Breed Information


2022: #118

2021: #118

2020: #123

2015: #126



Other names

South African Boerboel, South African Mastiff


South Africa

Breed Group

Working (AKC:2015)





Life Span

10-12 years








Male: 25-28 inches (64-70 cm)

Female: 23-25.5 inches (59-65 cm)


154-200 pounds (70-90 kg)


Brindle, Brown, Red, Cream, Tawny

Litter Size

7-10 puppies

Puppy Prices

Average $2000 – $4000 USD

Across North America, the Boerboel breeders charge anywhere from $2,000 to $4,000 for a puppy. It could be more or it could be less, depending on the breeder, where the breeder lives, shipping costs and the genetic’s of the puppy.

Boerboel Dog Breed

Disclaimer: While the characteristics mentioned here may frequently represent this breed, dogs are individuals whose personalities and appearances will vary. Please consult the adoption organization for details on a specific pet.

Breed Characteristics



Apartment Friendly


The Boerboel is not recommended for apartment life. It should, at least, have a large, fenced-in yard to run and play. The Boerboel can live outdoors. This breed should not be left to run on its own for it is very protective and sometimes does not take too well to strangers.

Barking Tendencies



Cat Friendly


Child Friendly


Good with Kids: This is a suitable breed for kids and is known to be playful, energetic, and affectionate around them. It is also shy toward strangers.

Dog Friendly


Exercise Needs


The Boerboel will get a lot exercise if it has a large yard to run and play. However it needs to be taken on a long daily walk. Boerboels love to play and would love a good game of ball.



Low Maintenance: Grooming is only necessary once in a while to maintain upkeep. No trimming or stripping needed.

Health Issues


Hypoallergenic: No

Boerboels are generally known for their good health. However, Boerboels can suffer from hip or elbow dysplasia, vaginal hyperplasia, ectropion, and entropion. Recently, juvenile epilepsy (with attacks brought on by metabolic changes or stress) has appeared in the boerboel breed. A boerboel’s behavior and comportment may change over time. The average life expectancy is ten years.



Ranking: # Full Ranking List



Shedding Level


Moderate Shedding: Expect this dog to shed regularly. Be prepared to vacuum often. Brushing will reduce shedding as well as make the coat softer and cleaner.

Stranger Friendly




Easy Training: The Boerboel is an intelligent breed which requires consistent, firm, positive reinforcement. The Boerboel should have a dominant owner who can be strict when necessary and ensure the dog’s obedience.

Watchdog Ability


Introduction to Boerboel Dog Breed Characteristics

The Boerboel, a majestic dog breed originating from South Africa, has captured the hearts of many around the globe. Known for its impressive strength, loyal nature, and striking appearance, the Boerboel stands out as a breed of its own. In this comprehensive guide, we’ll journey through the characteristics that make the Boerboel truly special.

History of the Boerboel Breed

Origins in South Africa

The Boerboel’s roots trace back to South Africa, where early settlers required a robust dog to protect their homesteads from wild animals. Over time, this breed, whose name literally translates to “farmer’s dog,” evolved to become the perfect companion for those in the rugged terrains of the African plains.

Evolution over the centuries

The Boerboel has undergone several transformations, adapting to various roles from a farm protector to a loving family pet. Their resilience and adaptability have cemented their reputation as one of the most versatile breeds.

Distinct Physical Traits

The Boerboel’s robust stature

When you first lay eyes on a Boerboel, its sheer physical presence is awe-inspiring. They possess a muscular build, with males weighing between 110-200 pounds. Their sturdy legs and broad chests are testaments to their strength.

Unique facial features

Their expressive eyes, coupled with a confident gaze, often leave a lasting impression. Their faces, often with a black mask, showcase their distinct lineage.

Temperament and Personality

Protective nature

A Boerboel’s loyalty knows no bounds. They’re naturally protective of their families, making them excellent guard dogs. Their vigilant nature, combined with their imposing size, often deters any unwanted visitors.

Affectionate side of Boerboels

Contrary to their fierce appearance, Boerboels have a soft spot for their loved ones. They are known to be gentle giants, especially around children, often forming unbreakable bonds with family members.

