Boerboel, also known as South African Mastiff is native of South Africa. They were bred to guard and protect property, farm, also gold and mines. Boerboel is fully devoted to protecting the people and property they love. They are large and powerful dogs and is one of the biggest dog breeds in the world.

Boerboel is recognized by American Kennel Club as Working group in January 2015 and they rank 131 of 193.

Boerboel is a powerful looking dog with a broad and square head. Their body is muscular with a strong neck and shoulder. The color of eyes can be any shades of brown and the ears are V-shaped. Their coat is short that comes in brindle, brown, cream, red with a different marking. Boerboel is more agile and energetic than most of the Mastiff breeds.

Boerboel Puppies
Small Boerboel puppies sleeping.
Image Source: instagram– @noxterraboerboels

Temperament of Boerboel

Despite their huge size and powerful appearance, Boerboel has a very playful, friendly and affectionate temperament making a great family companion. They love their family and are very protective of them. As a guard dog, they have a high instinct to protect their family and their territory.

They form a strong bond with the entire family members and have a great affection towards them. Boerboel get well with other canine and non-canine pets well if they are raised together. However, it is not a good idea to bring a male dog in a family if your Boerboel is grown up.


Boerboel shows aggressive behavior towards unfamiliar people and animals. They are very distrustful of strangers which make them a great guard dogs devotedly protect the property and people.

Boerboel is very alert of the presence of wild animals or intruders in his territory. Therefore, if an unfamiliar visitor or some other pet is going to be present, you need to introduce them properly to your Boerboel, ensuring them that they are of no harm.

Activity Requirement

Boerboel needs exercises to keep them fit, so a big yard is great for them to move and do some exercise. The amount of muscle is more in Boerboel, so a regular exercise is necessary to keep them away from being fat. Participate them in obedience, agility, and other canine sports to keep their body fit and mind stimulated.

Boerboel Personality

Boerboel is a trustworthy and reliable companion as they are a fearless and confident dog. Fiercely protective of his family, he does not accept outer people coming in their territory without a proper introduction from his family. They see themselves as a leader and they don’t like other dogs being dominant.

Boerboel is very loyal towards his owner and other family members. They like the company of human and want to be with them most of the time. If they are left alone for a long period of time, they tend to be bored and destructive. So, leaving them all by themselves for a long time is not a great idea.


Training a Boerboel is a tough task to do as they see themselves as a leader and do not want others to be dominant. They cannot be trained or handled by a novice owner. One should be experienced to train Boerboel and make him listen to you.

Develop strong leadership and with confident and dominant behavior. As a guard dog, they could show aggression towards other pets and people which result might not end well. Therefore, they should be trained to stop whatever behavior they are showing on command.

Is Boerboel Child-Friendly?

Boerboel is extremely protective of children from the same house and is very friendly and affectionate towards them. They adore children and love their company. However, they can be not so friendly with the children they don’t know and might see them as a threat.

They should be socialized properly and any outer children coming at your house should be introduce properly.

What Makes Your Boerboel Aggressive?

Boerboel aggression depends on the thing going on in the surrounding. If they sense some threats from people or other animals, they become aggressive. They are very loving towards their family but are aware and distrustful of other people. If someone tries to harm their family, they will be aggressive and will cross any line to keep his family safe and danger free.

Boerboel barking at some animal

How Does Boerboel Behave Around Strangers?

Boerboel is very suspicious and wary of strangers. They don’t like unknown people crossing their territory and might try to defend their property by barking and sometimes even biting them if they sense a threat.

What Kind of Owner Should Get Boerboel?

Boerboel is not at all for a novice owner and an inexperienced owner. They are also not suitable for an apartment as they need big space to roam around. An experienced owner who is confident and can establish a firm leadership and consistency can get this dog.

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