Boerboel Dog Breed: A Powerful Guardian with a Gentle Heart


Last Updated on November 23, 2023 by Fumipets

Boerboel Dog Breed: A Powerful Guardian with a Gentle Heart


The Boerboel, a South African breed known for its muscular build and protective instincts, embodies a harmonious blend of strength and gentleness. This summary explores key aspects of the Boerboel breed through a series of questions and answers.

Boerboel Dog Breed

Height: 22 – 27 inches
Weight: 150 – 200 pounds
Lifespan: 9 – 11 years
Colors: Brindle, brown, cream, red, reddish-brown, tawny
Suitable for: Active families, experienced dog owners, house with a yard
Temperament: Calm, protective, confident, intelligent, loyal

The Boerboel is a breed of mastiff that originated in South Africa in the seventeenth century. The Dutch and German immigrants to South Africa who brought big canines to assist them hunt game and defend their families were called “Boers.” These big canines evolved into the Boerboel, or “farmer’s dog,” through the years by breeding and interbreeding, protecting their owner’s property from the powerful African fauna.

Large, powerful, and muscular dogs with short, thick coats are known as Boerboels. These dogs might be red, cream, brindle, brown, or tawny in color, and they can also have white markings and a black mask. The Boerboel may also have Irish or piebald markings.

3 Little-Known Facts About Boerboel

1. Boerboels have dark skin

The Boerboel has black skin, which is supposed to help shield them from the African sun, regardless of the color of their fur.

2. The Boerboel Protected Against Wildlife in Africa

In addition to their unwavering tenacity, Boerboels’ enormous size and power made them the ideal guard dogs against baboons and even leopards.

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3. The Boerboel Needs An Experienced Owner

These dogs need someone who has expertise training and dealing with a dog that is very territorial and protective because to their size, power, and personalities.

Temperament & Intelligence of the Boerboel

Boerboels need a strong but kind hand to lead them since they are fiercely dedicated and protective of their family and land. Because of their disposition and high level of caution around strangers, they make excellent watchdogs and guard dogs.

Boerboels are extraordinarily dedicated to their families and very bright. They depend on the family so heavily that they cannot survive without it. Boerboels are calm, obedient, and self-assured dogs that, unless they have a firm, assured, patient, and, of course, loving owner, may attempt to handle matters on their own.

Are These Dogs Good for Families?

Boerboels are wonderful family pets, but they would thrive in a household with older kids. They are an essential part of the family because of their loving and protective nature, but because of their size, they shouldn’t be left alone with small children. Children must be taught to appreciate all canines.

Does This Breed Get Along with Other Pets?

Boerboels need a lot of early socialization and early exposure to household pets. Any family pet will be treated like a member of the family, especially if they feel protected. To avoid same-sex hostility, it might be preferable to choose the opposite sex if you have any other dogs. In order to prevent any conflicts with other dogs, it is also advised that you keep your Boerboel away from dog parks.

Things to Know When Owning a Boerboel

Food & Diet Requirements

Feeding your Boerboel high-quality food that is suitable for her size, age, and activity level are important. Pay attention to the daily amount of food and treats you offer your dog. When deciding how much food to give your dog, it’s typically best to refer to the instructions on the back of the food bag. And if you’re ever worried about your Boerboel’s weight or general health, talk to your veterinarian.

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The Boerboel is a quiet and laid-back dog, but she needs daily fun and lengthy walks. It is not advised to utilize dog parks due to their size. They may need a home with a yard so they can receive the exercise they need. Because of their protective attitude, Boerboels should never be taken on walks without a leash.


Due to their loyalty and intelligence, Boerboels are quite simple to teach, thus training should begin early. Don’t assume that just because Boerboel pups are gentle and meek, it means they’ll become controllable, submissive adults. Long into maturity, training must be constant. Enrol your Boerboel in obedience training, and make sure to socialize your dog often.


A hound glove, a rubber grooming mitt, or a soft bristle brush should be used to brush the Boerboel’s thick and short coat once a week. You’ll have less dog hair flying about your house as a result, and this will help keep their skin and coats healthy. They just need the occasional wash with premium dog shampoo, often no more than once every one to two months.

Every two to three weeks, you should wash your Boerboel’s teeth, trim her nails every three to four weeks, and clean her ears once a month.

Health and Conditions

In general, Boerboels are a fairly healthy breed and are strong, sturdy dogs. A reputable breeder will examine their dogs for any inherited illnesses that may exist.

Minor Conditions

Lower eyelid droop

Abnormal eyelid

Serious Conditions

Elbow dysplasia

Hip dysplasia

Heart disease

The veterinarian will examine your Boerboel’s elbows, hips, and heart, which may include radiographs and echocardiograms. Your dog will have a complete medical examination from your veterinarian, who will also carefully examine your Boerboel’s eyes.

Male vs Female

Physical stature is the first obvious distinction between male and female Boerboels. In general, they may weigh between 150 and 200 pounds and stand between 22 and 25 inches for women and 24 to 27 inches for men.

The kind of surgery that will be necessary for your dog is the next obvious distinction. In comparison to neutering the male Boerboel, spaying the female involves a more difficult procedure, is often more costly, and requires a longer recuperation period. However, by having your Boerboel spayed or neutered, you may lessen its more aggressive inclinations and, according to experts, you may also be able to avoid any future significant health issues.

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Last but not least, some people think that male and female dogs have distinct personality traits. Although it has been suggested that female dogs tend to be softer and less possessive than males, this generalization isn’t always accurate. The socialization, training, and treatment a dog receives when still a puppy all contribute to the development of her personality.


Boerboels are enormous, dependable pets that will not only protect your family but also grow to be an integral part of it.

You may locate quite a few Boerboel breeders by doing a simple internet search or posting on social media. You should be ready to spend a substantial amount on travel if there aren’t any breeders nearby. If you’re thinking about adopting one, you may either keep a careful check on any rescue groups in your area or turn to organizations that specialize in saving Boerboels, like Giant Paws Boerboel Rescue.

The Boerboel could be the ideal addition to your family if you’re seeking someone who will love you without conditions and defend you without reservation.

Frequently Asked Questions



What is the origin and history of the Boerboel breed?

The Boerboel, meaning “farm dog” in Afrikaans, originated in South Africa and has a history dating back to the 17th century. Bred for guarding homesteads, these dogs are descendants of various European and local breeds, resulting in a unique and versatile guardian.


What are the physical characteristics of the Boerboel?

Boerboels are large, powerful dogs with a distinctive blocky head, broad chest, and a short, dense coat. Their muscular build reflects their strength, and they possess a calm yet attentive expression. Boerboels come in various colors, with a prominent black mask often seen on their faces.


What is the temperament of Boerboels?

Boerboels are known for their loyalty, intelligence, and protective nature. Despite their imposing appearance, they are gentle giants with a deep affection for their families. Proper training and early socialization are essential to harness their protective instincts and ensure a well-behaved companion.


How should Boerboels be trained and socialized?

Training Boerboels requires a firm and consistent approach. Positive reinforcement techniques work well with these intelligent dogs. Early socialization is crucial to help them interact positively with various people, animals, and environments, minimizing any potential guarding behavior.


What are the exercise and care requirements for Boerboels?

Boerboels are energetic dogs that benefit from regular exercise to maintain their physical and mental well-being. Daily walks, playtime, and interactive activities are essential. Due to their short coat, grooming needs are minimal, but regular check-ups, a balanced diet, and dental care contribute to their overall health.

Understanding the Boerboel breed’s history, physical characteristics, temperament, training needs, and care requirements is essential for those considering this formidable yet loving guardian as a family companion.




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