to housetrain him... he'll do it himself.

Got More Excuses? Send 'Em On!!

If you have a problem not covered here, let me help you gain the most enjoyment from your dog's companionship! That's what I do!

Trust me... I have a solution for just about any problem. I've re-trained lots of dogs that were considered to be "hopeless cases" by their owners -- most, with the exception of aggressive displays, require very little actual work! The majority of these dogs are dumped because they're BORED. Go ahead -- try to spend just one day the way your dog does, cooped up in the back yard with NOTHING to do... no one to talk to, no television, no books, no toys, no music, NOTHING. Can you FIND something to do? Maybe dig a nice big hole, or yell at people across the road (barking), or destroy a rose bush. Spend a WEEK out there -- do your family members think you're obnoxious, in your happiness to see them??

Now: think about how your dog feels. He's not there by CHOICE.

Brenda Rushman, Web Author


Boxer Insane
Amen Debbie. I have a serious question though...I have often wanted to know (from people who have outside only dogs) why do they have a dog to begin with? I got my animals because I wanted the companionship. Any answers as to why people get outside only dogs?


Boxer Insane
Originally posted by Aimee
Amen Debbie. I have a serious question though...I have often wanted to know (from people who have outside only dogs) why do they have a dog to begin with? I got my animals because I wanted the companionship. Any answers as to why people get outside only dogs?

yes,i have the same question too...why?

Lava Linda

Completely Boxer Crazy
Boxer Rescuer,
I don't think it's valid to say your outside dog is ok because it lives a long time. Length of life doesn't say a whole lot about quality of life.

I'm impressed that you came to the board with your question. You're doing the right thing by asking questions about the breed before making a decision. As dogs go, boxers have a higher need for companionship than many other breeds.

If you intend to keep your dog outside while you're at work, but inside while you're home, then a boxer will do fine. If you can't or won't bring him in the house at all, I would highly recommend you look into another breed that's less social, or have cats instead of dogs.

Please listen to the responses you're getting. Right off the bat you got a response that said it was fine, but I would venture to say that at least 90% of boxerworld members would say it's not ok to keep a boxer outside 100% of the time. They're very sensitive, loving dogs with a high need for your companionship. If you read some other posts, you'll hear how they love to follow you room to room, just to keep you in sight.

If you decide to get a boxer, and let him into your house, I can promise won't regret it!!!! They'll add immeasurable joy to your life!

Have you made a decision yet?

I'm sorry to hear about your Collie. Has your vet given you any advice on what you can do for him or her? Are you sure he's still comfortable out there, with his coat thinned the way it is? Your collie deserves all of your love and attention right now. I hope I misunderstood, but is he under a vet's care? It sounded like you were sort of waiting for him to expire so you could get a new one.

I'm moving this thread to the boxer ring so you can get more feedback from others. Thanks for writing, and please come back to talk further about your decision.


Boxer Booster
Outside Yuk

My boxer boys would die outside. They both have been inside kids, laying on the waterbed with the television on since they were born. If they go out in the winter, they start to freeze right away. If you personnely can stand the cold without any coats or hats, lets say just a T-shirt and spent eqaul time outside, they'll be able to handle it. To send your boxer outside in cold weather is like senting out a young child undressed. I don't know how cold it gets in Tennessee. If they go out in the hot summer months, they can get heat exhaustion and even sunburn't. They love the air-condititioner on, Boxers have short hair and sensitive skin. Boxers are people dogs, they need to be in the same environment as we are. Think twice before leaving them outside.


Completely Boxer Crazy
I'm new to the ways of Boxers and am myself still learning their whiles and ways,but I can tell you that Boxers are people dogs. I would never throw my Gidget out in the extremes of outdoors. If they didn't die of exposure they would die from neglect. They thrive on human contact, interaction and companionship!!!


Boxer Buddy
I too do not understand outside dogs. It makes me soooo sad and angry. When I moved, I refused to live where I could not have Seffy. I don't mean to be rude, but why even bother with any dog if you can't live WITH it. Many people have dogs just for status. Boxers and any other dog belong with the family. Would you like to freeze you butt off at night sleeping on the floor of a doghouse? Would you like to drink warm water full of bugs dirt and anything else imaginable? Would you like to poop in an area that is inches away from your bed? Would you like to see your friends through a chain link or wood slatted window? Would you like to miss your family so much that when they came to feed you you acted like an idiot and cried when they left? smashicon Think about it!

Debbie Magon

Boxer Pal
I have bred dogs for over 25 years now and i have NEVER kept any dog inside for longer periods of time than he/she is outdoors. Many health problems can be attributed to keeping dogs indoors such as skin allergies.
I do agree dogs are social animals and as such need lots of human contact and social interaction. When a dog lives the summer and warmer months out doors he should still have plenty of human attention and house visits, but I do not believe he will suffer any form of mental or physical damamge by not being allowed to dwell inside the family home all day and night. On the other hand winter of course does present the short coated breeds with a new set of problems. If the dogs do not have purpose built kennels then perhaps they would be better off in doors or even crated in a utility room like mine are. I realise some countries have extremes of heat and cold but the boxer cannot be that weak to temperature changes as he was originally created in one of the coldest countries, GERMANY!!!!

My oldest boxer lived till he was almost 13 years old. He was a regular visitor inside our home but slept mostly in his well insulated kennel. He loved his kennel and would often retreat there if a youngster annoyed him too much. His coat was as soft as butter all year yound and he was well muscled and healthy till the day he died.


Boxer Buddy
I also live in Tennesse and both my boxers are kept outside most of the time and they love it. I have even tried keeping them in but it leads to them sitting at the door.
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