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Boxer Dogs & Quick Panting: What You Must Know

Seeing your boxer pant is a pretty normal sight for the most part, but when it becomes excessive, it can be cause for concern. If the panting seems out of place, then it’s important to look into it. This article explains everything you need to know about boxers and panting.

Quick panting happens when trying to cool down, after exercise or playing, becoming excited, or being too hot. Boxers are also a brachycephalic breed and are predisposed to breathing difficulties, naturally increasing panting.


Reasons Why Your Boxer Dog Pants So Much

When your Boxer pants, it will typically be for a completely normal reason.

And as I’m about to explain, there are many situations where you can expect to see him panting.

Boxers, just like all dogs, will pant primarily to cool themself down. And this is a natural reaction to when they overheat.

Other normal situations that will cause your Boxer to pant:

After becoming excited
When a family member comes home and makes a fuss of him
When traveling in a car
When experiencing new environments unfamiliar to him
When meeting new people or dogs
In response to unfamiliar events (loud noises, fireworks, storms, getting startled)
After playing or exercising
During summer months or warm weather in general

You may not have been aware that so many situations will cause your Boxer to pant, and still be considered completely normal.

And as the next section explains, panting is even more common with Boxers, than the vast majority of other breeds.

Boxers Will Pant More Due To Being a Brachycephalic Breed

This will prove to be a very significant factor. Brachycephalic is the official term for the flat-faced breeds with short noses.

There are 24 different brachycephalic breeds out there, and they all suffer from the same breathing difficulty: Brachycephalic Airway Syndrome. Source

As your Boxer will have extra difficulty in breathing compared to most other dogs, you will see your boxer panting a lot more than what you would consider normal for any other dog.

Flat-faced breeds also have problems overheating, and again, the primary way for a dog to cool themselves down is through panting.

This genetic abnormality is considered to be quite complex and there is a range of additional downsides other than just breathing.

There are certain ways to help a breed with Brachycephalic Airway Syndrome, which can include specific anti-inflammatories, corticosteroids, oxygen therapy, and surgery. For more information on this check out VCA Hospitals.

Interesting Read: Which breeds get along the best with boxers? Great info for owners

When Panting Is a Sign Of Else

Aside from the obvious and normal reasons to be panting like exercising, playing, and dealing with his breathing difficulties, let’s take a look at some of the other causes of panting.

And each of the following has its own classic symptoms aside from panting to watch out for.

Stress and Anxiety

Panting could be caused by general stress and anxiety. Many things can bring on stress and anxiety in dogs, and it’s just as prolific in canines, as it is with us!

Anything from a lack of exercise, being left alone too often, general needs not being met, boredom, frustration, dramatic events happening around him can all trigger stress.

Heatstroke and Dehydration

You may consider this to be the same as getting too hot. But actually, heatstroke and dehydration don’t only happen on the obvious hot summer days. They can develop in times you wouldn’t expect.

Here are the signs to look out for. If you notice your Boxer’s tongue to be bright red, his saliva is becoming very sticky, and collecting around his mouth, he’s weak, nauseous, vomiting, having diarrhea, and of course, panting as well, it could suggest heatstroke or dehydration. You should call a veterinarian to receive immediate guidance.

Allergies and Other Health Issues

In more unfortunate cases, your boxer may be panting excessively due to allergies or another health condition, aside from Brachycephalic Airway Syndrome.

Health concerns such as Cushing’s Disease, Pulmonary Disease, and Heart Disease can cause dogs to pant more than normal.

If you are ever unsure or have your suspicions of an underlying health condition, waste no time getting in contact with your veterinarian for their professional help and guidance. After all, that’s what they are there for 🙂

Popular Read: How to start running with your boxer

How To Know When Your Boxer Is Panting Too Much

The best thing you can do is to be very observant. There isn’t a specific amount of pants that you can count which means it’s either normal or excessive.

It’s about knowing if his panting fits the situation and the previous events leading up to now. Did he just play? get excited? is it really warm out today? or is there actually no good reason for him to pant?

One thing I need to mention though is with other breeds who don’t suffer from Brachycephalic Airway Syndrome, it’s easier to spot when something is wrong.

As boxers are Brachycephalic, it’s going to be hard to differentiate between when he’s just having a moment of “normal” breathing difficulties, as opposed to there being something actually wrong.

Of course, a good idea is to schedule a new appointment with your veterinarian to discuss his current breathing capabilities, and from there you should receive further advice on his breathing and panting habits.

Popular Boxer Articles:
Are Boxers Outdoor Dogs?
Why Your Boxers Licks So Much!
Why Your Boxer Is Smaller Than Normal

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Last Thoughts

Panting is going to be in the vast majority of cases, perfectly normal. And remember, there are many different types of situations that may lead to panting, other than the obvious.

Anything that mildly excites or arouses your boxer, in reality, could make him pant.

Not to mention the fact that boxers are a brachycephalic breed and unfortunately have much more difficulty breathing than most other dogs. This will no doubt increase the amount of panting you see coming from your boxer.

As always, though, if you are ever unsure or concerned for the health or safety of your boxer, play it safe and call your veterinarian right away.


Before making any decisions that could affect the health and/or safety of your dog, you should always consult a trained veterinarian in your local area. Even though this content may have been written/reviewed by a trained veterinarian, our advice to you is to always consult your own local veterinarian in person. Please read our full dislcaimer if you have any questions.