There are many myths surrounding rescue dogs and we want to make sure you understand the truth.
Most of the dogs who come into rescue do so due to no fault of their own. They have never bitten, destroyed property or strayed. They are merely a victim of financial or marital difficulties which have faced their loving families with little alternative but to find somewhere else for the dog to live. Responsible owners will ask a reputable rescue organisation to find their dog a home. Less responsible owners will sell their dog on the internet or in the free ads as if it were a commodity rather than a loyal companion.
Some dogs do have issues. They may never have been socialised with other dogs and so will show fear or aggression when meeting other animals. Some have never felt the touch of human kindness because they have been battered and mistreated. This treatment is sure to have a lasting effect on the dog. Sometimes it makes a dog timid and withdrawn and sometimes it will force the dog to become sensitive, nervy or even aggressive.
All of the dogs which come through the rescue are temperament assessed. Their stay in one of our foster homes will provide a good indication of how the dog will react in their new home or with another dog. If a dog has been kennelled during its time with us (usually due to unavailable foster space) we will assess the dog in the kennel environment, although this is not ideal. Most dogs will be much more relaxed in the home and this is important to remember when meeting a dog in kennels.
Excessive and careless breeding is the reason rescue organisations such as ours exist. We are here to provide the support and care which many unscrupulous breeders and retailers fail to offer. There are good breeders who will guarantee to accept a puppy back should the owner fall into a difficult situation and be unable to keep the dog but, unfortunately, there are far more who will wash their hands of the dog as soon as the purchase price is paid and would never consider carrying the burden of a returned dog.
We have a commitment to provide lifetime support for all of the dogs we rehome. This means that for as long as you have one of our dogs then one of the rescue team will be available to you for advice and guidance throughout the dog's life. It also means that if you ever need to part company with your new found friend, due to circumstances unknown at the time of adoption, we will guarantee to take the dog back into our care until we find it a new loving home.
Boxers often end up in rescue because their owners failed to properly research the breed and are not prepared for the amount of exercise and attention a boxer needs.
A reputable rescue will do as much as they can to assess a dog prior to rehoming. This will assist in determining the type of home the dog will need. It is important to choose a boxer that will match your particular lifestyle. Though no dog should be left for more than a few hours, an older dog might be slightly more tolerant. A younger dog will require more attention and a puppy will need constant attention for feeding, toileting and training throughout the day.
Before contacting Boxer Rescue, please ask yourself the following questions:
- Can you give a boxer a good home and are you prepared for muddy paw prints and slobber on your clean surfaces?
- Can you afford to feed a large dog correctly and will you be able to accommodate special dietary needs?
- Can you afford vets fees or insurance and can you support your dog by taking it for regular checks, worming and flea treatment?
- Are you prepared to walk your dog every day at least once and in all weathers?
- Do you have the time and commitment to offer the dog the exercise, discipline, affection and attention it will need?
- Do you know how much time this will take every day?
- Will your house accommodate a Boxer and allow space of his own - including a secure outside space for toileting?
- Are you prepared to work through any problems your dog may have or develop?
- Do you have the patience to allow a dog to settle into your home - should it develop toileting issues or chew your belongings?
- Are you prepared to accommodate these things for the next 12 years or more?
- If you can answer 'YES' to all of these things then go ahead and get your boxer!
- There are few joys greater than the companionship and affection of a boxer. We hope this site will encourage you to choose your boxer wisely, treat it well and enjoy it to the full.
Puppy farming is an industry driven by greed and cruelty. Thousands of dogs, (mainly female), are kept in appalling conditions, born to die in barns, sheds, caravans and crates, sometimes never seeing the outside world, except through a hole in the roof or a broken window. They never see a vet and all they know of humans’ is when a door is opened and food is thrown onto the floor. The only attention they get is when they are kicked or beaten. They know no other life. These female dogs exist only to produce puppies – they are simply breeding machines.
It is difficult to imagine the lives of these dogs - untreated sores, mange, ear mites, fleas, sickness, lack of clean water, unbearable heat in the summer and freezing in the winter.
Puppies are taken from their mothers as early as 4 or 5 weeks – the mother frets for her young. As soon as she is ready, she will be bred again and again. Then there will come a point in her life when, because of mental illness through being continuously bred, she may lay on their puppies and kill them, or she will not be able to produce enough puppies to be viable any more. She will then be disposed of. If she is lucky, she will be shot, if not, she will be beaten to death then fed to her kin. This is only a short insight into the life of a breeding bitch.
Stud dogs are less in number, only because of their ability to mate with many females. Their existence is equally as miserable, some think worse, as these males live longer than the females and are usually kept in isolation for years – the only respite they get is when a female, ready for mating, is thrown into the filthy place they live.
Before you think of adopting an ex-breeding/puppy farm dog – think of the problems you may face.
• These dogs have only known cruelty from humans – they will come round more quickly if there is already a dog in the home, who can show them the way.
• They are not house-trained and are generally frightened of the outside. Be prepared to go into the garden with them in all weathers on a lead if necessary.
• All noises are frightening, a hoover, a washing machines, even an electric kettle. Although for some reason, they seem to like watching television, cartoons are the usual favourite.
• They will cower when you go approach and (through fear of being kicked) will avoid passing you at all costs.
• If possible, let them lie on a couch or somewhere off the floor – they feel more vulnerable when close to the ground, especially when you approach them. They are not fear aggressive, their spirit has been broken.
• They quickly learn to eat from a bowl but, no matter how hungry or thirsty, will often be too frightened to leave their bed to eat or drink. Sometimes a little hand-feeding from their bowl will help.
• They have never been taken for a walk and are more at ease with a harness rather than a collar. Some have never had the chance to run before.
