Application and Organization Questions:

Typically, it takes two weeks or less to adopt a dog through Austin Boxer Rescue (ABR). The process begins when you submit your application. We ask that you be prepared to adopt (i.e., moved into new house, done with vacationing, etc.) before you submit an application. It becomes difficult for volunteers tracking all the applications if you're not ready to adopt when you submit an application. If something occurs after you submit your application that will delay adoption, please contact ABR and we will file your application and take it off the active list. When you are ready to adopt again, we ask that you please submit a new application to restart the process.

Current Adoption Fees are as follows:

  • Boxers (1-5 years) = $300
  • Adult Boxer Mix (1-5 years) = $200
  • Mixed Puppies (under 1 year) = $275
  • Pure Breed Puppies (under 1 yr) = $500
  • Bonded Pairs under 5 yrs (placed together) = $450
  • Bonded Pairs over 5 yrs (placed together) = $275
  • Non-boxers (any age) = $125
  • Senior Dogs (6-9 years) = $200
  • Boxers Seeking Permanent Fosters or Silver Hearts (10+ years) = NO FEE

NOTE: Adoption Fees will be determined by the organization prior to adoption and are not negotiable

We ask that you please wait until after you are settled into your new home before submitting an application and adopting a boxer. There are enough changes in the boxer's life just going to a new home, and moving again shortly after being adopted only interrupts their lives more. Also, due to the number of applications ABR receives and limited volunteer resources, we can only proceed with applicants ready to adopt immediately.

Again, we ask that you please wait until after you are home from vacation and settled back into normal life before submitting an application and adopting a boxer. We want both you and your new family member to have all the time you need to get acquainted with each other. Also, due to the number of applications ABR receives and limited volunteer resources, we can only proceed with applicants ready to adopt immediately.

Yes, you can meet dogs at our adoption days. However, if you fall in love with a dog before your application is submitted and approved, you could get disappointed when an approved applicant adopts the dog you have fallen in love with. We do not have the capability to hold dogs for anyone.

ABR does not have a main facility or shelter. The dogs are in foster homes and the only way to meet them is to start the adoption process by filling out an online application or joining us during an adoption day. Visit the calendar page of the ABR website for the next adoption day or event.

Dogs are living beings with their own personalities and behaviors. We have seen, on several occasions, dogs go into a home and their behavior changes. Our foster families work through many behavioral problems with these dogs and if the environment changes and a new family does not continue the current training, the dog can revert back to its old ways. The 72-hour period ensures that the family and the dog will all be happy and the family can make sure this is the boxer for them.

Please contact ABR and let us know and you have officially adopted the boxer. ABR will then mail you the boxer's veterinary records and tags.

Common Medical Problems for Rescue Dogs:

Kennel cough is a cold that dogs typically get from shelters or kennels. Most of the dogs rescued from a shelter will develop an upper respiratory infection. It is not life threatening and can be easily treated with medication. Please make sure that any dogs already in your home are current on the bordatella vaccination before you adopt a Boxer. Please contact ABR if your adopted Boxer begins coughing, sneezing, or has clear yellow or green discharge coming from its nose.

The disease is usually self-limiting (like a cold) and, if a viral infection is suspected, antibiotics can't kill the virus.  If the case is mild and uncomplicated, treatment is not necessary and the virus will run its course.  A mild to moderate cough without other symptoms is usually self-limiting.  Occasional cases become lingering and can cause chronic bronchitis, which is why it's important to seek advice from your vet.  If it is a more severe case, then a cough suppressant and antibiotics (to prevent secondary infections) are given under the supervision of a vet.  The time the dog first contracts the infections to when the symptoms develop is between 3 and 10 days.  These symptoms can last for several days to several weeks.  If your boxer does present symptoms of kennel cough please contact ABR and we can recommend the next steps to take.

Yes, a vet administered bordatella vaccination will prevent your boxer from contracting kennel cough, but because there are multiple strains of kennel cough the vaccination does not protect against every strain.

