Best Dog Food for Boxers - Comparison and Reviews
Man’s best friend comes in all shapes and sizes, just like their dietary needs. While one kind of dog food might work well for a Golden Retriever, a boxer wouldn’t be as satisfied with it.
Boxers are arguably one of the most muscular, fun-loving, and outright goofy dogs people can own. Their health challenges are unique to the breed, which makes selecting food for them just as important as what you put on your own plate for dinner.
There are fantastic and tasty food options out there that will give your boxer the ideal nutritional profile, helping them live long happy lives.
Best Dog Foods for Boxer 2019 - Reviews
1. Diamond Naturals Dry Dog Food for Adult Boxers
Diamond Naturals dog food uses only the best ingredients. While not specifically for boxers, this is for large dog breeds, and that is something to look for in dog food, too. Plus, it’s made by a family-owned and operated company in the United States, assuring you that it’s made with integrity.
Made with cage-free chicken and no grains, Diamond Naturals packs a load of must-have ingredients in their food. Fatty acids keep boxers’ skin and coat healthy and shiny. This superfood-packed blend contains antioxidants to support ideal weight, support joints, and taste great–or so we assume.
Chicken, chicken meal, and whole grain brown rice are the top ingredients. While the list does start with an animal protein, the overall ingredient quality is strong, but not elite.
2. Royal Canin Boxer Adult Breed Specific Dry Dog Food
Royal Canin is one of the first companies to create breed-specific foods. If your purebred boxer is fifteen months or older, Royal Canin is a quality option.
With an exclusively designed shape, the Royal Canin Boxer blend is designed for moderated consumption. The pieces are easy to pick up, but not easy scarf down. This protects boxers from bloating and eating too quickly.
Formulated with boxers in mind, the formula promotes strong, lean muscles and clean cardiac health through taurine, EPA, and DHA (fatty acids).
Royal Canin can be costly and does contain grains, which can irritate boxer’s skins. That is a possible side effect to look out for should you choose to try this brand.
3. Eukanuba Breed Specific Boxer Dry Dog Food
More than just a bright pink bag, Eukanuba also carries a breed-specific food line. An active life is a healthy life, and it’s more than just their slogan. They are dedicated to providing dogs with the right nutrition to live long and healthy lives.
Made with L-Caratine and natural taurine, Eukanuba Breed Specific Boxer food promotes joint and heart health with every bite. Plus, animal proteins make up the bulk of the top ingredients, ensuring they get the nutrition they need.
A unique ingredient in this food is 3D Dentadefense bits that help reduce tartar build-up. The further presence of DHA and Vitamin E supports mental health and brain function to keep your boxer alert and active.
As with other foods with corn products, Eukanuba can lead to itchy skin.
4. Wellness Complete Health Dog Food for Boxer Puppy
Wellness Complete Puppy Food is the perfect food to get your young boxer off to the healthiest start. This healthy weight formula uses positive carbs (peas) and chicken to give your dog a lean and nutritional meal. Blueberries and spinach provide valuable antioxidants, while flaxseed oil keeps skin healthy and digestion smooth.
This reduced-calorie meal made from deboned chicken helps promote a healthy weight without losing the energy a puppy should have.
Wellness Complete is the only brand on this list backed with a Wellness Guarantee to help ease your mind when feeding your puppy. The only drawback is the price is a bit high, but well worth the benefits for a young boxer.
5. BLUE Buffalo Life Protection Formula for Boxer Puppy
BLUE Buffalo might be one of the most recognized dog food brands on the market, and for a good reason. Real meat is not only the first on the ingredient list, but also the second in this puppy food. Plus, BLUE Buffalo Life Protection Formula has no by-products of any kind.
Chicken is the base ingredient, accompanied by wholesome grains, fruits, and veggies to load this formula up with the antioxidants and minerals to keep your dog feeling its best. DHA and ARA aid cognitive function and retinal health as they grow and develop.
BLUE’s exclusive life source bits have been selected by vets and animal nutritionists.
