Golden retrievers and boxers have a similar temperament and size. Whether a golden retriever vs boxer is the right pet for you depends on your lifestyle.
Whether you are single and living alone or have a partner and young kids, having a dog can greatly improve the quality of your life. Both golden retrievers and boxers are large dogs that are known to be friendly, safe with children, and great to take on hikes. However, before you adopt a dog, it is best to choose the breed that best fits your lifestyle. Not every breed will be a good match, so it is important to make the right decision before you adopt.
Golden retrievers and boxers are both friendly, affectionate, and willing to please. Boxers are generally better pets for experienced dog owners. Goldens are good pets for families, but require lots of grooming. Boxers bark more than goldens, so they require firm training.
Another key difference between a golden retriever vs boxer is their temperament and habitual behaviors. Boxers make better guard dogs than golden retrievers because they can be more aggressive. Golden retrievers are not good guard dogs because they are too friendly. Because goldens enjoy chasing, hunting, and are good at following commands, they are excellent hunting dogs and will enjoy going on runs with their owners.
Sources on golden retrievers and boxer temperament and appearance include The American Kennel Club, Dog-Learn, The Puppy Mag, and DogTime.
What Is the Typical Temperament of a Boxer?
Boxers have been one of the most popular breeds in America for a long time because they have a great temperament. Boxers have the right balance of being playful, protective, loyal, courageous, and powerful. Because boxers, like the athlete that they were named for, are strong and naturally protective over their family, they make great guard dogs. At the same time, boxers are a great breed for families with children because they have the energy to play all day and know to be gentle with little ones.
Compared to other breeds, boxers have above average problem solving and intelligence. For pet parents, this can be a double edged sword. Your boxer will be smart enough to pick up training quickly, but boxers are so smart that they can easily become bored. It is best to provide your boxer with a variety of activities and training techniques, otherwise they may get bored and find other ways to amuse themselves.
What Does a Purebred Boxer Look Like?
Boxers are beautiful, majestic dogs that often do well in dog shows. The average size of a boxer is 23 to 25 inches at the shoulder for male dogs and 21.5 inches to 23.5 inches at the shoulder for female dogs. When fully grown, boxers typically weigh between 50 and 80 pounds depending on the dog’s gender and the amount of exercise that they get. Like golden retrievers, American bullies, and other large dogs, boxers normally live 10-12 years when properly cared for.
Boxers are known for their short, smooth coat and their distinct coloring. The breed ranges in color from a russet brown to a dark brown, almost black. A boxer’s coat may be solid brown or have either white, black, or brown markings. The signature for the breed is the white coloring on the chest that extends down to the belly and forms “socks” on the paws.
Much like pugs and bulldogs, Boxers have a short snout and small jowls. Compared to other breeds, boxers typically have an above average level of drooling. It is not enough to cause a mess, but it is typical for dogs with a snout of that shape. It is common for boxers to have black and white markings on their face.
Boxers & Ear Cropping
Naturally, boxer ears are droopy like that of a beagle or a pug. If you see a boxer with ears that stand erect, it is because the dog has had its ears cropped. Ear cropping is a cosmetic procedure that is also common with dobermans. It does not have any health benefits; the only reason a owner might have their boxer’s ears cropped is to meet a breed standard for the purposes of a dog show.
Ear cropping for boxers was popular in Germany throughout the early 1900s. The practice has fallen out of favor because most pet owners believe it to be cruel and unnecessary.
Do Boxers Have Naturally Short Tails?
If you’ve seen boxers at the dog park, you probably saw animals with short, stumpy tails. The stumpy tail is not natural. Boxers are born with full tails like any other breed. The practice of cutting off a dog’s tail is called docking. It was originally performed because boxers were used to chase and capture larger prey like bears and boars during hunts. In this role, having a short tail was an advantage for the dog’s safety because it prevented larger predators from catching the dog by the tail.
For most pet owners, it is not beneficial for your boxer to have a docked tail if you are not hunting big game. As family dogs, boxers are normally happier with their natural long tails, even if small children may try to grab onto it.
