best dog food for boxers

Best Dog Food For Boxers in 2019 (Top Picks and Reviews)

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There are a lot of questions to ask about feeding your dog the right food. Does my boxer need special food? What is so different about boxers’ nutrition compared to other breeds? What is the best dog food for boxers?

While there might not be anything wrong with ‘regular’ dog food, it is likely not perfectly balanced for your boxer’s unique nutritional requirements.

Here we provide some information to help you keep your boxer fit and healthy so that he can always be at his best!

dog food for boxers

So What Is So Special About Boxers?

Boxers medium-large sized, extremely athletic and active dogs, with broad, blunt heads. They are well-muscled, and their short, sleek fur shows this off well. They have historically been used for a variety of jobs, from large game hunting to guarding, to tending livestock.

Today, due to their friendly, playful temperament, boxers continually rank among the most popular breeds in the United States.

They are, however, prone to a number of health conditions, notably hip dysplasia, bloating, and heart conditions. Boxers are also susceptible to a variety of food allergies, which can be avoided by carefully considering the ingredients in your dog’s food.

Because of their seemingly boundless energy, active personalities, and these specific health concerns, boxers will do best when fed a dog food that caters to these qualities.

Boxer nutrition

Boxer Nutritional Requirements

Protein:

High protein diets are key to a boxer’s health. Protein helps to develop and maintain a boxer’s muscles. This is especially important given the boxer’s high energy and activity levels.

While it is commonly recommended to feed your dog a diet consisting of 18-30% protein, experts recommend that boxers are fed a diet that is between 25-40% protein.

Fat:

Boxers need a diet with low-moderate percentages of fat. Fats from healthy sources, such as fish oil, flaxseed oil, and salmon oil, help keep a dog’s coat and skin healthy and provide a good source of energy.

Boxers are sleek, well-muscled dogs, and excess fat can lead to a dog becoming overweight and unhealthy. Finding a balance between these two issues is key, and it is recommended that you feed boxers a diet that is between 10-20% fat.

Carbohydrates:

Carbohydrates are the main source of a dog’s energy and should make up a good portion of their food, although a specified amount has not been determined.

Carbs in dog food can come from grains, legumes, and vegetables such as potatoes, and also provides fiber, which helps digestion.

Many carbohydrates that are commonly found in dog food, such as corn, wheat, and soy, are known to cause allergic reactions in some boxers, so you would do best to purchase grain-free dog food, or avoid these ingredients.

Calories:

The amount of calories required by boxers depends on the age, size, and energy/activity level of the dog.

Most adult boxers need to eat around 1600 calories per day. Older or less active boxers will require fewer calories while working or athlete dogs can require up to about 2300 calories per day.

Beneficial ingredients:

Boxers tend to have sensitive stomachs and benefit from foods that contain probiotics. Calcium is also important for supporting your boxer’s bone health, and L-carnitine and taurine help keep their heart healthy.

Because they are fairly large dogs, boxers can develop arthritis or joint pain as they age. Glucosamine and chondroitin in their diet can help alleviate these symptoms.

Allergies:

Boxers are particularly susceptible to certain allergies. Allergies to corn, wheat, and soy are common in dogs, so try to avoid those ingredients (which are mostly used as filler ingredients anyways).

Chicken or processed chicken products can also be hard for some dogs to digest.

best food for a boxer

What To Look For In A Quality Dog Food For Your Boxer

There are a lot fewer regulations governing the quality, production, ingredients, and labeling of dog food than there are governing human food standards.

There is also disagreement on nutritional requirements for dogs (especially since dog breeds vary so much).

However, here are some things to keep in mind when choosing a diet for your boxer.

You want to be feeding your dog a meat-based diet, where a specific meat is the first ingredient, rather than a grain or other filler ingredient. It is best to have real meat, rather than meal or by-product in the ingredients.

As explained above, an ideal diet for a boxer is made of 25-40% protein, 10-20% fat, and complex carbohydrates, all from quality ingredients. It should also avoid allergy-inducing ingredients, especially if your dog reacts poorly to them, and should contain plenty of vitamins, minerals, and probiotics.

Here are a few other things to think about when choosing what and how much to feed your boxer:

  • ACTIVITY LEVEL

This seems obvious, but a more active dog requires more calories than a dog who sleeps most of the day.

There are some dog food formulas for especially active or working dogs, but often simply feeding more of their regular diet is enough (provided it is good quality food).

Activity level is not always specified in feeding instructions, so the amount you should feed an active dog is not always clear. Be sure to check with your vet to ensure that your boxer is getting all the calories and nutrients she needs!

  • AGE

Puppies, adults, and senior dogs have different nutritional requirements. Puppies need food with extra high protein and fat content, which aids in their growth and development.

In order to prevent excess weight gain, adult dogs need lower proportions of protein and fat, and therefore their food has a higher proportion of carbs than puppy food.

Older dogs are usually less active, have lower calorie requirements, and need less fat in their diet. Senior dog foods are often higher in fiber as well, which helps digestion.

