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|Domestic dog (Canis lupus familiaris)|
The Bullenbeisser, also known as the German Bulldog, was an extinct breed of dog known for its strength and agility. The breed was closely related to the Bärenbeisser (some believe that the two breeds were one and the same; the names mean "Bull-biter" and "Bear-biter", respectively), and was an ancestor to the modern Boxer. It was, in all its aspects, similar to the present Alano Español (Spanish Bulldog) and very alike to the Dogo Argentino, not only in aspect, but also in usage. There were two regional varieties, the Brabanter Bullenbeisser and the Danziger Bullenbeisser. The breed is now extinct.
The Bullenbeisser ("Bull-biter") became extinct by crossbreeding rather than by a decadence of the breed, as happened with the Old English Bulldog, for instance. The size of the Bull-Biters varied from about 40 to 70 cm by 1850; the smaller lines lived in what today is the Netherlands and Belgium, with the larger dogs in Germany. In the late 1870s, German breeders Roberth, Konig and Hopner used the dog to create a new breed, today called the Boxer by crossing Bullenbeissers with Bulldogs brought from Britain. The original ancestry was 50/50. However, German owners started crossing their dogs with many Bulldog lineages, which produced an indistinguishable breed after World War II.
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- SarahsDogs.com. "Sarah's Dogs: Breeds: Boxer". Retrieved 2007-08-04.