Boerboel dog breed characteristics and facts

Boerboel dog breed characteristics and facts


Purebred Dogs


22 to 28 inches


110 to 200 pounds


10 to 12 years

You might be able to guess by first sight that the large and intimidating Boerboel would be a suitable guard dog, and you would be right. This breed, on the other hand, is as well-known for its affection, patience, and family-friendly vibes as it is towards human infants. South African farmers created these protectors to defend their homes from hyenas, lions, and another violent fauna. Furthermore, these keepers were an important part of their task. The name Boerboel, pronounced “boo-r-bull,” comes from the Dutch and Afrikaans words for “farmer’s dog.” This big homestead buddy has also been described as the South African Mastiff, South African Boerboel, Borbull, and Bole.

On the other hand, Boerboels are fairly docile, low-maintenance, and have relatively few health issues. However, this does not mean that they are easy to manage, especially for beginners. These dogs are confident, territorial and heavy chewers, and pullers. A confident, experienced owner with a lot of room for a big dog that needs exercise is required. If you’re planning to get a Boerboel puppy in the near future, consider the preceding information.

Boerboel Facts

  • Origin: South Africa
  • Size: Large
  • Breed group: Working dog
  • Lifespan: 9-11 years
  • Coat: dense, Short and smooth
  • Temperament: Intelligent, Protective, loyal and trainable
  • Exercise needs: High, At least 2 hours exercise daily
  • Training: Easy to train
  • Health: Gnerally healthy, Can be prone to some health problems, such as elbow dysplasia, hip dysplasia, and heart disease.

Boerboel Overview

Although Boerboels’ physical power is just matched by their love for their homes and households. The Boerboel was bred from dogs that Dutch settlers brought to South Africa. They safeguarded the homestead from hyenas, lions, leopards, and other wildlife. They are currently used as guard dogs, protectors, and competitors in dog contests. They are also devoted family pets who enjoy children. However, they can be quite territorial and, without appropriate training and socialization, exhibit aggressive behavior towards strangers and other dogs. Boerboels need much mental and physical exercise. Their requirement for mental and physical stimulation is moderate, given how agile and intelligent these creatures are. If left alone for an extended period and become bored or anxious, they may wreck havoc. A substantial residence and a teacher who is patient and confident are needed. They can protect your kid as a watchdog and playmate in the right house.

Boerboel Highlights

Large and muscular: Boerboels’ are among the biggest dog species on the list. Males usually grow 24-27 inches tall, weighing between 110-170 pounds.

Loyal and protective: Loyalty is a true part of its nature. Boerboels love their families and are willing to do whatever it takes to protect them.

Intelligent and trainable: Boerboels are brilliant dogs that are also simple to teach. They can, however, be obstinate at times; as a result, proper socialization and recentness are required.

Good with children: Boerboels are naturally compatible with children. They are tolerant and delightful to work with because they are frequently poor players.

Low-maintenance coat: Boerboels have a short, thick coat that is straightforward to care for. They do, however, need sweeping only once a week.

Generally healthy: Boerboels are usually healthy dogs. However, several health problems can affect them, including hip dysplasia, elbow dysplasia, and cardiovascular disease.

Boerboel History

The name “Boerboel” comes from Afrikaans/Dutch farmer (“boer”) and dog (“boel”); indeed they were farmers’ dogs when Dutch settlers’ bred them in South Africa starting in the 1600s. Dutch settlers needed dogs to defend the homestead and hunt dangerous wildlife such as hyenas, baboons, leopards, and other big cats. European settlers brought large strong dogs with them to South Africa, and they bred with indigenous domestic dogs and various other breeds over the next few hundred years. The English also brought Bulldogs and Mastiffs, and diamond mining company De Beers brought in Bull Mastiffs to guard their mines, which also bred with Boerboels to make them what they are today. It is unclear what breeds went into the Boerboel, but only the strongest continued to exist in the hot weather and face wild creatures, which contributed to its tenacity. In the 1800s, the colonists began protesting British administration of South Africa and moved in. This has scattered their dogs, which often went to isolated communities that required prey dogs to herd, hunt, guard, and shield from other dangerous people. South Africa became more urban after the World Wars, and Boerboels started to bred with other dogs haphazardly breed purity was not considered. In the 1980s, breed lovers in South Africa decided to attempt to revive pure Boerboels. Thanks to their breeding, dogs became famous and exported around the world. However, this particular breed is still uncommon if not in South Africa.