As this is for puppies, the kibble size is smaller and can lead to scarfing food. Boxer pups should be watched, as with any diet, to ensure they eat at a proper pace.
How to Choose the Best Dog Food For Boxers
Selecting the proper food for your boxer can be a bit daunting if you’re not prepared. If you are, the requirements are quite simple and easy to satisfy. Here are some elements to look out for.
- Meat (not grain or meat by-product) should be the first listed ingredient. While pups do need a variety, including fruits and veggies, meals that start with protein are key for their health.
- Avoid foods in general that contain meat by-products. While not as dangerous as once thought, not knowing which animal meat is the by-product could mean your little friend isn’t getting optimized protein for their body chemistry.
- Purchase foods made in countries with strict quality control standards. This matters more than most people realize. This will ensure accidental toxins are less likely to find their way into the mixture. Which countries qualify? The United States, Canada, Western Europe, Australia, and New Zealand.
- Look for foods with nutrition-rich additives. Vitamins and minerals help your boxer stay healthy, while also adding in powerful antioxidants and fats for the best possible energy and muscle maintenance.
- Avoid food with artificial additives. Dyes can trigger a dog’s food allergy and serve no flavor or nutritional purpose.
What Things to Consider when Buying Food for Boxers
Related: Best Dog Food for Large Dogs
Dogs of any breed have health concerns specific to them. Boxers are no exception to the rule, and these goofy giants have conditions that can be monitored with proper diet. Selecting foods that keep these issues in mind, or how to help such concerns, is always the way to go.
Nutritional Needs of Boxers
Proteins – A wide array can cause stomach issues but selecting one or two will keep them loving their food. Best proteins for boxer dogs include chicken, turkey, veal, beef, eggs, and lima beans. At least 20% of the ingredients should be animal proteins.
Carbohydrates – Quality carbs, not corn or soy, are suitable for your dog and should be in their food. Keep an eye out for sweet potatoes, peas, and oats. Lower quality carbs can lead to allergies and digestion issues.
Fats – Fatty Acids and Omega 3’s keep your boxers skin healthy and coat shiny. Also, small amounts of healthy fats such as plant oil, salmon oil, and chicken fat keep a boxer’s energy levels up.
Vitamins and Minerals – Look for foods with Calcium, taurine, L-carnitine for joint and heart health.
Fiber – Fiber in dog food should come primarily from vegetables. Fiber helps keep your pup’s bathroom habits healthy.
Life Stage of Boxer Dog
Puppy – From birth until two years old, your little friend is a puppy. They will have an abundance of energy and burn through it rapidly. A best puppy formulated food can keep them from burning out. Boxers also might seem “skinny” at this stage, but it is normal and nothing to worry about if you are feeding correctly.
Adult – Your boxer is an “adult” at two years old. This means they’ll be at their adult height and weight. Puppy energy and attitude begin to shift. Now is when you’d take them off puppy food if you were indeed giving it to them.
Senior – Boxers are considered to be seniors when they turn seven to eight. This will vary based on each dog’s health. However, introducing senior-formulated food at this point is a reliable way to keep them healthy.
Boxer Health Conditions and Special Dietary Needs
Bone & Joint Health – Thanks to their size and excitable nature, joint issues are common in boxers. Whether this occurs from bouncing around in excitement or just old age, finding food with chondroitin and glucosamine add-ins will help keep them from injury.
Healthy Skin & Coat – Boxers can develop an array of skin issues, from allergic reactions to acne to simply a dull coat. Look for omega-3 and other fatty acids to help with this.
Digestive Health – Boxers are at high risk for bloat. Boxers not only need to eat slowly (with encouragement from you) but chew properly. This can be easier to control with larger bits of kibble, as long as you help keep them calm, so they don’t scarf it down faster than someone saved from a deserted island.
Food Allergies – Food Allergies are more common in boxers. To help with this, go for foods with fewer ingredients and as few artificial ingredients as possible.
