European Boxer vs. American Boxer: Key Differences Explained (2024)

An adult Boxer dog lying with a curious expression against a gray background.

Boxers are energetic, brave, and playful. They are also very protective and loyal.

While all Boxers look very similar, there are different types, and they have different appearances and features that distinguish them from one another. 

What’s the difference between a European Boxer and an American Boxer? At 60-80 pounds, European Boxers are larger and stockier than American Boxers. European Boxers have broader heads, thicker necks, and a bulky, muscular frame. American boxers have a somewhat sleeker appearance; a slightly shorter, thinner coat; and a more prominent muzzle. They weigh 60-70 pounds.

If you are trying to decide if you would rather have an American Boxer or a European Boxer, read on to learn more about each variation.

European Boxer vs. American Boxer

The biggest difference between the European Boxer and the American Boxer is their size and appearance. There are different standards for each type of Boxer.

Head Size and Shape

Both Boxers have similar head shapes and faces, but there are some differences to note.

European Boxer 

The head is broader, and the jawline is thick. The snout is short and slightly pushed up, and the jowls hang slightly.

American Boxer

The head is smaller and less bulky. The snout is smaller but sticks out to be more prominent. The jawline is not as bulky, and the head is slightly smaller overall.


The next of both types of Boxers are similar, but European Boxers tend to have thicker, more muscular necks.

European Boxer 

The nape is easily noticeable and arches up to run into the shoulders. It has a rounded shape and is muscular and strong.

American Boxer

The neck is broad and should not show any signs of hanging skin. It also has an arched nape that moves into the shoulders smoothly.

Overall Size

European Boxers are slightly larger than American Boxers and have a stockier build.

European Boxer 

European Boxers weigh between 60 and 80 pounds. Males are larger and heavier. Males should stand between 22 and 25 inches tall, and females stand between 20 and 24 inches.

American Boxer

American Boxers weigh between 60 to 70 pounds, with the females weighing slightly less. The males stand around 23 to 25 inches tall, and the females stand between 19 and 23 inches tall.

Body Type

While these dogs have similar body types, the European Boxer is slightly more bulky, and the American Boxer is more slender.

European Boxer 

The European Boxer has a bulky and muscular body type. Its frame is square, and the legs are straight. It has clearly marked withers with a deep chest and short, tucked flanks.

American Boxer

The American Boxer has a slightly leaner build but is still a stocky dog. The back is short and smooth, and the shoulders are long with a slight slope. The ribs arch slightly, and the tail sits high.


Both dogs have smooth coats that are short and shiny. 

European Boxer 

European Boxers have smooth, short coats that come in colors that include fawn and brindle with black masks. The coat is often slightly longer and thicker than their American counterparts.

American Boxer

American Boxers have the same short and smooth coats, and they come in the same colors, including fawn and brindle with black masks.


Both types of Boxers are strong, courageous, and protective. They can make great family pets if socialized properly.

European Boxer 

European Boxers are fearless, confident, and loyal. They are also very protective and bond quickly with their families.

They are watchful and naturally distrustful of strangers but can be more trustworthy with proper socialization.

American Boxer

American Boxers are very alert, loyal, and protective. They were bred to be guard dogs, and they can be shy if not socialized at an early age.

They are smart and affectionate and bond with their owners quickly.

Breed Standard

Both dogs have a breed standard for their specific kennel club.

European Boxer 

European Boxers are large dogs weighing over 60 pounds with broad chests, large heads, and strong necks. They should be brindle or fawn with black masks, and the ears may be cropped or natural.

They should hold their heads high, and their expressions should be serious.

American Boxer

The American Boxer should weigh between 55 and 70 pounds. They have broad chests but are not overly stocky.

They should be brindle or fawn with black masks, and the ears can also be cropped or natural. Some white markings are permitted but cannot account for more than ⅓ of the body.

A fawn Boxer dog with a pink heart ID tag lying on grass.

Are European Boxers Smaller Than American Boxers?

No, American Boxers are usually slightly smaller than European Boxers. The dogs are similar in size, but European Boxers are slightly taller, heavier, and stockier.

How Big Do European Boxers Get?

European Boxers can weigh up to 80 pounds and can be up to 25 inches tall. Males are usually larger than females.

Are European Boxers Aggressive?

European Boxers are not overly aggressive, but they are fearless and are not likely to back down if they feel threatened.

If properly socialized with children, other animals, and other adults, they are less likely to show signs of aggression. 

Are European Boxers Healthier?

There is no evidence that proves European Boxers to be any healthier than American Boxers.

Some breeders claim that their bloodlines are purer and that certain illnesses have been bred out of their dogs, but this is not the case with all European Boxers.

How Long Do European Boxers Live?

European Boxers typically live to be between 10 and 12 years with proper care.

How Long Do American Boxer Dogs Live?

American Boxers also have an average lifespan of between 10 and 12 years.

Are German Boxers the Same as European Boxers?

German Boxers and European Boxers are not the same. German Boxers are slightly larger and more muscular than other Boxers.

English Boxer vs. American Boxer

The English Boxer and American Boxer differ in appearance. The English Boxer has different legs and ankles, which causes it to stand differently and have a different posture.

They are similar in size, but the English Boxer has a much tighter coat with hardly any wrinkles.

The muzzle of American Boxers is wider than the nose of the English Boxer and appears shorter.

Related Questions: 

How Can You Tell if a Boxer Is Purebred?

The only way to tell if a Boxer is purebred is to examine their pedigree. While Boxers do have a specific look, there is no guarantee that a dog that looks like a Boxer is a purebred Boxer.

Why Are Boxers’ Tails Docked?

Boxers were once bred for hunting, and their tails were docked to protect them from being bitten or ripped off. Today they are usually docked for cosmetic purposes.

Final Thoughts 

There are several different types of Boxers, and each has a different appearance and temperament.

If you are considering getting a Boxer and want to find the right type for your family, research the different types, and choose the one that will be the best fit for you.