The Boerboel and Bullmastiff are two dog breeds that resemble one other. If you compare these two breeds, you might mistake them for one another. But if you look a little closer, you’ll discover many more distinctions than you initially imagined.

Breed Comparison

Bullmastiff Boerboel
Height 21– 27 inches Height 22 – 28 inches
Weight 45 – 59 kg Weight 50 – 80 kg
Temperament courageous, reliable, reserved, loyal, Temperament Confident, intelligent, assertive
Lifespan 8 – 10 years Lifespan 9 – 11 years
Coat A short, dense, single coat Coat Double coats
Coat color brindle, fawn, red Coat color red, fawn, brown, brindle, brown
Price $1000 – $2000 Price $1500 – $2000


Boerboel And Bullmastiff Breed History


boerboel and bullmastiff
Boerboel – photo by Betsy keating from Unsplash

Boerboels are a breed of guard dog that originated from South Africa.

Although the Boerboel is a rare breed in America, you might have met one of these puppies if you frequently travel to South Africa. They are among the more well-liked dog breeds in South Africa.

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The word “Boer” is Dutch for a farmer, and it was the Dutch who developed the formidable guard dogs known as Mastiff and Bull breeds that created the Boerboel. He was the dog of choice for farmers looking to keep lions and other predators away from their families and land.

This canine loves socializing with his family, so he is more than a fighting dog. This breed love kids.

He is also frequently chosen as a therapy dog due to his sweetness. The American Kennel Club (AKC) honored him in 2015. Owners often compare this dog to other breeds, such as Rottweilers, because of its inherent protective instincts.


boerboel and bullmastiff
bullmastiff – photo by crystal weed cannabis from Unsplash

The Bullmastiff is also a guardian dog, and it originates from the United Kingdom

Like the Boerboel, the Bullmastiff owners used them to guard the English aristocracy’s country estates and game preserves. The Bull and Mastiff-type dogs are the progenitors from which the Bullmastiff originates.

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The Bullmastiff is 60% Mastiff and 40% Bulldog. Bullmastiffs are brave enough to defend estates and apprehend intruders yet submissive to refrain from killing them so they can face justice.

Although he is from 19th-century England, he didn’t formally join the AKC until 1933. He is now the 51st most popular dog in America, significantly increasing his appeal to American households.

Boerboel And Bullmastiff Appearance

Although they may have a similar appearance, these breeds are very different!

You can tell by looking at their histories that both breeds originated through the mating of Mastiff- and Bull-type dogs.

And this explains why they resemble one another so much. But slight differences are visible to the skilled eye, and their size is the most noticeable. The larger of the two, the Boerboel, can weigh up to twice as much as a Bullmastiff.

The Bullmastiff frequently causes difficulties in the home by breaking numerous ornaments thanks to his long, thick tail. However, the Boerboel’s tail usually is long and docked at the third vertebrae.

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Compared to the Boerboel, the Bullmastiff has a flatter muzzle and more pronounced links resembling Bulls on his face. Both have a square-shaped skull, long, triangular, drop-down ears, and a large, meaty snout.

They both have similar coat colorings, with fawn and red being the most prevalent in both breeds. They both have the more uncommon choice of the brindle jacket and typically wear the black mask. Their double-layered coat feels smooth and sleek to the touch.

Boerboel And Bullmastiff Temperament

Their temperaments might resemble one another yet also be very dissimilar.

Bullmastiff and Boerboel’s personalities are relatively similar, with slight differences. They are both fiercely loyal to their families.

Neither breed is ideal for a first-time dog owner due to their character. Both dogs might develop aggressive tendencies if they aren’t properly socialized and trained from a young age.

This dog breed is less aggressive when defending its family and makes a great cuddler on the couch. The Bullmastiff is more laid-back than the Boerboel, who is constantly on guard. Also, they will defend their families just as well as one another.

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Thankfully, both types are peaceful at home and devoted to their owners. Both are drawn to kids because they are calm and protective of their group. Unexpectedly, the Boerboel shows a stronger affinity for youngsters and will approach them. The Bullmastiff, in contrast, is a sucker for anyone.

Boerboel And Bullmastiff Exercise

Boerboels are more active than Bullmastiffs.

The Bullmastiff requires about 45 minutes of exercise per day compared to the Boerboel’s 60 minutes. To release its deep-seated working energy, the Boerboel should exercise more vigorously and cognitively. The Bullmastiff is generally content with a stroll around the block.

They both need playtime throughout the day because they are intelligent, lively, and energetic, with the Boerboel needing it more than the other two breeds. Otherwise, they can focus on the legs of your favorite table if you don’t buy larger or more durable dog toys for larger dogs.

Boerboel And Bullmastiff Training

Both breeds are headstrong, so teaching them will take time.

These two require immediate, intensive training, and neither is appropriate for novice dog owners. It’s also a good idea to sign them up for puppy behaviour lessons as soon as possible.

Before they become the alpha dog in the house, you need to acquire a handle on their dominant personality. Don’t undervalue their power.

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But those who can handle their pets with firmness and fairness will discover an excellent relationship. The Boerboel is more independent than the two breeds, having grown up managing a ranch on his own.

The Bullmastiff might be a better choice unless you are incredibly experienced. Many people believe the Boerboel is too much dog to handle.

They must be socialized or view the neighbor’s cat as a lion or an intruder. The best training strategy is to provide positive reinforcement. The Boerboels will be whatever he is feeling that day, and the Bullmastiff’s preferred incentive will be edible delights.

Boerboel And Bullmastiff Health

Due to its size, the Bullmastiff has a marginally longer life expectancy than the Boerboel.

Both the Boerboel and the Bullmastiff have eye issues such as entropion, progressive retinal atrophy, conjunctivitis, and hip and elbow dysplasia.

The Bullmastiff should also undergo testing for various heart issues and thyroid irregularities. Even though Boerboels have fewer health issues, their increased weight unfortunately, shortens their and life expectancy.

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Compared to the Bullmastiff, which is from England and is known for its cold and wet climate, the Boerboel, which is from Africa, is better adapted to hotter temperatures.

The darker skin on his head and back shields the Boerboel from harmful UV rays, and Bullmastiffs don’t. The Bullmastiffs prefer cooler areas because of their flatter brachycephalic face, which is also essential to note.

Boerboel And Bullmastiff Nutrition

The Bullmastiff and Boerboel will both consume a significant amount of food.

The Bullmastiff will finish between three and four cups daily, while the Boerboel will eat about five to six cups daily. Their size, age, and energy level all play a role in this, and both will require premium kibble that will give them a well-balanced diet. They are both large-breed dogs.

You will therefore require a diet appropriate for their age. For both breeds, we would advise an adult diet with a boost in glucosamine and chondroitin before they reach their senior years.

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Don’t overfeed these because they both risk becoming obese. Please don’t add any additional weight to their joints; they already bear more than enough, raising their risk of having other health issues linked to their weight.

Boerboel And Bullmastiff Grooming

The Boerboel and Bullmastiff require similar grooming procedures.

Because the Boerboel and the Bullmastiff have comparable coats, they require the same maintenance level. Because of their short, glossy coats, they only require weekly brushing all year long. During the shedding season, brushing him twice a week will help you control his shedding and lessen the amount of hair that falls over your clothing.

To maintain them clean and free of oil and filth, bathe them once every 8 to 12 weeks. Spend money on a soft dog shampoo that won’t itch their skin. When you groom them, check their eyes because they both have vision problems. And take note of any adjustments that might require veterinarian care.


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