Weight Management – Boxers are no exception to weight issues. Overweight boxers experience more pressure on their joints, so it’s essential to feed them the proper amount and ensure the food has healthy ingredients.
How much to feed boxer puppy?
Feeding your boxer puppy sets the stage for proper diet and nutrition throughout their life. Generally speaking, puppies require fifty-five calories of food per pound of body weight.
Puppies burn more energy, and therefore food, requiring a different feeding schedule than when they are adults. Always refer to the feeding guidelines on the food bag, but there are general rules.
Puppies should be fed twice a day. From when they start solids until six months, feed them four cups per day. It’s important to portion those cups out into multiple meals. Boxers eat quickly, even when you try to control it, and can suffer from bloat.
Once they turn six months, if they are a healthy weight, you can slowly begin to feed them less. Puppies still have crazy high energy levels and will scarf large amounts of food if you let them. Begin to create a feeding schedule with your pup, so they know when to expect meals. This helps with portion control later in life.
While you can often make a generalization on cups to feed your boxer, use this chart for exact nutritional measurement based on their weight.
- Weight 5 pounds = about 275 calories
- Weight 10 pounds = about 550 calories
- Weight 15 pounds = about 825 calories
- Weight 20 pounds = about 1,100 calories
- Weight 25 pounds = about 1,375 calories
- Weight 30 pounds = about 1,650 calories
How much to feed an adult boxer dog?
Once a boxer is two, they’re typically at their ideal height and weight. Ideally, they need forty calories of food for every pound of body weight. Caloric count to cup ratio information can be found on the food bag.
This means it’s not only time to switch the puppy food to adult food, but to change how you feed them as well. Though dependant on size, it can be safe to give your adult boxer three cups of food a day.
For exact guidelines, please use your dog’s weight.
- Weight 50 pounds = 1,250 to 1,750 calories
- Weight 55 pounds = 1,375 to 1,925 calories
- Weight 60 pounds = 1,500 to 2,100 calories
- Weight 65 pounds = 1,625 to 2,275 calories
- Weight 70 pounds = 1,750 to 2,450 calories
- Weight 75 pounds = 1,875 to 2,650 calories
How much to feed a senior boxer?
As with puppies and adults, bloat is still a concern in the advanced stage of a boxer’s life. A few, small meals a day remains the top method for feeding these dogs while basing it on their overall body weight in pounds.
Unlike some senior breeds, Boxer’s do not see a real decrease in their energy levels as they age. As such, their food needs to continue to provide high levels of protein. Unless kidney issues are present, high protein chicken meat is best to avoid skin issues.
Dogs can often lose weight as they age, and this should not be cause for alarm unless rapid. See the chart above to measure weight and caloric intake. As with all other stages, caloric count information to cup ratio can be found on the dog food bag.
How can I best monitor my boxer’s eating habits to avoid bloat?
Bloat is life-threating and can occur when a boxer (or other large breeds) eats too quickly. To avoid this, lots of smaller meals and controlled eating with a watchful eye are needed.
Place out a cup of dog food and leave it down for thirty minutes at a time. Even if your boxer is still hungry, don’t lay more out until at least an hour has passed. Instead, consider healthy treats that can tide them over until the next small meal.
When should boxers switch from puppy food to dog food?
Boxers are considered adults when they turn two. This is the recommended time to change from puppy to adult food.
Never swap your dog’s food outright. Start by reducing the amount of puppy food and mixing in adult formula food, whether it’s kibble or wet. This prevents their stomachs from growing upset by the change in ingredients and also masks the different smells, so you don’t have any trouble getting your furry one to eat.
What snacks are safe for boxers?
If you are sticking to commercial treats, you should look for the same ingredients and warning signs as in the overall food. If you’re going the “human food” route, stick to fruits and veggies to help keep their weight at a healthy level.
Blueberries, eggs, peanut butter, and carrots make for healthy treats in moderation and can be used for positive rewards in training, too.