© Ankevanwyk (Anke Van Wyk) |


Also known as: South African Boerboel, South African Mastiff

Breed origin: South Africa
Original purpose: Farm protector and big game hunter.

AKC recognized: No
AKC group: Foundation Stock Service

Size: Weight: males 125 to 145 lbs; females 92 to 105 lbs
Size: Height: males 25 to 28 inches; females 23 to 26 inches
© Petergriend (Peter Griend) |
Color: Brindle, brown, red-brown, red, fawn, yellow-cream, white-cream, dilute, or black, preferably with a deep mask.

Life span: 10 to 12 years.

General characteristics/temperament: The Boerboel is intelligent, self-assured, fearless, and very dominant. They are a versatile breed and are capable of being both a working dog and a loyal companion. However, due to their large size, strength, and dominant temperament, they are not for first-time owners or owners with no previous experience with large breeds. Because of their strong guarding instinct, they need to always be watched around strangers, and require early socialization and obedience training. They should never be left unattented with young children, and should not be left alone in the yard (even if fully fenced). These dogs will become destructive and dangerous if deprived of constant companionship from their owners, but will thrive on love and attention.

© 3kie (Driekie Potgieter) |
Good watchdog? Yes

Protective? Highly

OK for inexperienced owners? No

OK in apartments? No

© Temele (Temelko Temelkov) |
Intelligent? Yes

Easy to train? No

Exercise requirement: At least one long walk daily plus play sessions in a large fenced yard.

Grooming requirement: Brush occasionally to remove any dead hairs as they are considered average shedders. Bath monthly.

Known health problems: Hip dysplasia, elbow dysplasia, Wobblers disease, eye problems, heart problems, thyroid problems, gastric dilatation volvulus, allergies.

Additional photos of Boerboel

Recommended books for further reading:

Dogs of Africa
By Sian Hall
Published in 2003
366 pages

Other websites for additional information:

American Kennel Club breed page
American Boerboel Club
South African Boerboel Association
Wikipedia breed information page

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Page Last Updated: February 1, 2018

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