‘First ever Bots appraisal scores BIG’

1-diog2- Local breeders hope exercise will be annual event


The Gaborone Club in Village was the ideal setting for the first ever Boerboel appraisal in Botswana Saturday with Boerboel owners and lovers converging to attend a milestone event. 

Nestled in a quiet suburb called Village a stones throw from prison facilities and Public Relations Unit for the Botswana Police these big, imposing South African originated mastiff dogs are increasingly seen as a necessity for households increasingly concerned about burglaries and break ins, in a country renown for its low crime rate and its general intolerance to criminal activity.

The SABBS appraisal process undertaken over the weekend is the only internationally accredited and recognized assessment process undertaken by any local association or society. It is expected to enable Boerboel breeders to improve standards in a country where Government provides start-up capital to youth who wish to pursue economic opportunities as a dog breeders.

Johan Blomerus, Senior Appraiser for South African Boerboel Breeders Society(SABBS), observed "The quality of dogs was very good for a first appraisal in Botswana. It was well organized and I saw a lot of interest in Boerboels in Botswana."

He said, "I was very surprised by the quality of Boerboels. It will help to improve the quality of Boerboels in Botswana."

According to experts it is in the interests of breeders especially to enter the competitive arena, to enable them to measure the success or failure of dogs against a defined breed standard.

It is the general consensus of those in the know that breeding purely for the fun of it without measuring your success against a breed standard is not conducive to improvement of the breed. This observation was picked on by aspiring local breeders in small break away discussions after the event.

Local Boerboel breeder Frederick Maila, said "It was our first appraisal and it went well. The scoring was useful because it will help us to correct faults on our dogs."

He noted, "If my dog does not have a very good topline I will focus on puppies with very good topline. There was also information we learned about the importance of getting dog with right bite attributes."

Some breeders observed the costs of undertaking appraisals in South Africa was prohibitive because it often involved accommodation costs because it was not practical to appraise tired dogs which had undertaken a long journey and had not been sufficiently rested.

Boerboel Breeder Ernest Mmirwa Mosedame, said "It will help us as Batswana to choose puppies more carefully for breeding. We often get excited and think because a dog is big it is suitable for breeding but you realize during appraisals that a lot of things are considered like bite, movement and proportion."

He said, "I hope this appraisal will run as an annual event because it will help us grow as Batswana breeders. It was my first time to appraise and it would been difficult for me to cross border and appraise because it is expensive. You have to leave a day before event if you go to South Africa and have to incur costs of accommodation. If you travel and appraise the same day it might affect scores your dog will get because it is likely to be tired."

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