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"Heaven goes by favor. If it went by merit, you would stay out and your dog would go in."
~ Mark Twain (1835-1910)
Over time, dogs have been bred not only for their use as working dogs and companions, but for their puppy "cuteness" - traits which elicit the same reactions humans have to features similar to that of human babies, rounded heads and big eyes. The Boxer breed takes about three years to reach maturity, making their puppyhoods one of the longest in the dog world! Boxers were bred from a now-extinct breed known as the Bullenbeisser (bull-biter), a massive breed that also influenced bulldogs and mastiffs. When playing, the breed has a tendency to stand on its back legs and kick out its front paws like a human boxer might do, although the origin of their name is likely unrelated to this. Official Boxer breed colours are designated as fawn and brindle, with white markings called "flash". "Fawn" denotes a range of colors, such as light tan or yellow, reddish tan, mahogany, or stag/deer red, and dark honey-blonde! "Brindle" refers to a dog with black stripes on a fawn background. 🐶
National Dog Day has two goals: to honor dogs, and to rescue dogs from homelessness and abuse. It's an opportunity for us to recognize and appreciate the value and importance of "man's best friend" in our lives.
Purebred dogs of one breed are genetically distinguishable from purebred dogs of other breeds. DNA analyses of 85 dog breeds showed they fell into four major types of dogs that were statistically distinct. These include the "old world dogs" (e.g., Malamute and Shar Pei), "Mastiff"-type (e.g., English Mastiff), "herding"-type (e.g., Border Collie), and "all others" (also called "modern"- or "hunting"-type).
This tartan is designed to celebrate the Boxer dog, which is known for its handsome looks, playfulness, and warmly affectionate nature. The Boxer can be all white, brindle (black on brown or brown on black), and fawn (various shades of ginger, caramel, strawberry blonde), with or without white 'flash' throughout the coat.
The origin of the name "Boxer" is disputed with many theories as to its etymology.
A passage from the book "The Complete Boxer" by Milo G. Denlinger states:
It has been claimed that the name "Boxer" was jokingly applied by an English traveler who noted a tendency of the dog to use its paws in fighting. This seems improbable. Any such action would likely result in a badly bitten if not broken leg. On the other hand, a German breeder of forty years' experience states positively that the Boxer does not use his feet, except to try and extinguish a small flame such as a burning match. But a Boxer does box with his head. He will hit (not bite) a cat with his muzzle hard enough to knock it out and he will box a ball with his nose. Or perhaps, since the German dictionary translates 'boxer' as 'prize-fighter' the name was bestowed in appreciation of the fighting qualities of the breed rather than its technique."
Boxer is also the name of a dog owned by John Peerybingle, the main character in the best-selling 1845 book The Cricket on the Hearth by Charles Dickens, which is evidence that "Boxer" was commonly used as a dog name by the early 19th century, before the establishment of the breed by the end of that same century.
For more on this popular breed, click the Boxer puppies!