The history of the Boerboel in South Africa traces back to the dogs of the settlers who began arriving in the 1600's, particularly Jan Van Riebeeck who brought his "bullenbijter", a mastiff-type dog, with him. Over the centuries, the dog known as the "bole" evolved as a worker, guardian, and fighter, taking on the necessary roles of the isolated farms. The "bole" almost disappeared due to urbanization and in 1980's the South African Boerboel Breeders Association was formed to improve and refine the breed. Today, the South African Boerboel is a family guardian and watchdog.
The Boerboel is a large, strong, solid dog with a smooth, short coat. It reaches a height of 23-28" and a weight of 110-200 pounds. It is steady, loyal, and affectionate.