Heartworm disease is a common condition in dogs in Texas.  It is recommended that dogs be on monthly heartworm prevention year round which can only be purchased in your veterinarian's office. Transmission occurs when a mosquito bites an infected dog and ingests baby heartworms, which live in the bloodstream.  When the insect bites another dog, some of the baby heartworms are injected under the skin.  They grow for 3 to 4 months and eventually make their way into the heart.  Once in the heart, the worms become adults and the cycle continues.  The "load" of worms in the heart can be mild to severe, with the more severe cases causing more strain on the heart.  If left untreated, heartworm disease can be fatal.

Heartworm infection is an easily preventable disease in dogs.  There is a monthly prevention pill that will protect your dog from getting the disease.  This prevention pill is available only through your vet.

Your vet will able to run a test and tell you whether or not your dog has been infected.  It is recommended that this test be ran yearly, even for dogs on monthly prevention.  Symptoms don't usually develop until significant damage has already occurred to the heart.  Dogs can have a wide range of symptoms, with some having no symptoms at all.  Symptoms usually occur because of heart failure and include: coughing or coughing up blood, heavy or difficult breathing, unwillingness or intolerance to exercise, and signs of congestive heart failure, including fluid distention of the belly and pulsation of the jugular veins in the neck.

Yes, but treatment is expensive and hard on a dog.  A dog receives a series of injections into the muscles of their back.  The regular treatment consists of two injections for two consecutive days.  The split treatment consists of one (1) injection one month prior to the regular treatment.  The prevention pill is then started one month after the two consecutive injections and is continued for the dog's life.  Heartworms will not return if the prevention pill is given monthly for the life of your dog.  If the prevention pill is discontinued at any point, the dog is then at risk of re-infection.  If you adopt a boxer that needs to be treated for heartworms, the vet will go over the "\do's and don'ts in detail before you take the dog home.  Most important is to keep your dog calm for six (6) weeks after the last injection.  Exercise restriction is very important because as the drugs are killing the worms in the arteries, the worms can break off and travel to block parts of the blood vessels.  This is known as pulmonary thromboembolism (PTE).  PTE results in obstruction of the blood flow to parts of the lung, is very serious, and can be fatal.  Keeping the dog quiet allows the body time to slowly break down and absorb the dying worms.  Ideally, a dog should remain crated to ensure a calm environment.

The major complication to treatment is PTE.  PTE is associated with signs of fever, heavy or fast breathing, and coughing.  Observation of any of these critical signs necessitates a visit to your emergency vet center.  In its worst form, PTE can result in sudden death.  Back pain is often noted as a minor complication of the injections into the muscles of the back, but it usually relieved within a week.

Boxer Traits and Characteristics:

Yes they are great family dogs. See Vandy (dog rescued by ABR) in action protecting a toddler from a rattle snake.

We highly recommend that you research the Boxer breed thoroughly before bringing a Boxer home.  Your local library or bookstore will contain books specifically about Boxers.   You can also find online sources to research the breed.  After you've researched the breed, come to an adoption day to see their dispositions and get a better sense of the breed.

Boxers are very high energy dogs.  They were bred to be working dogs and they require exercise and obedience training to ensure that they are happy.  Most Boxers are great family dogs, but without the proper training and exercise, Boxers can begin having behavioral problems.

Boxers are notorious for getting cancer.  It is essential to treat every lump that comes up on your Boxer as malignant and see your veterinarian immediately to have it checked and removed if necessary.  Another common problem that Boxers have is heart problems.  The best way to monitor your Boxer's heart is by taking your dog in for a checkup with your veterinarian at least once a year.

Jumping up on people, counters, etc. – Boxers love to "box", therefore they spend quite a bit of time on their hind legs.  This is great for playtime but can become annoying quite quickly when it occurs when it is not acceptable.  This is a behavior that can be remedied easily with training. Front door bolting – It is common for a newly adopted dog to bolt out the font door when it opens.  Once a dog gets out the front door, they can be hit by a car, can cause a long "chase", and even be lost forever. Even though you know that your home is your dog's new home, they are unaware of this yet due to all the activity in their past.  Emphasize this to your dog by telling him he's home.  It can take several months for a dog to settle in and realize that he is indeed home. The safest thing is to have a crate available so when friends and family come in and out the door, the dog is safe in the crate. If a crate is not readily available, be sure to keep a collar on your boxer so you can grab the collar and have a tight hold of your boxer when you open the door. If your Boxer does get out, please contact ABR and we will help look for your missing dog. Fence jumping – The ABR volunteer that was fostering your new boxer can usually tell if they're a fence jumper.  If the boxer is identified as a fence jumper, this means they can easily jump or scale a 6-foot fence.  There are some simple and easy ways to prevent the dog from getting out.  If you have a fence jumper, please contact ABR for more info.  One thing to remember is to never leave your fence-jumping Boxer outside unattended.

