Black Russian Terrier vs Boerboel - Breed Comparison

Black Russian Terrier is originated from Russia but Boerboel is originated from South Africa. Black Russian Terrier may grow 6 cm / 3 inches higher than Boerboel. Black Russian Terrier may weigh 30 kg / 66 pounds lesser than Boerboel. Both Black Russian Terrier and Boerboel has almost same life span. Both Black Russian Terrier and Boerboel has almost same litter size. Black Russian Terrier requires High maintenance. But Boerboel requires Low maintenance

Basic Information

Group:
Working dog
Working dog
Origin:
Russia
South Africa
Height Male:
72 - 76 cm
28 - 30 inches
64 - 70 cm
25 - 28 inches
Height Female:
68 - 72 cm
26 - 29 inches
59 - 65 cm
23 - 26 inches
Weight Male:
50 - 60 kg
110 - 133 pounds
70 - 90 kg
154 - 199 pounds
Weight Female:
40 - 50 kg
88 - 111 pounds
68 - 90 kg
149 - 199 pounds
Life Span:
9 - 14 Years
10 - 12 Years
Litter Size:
6 - 12
5 - 10
Size:
Large dog
Large dog
Other Names:
BRT Russian Black Terrier • Russkiy Tchiorny Terrier • Chornyi • Terrier Noir Russe • Russian Bear Schnauzer • Black Terrier • Tchiorny Terrier
South African Boerboel, African Boerboel, South African Mastiff, African Mastiff
Colors Available:
black only
Fawn, Red, Brown, Brindle
Coat:
Rough and thick, slightly waved
Short and dense
Shedding:
Minimal
Minimal, Constant
Temperament:
Alert, Courageous, Energetic, Independent, Intelligent, Loving, Loyal, Protective, Responsive, Stubborn, Territorial
Affectionate, Aggressive, Alert, Cheerful, Courageous, Curious, Energetic, Friendly, Independent, Intelligent, Lively, Loving, Loyal, Outgoing, Playful, Protective, Responsive, Social, Territorial
Grooming:
High maintenance
Low maintenance
Trainability:
Easy
Easy
Hypoallergenic:
No
No
Kids Friendly:
Yes
Yes
New Owners Friendly:
No
No

History

During the cold war, the Soviet Union developed the Black Russian Terrier as a working military dog. During the early 1950’s, the Red Star Kennel developed this breed and in 2004 by the American Kennel Club. The Black Russian Terrier is not really a terrier at all, but a mid-sized working dog used for hunting and guarding or as a pet. The Red Star Kennel is thought to have developed the BRT using a wide variety of breeds – as many as seventeen – including breeds like the Newfoundland, the Rottweiler, the Caucasian Shepard Dog and a Giant Shepard and an Airedale. So, you can see the wide variety and several more breeds were added. The Red Star Kennel in Moscow was owned by the state and they developed the BRT for specific working conditions and not for appearance. They did not really care how it looked except that it had to be black. In 1957 the state allowed a few puppies to be sold to non-military breeders. These breeders began to breed the Black Russian Terrier for appearance as well as function.

As these breeders worked with the dogs, they spread the breed throughout Russia and into Finland, Poland, Hungary, Germany, Czechoslovakia and Germany. From there they spread to Australia, Canada and the United States. The breed standard was developed in 1958 and by 1996 an updated version of the standard was developed to reflect the dog we see today. In 1996 the United Kingdom also got their first introduction to the breed. They are still rare outside of Russian or previous Soviet Union states.

The name ‘Boerboel’ is derived from an Afrikaans/Dutch word, and the large Boerboel dog from South Africa has been specifically bred to be a farmer’s dog. Bred also to be a strong guard dog, the Boerboel is a mix of different African and European breeds, which in all likelihood, will include the Bullmastiff, the Rhodesian Ridgeback and the Bulldog. These dogs were used to hunt baboon and leopard.

There is some information that suggests that the Boerboel was brought to South Africa by Jan van Riebeeck in 1652. Other information suggest that the dog is a descendant of the old Boer Hund, a powerful animal which was invaluable to the farmer.

In was in January 2010, that the American Boerboel Club was elected as the AKC’s Parent Club. The Boerboel was accepted into the Miscellaneous Class in the Working dog group.

Description

A little larger than a mid-sized dog, the Black Russian Terrier is strong, powerful, stable and alert. His head is block shaped and has a broad skull. The muzzle is square with a beard and mustache. A black, large nose and full black lips are matched with powerful and large jaws. He has a scissor bite and his ears should be triangles with rounded apexes. They have very large paws that are bear-like in appearance with thick black pads. They are also covered with hair. Their legs are muscular, powerful and strong. They have a cropped tail.

Looks

The Boerboel is a big, strong dog with powerful muscles. His height is between 61 – 66cm. He is similar looking to the Boxer dog, just heavier and bigger. The head of the dog is broad and big and the short, smooth coat can be of various shades, with breeders trying to achieve a single color of light tan and with no white. Their coats can also be red, different shades of brown and brindle.

The dog has a black facial mask and the eyes are brown with the ears being of medium length and floppy. The Boerboel’s tail has always been docked, but today breeders are keeping the tail long. Many Boerboel lovers object to this, saying it detracts from the distinctive look of the Boerboel.

Temperament

The Boerboel can be a wonderfully loyal and loving pet to their owners. They are territorial dogs and suspicious of strangers. This is a dog where it is imperative that they receive training and socialization as a puppy. They have leanings towards being aggressive so they wouldn’t be recommended to first time dog owners, unless of course the first time owners are firm and strong.

