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I have always heard and read that Boxers were very prone to getting cancer.    Right after I got Cuda' I was told that the females were 90% less likely to get cancer if I got her fixed before her first heat cycle.    I had no intention of ever breeding her and would like for her to live as long and healthy as possible so I got her fixed before she went into heat the first time.    I would like to hear any and all options on my situation as well as Cancer vs. the Boxer breed in general.
 

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they do tend to be at higher risk for it...and masses in general...lilly has a tendency tyowards burst cysts under the skin, but they still freak me the hell out...nothing like a scary red bump on your beautiful fur baby to scare the hell outta ya...
 

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My vet also told me the same thing about getting Chloe fixed before her first heat cycle. We just had a lump removed on Chloe's back that we thought might of been cancer but it turned out it wasn't ..Thank God!
 

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Unfortunately the overall incidence of cancer is incredibly prevalent in boxers. The most common in the breed are mast-cell tumors, histiocytomas and lymphomas. Other than that they have the same risks as any other breed out there. I do believe that getting them spayed before their first heat cycle will also lower the risk for uterine cancer. I'm no vet though, that's just my own belief.  :roll:
 

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Yes Boxers are prone to cancer, and there are said benefits in neutering your pet at an early age...however shall you be getting your pets from Breeders who health test, hopefully this is something you do not have to worry about.

Yes they are prone to cancer, and yes even healthy health tested boxers can get it, however by selecting a breeder that does health test at least we can cut down the number of cases by screening for it.

Also looking at a pedigree of a possible puppy and the health and longitivity of the lines is alot a plus too.
 

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Voltaire's not quite 3 yet but he had a fast-growing tumor removed last month that the vet said did look like cancer. I didn't get a biopsy done, the vet seemed pretty sure and it wouldn't have changed anything treatment-wise. I just have to keep an eye on him in case of new ones.
 

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I agree with having a female spayed before the first heat if you do not intend to breed.  I have seen to many mam tumors in unaltered females as they get older. Boxers are prone to cancer, but other dogs are as well.  I lost my last dog to cancer and she was a lab.  

I feel it is being aware and feeling all over them to find any lumps and bumps at a early stage.  Have them removed or watch them for growth very carefully.  

Finding one and it not being cancer does not mean the next one could not be.  There is also having one removed that is cancer, it could come back in the same place or pop up in another place.

I agree with Hanna that having a pup from tested parents is always a plus, taking care of them, feeding a good food, having vaccinations done at an early age for protection against Parvo....all of these things are steps you take to protect your babies.

In the end the truth is that cancer or not cancer prone Boxers are wonderful dogs and they just do not have a long enough normal life span.
 

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My Dixie is 6 1/2 and had a mast cell tumor removed from her side in June.  The vet was able to tell it was in fact a mast cell tumor during the surgery but we decided to have the biopsy done to stage the tumor and determine if enough surrounding tissue was removed.   Fortunately, while the tumor was a Stage 2, the margins were clean so the prognosis at this point is good.  As everyone else has said,  it's important to check for lumps on a regular basis and bring any found to the attention of your vet.  

Is the life span of a Boxer shorter than that of other large breeds?
 

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As far as cancer goes, the facts are that spaying will decrease the risk of some cancers, but increase the risk of others.  You need to decide which risks are more comfortable for you.  

Boxers do have a somewhat shorter lifespan than other breeds of similar size; average age of death for a Boxer is about 9 years, and for Dobermans it is about 10 years.  There is a wide range, though, and deaths anywhere from 2-13 years are not uncommon.
 

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Are there any numbers for the males? One of my rotts died from bone cancer. I adopted an 8-month-old rescue so I don't have any breeder background on him.  :(
 

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Jennifer,   thanks so much for the link.  Once again you have provided information that was eye opening for me.  

This is the first time I have seen a discussion of the down side of spay/neuter.  Everything I have seen or heard before promotes spay/neuter and the positive health benefits.  We have always spayed our females and not neutered our males.  Our last two males were rescues and were neutered before we adopted them.
 

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Thanks for the link.  It was a very interesting read and I will definitely talk further with my vet about when to spay Sophie.  Since Kane is neutered, we don't have to do it so early and this study certainly gives me something to think about.
 
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