This is the S.A.B.T. standard for the boerboel. All of our dogs are registered with this organization, which is the founding registry for the boerboel in its native country, South Africa. NOTE: Piebald coloring is now accepted by SABT with some pattern requirements.
STANDARD FOR THE BREED
The Boerboel is a big, strong and intelligent workers dog which was bred in Africa since the seventeenth century. Various mastiff type dogs from Europe as well as big dogs from Africa contributed to the development of the breed. A typical Boerboel's characteristics are very similar to that of the Assyrian dogs of the period up to 700 BC.
1. GENERAL APPEARANCE
The Boerboel is a big strong dog, well balanced, with good muscle development and buoyant in movement. The dog should be impressive, and imposing. Male dogs appear noticeably masculine and bitches feminine.
The Boerboel is a perfectly balanced dog - all parts of the body should be in proportion.
3. TEMPERAMENT AND CHARACTERISTICS
The Boerboel is reliable, obedient and intelligent, with a strong watch-dog instinct. It is self-assured and fearless.
4. THE HEAD
The head is the most important feature of the Boerboel, as it represents its total character. The head is short, broad, deep, square and muscular with well filled cheeks. The part between the eyes must be well filled.
5. TOP-LINE OF THE HEAD/OCCIPUT
The top of the head is broad and flat, with prominent muscle development.
The face should blend symmetrically with the head, and can be with or without a black mask.
The stop should be visible, but not prominent.
The muzzle is black with large nostrils that are widely spaced.
6.3 NASAL BONE
The nasal bone is straight and parallel to the top-line of the head. It is deep, broad and it tapers slightly to the front. The nasal bone should be 8-10cm long.
The upper lip is loose and fleshly, and should not hang lower than the lower jaw. The upper lip (beneath the muzzle) should cover the lower lip.
The jaws (mandibles) are strong, deep and broad, and narrows slightly to the front.
Teeth should be white, well developed, correctly spaced, a complete set (42 teeth), and should have a scissors bite .
The colour of the eyes can be any shade of brown, but darker than the pelt. Eyes Should be horizontally set. It should be broad-spaced with firm, well pigmented Eye lids.
The ears should be of medium size, v-shaped and should be in proportion to the Head. They are set fairly high and wide against the head. When the dog is Interested, the ears should form a straight line with the top of the head.
The neck shows a noticeable muscle curve, and is attached high at the shoulder.
The neck is of medium length and in proportion to the rest of the dog.
The neck is quite strong and muscular, firmly attached to the head and gradually broadens up to the point where it is attached to the shoulder. The neck, head and shoulder should from a unit.
7.4 THE SKIN OF THE NECK
The skin of the neck is loose under the throat and becomes taut between the front legs.
The body narrows slightly towards the loin .
The top line should be straight.
The back is straight, broad and in proportion, with prominent back muscles and a short loin.
The rump is broad and strong with good muscle development.
The chest is muscular and strong. The chest should be broad and deeply set between the forelegs, with well-attached and curved ribs. The rib cage should be in proportion to the chest.
The tail is attached high to the body. It should be straight and preferably short (three joints). Long tails are acceptable.
The forequarter is strong, muscular and in proportion to the rest of the dog.
The withers should be well attached, correctly angulated and with good muscle development.
The upper arm should have good muscle development.
The front legs should be thick, strong, muscular and should stand perfectly vertical .
The front pasterns are short, strong and a vertical extension of the front legs and pastern joints.
The front paws are big well padded and rounded and with strong dark and curved toenails. The paws should point straight forward.
The hindquarter should be strong, firm and in proportion to the rest of the dog, with the ability for effective propulsion.
The upper thighs are broad, deep, well developed with prominent muscles.
The second thighs should be well developed with prominent muscles.
The knees are strong, firm and correctly angulated.
The hock joints are firm with correct curving .
The hocks are relatively short, strong and thick. The hocks are parallel. (Dewclaws should not be present).
The hind paws are slight smaller than the front paws. They should be well padded, rounded and should point straightforward. The nails are strong dark and curved.
Movement should be easy, smoothly powerful, by means of good propulsion of the hindquarter and parallel movement of the legs. In movement, a straight top- line should be maintained.
The skin is thick, loose, well pigmented with moderate wrinkles.
13.1 The pelt is short, sleek and dense.
13.2 Recognized colours are cream white, pale tawny, reddish brown, brown and all shades of brindle.
14.1 MALE DOGS
The ideal height for a male dog is 66cm (25 inches). It can, however, be a minimum height of 60cm and with no maximum height; as long as it is in good balance.
The ideal height for a bitch is 61cm (24inch). It can vary between 55 and 69cm.
15. GENERAL HEALTH
The Boerboel enjoys exceptional health, due to natural selection.
The Boerboel is well pigmented, especially on the lips, paws, toenails and genitals.
17.1 A dog which is too small.
17.2 A dog which is too big.
17.3 An overly aggressive dog.
17.4 A head which is too small and nondescript.
17.5 A liver coloured muzzle.
17.6 An underbite of more than 1cm.
17.7 A noticeable overbite.
17.8 A narrow mouth.
17.9 A long mouth.
17.10 A sharp mouth.
17.11 Blue eyes.
17.12 Erect ears.
17.13 A narrow chest.
17.14 Bandy legs.
17.15 A hollow back.
17.16 Cow hocks.
17.17 Sickle hocks.
17.18 Straight hocks.
17.19 Clumsy and unbalanced movement.
17.20 A Piebald dog without sufficient pigmentation.
17.21 A Piebald dog without any of the five acceptable colours around both eyes and on both ears.