Boerboel

The Boerboel is a farm dog, native to South Africa, who does well guarding livestock and even cats. The word “boer” is Dutch/Afrikaans for “farmer.” She is also called the South African Mastiff or the South African Boerboel dog. She is a fierce protectors and is almost always aware of the presence of wild, predatory animals and prepared to defend her family. There have been a number of attacks associated with them, but attacks shouldn’t worry the average person. A well socialized dog is usually pretty good with all people. A Boerboel is a loving creature who, when properly socialized, comes to enjoy the family, its children, and even meeting new people. When properly socialized and trained she can have a nice temperament. Introducing her to strangers is a good way to socialize you Boerboel.

Boerboel image

Experts recommend that the entire family participate in the Boerboel’s training, so she comes to recognize that the children rate higher than the dog in the family hierarchy.  It is not a real common breed, but there are breeders out there that will have south african purebred boerboel puppies for sale. However, we recommend that you look and find a boerboel rescue in your area. The rescue might even have black or brindle boerboel puppies, you never know. To my knowledge, there isn’t a miniature boerboel, there are just puppies.



History

Boerboels are considered rare in the U.S. and parts of the world other than South Africa. Legend has it that after the conquest of Egypt, Assyrian dogs spread to the rest of Africa and to other parts of the world. Two new breeds resulted: the hound and the mastiff. The Boerboel -- hardy, athletic and muscular, with a protective instinct -- fell into the mastiff offshoot of the ancient African breed.


The Boerboel was developed to work. In 1938, the De Beers family brought several of the Bull Mastiff type dogs to South Africa to guard their diamond mines, a task they were more than suited for.


In the early 1980s in South Africa, a pair of researchers covered 5,500 kilometers in search of  an example the “original” Boer dog. Of these, just 72 dogs were considered close to the ancient dog and were registered for breeding. The breed remains rare, but in 2015 she was accepted to compete in the AKC’s Working group.  There are many different types and colors, the white, brindle, black, blue among others.


Size

Boerboels are considered rare in the U.S. and parts of the world other than South Africa. Legend has it that after the conquest of Egypt, Assyrian dogs spread to the rest of Africa and to other parts of the world. Two new breeds resulted: the hound and the mastiff. The Boerboel -- hardy, athletic and muscular, with a protective instinct -- fell into the mastiff offshoot of the ancient African breed.


The Boerboel was developed to work. In 1938, the De Beers family brought several of the Bull Mastiff type dogs to South Africa to guard their diamond mines, a task they were more than suited for.


In the early 1980s in South Africa, a pair of researchers covered 5,500 kilometers in search of  an example the “original” Boer dog. Of these, just 72 dogs were considered close to the ancient dog and were registered for breeding. The breed remains rare, but in 2015 she was accepted to compete in the AKC’s Working group.  There are many different types and colors, the white, brindle, black, blue among others.


Personality

We find this old saying is used to describe owning a  lot of dogs, in this case: “A tired Boerboel is a happy Boerboel.” Like so many breeds, they need vigorous exercise to prevent mischievous or destructive behavior. Today they still work the farms of their native country, where Boerboel breeding is a hobby and a business. The dogs have begun to be imported to other parts of the world.


If you want to bring a Boerboel into your life, experts advise you consult a reputable breeder, who will put the welfare and health of the dog ahead of profits. Reputable breeders will also take back or exchange a puppy who is found to have a congenital defect.


Your Boerboel will need early obedience training, as she may be prone to aggression toward other dogs that the handler will need to control. As a dominant breed, she is probably not a good candidate for the dog park. Other than that, she’s a gem, protecting and loving her family and bonding to one particular person to the point of following that individual from room to room. You might have heard of a boerboel fighting lions. That is what they were bred to do. You should really keep this in mind when training them.


Health

The best Boerboels are historically healthy dogs. There is some record of their developing hip dysplasia, elbow dysplasia, vaginal hyperplasia (a reproductive disorder), ectropion (a condition of old age in which the eyelid is turned outward from the eyeball), and entropion (a condition in which the eyelid rolls in against the eyeball). There have also been some recent instances of epilepsy. The best food for boerboel pups is probably the Raw Food Diet. They are known to have skin problems, demodicosis is one of the most difficult to treat.


Care

The Boerboel sheds only moderately and is easy to groom. An occasional brushing, monthly bath and nail trim will keep her looking neat and tidy.


Rescue

The USA Boerbel Rescue Network maintains a Facebook page (facebook.com/BoerboelRescueUSA) where prospective adopters can look at dogs and those who may need to rehome a Boerboel can ideally meet up with hopeful adopters. Outside of a rescue? How much is a boerboel puppy? What is the price? The cost? Well they average around $1,600. So that is another really good reason to look into your local rescue.


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