Almost every commercial dog food brand has specifically designed puppy, adult, and senior formulas to choose from.

  • SIZE

Just like with activity, a dog’s size will determine how many calories they need, and therefore how much food you should feed them.

A large male boxer will have a higher caloric need than a smaller female boxer.

  • ALLERGIES

If your dog has any food allergies, it is important to ensure that whatever you feed him will be safe.

Some common dog food ingredients, such as wheat, soy, corn, and chicken products, are known to cause allergic reactions in some dogs, and boxers tend to be particularly sensitive.

That said, the FDA has found a potential link between diets that rely on potatoes, lentils, and peas to be grain-free and heart disease – so that might not be a good option either!

Please remember that whatever you feed your dog needs to be approved by your vet. A licensed veterinarian will always have more relevant information than the internet research a dog owner can do.

Checking with your vet about your dog’s diet is especially important if your dog has allergies or food sensitivities, if you are switching him over to a new diet, or if you are preparing homemade food.

Vets are there to help you take care of your dog, and this help can really come in handy when considering the specific nutrition requirements of the boxer.

best boxer dog food

Best Dog Food For Boxers

Using all this information, we have compiled a list of some of the best foods you can give to your pet boxer!

Taste Of The Wild High Prairie Recipe

 

Description: This high protein, grain-free recipe is made with roasted bison and venison meat (as well as lamb and chicken meal), and contains sweet potatoes, peas, and potatoes as the main sources of carbohydrates. Added fruits and vegetables provide lots of vitamins to keep your boxer healthy and happy.

Nutrition Facts:

Calories per serving370 kcal/cup
Minimum percentage protein32%
Minimum percentage fat18%
Maximum percentage fiber4%
Maximum percentage moisture10%
First five ingredientsBuffalo, lamb meal, chicken meal, sweet potatoes, peas

 

Why It’s Good For Boxers: This recipe is high in protein, and avoids many common allergy inducing ingredients. It is grain free, and therefore avoids many common filler ingredients. It also contains probiotic microorganisms and Taurine, to keep the stomach and heart healthy.

Cons: Lamb meal and chicken meal (highly processed versions of meat) are two of the top ingredients, and chicken products can cause allergic reactions in some dogs.

Wellness CORE Natural Grain Free Dry Dog Food

 

Description: Wellness CORE provides balanced nutrition for your Boxer and is made from high quality, natural ingredients. This food is high protein and grain free to maintain your dog’s muscles and activity.

Nutrition Facts:

Calories per serving421 kcal/cup
Minimum percentage protein34%
Minimum percentage fat16%
Maximum percentage fiber4%
Maximum percentage moisture10%
First five ingredientsDeboned turkey, turkey meal, chicken meal, peas, potatoes

 

Why It’s Good For Boxers: Wellness CORE is a high calorie food to support the high energy of Boxers, and it is also high in protein. It avoids grains and soy, which can cause allergies, and it contains calcium, glucosamine, and chondroitin, to keep your Boxer’s bones and joints healthy.

Cons: Again, turkey meal and chicken meal are included in the top ingredients, and chicken can cause allergies.

Orijen Biologically Appropriate Dog Food

 

Description: Orijen produces a high quality, high protein dog food that uses quality meat ingredients. It is made of almost entirely meat, fish, and animal proteins to give your Boxer all the protein and energy he needs.

Nutrition Facts:

Calories per serving440 kcal/cup
Minimum percentage protein38%
Minimum percentage fat18%
Maximum percentage fiber4%
Maximum percentage moisture12%
First five ingredientsDeboned chicken, deboned turkey, atlantic flounder, whole eggs, whole atlantic mackerel

 

Why It’s Good For Boxers: Orijen contains plenty of calcium, glucosamine, and chondroitin to promote healthy bones and joints. It also is high in calories and protein, and contains probiotic microorganisms to promote a healthy gut.

Cons: This recipe contains mostly high quality meat ingredients, but the carbohydrate sources it does contain are almost all legumes, which can be hard for dogs to digest.

Blue Buffalo Wilderness Natural Dry Dog Food

 

Description: This high protein, grain free diet provides your dog with antioxidants and balanced nutrients that will nourish and support your Boxer and provide him with all the energy he needs for an active lifestyle.

Nutrition Facts:

Calories per serving409 kcal/cup
Minimum percentage protein34%
Minimum percentage fat15%
Maximum percentage fiber6%
Maximum percentage moisture10%
First five ingredientsDeboned chicken, chicken meal, peas, pea protein, tapioca starch

 

Why It’s Good For Boxers: Blue Buffalo Wilderness formula contains glucosamine and chondroitin to promote joint health, and calcium to support healthy bones. It is also high in protein and grain-free, so it is not likely to cause an allergic reaction in your Boxer.

Cons: This formula contains fewer high quality meat ingredients than some of the others listed here, and it contains filler ingredients like tapioca starch.

Whatever food you choose to feed your Boxer, make sure to have it approved by your veterinarian! These choices listed here are all good quality, high protein options, with extra vitamins and minerals to keep your Boxer in top shape!

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