Dog Breeds


Boerboel is a dog working on African farms – South African settlers of Dutch origin. Solid, massive, short-haired. An excellent guardian and a good defender, as well as a dog with excellent hunting predispositions. Durable, resistant, independent.


The biggest advantage of a boerboel is its balanced character. This is a strong and controlled dog, which strongly attaches to the owner. He would not hesitate to defend him, even if he had to pay for it with his life. Intelligent, obedient, with a well-developed defense instinct, he can make decisions alone.

Coming from a good breeding and properly socialized boerboel should not be aggressive for a reason.


He is gentle, patient, tender and caring towards children and the whole human family. This great pet loves to spend time having fun. He often looks for contact with the owner. He learns quickly and willingly carries out orders, if only the mentor has established the right relationship with him.

Rather quiet at home, no desire to demolish an apartment. Due to the tendency to defend the territory, he feels best at home with a garden. However, he must also have close contact with his family.


A representative of this breed usually lives in friendship with other animals at home. Of course, it may happen that two males will not be accepted, especially in the presence of a bitch in a liquid.


As a born guardian, he is alert but not noisy. Anxious, he can make a sound like a roar of a lion. Barks a little – usually only when it warns of the appearance of an intruder.

When a stranger wants to invade his territory, the boerboel will signal that something bad is happening and will immediately attempt to defend the property. However, at the owner’s command, he will cease the attack and will even politely greet guests.

Boerboel. Training and education

If the owner has established proper relations with the dog, the boerboel is happy to learn and follow the instructions, but can also make independent decisions.

Who is this race for?

Despite many advantages, boerboel is not a dog for everyone. His owner should have experience in raising dogs, be firm and consistent, but at the same time surround the animal with love and devote a lot of time to it. Without human contact, the boerboel will be unhappy.

This dog is only for responsible and active people.

Boerboel. Advantages and disadvantages


  • sometimes dominant
  • can be aggressive
  • expensive to maintain


  • balanced
  • brave
  • very devoted to his family
  • caring for weaker members of the herd
  • excellent watchman
  • easy to care for

Boerboel. Health

The breed was subjected to natural selection in difficult African conditions – that’s why boerboels are resistant and healthy. However, as with other large breeds, hip and elbow dysplasia sometimes occur. There are also problems with the eyelids. A specific condition found in this breed is vaginal prolapse.



Like all large boerboel dogs, they should be given very good quality food during growth, but generally, they are not picky.


Boerboel care is uncomplicated, you only need to brush it from time to time when it molts.


Boerboel. History

The homeland of the boerboel is South Africa. Like other dogs, it is derived from ancient dogs, i.e. powerful dogs used in Assyria to hunt big beasts.

In addition, these quadrupeds played the role of gladiators in the Roman arenas and were involved in wars as war animals. Along with the Roman legions, they came to many European countries, including the British Isles and gave birth to local races. Centuries later, dogs traveled with European settlers to southern Africa.


The official beginning of the formation of the breed later called boerboel is considered to be 1652, when Jan van Riebeeck, an envoy of the Dutch East India Company, founded Cape Town with a handful of settlers.

Initially, it was a supply base for Dutch ships sailing to Asia. Van Riebeeck took with him to defend the bullenbijter – the molossus popular at the time. Other settlers also brought similar dogs with them.

In the veins of the Boerboel, however, the blood of quadrupeds flows, whose paws never stood on European soil. It is believed that the African ancestors of the race were kept by a tribe of Cynomons dogs from Babylon. Chroniclers described them as powerful animals capable of fighting lions. The Cynomons used them to hunt and defend against migrating herds of wildebeest antelopes that trampled everything they encountered on their way.

In addition, the tribe milked bitches – hence their meaningful name: “mature dogs”. Like many other African tribes, Cynomoni migrated south, taking quadrupeds with them. English settlers pushed the Dutch out of the southern tip of Africa and forced them to migrate northwards during the so-called Groot Trek (great trek). Descendants of the first Dutch colonists began to be referred to as Boers (“Boer” in Dutch means: peasant, farmer).

Boerboel was formed from a combination of dogs from these two sources: dogs imported by settlers and soldiers, and dogs of African tribes.

“Boel” means as much as a large dog. The breed’s name can therefore be translated as “Boer mastiff“. Later, the descendants of the Boers began to be called Afrikaners, i.e. people who speak Afrikaans, based on Dutch dialects. They lived in difficult conditions, struggling with harsh climate and wild animals.

Powerful dogs guarding their homes and belongings helped them. These quadrupeds were crossed that did their job well. The purity of the breed was not taken care of, but isolation and selection in terms of usability contributed to the creation of a specific type of dog.

In 1938, bulmastify was brought from Great Britain to protect diamond mines. They also contributed to shaping the breed.

Modern breeding began only in the 1980s. In 1983, SABT – South African Boerboel Association – the first and largest boerboele registration organization to date was established. Currently, there are two other organizations in South Africa that only register dogs of this breed: HBSA (Historical Boerboel Association of South Africa) and the most stringent breeding requirements EBBASA (Elite Boerboel Breeders’ Association of Southern Africa).

In addition, in 2008 the breed was recognized by KUSA – a South American cynological association accepted by the FCI. Thanks to this, you can register these dogs in all organizations subject to the FCI, although the breed is not even pre-approved by it. It is also allowed to present boerboels at exhibitions under the auspices of FCI, but it is not allowed to win championships. Recognition of a breed is a matter of time, especially since its popularity is growing.

The breed gained special popularity in Great Britain and Russia. A lot of its representatives can also be found in the Netherlands, Belgium, Germany and Norway. I

Boerboel. Template

Boerboel – not yet recognized by FCI, although it can already be exhibited, from molos origin

  • Origin: South Africa
  • Character: balanced, intelligent, independent dog, but likes to be close to the master, alert, brave, confident guardian and defender
  • Size: dogs – ideal height 66 cm, min. 60 cm; bitches – perfect height 61 cm, min. 55 cm
  • Weight: dogs 60-65 kg (there are males weighing 90 kg), bitches around 55 kg
  • Coat: short, smooth and thick
  • Ointment: fawn or red in various shades and brindle preferred; acceptable but undesirable white markings on the feet below the carpal and ankle joints and on the chest; SABT also allows spotted coat
  • Lifespan: 10-13 years
  • Vulnerability to training: high
  • Activity: moderate
  • Resistance/susceptibility to diseases: resistant; there are hip and elbow dysplasia, eyelid curvature and extension, and vaginal prolapse

Interesting facts

In 2016, the boerboel female gave birth to 19 puppies. Ultrasound examinations heralded the birth of “only” 15 babies. Unfortunately one baby did not survive delivery.

It was the first litter of four-year-old Bailey. Although she did not break the world record, which was set when another dog mother gave birth to 24 cubs, her result is still extremely impressive.

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