South African Boerboel and Bull Mastiffs
Historically South African Boerboel Breeders have used any dog that would do the job. and further enhace the farm dogs (boerboels) in their breeding programs. Many dog breeds have been used in boerboel breeding historyincluding the Hound Bulldogg Bull Terrier and Mastiff. resulting in a highly effective functional farm dog with a diverse genepool.
Bullmastiffs served as the game keepers night dog. They were used catch and hold to illegal hunters. The dogs were taught to tackle and hold the poacher without mauling and killing him. First created for large estates in England were poaching was frowned upon. The punishment when caught was death. Wealthy estate owners hired the gamekeepers to protect gameand watch over the estates.
The original bullmastiff was 40% bulldogg and %60 mastiff. The English Mastiff too big and slow lacked drive necessary to keep up with the crafty poacher. Bulldogg was too viscious and would tear up the poacher too bad often causing severe injury and death. What the game keeper needed was a big strong dog powerful enough to knock down a man and hold them without viscously mauling them or killing them. to keep up wiht poacher.So they crossed the two breeds out of need rather than to create a distinct look.People are often mistaken when they see a boerboel. They think that it is a Bullmastiff. But they look similar because of the common ancestory.
The South African Boerboel does have the influence of the Bullmastiff.
In some of the lines you can see the resemblance in others you will not. Bull mastiffs were the dog of choice in South Africa for guarding the diamond mines. At the time these dogs were fierce protectors and highly valued guradians. These dogs later fused with other breeds better suited for farm life and farming purposes. Boers would used any dog they thought could enhace their breed.The reason that it is important to mention the bullmastiff when talking about the boerboel is because of how heavily inluence the dog carries. The Bull mastiff is integral to the foundation of the boerboel breed. They are relatives and more similar than they are different.
The difference betweem the Boerboel and the Bullmastiff.
In South Africa the English Bullmastiff later bred with many other breeds including (Japanese Tosa English Bullterrier Bulldogg Bullmastiff English Mastiff African Cynomones and Africanis dog) and evolved into the ultimate protector, the modern boerboel.
Pure bred Bullmastiff's genes are locked and rarely does fresh dna enter the pool. The result is a less functional mastiff who is mainly bred as a pet for looks rather than for its ability to perform.
Jordan Pittman 216-244-2088