Like you, we wondered “What is the best dog food for Boxers?”, so we dug deeper & here are our favorite dog foods for your ball of Boxer energy [and why].
CC image “Boxers is the craziest peoples.” via IntangibleArts on Flickr – thx!
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Yes, she can be a whirling ball of energy that doesn’t seem to understand that shoes are for wearing.
And not for chewing.
Wait…what?! CC image “Gnawing on Eliot’s cleats, 1/3” via Jason Jones on Flickr
She’s also one of the most lovable dogs you’ve ever owned.
She’s got so much energy, especially for a bigger dog, that you’re starting to suspect that maybe her diet should differ from the mastiffs and dobermans you see in the park.
And you would be correct because Boxers are a special case.
They’re considered a large dog (over 50lbs), but their energy levels are more on par with an overly caffeinated terrier.
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Here are the top 4 Best Dog Food for Boxers
Are the standard large breed dog foods really up to snuff when it comes to meeting the energy needs of your beloved Boxer?
It’s a good question to ask and I’ve outlined four excellent dry dog foods that would be well-suited to ensuring your Boxer has the energy he needs to cause the havoc and mayhem you can only love him for.
1. BLUE Wilderness Denali Dinner w/Wild Salmon, Venison & Halibut
The first thing you need to know about Boxers is that they have higher protein needs than other large breed dogs.
All that pep in such a large package, and they’ll be hitting a wall if you feed them carb-heavy and protein deficient foods that are common amongst the lower quality dog food brands.
Therefore, when looking for the perfect food for your boxer, consider one that has a higher protein content from pure animal sources (none of this isolated pea protein garbage!).
Blue Wilderness is a good brand because they use whole food sources while nixing a lot of the junk found in low grade pet foods.
The first ingredient is deboned wild salmon, and not some type of ambiguous fish meal from unknown origins.
Plus, Blue Wilderness utilizes some more exotic protein sources like venison. Providing your Boxer with some alternative protein sources can be a great idea to prevent him from developing an allergy to all that chicken that seems to proliferate in 90% of dog foods.
Another great aspect of this food is the inclusion of fruits and vegetables like sweet potatoes, carrots, blueberries, and cranberries. These colorful plants will provide a host of antioxidants and fiber to protect your Boxer from external toxins and free radical damage that can lead to chronic disease.
And at 30% protein, this food will give your pup enough energy to build strong muscles, and run circles around your neighbor’s sleepy St. Bernard.
At the same time, there is a sufficient amount of starch (if you want starch in your dog’s diet) from legumes and tapioca. Being grain-free is great if you suspect your dog tends to experience inflammatory digestive woes.
My only concern is that legumes and tapioca starch can still be very binding, meaning more pellet poops and stinky toots.
And finally, I don’t like the inclusion of caramel color because what’s the point of including a toxic chemical just to change the hue of your dog’s food?
But overall, this is a good food to start your Boxer on if you’ve been dabbling with some other lower-quality brands.
Good For Boxers:
- Who thrive on a higher starch diet (while still being high protein).
- Who don’t have a sensitivity to legumes or starchy vegetables.
- Who have developed a sensitivity to common protein sources like beef or chicken.
2. Wysong Epigen Dog Food
You may have remembered I mentioned high protein being an important part of your Boxer’s diet. And if you’re trying to maximize your dog’s protein consumption then look no further than Wysong Epigen’s dog food.
At a staggering 60% protein, I doubt you’ll find another brand with a higher protein content.
Do you regularly consume organic meat? If you don’t then you’ll be feeding your Boxer better than you’ll be feeding yourself because the first ingredient in this dog food is organic chicken!
The protein content in this food is so high because Wysong made a deliberate decision to not use any starch in their formulation. That means no starch from grains, legumes, tapioca, or potatoes.
The idea is based on what your dog would have eaten if he were a wolf and had to subsist off of what he could hunt to survive. Your dog wouldn’t be harvesting potatoes, threshing wheat, or picking peas to meet his energy requirements.
Of course, there is a lot of debate about what a dog’s diet should look like with some experts saying domesticated dogs have evolved to eat starch, while others viciously accusing starch as being the basis for all chronic disease.
The only thing I can suggest to you is to experiment with different brands and monitor your Boxer’s health and vitality. Wysong still has included a nice array of fruits and vegetables for their antioxidant content, and probiotics to assist with the digestive process.
Overall, while I am a fan of the high protein content, I’m not necessarily cheering over the methods used to obtain such a powerful protein punch. Wysong would have used an extraction process to isolate a food’s protein content (while discarding the fat content and everything else they consider not usable).
So some of your Boxer’s protein is coming from meat protein isolate and potato protein. If we were really trying to adhere to an ancestral diet for our dogs then I would question what wolf would eat protein isolate?