No.  ABR is working to help reduce the current population of unwanted, abused, and neglected boxers and will not contribute to bringing more into the world.  All Boxers are spayed or neutered before leaving the rescue program.

Female boxers tend to be more dominant than male boxers.  Many of the females that come through ABR have to be surrendered by their owners because they no longer get along with another female boxer in the house.  As a female boxer ages, her personality will change.  Some females will be fine with other females until she reaches 3-6 years of age.  She can then begin to fight with other females, regardless of training.  Because of this, ABR will not adopt females together or will not allow an adoption of a female boxer is there is already a female in the house.  The best dynamic is a male and female boxer.

Many times these behaviors occur for a variety of reasons. First, it could be because a dog is young and/or teething.  Try crating your boxer during the day when you are not at home.  Another possibility is that your boxer is bored and frustrated.  This occurs when there is a lack of exercise and training.  Boxers are high energy dogs and require daily exercise.  Because they were bred to be working dogs, they need to know what their "job" is.  You can achieve this by taking your boxer to a training class and beginning a daily routine including puzzles and other "work" for your boxer. A bored boxer can be a destructive boxer.

Absolutely not, this is a myth about white boxers.  Many times they are destroyed by breeders because they consider them "worthless".  There are two things that can occur in a white boxer.  Many, but not all, white boxers are born deaf.  They can still live a long, productive life and ABR can recommend a trainer to assist in training.  White boxers also sunburn easily.  This can easily be prevented with sunscreen.

Most boxers are great with small children.  Keep in mind that not all boxers will love children and therefore, ABR is careful when adopting dogs out to families with children.  If a boxer is good with children they tend to be very gentle, affectionate, and are devoted life-long friends to the children in the home.

Some boxers are great with cats and befriend them quickly.  Other boxers see any small furry animal and instinctively go after it.  ABR works closely with all of the foster families to help determine if a household with cats is appropriate for each dog.  ABR will also assist with introduction of the new boxer to all members of your family.

This varies for every boxer.  Some boxers have lost their lives to cancer at 2 years, while others can live to be 15 or 16.  On average, a boxer will live to be about 12.

Bringing a Rescued Boxer Home:

How much to feed your boxer depends on the type and the recommendations for that specific brand.  Check the bag for specific amounts.  You can also feed your boxer extra if it's on the thin side, or cut back if your boxer is full-figured.  It is better on the hips if your boxer is on the thin side rather than overweight.

ABR recommends feeding boxers premium dog foods only. Many foods contain beef, corn and wheat, which have been proven to contribute to both allergies and behavioral problems in boxers. Please feel free to contact your local pet store or ABR for specific foods that would benefit your Boxer.

ABR appreciates rescue of a boxer-mix or a non-boxer. Boxer mixes and non-boxers enter the program the same way that boxers do – they need rescue too and are looking for a forever home. Although the FAQs are geared towards the boxer breed, they most certainly apply for any rescued dog you should bring into your home.

Because our boxers are in foster homes, most are tested with other animals.  Because of this, we can determine the boxer's temperament before placed into a home.  An ABR volunteer will work with the family and the new boxer through slow introductions.  Integration of a new boxer can almost always be successful.

Yes.  Keep in mind that your boxer will need daily exercise and training if kept in an apartment.  If you cannot provide a boxer with both, then maybe consider another less active breed.  Please check with your apartment management to ensure that boxers are allowed.

Yes, it can take a few days to a couple of weeks for your new boxer to get settled into your home.  The best thing to do is to crate train a dog during the day and begin a routine with the Boxer so he can begin to get on the same schedule as you.  If you are still having problems after a week, contact ABR for advice.

Absolutely! Please visit the ABR website and select "Ways to Help" and complete a foster application. Other than fostering, ABR has various other volunteering options that fully benefit our rescued boxers. If you have questions, please email ABR at