Boerboel Size

Boerboels are large dogs, with males averaging 23 to 28 inches to the shoulder and females between 22 and 25 inches in height. Most Boerboels weigh 110 to 200 pounds, though a few individuals dwarf or nihility than that.

Boerboel Personality

Boerboels are anything but dull: they are intelligent, playful creatures that adore work. It may be challenging farm efforts, guard duties, or tracking and agility competition job, but they can’t get enough of it. Boerboels are wonderful with the family, particularly with children, and may even be somewhat overprotective. Unfortunately, the same attributes that make them excellent watchdogs and guardians can make them naturally territorial and competitive if not properly trained or socialized. The family must first introduce a new visitor to the Boerboel inhabitants if anyone goes to the door. Boerboels are typically cordially with individuals they have met and with whom they are comfortable; nevertheless, they are watchful even if Boerboels trust the family has granted authorization to their friend.

As far as training is concerned, while they are trainable, Boerboels can be relentless, and the individual training them must be confident and use optimism while establishing borders without being unkind. They are not fit for a first-time pet owner. They should do well with a patient and respectful handler who has access to much more room and a variety of ways to divert their mind. Boerboels should also be exposed to people and a variety of situations at a young age to help avoid confrontation. Boerboels should be tested both mentally and physically because they can get bored and more stressed out due to which they can cause havoc. Puzzle feeding systems, brisk playtimes, and extensive outings should aid them in doing enough effort. Since it is a large and medium breed with mild to moderate exercise demands, it prefers merely being housed. They prefer to dwell in a dwelling with a garden area where there is a high, robust protective wall where one can interact and enjoy. While not a dog for the weak of heart, Boerboels reward the proper person with compassion for the home and dedication to shield the individuals inside at all costs.

Boerboel Health

The Boerboel breed is generally considered strong and sound, with a relatively low prevalence of hereditary diseases. Nonetheless, there are some sicknesses to which they may be inclined and which can appear as they get older. These diseases include:

  • Hip dysplasia
  • Heart disease
  • Eye conditions
  • Vaginal hyperplasia
  • Bloat
  • Juvenile epilepsy

Boerboel Care

The Boerboel require relatively low maintenance. They must be exercised or kept active physically and mentally through play or exercise. The other part of pet care is minimal. Their nails require trimming every two or so weeks, and teeth should be regularly cleaned by a vet. The ears should be checked weekly for debris and wax buildup for cleaning, and regular cleaning should be done to avoid infection and pest infestation.

Boerboel Grooming And Coat Color

Boerboel coats are short and straight and form a smooth, glossy protective overcoat over a soft, dense undercoat. Boerboels come in shades of red, fawn, brindle, brown, or black. White spots are seen on the coat of some Boerboels, notably around their neck, face, and paws, though more than 30% of the coat’s coloration as white is a fault. Many Boerboels have dark markings surrounding their eyes, mouths, and noses, while some have dark surrounds surrounding their paws. This coat sheds an average amount of shedding and needs minimal upkeep. Weekly brushing and monthly baths can assist to maintain the coat tidy and to gather shed extensive amounts of fur.

Boerboel Children And Other Pets

Boerboels love their humans, and although they are known for being great protectors of their children, as they may knock one over just as every playful, enormous dog, out of sheer playfulness and excitement. However, children must also follow protocols when playing with pets. There should be absolutely no poking and prodding, no matter how trained and docile a Boerboel is. As is the case with every other dog, playtime should be monitored to prevent something from going wrong. The Boerboel’s other natural instinct for protecting its family may also work against it when kids are involved in playtime with their companions. It may perhaps misinterpret playtime as being aggressive and feel the urge to protect its humans. However, these dogs are also known for loving their human children and are the ideal kid protector is it delicate and gigantic. When it comes to other dogs, a Boerboel may be social with animals raised with it and living on the same property, but territoriality, suspicion, chess, jealousy, and even aggression are inevitable when dealing with unfamiliar animals. Males of the same sex are especially known to become aggressive and competitive. Although socialization may keep this inherent tension at bay, these dogs may thrive in a home where they are the only dogs.