Legend says when God was fashioning different breeds of dog out of clay, he came to his final task and decided to create the most beautiful dog ever and call it a ‘Boxer’. But this new breed of dog was vain and rushed to see himself in the mirror before the clay was properly set and bumped headlong into his own reflection. That accounts for the flat nose characteristic of the Boxer, and also proves that God really did accomplish his design for the world’s most beautiful dog! Here are another ten things you may not already know about Boxer dogs:
* The Boxer Dog Who Cheated Death and Became a Television Star Instead
In 1985, a white boxer dog called Bomber was snatched from a vet’s surgery by an animal nurse and later appeared in the UK television series, Oliver Twist. It appears the dog’s previous owners decided to put the dog to sleep when they learned he didn’t quite fit new Kennel Club standards for his breed! In filming he was made to look flea bitten, dirty and covered in sores. Bomber even had a dressing room all to himself and was congratulated on giving a superb performance. Well done Bomber, and shame on those who gave up on him!
* A Boxer Dog With His Own Fan Club
A boxer dog called George was used in media advertisements in the early 1990s and became so well known that he eventually had a fan club all to himself. George’s strange expressions appeared in ads. for Coleman’s Mustard and eventually the dog became a household name and even made guest appearances at public functions and schools.
* The Boxer Dog With The Longest T-o-n-g-u-e!
A boxer dog called Brandy featured on Ripley’s ‘Believe It Or Not’ due to her incredible 17 inch long tongue! Brandy, from Michigan, USA, was bought from a local breeder in 1995 and her new owner was assured the dog would eventually grow into her l-o-n-g t-o-n-g-u-e! She didn’t and on television she was shown performing antics such as eating from a bowl 13 inches away. Her owner, John Scheid, says brandy likes sunbathing and even gets tan lines on her tongue, but says the beautiful Boxer is fit, happy and healthy, so her unique feature isn’t a problem at all. She even has her own web site at: http://www.tungdog.com
* Zoe, The Boxer Dog Who Came Back to Life!
Zoe’s owner, Cathy Walker, from Manuden, near Bishop’s Stortford in the UK, has been told by a medium that she is surrounded by all the pets she has lost. That certainly seems true of Zoe, a tan and white Boxer bitch who died several years ago, aged eleven. The Daily Mail (November 6th 2001) printed an amazing photograph of the bark of a tree under which Zoe spent her last day, showing what can only be described as the image of a boxer dog in the bark. Cathy tells how she is a great believer in life after death and claims the image of Zoe has strengthened that belief.
* The White Boxer Dog Who Received Hate Mail
To anyone who loves dogs in general, and Boxer dogs in particular, Solo was as beautiful as any other of her breed. To her owner, Joyce Lang, she was more than just beautiful, she was a constant friend, a much loved family member. But not everyone thought the same way and, surprisingly, in 1982, in Burgess Hill in the UK, an anonymous letter arrived addressed to Solo, saying: “I think you are the ugliest dog I have ever seen.” What sort of human could write such nonsense is beyond most people’s comprehension, and probably the letter was intended mainly to upset Joyce, an objective the hateful writer most definitely achieved. Letters continued to come saying: “Why don’t you get your master or mistress to take you for a face lift?”. One even contained a paper bag which the sender said should be placed over Solo’s head! When local newspapers heard the story the headlines proclaimed that beauty is always in the eye of the beholder and in Joyce’s and other dog lover’s eyes, Solo was beautiful.
* A Little Boy’s Tribute to His Pet Boxer, Lance
This story appeared in ‘The Faithful Friend (Writings About Owning and Loving Pets’ and concerned dog owners in the United States who often loaned their pets to the military in World War Two. Lance, a Boxer, worked with Dogs for Defence which eventually became the noted K09 Corps, and belonged to a family with young children, one a boy who wrote this letter to Dogs for Defence: ‘My Boxer, Lance, was in the army since last June. I have not heard anything about him since I received a certificate from the Quartermaster General. The number on it was 11281. I love Lance very much and want to know if he is doing anything brave. Can you please tell me where he is and what kind of a job he does? Please answer soon because I can’t wait much longer to know what has become of him’.
* Origins of the Boxer Dog
What we know about the origins of most breeds, including the Boxer, is largely owed to early sculptures, painting and drawings. In the Boxer’s case, a carving of a dog looking much like a Boxer can be seen on a tomb in Arnstadt where lies Elizabeth of Hohenstein who died in 1368. Flemish tapestries from the sixteenth and seventeenth centuries show dogs resembling the Boxer engaged in stag- and boar-hunting.
* German Origins
Boxer dogs became very popular in Munich where the breed is thought to have originated. But the history of the breed has not been without controversy. In fact the first Boxer Club in the UK was closed because of disagreements over almost everything pertaining to Boxers. By 1905, however, the most enthusiastic followers of the German Boxer met to develop a standard for the Boxer which would be accepted by all. The Munich Boxer Club drew up the standard which exists largely unchanged even today.
* Boxer Dogs in America
The first Boxer dog in America was imported in 1903 from Switzerland. The new owner of the dog was New York Chief Justice of the Court of Appeals, Irving Lehman who imported many other Boxer dogs. The first Boxer dog registered with the American Kennel Club was in 1904. The dog was Arnulf Grandenz, bred in America by James Welch of Illinois.
* Boxer Dogs in Warring Nations
The boxer dog gained rapid popularity soon after the Second World War ended, ironically more prominently in countries formerly opposed in war with the Boxer’s most likely native home, Germany. Listen to what Rowland Johns says in ‘Our Friend The Boxer’: ‘The re-emergence of the Boxer breed has added proof that warring nations do not carry their antagonisms for long into the relations between them and other nations’ dogs. Both with the Alsatian and the Boxer their popularity derives directly from the contacts made during a state of war. In those two wars the adoption of both breeds by members of the British forces provided some personal satisfaction and uplift of the spirit in long periods of exile from home, family, and friends.’
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