Your Boxer isn’t a bodybuilder trying to guzzle protein powder to meet his gains goals, so why are we isolating protein for the food he’ll be eating every day? It’s unnecessary and maybe not the healthiest method to achieve overall canine vitality.
Some other issues I have is the addition of yogurt, which could irritate your Boxer’s digestion, which is a real possibility considering how allergy-prone Boxers can be.
Plus, the addition of trendy chia seeds may seem like a great idea, but their function is to massively swell when exposed to water. This could prove to cause a lot of digestive discomfort for a dog already prone to indigestion.
Overall, Good For Boxers who:
- Have high energy demands or workload that require a high protein content.
- Cannot digest any form of starch including grains, legumes, and potatoes.
- Don’t have extremely sensitive digestion (yogurt, chia seeds)
3. EVO Turkey & Chicken Formula Large Bites
EVO is another brand that bases their formulation off of what your dog would have eaten if he were a wolf living in the wild.
Ancestral nutrition means a grain-free dog food that is a good option for allergy-prone Boxers.
In addition to saying goodbye to grains, EVO has also said hello to an impressively high protein content. At 42% protein, you don’t need to worry about your Boxer’s muscles atrophying or him languishing in a corner from lack of energy.
The protein EVO includes ranges from a variety of protein sources such as chicken, turkey, and salmon (a great source of brain-building omega 3s).
My only beef with their lack of beef is that the majority of EVOs protein is included in meal form, which is an inferior form compared to whole chicken or whole salmon.
Meal is definitely a cheaper source, which is why they’ve used it, but it’s not the best source of nutrition for your Boxer.
There are a few ingredients that could cause your Boxer some digestive upset including legumes (beans, beans, the magical fruit), and cottage cheese.
If basing your formulation off of ancestral nutrition then I understand eggs as a potential protein source, but I can’t remember the last time I heard a wolf milking a cow for a snack.
And considering how prone Boxers are to developing allergies, any form of dairy could become an issue.
All that being said, the legumes and cottage cheese could provide an energizing form of carbohydrates for your dog, and combined with the probiotics EVO has incorporated into the final product, your dog may never experience the telltale signs of digestive distress including stinky gas and itchy skin.
On another note, EVO has included a substantial dose of omega 3 for a shiny coat and sharp mind.
Good for Boxer dogs that:
- Don’t have a sensitivity to starches or legumes
- Haven’t developed an allergy to common protein sources like chicken
- Need a higher protein diet to meet their energy needs
- Don’t have extremely sensitive digestion (cottage cheese and legumes)
4. Orijen Regional Red
The name of Orijen’s game is biologically appropriate food for your beloved pooch.
Biologically appropriate means:
Animal protein, fruits, vegetables, and not much else!
Orijen’s Regional Red formula may have your dog jumping for joy at the chance of chowing down on angus beef and wild boar, which are just two of a number of animal proteins included in this food. In addition to boar and beef, your Boxer will be eating lamb, pork, herring, salmon, Pollock, and bison.
The reasoning goes that if your dog were wild, he probably wouldn’t have limited himself to chicken breast everyday. In order to get the widest range of nutrients, you have to feed your dog a wide variety of proteins.
But it’s not just the number of proteins that Orijen includes that makes it such a winner, it’s also the fact that these proteins are largely unprocessed (no bi-products or ground meals here!), and Orijen includes organ meats!
Organ meats are like super powered nutrition because they’re such a rich source of fat soluble vitamins. And the more nutrition the better for your high-energy Boxer!
Such a wide variety of animal protein also means a high protein content for your Boxer, with 38% providing a substantial dose to fuel your dog’s fetch-filled romps in the dog park.
That being said, there is some starch in the form of legumes in this recipe, which may pose a problem for Boxers were extremely sensitive digestion.
Of course, some starch can provide energy for owners who feel their dogs can digest it.
And if you’re an owner that wants to know where every single ingredient is sourced from down to the last chickpea, then this is a great brand for you to support. Check out their website and you’ll be able to see Jane and Joe who raise the beef or grow the apples found in your dog’s food.
My only concern with this formulation is that the calcium content runs a little high for large breed dogs. As a reminder, large breed dogs need to avoid excessive calcium because it can cause their joints to grow too fast resulting in long term chronic disability like hip dysplasia.
Good for Boxers:
- Who don’t have a sensitivity to starch (legumes)
- Who need a higher protein content to meet their energy needs
- Who have become sensitive to some more commonly used proteins (chicken, pork)
- With owners that care about sustainability and ethical sourcing
I hope this article has cleared some confusion around the optimal food for your bouncing Boxer!
As a high energy large breed dog, your Boxer’s nutritional needs are unique. Just remember that protein is the name of the game when it comes to feeding your dog.
At the same time, Boxers are very prone to allergies, so going grain-free is a great starting point to avoid any digestive issues!