Health Testing your Boxer

It is very important to understand that health is one major factor that is considered before a responsible breeder mates his or her dogs. With Boxers there is NO exception as there are several health problems that unfortunately take our beloved babies lives.

Whether your Boxer is a show dog or just your faithful companion and pet it is important to help educate others and allow the breeder of your dog to know what health problems occur throughout your Boxers life. One VERY important and relatively inexpensive way to do so is to have your Boxer tested for health related problems. Assuming that your dogs parents have already been tested for common problems the outcome of the testing results will help educate the breeder to let them know if they are doing a good job in producing healthy dogs.

Below you will find information that should be performed on your Boxers parents (and hopefully you will have done on your Boxer):

Please click on links to take you to the appropriate OFA application forms.

Heart: SAS/AS & PS Auscultation by Board certified Cardiologist (should be done at 12 months and again at 24 months) If a murmur is detected an Echo CardioGram Color Flow Doppler should be performed as well. *If breeding: an Echo Cadiogram should be done after 2 years of age.Registration with the Orthopedic Foundation for Animals (OFA) is recommended*

Heart: 24 hour Holter monitor. A test for BCM that records your Boxers heart for a period of 24 hours. A low number of PVC�s is acceptable. Registration with OFA is recommended*

Thyroid: Full Panel thyroid testing is recommended at 12 months and every year after until the age of 4. Registration with OFA is recommended*

Eyes: It is recommended* that your dogs eyes be tested and registered with the Canine Eye Registration Foundation (CERF) beginning at 12 months and every year thereafter.

Hip Dysplasia: It is recommended that your dog be X-Rayed for Hip and or Elbow Dysplasia. A preliminary exam can be done before 2 years of age, but the final result can not be done until the dog is 2 years old. Registration with OFA is recommended*
IF USING PENNHIP: you may X-Ray beginning at 4 months of age if HD is a problem in your breed/line. Recommended age for breeding evaluation is 12-24 months minimum.

*These tests are recommended for pet owners, but should be done if a dog is shown and bred. Registering the health results with the OFA is NOT required and you can NOT judge whether someone has health tested a dog based on viewing the OFA database. It is the CHOICE of the owner to decide to use the OFA database!!! The only tests OFA grade are HIPS, ELBOWS, and THYROID (via their required labratories only).
Pennhip can be used for hips as early as 4 months of age (although this is not recommended) and it is not mandatory to use OFA thyroid.

Helpful websites:

Orthopedic Foundation for Animals*:

Canine Eye Registration Foundation*:

CERF site that records other health information:

The American Boxer Club Health Recommendations for Breeding:

*You may search these databases for any dogs health testing results if they are registered with them.

Copyright 2005-2008 Schattenboxen Boxers