• They do not know how to play and have never seen a toy
Adopting an ex-breeding dog takes a great deal of patience and understanding, but the rewards are tenfold. You will end up being owned by the most loyal, loving and faithful friend you could ever wish for.
Mishka When Rescued
Mishka was the victim of a vile puppy farming trade which is still operational in this country today. She was an ex-breeding bitch rescued and taken from a shed. She was three years old. We do not know why her captors chose to send her to rescue but we expect that it was because rescue is a low cost disposal method. Despite her terrible condition she was the lucky one. Many are shot or bludgeoned to death once their time as breeding machines is over.
Mishka had never been stroked, never been for a walk and had never felt a kind touch. Her skin was covered in mange and her body was full of large pressure sores. She was emaciated and her rib bones could be counted easily through the skin.
Mishka found kindness in her fantastic adoptive home. She found the company of other animals and the companionship of a special person who assisted in her rehabilitation.
Mishka 1 Year On
There are many unwanted dogs in the world, having your dog spayed/castrated will ensure that there are less unwanted puppies in the world. There are not enough homes for them all!
In addition to the moral benefits of neutering there are also significant health benefits to your dog.
There are several health benefits to neutering. One of the most important concerns the prostate gland, which under the influence of testosterone will gradually enlarge over the course of the dog’s life. In age, it is likely to become uncomfortable, possibly being large enough to interfere w ith defaecation. The prostate under the influence of testosterone is also predisposed to infection which is almost impossible to clear up without neutering. Neutering causes the prostate to shrink into insignificance thus preventing both prostatitis as well as the uncomfortable benign hyperplasia (enlargement) that occurs with ageing. It is often erroneously held that neutering prevents prostate cancer but this is not true.
Other health benefits of neutering include the prevention of certain types of hernias and tumours of the testicles and anus. Excessive preputial discharge is also reduced by neutering.
The only behaviour changes that are observed after neutering relate to behaviours influenced by male hormones. Playfulness, friendliness, and socialisation with humans are not changed. The behaviours that do change are far less desirable. The interest in roaming is eliminated in 90% of neutered dogs and aggressive behaviour against other male dogs is eliminated in 60% of neutered dogs. Urine marking is eliminated in 50% of neutered male dogs and inappropriate mounting is eliminated in 70% of neutered dogs.
An incision is made generally just forward from the scrotum, then the testicles are removed through the incision. The stalks are tied off and the wound stitched, usually with 3 - 5 stitches.
The scrotum is often swollen in the first few days after surgery, leading some people to wonder if the procedure was really performed. If the dog is immature at the time of neutering, the empty scrotum will flatten out as he grows. If he is mature at the time of neuter, the empty scrotum will remain as a flap of skin. Sometimes the incision is mildly bruised but this is not unduly sore for the dog, although pain relief is usually administered for up to 3 days following the surgery to ensure maximum comfort. Most male dogs are eager to play by the day after surgery but, to keep the incision intact, it is best to restrict the dog from boisterous activity.
Activity level and appetite do not change with neutering. A dog should not gain weight or become less interested in activity post neuter.
His interest will be reduced but if he is around a female dog in heat, he will become aroused by her. Mounting behaviour often has roots in the expression of dominance and may be expressed by a neutered male in a variety of circumstances that are not motivated by sexuality.
Undescended testicles have an increased tendency to grow tumours over descended testicles. They may also twist on their stalks and cause life-threatening inflammation. For these reasons, neutering is recommended for dogs with undescended testicles. This procedure is more complicated than a routine neuter; the missing testicle can be under the skin along the path it should have descended to the scrotum or it may be inside the abdomen. Some exploration may be needed to find it thus there is often an incision for each testicle. The retained testicle is sterile and under-developed.
A female dog spayed before her first heat will have a near zero chance of developing mammary cancer. After the first heat, this incidence climbs to 7% and after the second heat the risk is 25% (one in four!). It is easy to see that an early spay can completely prevent what is frequently a very difficult and potentially fatal form of cancer.
But is it too late if a dog is already past her second heat? No, in fact spaying is important even in female dogs who already have obvious tumours. This is because many mammary tumours are stimulated by oestrogen, so removing the ovaries which are the source of oestrogen, will help slow down the rate at which the tumour spreads.
Spaying removes both the uterus and ovaries and is crucial in the prevention as well as the treatment of mammary cancer.
The female dog comes into heat every 8 months or so. There is a bloody vaginal discharge and attraction of local male dogs. Often there is an offensive odour and the dog can display unwanted behaviours such as soiling in the house, even though she is toilet trained. All of this disappears with spaying.
"Pyometra" is the life-threatening infection of the uterus which generally occurs in middle-aged to older female dogs in the six weeks following heat. The hormone "progesterone," which primes the uterus for potential pregnancy, does so by causing proliferation of the blood-filled uterine lining and suppression of uterine immune function. It is thus easy during heat for bacteria in the vagina to ascend to the uterus to cause infection. The uterus with pyometra swells dramatically and is filled with pus, bacteria, dying tissue, and toxins. Without treatment the dog is likely to die. Despite her serious medical state, she must be spayed quickly if her life is to be saved.
THIS IS AN EXTREMELY COMMON DISEASE OF OLDER UNSPAYED FEMALE DOGS. PYOMETRA IS NOT SOMETHING WHICH "MIGHT" HAPPEN - CONSIDER THAT IT PROBABLY WILL HAPPEN.
The older unspayed female dog has an irregular heat cycle. There is no end of cycling comparable to human menopause. If you still decide against spaying, be very familiar with the signs of pyometra. (These include loss of appetite, lethargy, vomiting, excessive thirst, marked vaginal discharge).