Starting a Real North American Boerboel Rescue?

Just a quick note on the state of Boerboel Rescue in North America:

Short version:

It is clear that most breeds have a rescue. The Boerboel needs one in North America. All of our North American breeders and “alphabet soup” named organizations that are out there need to step up here and — without overt interest in generating puppy customers — do the Right Thing. Now is as good a time as any.

In fact, I think it’s a GREAT time. There are lots of new faces, lots of positive energy, and no shortage of both demand for dogs and dogs needing homes.

Longer version:

I heard there were a couple Boerboel rescues that just unwound somehow due to unknown factors. With the recent interest in some of the cases near me, it strikes me that now is a good time, in this economy, to consider starting one up again — but with an eye to avoiding whatever knocked the old rescues off the track the last time. Almost every other breed has a rescue. The lack of one here is pretty embarrassing, frankly.

To be clear on my motives and weaknesses, I just want to help dogs. I do also have healthy, registered dogs, I am a registered breeder on paper, I had the desire and I have all the ways and means to add more dogs to the population but have never been able to “pull the trigger” with respect to getting a litter on the ground because … I just cannot get my head around all of the discarded Boerboels out there already (only some of whom live long enough to make it to the pages of my blog.) I may someday, to be clear, but … not yet.

I have been filling this tiny niche of this rescue void because there’s “demand” for it, but I don’t desire a monopoly (and to be fair to the others who have of course been busy doing heavy lifting via ad-hoc local rescue, I know you’re out there — I am just being a bit dramatic for effect 😉 ) and in fact I totally suck at the interpersonal, organizational side of the “rescue thing”. Thus it would really be wonderful if some of you stepped in at the organizational level and made this a priority. A few have already offered, and I strongly encourage you to go forward.

My opinion, though, is that — whatever happens — some general rules that will probably help long term success would be:

  1. The DOGS ALWAYS COME FIRST. If there’s any chance at rehab, try it. Look at people like Jenny at Barlee’s (recent Maverick rescue) as an example of someone who gives a dog a chance at least. It’s easy to place the easy dogs, it’s the hard ones we need a breed rescue for.
  2. Don’t run the thing with an unreasonable “liability bias” — You break rule #1 if you only worry about lawsuits. Structure it accordingly.
  3. Breeders need to take responsibility for their own dogs, where possible (that’s easy enough.)
  4. Breeders or registries must not turn the whole thing into a bun fight of “oh, well that’s one of Larry’s dogs and we all know they are to aggressive to be saved, unlike mine.”, or “well, that registry doesn’t temperament test, thus this is to be expected.” etc. It’s about the dogs, not marketing advantage. See rule #1. :)

Anyway, I will help wherever I can fit in, whether it’s just sticking my hand in the odd crate to see if it’s still there when I pull it out, or driving, or helping set up a website, or whatever works, but I think at this point in it’s life this community should be mature enough to set aside differences and run with this without much drama.

I have set up this post on my blog (you’re reading it!) and it’s comment section can take some of the dialog off this list, or if that feels too controlling (I don’t even want control, but I can see how everyone is a bit jaded and assumes everyone has a nefarious motive) we can setup some independent rescue Yahoo discussion group or whatever. I don’t care. I just want everyone to do what’s right for the dogs.



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7 thoughts on “Starting a Real North American Boerboel Rescue?

  1. Ron I’m in. I have some BB owners I am meeting with tomorrow for a play date and I will be discussing this with them as well.

    My experience is finance, operations and organizational development so that is where I think I can be of most help.

    • Well, the bad news is there’s not a huge turnout here publicly for help, however I’m not really surprised as a lot of people are burned out by the politics and potential mudslinging in the community.

      The good news is I have received a few private emails, as well as this post from Tony over at PAK Drift:

      So there are a few people interested still, it’s just the question as to how to move anything forward.

      Thanks again, and any other thoughts or comments, please feel free to add them!

    • That’s great to hear. :)

      If anything comes up I’ll keep you in mind. Maverick is still in need of a foster and/or forever home if you know anyone. I’ve met him and really love his personality. I can’t take him myself as I have a full house, but if I didn’t he’d be here.

      Take care,

  2. Hey Ron, ya I saw your posting, I didn’t realize we were both in that group.

    Anyway I came across a couple more in the Maryland pound…
    With the way new breeders are popping up I hope we don’t see allot more of these dogs come into the shelters and pounds.
    Seems like the Boers are getting more popular now with “urban cultures”….like the Pittbulls did..
    I could go off on a whole rant on that subject but I’ll behave myself LOL..


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