What Environment Is Best for Golden Retrievers?
Like boxers, golden retrievers are also full of energy, playful, and great with kids. Golden retrievers are ideal pets for both families and singles, as long as they have a big yard available to run around in. Whereas boxers are intelligent to a fault and may get themselves in trouble if they get bored, goldens are more loving than they are smart. For this reason, your golden retriever will be easier to train and will be very eager to please.
Golden retrievers are ideal dogs for first time dog owners. They are largely well behaved with manageable amounts of energy. While goldens make terrible guard dogs, they are great running, hiking, and biking buddies because they can run fast and enjoy being involved in all human activities. Due to their trainability, golden retrievers are often used as service dogs, therapy dogs, and for search and rescue. Even a first time dog owner will be able to manage training their new golden.
If you are considering adopting a golden retriever, it is very important that you create an environment where they will thrive. Goldens do not enjoy being left alone; they will thrive better in a household with other pets, multiple kids, or with an owner who works from home and has a flexible schedule.
It is also important for a golden parent to take good care of their pup’s coat. Golden retrievers are known for their long, majestic blonde coat. This coat will need brushing about 3 times a week and a bath every month or so. Because goldens have such a long coat, they shed significantly more than boxers do. Any future pet parent of a golden retriever will need to be prepared for their house to be covered in a healthy layer of dog fur.
How Big Do Golden Retrievers Get?
Golden retrievers and boxers are about the same size. Fully grown, goldens are normally between 21 and 24 inches tall at the shoulder. At a healthy weight, golden retrievers are between 55 and 75 pounds with the females being slightly smaller than the males. Like boxers, golden retrievers live 10 to 12 years.
Because goldens and boxers are so similar in size, determining which breed is right for you should come down to temperament, amount of shedding, and how well you can meet your dog’s needs.
Golden Retriever vs. Boxer - Which Breed Is Right for Me?
Both boxers and golden retrievers are great family dogs and are good with kids of all ages. Because both breeds are rather large, they need lots of room to run around, as well as frequent, long walks. Whether a golden retriever vs boxer is right for you will depend on your lifestyle.
The Best Dog Breed For Families
If you have a family with kids and other pets, either a golden or a boxer will be a great addition to your family. Golden retrievers in particular will love having so many people around and will be patient and gentle when playing with the children. Boxers are also ideal play companions for children because they are quite playful and are capable of being very patient with the little ones. Most families with boxers report that their puppy is protective of the kids and may be a little weary of anyone new who comes around their family.
It is best to adopt a boxer if your children are a little older. While boxers are notoriously gentle dogs, they are still large animals. Boxers also have a powerful bark. Due to their protective nature, they will be more prone to bark at passersby, new guests, and animals outside than goldens. For this reason, a boxer may not be the ideal pet if you have a new baby.
What Are the Best Dog Breeds for Singles?
If you are single and live alone, adopting a dog can be just what you need to turn your house into a home. Having a dog can help singles meet people, get more exercise, and generally get out and about.
Whether a golden retriever vs boxer is right for you depends on your other commitments and your work schedule. Neither breed likes to be bored, but golden retrievers are especially social and will want to be around you all the time. For this reason, goldens are best for people who work from home, have other roommates, or have the ability to bring your dog to work with you.
Boxers fare a little better at being left alone. The key to keeping your boxer happy and healthy is to constantly take them to new places and expose them to new things to fend off boredom. Because boxers can be stubborn and have a powerful bark, they may be less conducive to coming to work with you.
Whether you decide to adopt a boxer or a golden retriever, your new pet will need frequent walks and lots of attention.
About THE AUTHOR
I have had dogs my whole life and have always trained my own dogs with patience and positive reinforcement. My dogs are my life. My family always had dogs growing up. I've trained dogs for clients while working at a local dog daycare. I hope that my research and experiences are helpful to you as I share them here.Read More About Russell Wright