Care and Maintenance

Dietary needs

Feeding a Boerboel requires understanding their nutritional needs. A balanced diet, rich in proteins and essential vitamins, ensures they maintain their health and vigor.

Exercise requirements

Being active dogs, Boerboels thrive when they get regular exercise. Whether it’s a game of fetch or a long walk, physical activity keeps them mentally and physically stimulated.

Training and Socialization

Importance of early socialization

For a Boerboel to grow into a well-behaved adult, early socialization is paramount. Exposing them to various environments and people during their formative months helps in their overall development.

Training techniques for Boerboels

Positive reinforcement works wonders with Boerboels. They respond well to treats and praises, making training sessions both fun and productive.

Health Concerns and Longevity

Common health issues

Like all breeds, Boerboels have their set of health concerns, including hip dysplasia and certain heart conditions. Regular check-ups and being aware of any changes in their behavior are essential.

Expected lifespan

With proper care, a Boerboel can live up to 10-12 years, filling their owners’ lives with joy and companionship.

Boerboel vs Other Breeds

Comparison with Mastiffs

While they share similarities with Mastiffs, especially in size, Boerboels have distinct characteristics setting them apart, such as their unique coat colors and temperaments.

Distinction from Bullmastiffs

Although often confused with Bullmastiffs due to similar appearances, Boerboels are generally more agile and have different care needs.

Adoption and Purchase Considerations

Adopting a Boerboel

Adoption is a noble choice, giving a Boerboel a second chance at happiness. Various rescue organizations specialize in this breed, ensuring they find loving homes.

Purchasing from reputable breeders

If buying a Boerboel, it’s crucial to source them from ethical breeders. This ensures the puppy has a healthy start and is free from any genetic disorders.

Boerboel Dog Breed Characteristics in Pop Culture

Famous Boerboels in movies

Though not as commonly seen in Hollywood, Boerboels have made their mark in several films, showcasing their versatility as actors.

Impact on modern culture

Their increasing popularity has seen Boerboels become symbols of strength and loyalty in various cultural representations.

Pros and Cons of Owning a Boerboel

Advantages of having a Boerboel

From their unwavering loyalty to their playful nature, the joys of having a Boerboel are endless.

Challenges faced by Boerboel owners

While they are a delight, Boerboels also come with their set of challenges, including their need for constant attention and care.


The Boerboel is more than just a dog; it’s a testament to nature’s wonders. Their combination of strength, loyalty, and affection makes them stand out in the canine world. Whether you’re considering adopting one or simply fascinated by the breed, the Boerboel surely leaves an indelible mark on all who encounter it.


How often should I exercise my Boerboel?

Regular daily exercise is vital to keep a Boerboel healthy and happy.

Are Boerboels good with children?

Yes, they’re known to be gentle and patient, making them excellent companions for kids.

Do Boerboels shed a lot?

They have a moderate shedding pattern, which can be managed with regular grooming.

How big do Boerboels get?

Males can weigh up to 200 pounds, while females usually weigh slightly less.

Is it hard to train a Boerboel?

With consistency and positive reinforcement, Boerboels can be trained effectively.

Do they make good apartment dogs?

Due to their size and activity levels, Boerboels are better suited for homes with ample space.

Related Posts

Bouvier des Ardennes Dog Breed Information

Bouvier des Ardennes

Table of Contents Bouvier des Ardennes Dog Breed Characteristics Introduction History Origins Purpose Appearance Size Coat and Color Distinguished Features Temperament Personality With Family With Other Animals Care Exercise Grooming…

Read more
Bavarian Mountain Hound Dog Breed Information

Bavarian Mountain Hound

Table of Contents Bavarian Mountain Hound Dog Breed Characteristics History of the Bavarian Mountain Hound Physical Appearance of the Bavarian Mountain Hound Coat and Colors Size and Weight Temperament of…

Read more
Beaglier Dog Breed Information


Table of Contents Beaglier Dog Breed Characteristics Introduction Origin and History Physical Characteristics Size and Weight Coat and Coloration Temperament and Personality Active and Playful Affectionate and Loyal Care and…

Read more

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *