Most dictionaries define a boer-boel as a big farm dog of uncertain origins. Since now the boer-boel is now a fully-fledged Southern African breed, and it is accepted by the Southern African Kennel Union, this definition can now be put aside.

Extended research has revealed that the ancestry of the boer-boel can be traced as far back as the time of the Herrodus, Tibet, Assiria and Babylon. In Assiria the use of dogs as soldiers was so intense to the extend of covering them with reinforcement material to protect them. When Assurbanipal conquered Egypt, these dogs were also taken along and thus began their spread further into the so-called known world. 


Alexander the great was later responsible for introducing them to Europe. It is alleged that in 326BC he received about 156 of these dogs that had been trained to fight lions and elephants.

Over time these dogs developed into two definite strains, the mastiff and the hound. The mastiff was mainly used for protection while the hound was used for hunting purposes. These dogs were large and strong typical working dogs with only a slight difference in appearance and build.

It is reputed that all dogs of the western world are descended form these breeds. About 600 years ago the Europeans started specialised breeding from these 2 breeds and through fine selection and cross breeding the different breeds evolved. And even though different breeds emerged, each having their own characters they all still have one origin.


When the famous Jan Van Reebeck came to the Cape in 1652, he brought his own dog to protect him and his family in the wild and unknown country. This dog was a bullenboter, a large, heavy mastiff type of dog. He also brought along other of his strongest dogs to protect him against all the unknown dangers of this strange land. In this way different types of dogs arrived to this part of the world from different regions of the world. They were the wolfhond, the old English mastiff and the Scottish deehound.


As the pioneers moved further and further inland and started to settle in the remote farms the dogs were isolated and a lot of inbreeding took place, the result of which was the reappearance of the characteristics of the original Assirian dog. 

The hard and dry environment of Africa cultivated in the dogs the spirit of survival of the fitness and it was due to this that the hardiness of today?s boer-boel was intensified. Since there were no verterinaries surgeons or medicines available for the dogs, to a large extend the dogs had to look after themselves and develop resistance to most common diseases.


During the Great Trek in 1834, the boer-boel had most of the features that it has today and is clearly recognisable from old drawings. In the period after the trek on the distant farms, the boer-boel interbreed further and only the biggest and only the biggest and the strongest survived. His pioneer owners requested him to be a friend of the family, a worker, fighter and also provide protection. They could not afford to have a disobedient, moody, finicky and sickly dog. They had to rely on him to protect the family, work, kill and fight. This dog is the only dog in the world specially bred to guard, protect and be a watchdog.

At the turn of the century the characteristics of the old original dog were clearly visible and the dog was generally known as the ?boel?.



Information, Facts and Origins of the Boerboel Dog BreedThe Boerboel can claim its ancestry to the Molosser Dogs. The Romans believed that the Molosser type of dogs were obtained by crossing a dog and a lion.  The Boerboel is not a pure bred dog and has descended from the cross-breeding of Pit Bulls, Mastiffs and Rottweilers. These dogs were brought to South Africa by European settlers in the 1800's and cross breeding produced the Boerboel. The literal meaning of the Boerboel is taken from Dog of the Boers. The Boerboel has been classified as one of the Working Dog Group which we go on to describe in detail in the section at the bottom of this page. As there is not a specific breed standard Boerboel is not Registered by the AKC (American Kennel Club) and is therefore in the category of dogs termed Unrecognised & Rare Breeds. Name Facts and Dog Names: This dog's name is often referred to as the Boer Boel, the Boel and the Bole.

Description of the BoerBoel Dog Character and TemperamentWorking dogs, like the Boerboel, are medium to giant size and are strong, often independent, domineering and difficult to manage. This, together with the immense sizes of many of the breeds, make many of the working dogs unsuitable as a normal family pet or first time dog owners.  These dogs require firm control and must be properly trained. Formal obedience training should include a proper socialising program. Training need not be difficult as Working dog breeds are generally quick to learn and intelligent. Some of the working dog breeds are easier to handle such as the Newfoundland dog, the Portuguese Water Dog, the  Samoyed and the Saint Bernard.Description of the Boerboel Dog and Puppies - Coat and Colours informationThe Boerboel's coat is normally a shade of yellow, white, brindle, brown, & grey with or without white markings . The outer coat is normally coarse and straight - undercoat is soft and dense.

Dog Health information - potential health problems of the Boerboels

All owners of dogs and puppies are concerned about the health care of their pets and just as with humans dog health issues arise from time to time. Resolving dog health problems, including those of the Boerboel, can prove to be costly and it would be wise to consider the benefits of obtaining dog health insurance. Diseases in dogs may occur because of trauma, infection, immune system abnormalities, genetic factors, or degenerative conditions. Common health problems and questions occur in relation to the Bones, Joints, Muscles, Nerves, Ears, Eyes, Teeth and the Mouth. Other, more serious, issues can relate to the Digestive System, Heart & Respiratory Systems, Immune & Blood Systems, Reproduction and Urinary Systems. There are no common health problems attributed to the Boerboel.Please click the following link for additional information which we have provided via our:

Online Encyclopaedia of Common Dog Health Problems

This describes the most common canine health problems concisely but simply without using medical jargon. A section on Dog and Puppy Vaccinations is also included offering information on each of the diseases, symptoms and effects for which immunization vaccines are available. Not sure of the name of the dog or puppy illness? A Dog Symptom Sorter is also featured. The Online Encyclopaedia of Common Dog Health Problems should only be used as an informational guide and when and if any dog or puppies health problems occur it is essential to raise any questions you may have with a Dog Health care professional.

Information on Grooming and Care of the Boerboel Dog Breed

The Boerboel requires weekly care and grooming. All dog breeds require a certain amount of grooming and care is necessary to keep dogs and puppies looking at their best. Grooming consists of not only brushing out the coat and bathing but also giving attention to the eyes, teeth, ears, feet and nails. A regular routine also ensures that any potential health problems are identified as quickly as possible, especially important in puppies and older Boerboel dogs.

Life Expectancy information of the Boerboel Dog Breed

The life expectancy for this particular breed is 10 ? 12 years.

Age comparison between the Boerboel Dog Breed and a HumanAge comparisons between dogs and humans are always a matter of debate - we hope that the following information clarifies the situation. After the first year of life, a dog is equivalent to sixteen human years. After two years, they are equivalent to a 24 year old, at three years a 30 year old, and each year after, add 5 human years to determine a dog's age.

The Pictures reflect the Size of Adults - not Children and Puppies!

The pictures above allow for a useful comparison of sizes providing an accurate portrait of the size of an average Boerboel - essential information but unique to this site. It should also be noted that the pictures feature adults. The size of puppies are naturally considerably smaller and the full grown size of the animal can easily be forgotten when confronted with cute puppies! The slogan " A dog isn't just for Christmas - it's for life!" was necessitated by well meaning people buying puppies at the Christmas, unaware of the puppies growth rate. The pictures provided make it extremely clear exactly how small puppies will develop and whether it will suit the life and living conditions of the family.

Boerboel Dog - Puppies Info and Names


  • Budget - Purchasing, training, equipment, medication and feeding costs of the breed

  • Convenience and Grooming time e.g. long or short hair

  • Personal situation - time available and medical conditions such as allergies, asthma or back pain

  • Exercising requirements for the Boerboel breed

  • Living Conditions for the dog breed - suitability for puppies

  • Family - child suitability

  • Puppy and Dog Names - The Importance of choosing the right names

Working Dog Breed InformationDogs in the Working group, which include the Boerboel, were developed to perform a wide variety of tasks, such as herding, droving, pulling, hauling, herding, hunting, rescuing and guarding. The very nature of many of these tasks require a big, strong dog. These dogs have a long and close association with man and have provided invaluable help to their owners. The working dogs are generally large, intelligent, and protective of their masters. Working dogs have always been viewed as real assets to their owners and have worked with man replacing larger animals such as horses when none such animals were available. Advanced technology and machinery have negated some of the working requirements of these dogs but strength, courage and a fast reactions ensure that this partnership will continue long into the future.

Working Dog Breed Duties and Tasks

Characteristics and features of Working Dogs have been introduced and strengthened by breeding with animals who already demonstrated the desired traits. Breeding for appearance was only introduced in the 19th Century. Before this time dogs and puppies were bred to increase useful abilities and traits helpful for the duties they were intended for. Thus, the various Working breeds,  including the Boerboel, were introduced to help man according to his specific requirements such as:

  • Guarding premises

  • Herding or Droving various animals including cattle and reindeer

  • Pulling or hauling various vehicles such as carts and sleds

  • Hunting which could range from all kinds of smaller animals to big game including lions and tigers

  • Performing water and mountain rescues 

In this day and age not every Boerboel might be called to undertake these tasks, but nevertheless, they still harbour the skills and characteristics that made the original Boerboel breeding program successful. Many of the Working dogs group are still gainfully employed as:

  • Guard Dogs

  • Police dogs

  • Sled dogs

  • Rescue dogs

Examples of other Unrecognised Breeds

The Bandog belongs to the Working Group of dogs but is as it is not a pure blood as such is Unrecognised by the AKC. Other Unrecognised & Rare Breeds that have been featured on this site include the following:

Other Unrecognised & Rare Breeds that have been featured on this site include the following: Tibetan Mastiffs, Dogue de Bordeaux, Hovawarts, Patterdale Terriers, Alaskan Klee Kai, Bandogs, Boerboels, Chinese Foo Dog, Catahoula Leopards, New Guinea Singing Dog, Shikokus, Tosa Inus, Rat Terriers and Thai Ridgebacks. Name Facts and Dog Names: This dog's name is often referred to as the Boer Boel, the Boel and the Bole.



de Zuid-Afrikaanse Boerboel<?xml:namespace prefix = o ns = "urn:schemas-microsoft-com:office:office" />

De persoonlijkheid van de Zuid-Afrikaanse Boerboel. De Boerboel heeft een stabiel en rustig karakter gecombineerd met een sterk waakinstinct. Hij is een toegewijde en aanhankelijke metgezel die een sterke band ontwikkelt met zijn baasjes en hun kinderen zonder te zeer afhankelijk van hen te worden. Zijn territoriaal instinct, afstandelijkheid en wantrouwen naar vreemden gecombineerd met een zeer goede reukzin en gehoor maken

hem een uitstekende waakhond die bereid is zijn familie en huis desnoods met zijn leven te beschermen. De Boerboel is intelligent en leert makkelijk, maar heeft de behoefte aan afwisseling en nieuwe uitdagingen in de opvoeding. Door zijn zelfredzaamheid en aanpassingsvermogen heeft deze hond de harde omstandigheden van weleer overleefd. Dit maakt misschien dat de Boerboel niet een hond voor iedereen is.

Door zijn onafhankelijkheid en zelfstandig denken is het onontbeerlijk dat de eigenaar liefdevol, maar zeer consequent de baas is over de hond. De relatie tussen baas en Boerboel moet er een zijn van wederzijds respect en vertrouwen. Een hond die zijn eigenaar niet respecteert als zijn meerdere of hem niet vertrouwt zal zelf proberen de leiding in handen te nemen en zijn eigen weg gaan. Nu moet men niet denken dat de Boerboel een moeilijke hond is om op te voeden of mee om te gaan, juist integendeel. Hij is intelligent en zoekt nooit een conflict met zijn baasjes.

Om een sterke band te smeden met de boerboel volstaat het rechtvaardig met hem om te gaan en veel beloning en weinig straf te geven. Het enige dat men nodig heeft om een Boerboel op te voeden: veel liefde, oprechtheid en enig inzicht in de denkwereld van honden.

Als de gezinsleden een hechte band hebben gesmeed met hun Boerboel zullen zij ten alle tijden op hem kunnen rekenen. Hij zal hun beste vriend zijn. Hij zal aanvoelen wie een gast is en wie een indringer. Hij zal weten wanneer zij bang zijn of zich bedreigd voelen en hij zal met een grom duidelijk maken dat hij er is om hen te beschermen, altijd.

De Standaard van de Boerboel.

Het Algemeen Voorkomen.

De Boerboel is een grote, sterke, forse hond met krachtige spieren. Zijn bewegingen moeten vlug en lenig zijn. Zijn bouw moet forser, zwaarder en groter zijn dan de boxer, maar weer lager in de benen dan de Deense dog. Bij mannetjes moet de schofthoogte niet lager zijn dan 66 cm. en bij vrouwtjes niet minder dan 61 cm.

Het Karakter.

De Boerboel moet een goede geaardheid hebben, standvastig en intelligent zijn met een goed uitgebalanseerd karakter. Hij moet trouw zijn aan zijn baas, zelfs wanneer zijn leven op het spel staat. Hij moet van jongs af aan goede waakhond kwaliteiten bezitten en moet houden van alle gezinsleden, en speciaal de kinderen.

Het Hoofd:

Het hoofd moet groot en sterk zijn en recht tussen de oren.

De bovenkaak moet sterk en breed aan de achterkant zijn met een kleine versmalling naar voren.

De onderkaak moet breed aan de achterkant zijn met een kleine versmalling naar voren. En de onderkaak moet goed samenvallen met de bovenkaak en het liefst in een schaargebit.

De lippen behoren los en vlezig te zijn en de bovenlippen moeten niet overhangen. De lippen mogen ook niet grof of te dik zijn.

De neus moet zwart gepigmenteerd zijn en zeker niet leverkleurig.

De neus of de brug van de neus moet niet te lang zijn, zo'n 8-10 cm. Dit wordt gemeten van het puntje van de neus tot aan het middelpunt waar de ogen beginnen.

Het neusbeen moet recht zijn, met weinig tot geen omhooggaande lijn (zoals de boxer).

Het hoofd moet zeer zeker een "bole" hoofd zijn met een krachtige mond, die goed samenvalt met de symmetrie van het hoofd. Geen "teddybeer-look". Natuurlijk is het hoofd van het vrouwtje een stukje smaller en heeft een vrouwelijke uitstraling.


De Lichaamsbouw.


De nek moet stevig en gespierd zijn en in relatie staan tot het lichaam, met een los nekvel. Zijn nek moet in een rechte lijn zijn en goed tussen de schouderbladen aanhechten.

De rug moet eveneens sterk en recht zijn, een beetje gebogen over de lendewervels is toegestaan.

De borst moet breed, recht en gespierd zijn en het losse vel vanuit de nek moet tussen de voorpoten worden gespannen, waarbij het goed uitgerekt wordt om over de brede borst te passen.

De poten moeten krachtig, recht en in staat zijn om het lichaam te dragen met zijn welgevormde, stevige voeten.

Bij voorkeur de staart gecoupeerd.

De vacht behoort kort en zacht te zijn.

De oren moeten slap en gemiddeld groot zijn en goed in relatie tot het hoofd zijn.

De Kleur

Brindle, geel (leeuw), grijs, roodbruin, bruin. Witte tekeningen zijn toegestaan. Met of zonder zwart masker. We proberen het voor elkaar te krijgen om een 1-kleurige hond te fokken met geen of weinig witte tekeningen.

De Ogen

Lichtbruin, geelbruin en donkerbruin zijn toegestaan. Blauw of blauwgrijs is onacceptabel.