Boerboels raised the right way can be gentle giants. They often get bad publicity as regards to aggression, but this is because of they way they have been raised. Boerboels have been bred to be tough and fearless and they make excellent watchdogs. When raised and trained correctly, they make awesome, devoted companions, even around children and other pets.

Health Problems

This is a healthy breed who faces some of the same issues other large dogs face such as dysplasia in the elbows and hips. Then they also face their own hereditary diseases such as Juvenile laryngeal paralysis, hyperuricosuria and polyneuropathy. They are also susceptible to heart disease, eye diseases, allergies, Panosteitis and hypertropic osteodystrophy. Let’s look at the major hereditary disease that are not so common.

Juvenile Laryngeal Paralysis

This occurs when the larynx arytenoid cartilages stop working and don’t operate so then the adjoining muscles don’t work either and the dog cannot swallow without the possible damage to the airway and the cannot breathe properly during exercise or while panting.

Hyperuricosuria

This is a condition that can occur in people and animals. This condition can lead to kidney or bladder stones as there is too much uric acid in their urine.

Polyneuropathy

Like any form of neuropathy, in this disease many different nerves are damaged, and this can cause weak reflexes and tremors. There are effective treatments however.

Many health problems experienced with any dog are found in the way dogs are fed, the way they are exercised and the way they are attended to when they are ill. Boerboels are healthy dogs and suffer fewer health defects than most similar breeds. The average life expectancy of a Boerboel is about 10 to 12 years. There are one or two health issues you’ll want to watch out for with your Boerboel.

Hip dysplasia

This aliment is typically found in large breed dogs. It’s a problem caused by a malformation of the hip joint. Over time hip dysplasia causes discomfort, pain and even arthritis and lameness. It is genetically inherited, with its severity being influenced by environmental factors. There are treatments available to alleviate the symptoms and make the dog more comfortable.

Obesity

The Boerboel has plenty of muscle mass, and because he is such a large dog with a big appetite, he can lean towards obesity. Plenty of activities will be imperative to maintain muscle mass and ward off obesity. Over-eating suppresses the immune system, so over-feeding your dog simply contributes to ill health.

Caring The Pet

Feeding

This is a large, working dog that needs healthy nutrition. Feed once or twice a day but do not overfeed. Don’t let your Black Russian Terrier get overweight. Proper nutrition for puppies is critical given the nutrionally based diseases discussed below.

Health issues

  1. Hypertrophic osteodystrophy (HOD) – Watch out for this in your puppy. Like other large, puppies that grow fast the Black Russian Terrier is susceptible to this bone disease.
  2. Panosteitis (Wandering Lameness) – Again an issue for puppies of larger breeds as a nutritional issue causes an abrupt lameness at 6-8 months of age.
  3. Heart Disease – Cardiomyopathy, Mitral Valve Dysplasia and Aortic Stenosis
  4. Eye Diseases – Conjunctivitis, entropion and ectropion.
  5. Allergies – Food, contact and inhalant. Hot spots and fungal infections of the beard and ears.

Exercise and games

This is a high energy dog that needs to work. He doesn’t just want to work, he needs to work. So, find him a job and one that includes a lot of exercise. He needs consistent and firm training but will respond well and excel in Obedience Trials. They are good at Schutzhund and agility. They need plenty of exercise and will be unhappy and destructive without enough and a job. He needs to burn off that energy.

Grooming

Boerboels are a robust breed and their short hair doesn’t shed heavily. Your Boerbul will require a thorough brushing twice a week to remove loose hair and to keep the coat shiny and healthy.

Boerboels, just like any other dog, should have their teeth brushed regularly to prevent tartar and plaque build-up. Left unattended, your pet can battle with tooth decay and gum disease.

Feeding

Your Boerboel puppy will need ‘large breed puppy’ dog food. Speak to your veterinarian about wet- or dry kibble choices. An adult Boerboel will certainly need raw meat in his diet. When you do research, you find that the best Boerboel breeders are advocates for raw feeding. Home made food with rice, vegetables and meat as well as the best quality commercially manufactured dog foods for large breeds are excellent choices but raw meat is imperative as part of every dog’s diet.

Characteristics

The Black Russian Terrier is a working dog and he is confident, calm, self-assured and confident. He is responsive and intelligent, protective and fearless, loyal and aloof. He is not welcoming to strangers. If socialized well, he is enough of an independent thinker to be able to decide on his own who or what poses a threat to his family and what doesn’t. They get bored quickly because they are so smart. Keep him stimulated. These are strong, athletic dogs who will love to run with you, jog along side your bike, hike the mountain or just walk with you. Whatever your form of exercise is, the Black Russian Terrier can adapt to it. They also have a strong prey drive so don’t trust them with animals they do not know. They are ok with cats and dogs that they grow up with. They love to play with kids but be careful they don’t unintentionally knock the little ones down.

The Black Russian Terrier matures later than other dogs. Treat the puppy the way you want the adult dog to be. If you don’t want a large dog on your bed don’t let the puppy sleep on the bed. He will soon be a large, powerful and strong dog with a mind of his own and you will not be able to keep him off the bed.

A well trained, socialized Boerboel makes a splendid pet. This is one breed known to have excellent guard- and watch dog characteristics. Boerboels are known for being protective when necessary. When not on guard, they make wonderful pets. He’ll need plenty of exercise, but he loves to also spend time indoors with his human family.

This a a bold, fearless dog who becomes devoted to his family. With the right training he is obedient and affectionate and knows how to behave appropriately indoors- and outdoors. For such a big dog, the African Boeboel’s temperament can be surprisingly gentle and affectionate around the family that he loves.

Comparison with other breeds

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