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Boxer Dog Grooming


With its short coat, grooming a Boxer is not extremely difficult.  However, grooming involves a lot more than a bath or brushing.

Keeping your dog clean = keeping your dog healthy.  For a Boxer to be properly groomed, the following must all be addressed:
  • Fur
  • Nails
  • Ears
  • Wrinkles on the face
  • Eyes
  • Teeth

Grooming a Boxer is not difficult and can be a great way for you to bond with your dog. 

Many dogs find this time relaxing and show signs that they love being pampered. 


A Boxer has shiny, short hair and therefore does not need a bath as often as other breeds may. 

It is recommended to give your Boxer a bath every 3 weeks (but more often under certain circumstances, i.e. your Boxer runs through a mud puddle, etc). 

If you will be showing your Boxer in the ring, you will want to give him or her baths once per week. Before the event, a bath should be given the night before. 

Giving too many baths will dry out the skin of this breed and can lead to itching, sometime intense.

It is very important to only use canine shampoo. One may think that no harm would come from using human products; however this is not true.  Canines are often allergic to human products and human shampoo has a completely different pH balance than what this breed requires for healthy skin and coat. Therefore, it is suggested to always use a effective canine shampoo, followed by a quality canine conditioner.

Bath time should be a fun time; though serious attention must be given in order to do a thorough job. Choose a time when you won't feel rushed.  Dogs pick up on their owner's vibes... If you're feeling frustrated or are in a hurry, your Boxer may resist baths or feel stressed when being cleaned.

Plan ahead of time so that the bath is already filled; rushing water can scare a puppy. The water should be warm. Use your wrist to check the temperature. If it feels hot to you, it will be too hot for your dog.

Since an adult is rather large, you may opt to bathe your dog outside and this is fine as long as it's 'weather permitting'. Do keep in mind that this should be done only if your dog has learned to love baths, doesn't mind being sprayed and you can do this in an enclosed area so that your dog will not run off. 

If choosing to clean your Boxer outside, it's best not to use a garden hose unless it is very hot outside or the water will just be too cold and may give a Boxer a case of the shivers. You can use a large bucket of warm water to clean your dog and then use buckets of fresh, warm water to rinse. 

Choose the shampoo for your Boxer wisely; you'll want a brand that cleans away accumulated body oils without stripping the fur of its outer layer (the cuticle) while moisturizing the skin to avoid drying issues without clogging skin pores.  Those that contain oatmeal and aloe are great and the scents of almond and/or vanilla tend to remain longer on this breed than some other fragrances. 
While all areas of the body should be soaped up and cleaned, an owner must pay special attention to darker areas of the dog. These areas, such as the ears and face can be a breeding ground for bacteria. Yeast infections can occur if not kept clean. 

Ears and any wrinkles on the face should be wiped with soft Q-Tips.  These facial folds should be wiped several times with new ones until the Q-Tip no longer wipes up any moisture.

Eyes should be wiped with a soft wash cloth. If you notice that discharge is causing a discoloration under or around your Boxer's eyes, it is recommended to use dog eye wipes. 

Excessive eye discharge is considered a health issue and should be checked out by your dog's veterinarian. 


All dogs must have their nails trimmed. A dog has a vein that runs down the center of each nail. This is called the "Quick". If this is cut, it can cause rather severe bleeding and pain. 

Many owners find it much easier to use a grinder (an electronic device that simply files the nail down).

If you are nervous to cut the nails, certainly save this grooming step for a professional groomer. 

Some dogs are so scared of having their nails cut, that a professional groomer must give them a mild sedative. This is common and safe when done by a licensed professional.

The nails on a Boxer need to be trimmed or filed about every 5- 6 weeks. Most professional groomers will not charge a lot for this, especially if you will be bringing them your business every 6 weeks or so. The average charge is $10.00 US dollars.

Ears and Eyes

Ear care is important since excess wax can lead to all sorts of issues including ear infection. If a Boxer already has an issue with chronic infections, cleanings may need to be done as often as once per week.
Eye care is also important for this breed, due to large eyes that tend to excrete discharge. Daily wiping and keeping a watch on any potential problems will help keep your Boxer's eyes healthy and the eye area clean.


Sadly, many owners do not understand the vital importance of dental cleaning for their dogs. It is extremely important to brush your Boxer's teeth at least once per day. 

While a dog does not develop cavities in the same way that humans do, they quickly build up plague. This causes very serious health problems if cleaning is not done. 

Beginning when a Boxer is a puppy, dental cleaning should be part of a daily routine. 
Many dogs that do not receive care, such as those that find their way into rescues and dog shelters need to have teeth extracted and run through courses of antibiotics in an attempt to counteract infections. This causes severe pain for the dog and of course, interferes with eating.

Human toothpaste should never be used. To allow your Boxer to become used to having his or her teeth cleaned you can start off by simply putting a small drop of canine toothpaste on your finger and running it across your Boxer's teeth. Be sure to touch the back teeth as well.

Move on to using a finger brush. These are made for dog dental cleanings and can be less threatening to a dog than a brush. If your Boxer does well with the finger brush, certainly attempt to move on to the best product: a canine toothbrush. If your dog strongly resists, stay with the finger brush.

While daily brushing will remove plague, only a professional cleaning will remove tarter. It is very important to have your Boxer's teeth cleaned by a professional at least once per year. Most dogs will be sedated during this process, as it is a very intense cleaning. Your dog should receive the whole sha-bang! X-rays, deep cleaning and polishing.

See Also:
Shedding - The Boxer is a moderate shedder. There are ways to help cut down on the amount of dead hairs that you'll see and also tips to keep the coat healthy. 
Skin Problems - One of the more common issues seen is moderate to severe dry skin which can cause quite a bit of itching. This article also covers other skin conditions that may develop. 
Dry Cracked Noses - Noses are vulnerable to the elements 24/7. Tips to keep the nose healthy and how to fix noses that become overly dry, with peeling and/or cracking. 
Summer Care for Boxer Dogs - Summertime brings about some challenges in regard to caring for a Boxer puppy or dog. Tips and advice to have a great summer season. 
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