Boxer vs. American Pit Bull Terrier

*. Although they may look very different, the Boxer and American Pitbull Terrier are very similar in temperament. These energetic dogs are a joy to be around and will keep your family entertained for hours. Both require significant exercise and a strong pack leader.

The Boxer is more likely to have health problems than the Pitbull. However, unlike the Pitbull, the Boxer doesn’t have a reputation for being ‘ferocious. Both make great family companions and have lots of love to share. The Pitbull will be called the American Pitbull Terrier throughout this article.

Both of these breeds can be good family dogs if trained correctly. These two breeds are often combined to make a popular “designer” dog .”

Boxer vs. American Pit Bull Terrier

Breed History

The American Pitbull Terrier Terrier and the Boxer both have a different history, but they were originally raised as hunting dogs ; while the Pitbull’s forefathers were trained to hunt vermin. The Pitbull became a fighting dog over time. This is why the Boxer has a much more savage reputation than the Pitbull.

Boxer

The Boxer is believed to date back to the late 19th Century Germany, who was bred down from a larger, but now extinct breed, known as the ‘Bullenbeisser,‘ which translates to ‘Bull biter.’ The Bullenbeisser was a much larger dog who was used to hunt bull and wild boar. He was a powerful guard dog and was a strong breed.

The Germans desired a more agile and slender dog that could be adopted into their home as a companion canine. The Boxer was born by combining the Bullenbeisser and other undocumented dogs.

He was called Boxer because of the way he uses his front legs to defend himself during a fight or play. It’s very similar to what a boxer does.

The Boxer is an intelligent, loyal and affectionate pup. He also bears the title family clown !. The Boxer currently ranks as the American’s 11th most popular dog breed according to the American Kennel Club (AKC).

American Pitbull Terrier

The term ‘Pitbull’ is an umbrella term used to describe dogs that were bred from Terriers and Bulldogs during the dogfighting era in the 19th Century. The American Pitbull Terrier is one of the four Pitbull-type Pitbull dogs ,. The other breeds are the American Staffordshire Terrier and American Bulldog. The Pitbull Terrier is commonly referred to as the American Pitbull Terrier.

In 19th Century England, such dogs were used as fighting dogs, but when this cruel bloodsport was outlawed in 1835, immigrants took their dogfighting pups to America, where they continued the sport for a short time. The biggest, most powerful dogs were bred at that time. This was the birthplace of the American Pitbull Terrier.

During fights, he was trained not to fight any other dogs. However, when his master entered the ring to end the fight, the dogs refused to turn against their master. This respect for humans was recognized when American blood sport was banned. The dogs were then bred to become companionship dogs.

Appearance

The Pitbull and the Boxer are dissimilar in their appearance and it is quite easy to tell the difference between the two breeds. The Pitbull is the smallest of the two breeds. The male Pitbull will measure 18 to 21 inches in height, measured at paw to shoulder, whereas the male Boxer will measure 23 to 25 inches. Similarly, the male Pitbull weighs 35 to 65 pounds, whereas the male Boxer will weigh a much larger 65 to 80 pounds.

Despite being the larger of the two breeds, they have similar-shaped bodies. They are both in proportion, with long legs that carry a thick and square-shaped body. They have a large, barreled chest with a narrow waist and a long, held high tail.

The Boxer is more likely have his tail trimmed to keep him traditional looking, while the Pitbull is more likely have his ears cranked to maintain his traditional appearance. Both have natural drop-down ears. However, the Pitbull’s ears are larger than the Boxer’s.

Their face is the most distinctive feature of the two breeds. Pitbulls have a more square face and a longer muzzle. They are also more proportionate. His wide smile is similar to Alice in Wonderland’s Cheshire Cat.

The Boxer’s face appears rounder and his lower jaw is longer than his upper, giving him his unique shape. For this reason, he is a Brachycephalic canine, and whilst many people like this ‘baby-faced’ look along with his large round eyes, it, unfortunately, comes with respiratory health problems.

Temperament

The temperaments of the Boxer and the Pitbull are quite similar. Both make wonderful family pets. Both are extremely social canines who should be part of every family event. They are extremely active , and they love to have fun in the garden.

Despite Pitbull’s reputation for being vicious, he is affectionate towards children and is often called the ‘nannydog ,’. Many people believe that Pitbulls are best suited for families with older children due to their size and energy. However, owners often say that their pets make great family pets if they have the ability to supervise their children and teach them how to behave around them.

The biggest, and maybe the only, difference is that the Boxer is known to be slightly more aloof with strangers, and while they will quickly accept them into the estate, they will be suspicious and will bark at strangers until his master welcomes them.

The Pitbull, despite its unfriendly and aggressive reputation, will welcome everyone into his estate and be the first to make friends. The Boxer is the best choice if you’re looking for a guard dog. The Boxer is more social than the other pups and will chase any unidentified animals due to their higher prey drive ..

Exercise

Both Pitbull and Boxer are full of energy and fun. The Boxer is more energetic than the Pitbull and requires a little more exercise. The Pitbull will need around 60 minutes of exercise a day, whereas the Boxer will need around 90 minutes a day.

They both require intense exercise. As such, they need stimulation in the backyard with interactive games and treat-filled puzzle toys.

Because both breeds have strong jaws, make sure you are also looking at durable toys that can take a beating. The Boxer and the Pitbull are not great apartments dogs.

Training

As with any dog, both the Pitbull and the Boxer need early socialization with other pups of all shapes and sizes to ensure that they are well behaved around other canines.

While neither one of these breeds is dominant, they still require a packleader who is consistent and firm in their training.

Health

The Pitbull and Boxer have different health issues that their breeds are prone to.

The Pitbull is prone:

  • Hip Dysplasia – This usually develops in later life, and this is caused by an abnormal formation of the hip joints which can cause painful arthritis.
  • Cerebellar Abiotrophy – This can reduce his mobility, and on occasion cognitive function, which is caused by damage to a particular part of his brain.
  • Skin Allergies – Grass allergies are the most common allergy to be suffered, but they can all be managed with ointments, medications, and high-quality kibble.

The Boxer can be susceptible to a few issues ,more than other dogs and significantly more than Pitbulls. This is something you should consider if you’re thinking of welcoming one of these beautiful dogs into your home. Their higher cancer rates are common. It is recommended by the Boxer National Breed Club that his parents are tested for the following issues:

  • Elbow and Hip Dysplasia – The same as the Pitbull, but the Boxer suffers from the additional Elbow Dysplasia.
  • Thyroid Evaluation – Hypothyroidism can affect hormone levels, which leads to a multitude of other issues.
  • SAS Cardio – Subvalvular Aortic Stenosis is congenital heart disease.
  • Aortic Valve Disease – This is a narrowing of the heart walls that restricts blood flow, which can cause heart failure.
  • Boxer Cardiomyopathy – This is characterized by an irregular heartbeat which can cause fainting and heart failure.
  • ARVC DNA Test – This is similar to the above, but the test is aimed at another area of the heart.
  • Degenerative Myelopathy DNA Test – This is a neurological disorder that affects the spinal cord, and is characterized by an unsteadiness that eventually leaves him unable to walk.

In addition to the above-listed concerns, the Boxer is also a Brachycephalic canine, and as such, any prospective owner should research exactly what this is and what this means for your pup. His flat face can cause respiratory problems and heat regulation issues.

Nutrition

Both the Pitbull as well as the Boxer need 2 half cups of food each day. They may require slightly more or less depending on whether they are active or sedentary. Pitbulls will do well on a sports formula dog food for active breeds, whereas Boxers will do well on a variety of food formulas.

Grooming

Both Pitbull and Boxer have similar grooming needs and are very simple to care . Their shiny, short coats will look healthy if they are brushed once per week. Although neither breed is known for being heavy shedders you can still expect to see some hairs around your home.

They will only need a bath when they feel it is necessary once per two months should be sufficient, provided they don’t love mud!

Puppy Price

The cost of either breed, from a reputable breeder, will start at around $800. The Boxer is more expensive because he is highly sought-after and there are less of them available in rehoming centres than the Pitbull.

If you are thinking about adopting one of these guys then the website, Pitbull Rescue Central, has a database where you can search for Pitbull’s state by state. Whilst Boxers are much less common than the Pitbull, the American Boxer Club also lists dedicated Boxer rescue centers by state.

Final Thoughts

Both the Pitbull and the Boxer are great dogs that make great family pets. Both are friendly and affectionate with their immediate families. The Boxer is slightly less open to strangers but is more open to them. The Boxer is a better guard dog than the Pitbull. Both dogs require a lot of exercise, mental stimulation, and they are best suited for active families. They would not thrive in a sedentary environment.

So, regardless of whether you like the Boxer’s baby Brachycephalic look or the smiley Pitbull, your whole family will enjoy many happy years and memorable memories.

Becky Roberts

Becky Roberts

One of Becky's favourite things to do every morning is to browse the top pet-related forums, looking for issues and questions that people have. She then shortlists the most common ones, and turns them into blog posts for Fuzzy Rescue. She's had over 4 cats and 2 dogs over the past decade, so she does know a thing or 2 about raising/training, and more importantly, loving them. She's the only one on our team that doesn't like coffee, but it seems to us she really doesn't need more energy :). We're very fortunate to have her on board as she does most of the heavy listing for the site, outputting an insane amount of content each month. Read More

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