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Vizsla Breed

Profile photo of Heather Venkat, DVM, MPH.By Heather Venkat, DVM, MPH, DACVPM

Looking for a cheerful and energetic companion?

Do you need pup who will happily go on runs with you?

Meet the Vizsla!

He hails all the way from Hungary.

Make sure to pronounce his name either “VEEZ-la” or “VEESH-la”!

The Vizsla is known as a well-rounded hunting dog.

This pooch will work hard to please you.

He will be gentle and loving to your children.

Recognizable by his red coat, the Vizsla has a low-maintenance beauty standard.

He is incredibly affectionate.

In fact, your Vizsla will follow you everywhere, sticking to you like glue!

This pup needs a substantial amount of exercise every day.

Apartment life isn’t ideal for the Vizsla.

He prefers having a lot of space to run around in.

This article will provide you with detailed information regarding the Vizsla breed.

So let’s get going!

Time to meet the versatile Vizsla!

 

Appearance

happy Vizsla dog enjoys winter

The Vizsla is one handsome dog.

He does his Hungarian heritage proud!

A purebred Vizsla only comes in a golden-rust color.

Other colors that a Vizsla can manifest include golden, red, and sandy yellow.

The breed sometimes has white markings, but the American Kennel Club has very detailed specifications about what can and cannot be considered the Breed Standard.

He has a proud bearing and is attentive to everything around him.

His coat is short and does not have an undercoat.

This medium dog is lean, sporting sleek muscle-tone and clean lines.

Typical size is 21-24 inches tall and 44-60 pounds.

Intent on everything you do, your Vizsla has a strong and intentional gaze.

His perky ears are primed to listen for your next command or the rustle of a squirrel in the underbrush.

This pooch is happiest when with his human.

Everyone will be complimenting you on your outdoor companion and his spiffing good looks!

 

Personality

The Vizsla is known for being an affectionate and energetic breed.

Originally developed as a versatile hunting dog, the Vizsla loves any kind of activity, especially if it is outdoors!

If you have children, a Vizsla will adore them.

He loves being social and meeting new people.

The Vizsla might not be the best choice for a guard dog;

He just wants to make friends with everyone!

But he will be a loyal companion for your kids.

The Vizsla might not be the dog for you if he is going to have to spend a lot of time alone.

If left alone a lot, he will become sad and mischievous.

Your Vizsla will make a mess to occupy himself and get attention.

This breed thrives with a lot of mental challenges.

Try to always have a new training project going on for your Vizsla to engage with.

A bored and neglected Vizsla is a destructive and naughty Vizsla.

And all the best activities will take place with a Vizsla’s favorite people: his family!

Social to a fault, this pup will love interacting with other people and dogs.

Just make sure to get him involved in socialization training at an early age to prevent any anxious or naughty behaviors down the line.

Always be aware that each dog has an individual personality, so your pup might need more exercise or cuddles than another within the same breed.

 

Exercise

Dog on the beach

The Vizsla could be aptly nicknamed ‘The Energizer Dog’!

Lots of physical activity is literally in his blood.

Originally bred as an all-around hunting dog, the Vizsla has seemingly endless amounts of energy.

The best home environment for this pup is one with a large backyard where he can run at full speed.

Vizslas also have good stamina running for long distances.

This makes this breed ideal for running or jogging with their human.

Remember, they are happiest when they get to be with you and do things with you!

There is one caveat that must be mentioned.

Do not take your Vizsla running for long distances before he is at least 18-24 months old.

Before that point your pup hasn’t matured enough to run long distances safely.

Games and obstacles will engage your Vizsla both mentally and physically.

He is incredibly intelligent.

This breed becomes bored and destructive if not given enough mental stimulation.

Continuing some sort of training as part of his daily exercise will help fulfill your Vizsla’s intellectual needs.

If you can, spend time in public socializing with other people and dogs;

Vizslas are very social and will love the interaction!

Most experts say that this breed should have at least 30-60 minutes of exercise a day.

If you cannot commit to this kind of lifestyle, the Vizsla might not be for you.

 

Grooming

This breed can be relatively low maintenance.

It all depends on the individual personality of your pup!

The Vizsla has a short coat that only sheds a medium amount.

Brushing your dog’s coat is only necessary about once a week.

Your Vizsla will only need bathing a few times a year.

Unless he happens to roll in something smelly!

Because of the Vizsla’s hunting heritage, you pup might occasionally find a lovely pile of disgustingness to roll in.

Make sure to check your pup’s nails regularly.

Keeping his nails the right length is a matter of both health and comfort.

Runs and walks on macadam road surfaces will help keep your pup’s nails at the proper length.

You should also keep an eye on your Vizsla’s ears.

Dirt, bugs, and buildup can cause irritation and infection.

Make it easy on yourself and make a point to clean out his ears whenever you brush your pup.

With just a little bit of time and love, your Vizsla will be his happiest, most handsome self!

Take the time to give your pup’s coat a little love and heads will turn when you walk down the street together!

 

Training

This breed wants to do whatever it can to please you!

The Vizsla has a long and renowned hunting history and is a naturally sociable dog.

Remember that this pup is a sensitive soul.

He doesn’t respond well to harsh or negative feedback in training.

Your Vizsla wants nothing more than to be with you and make you happy.

Praise, petting, and occasional treats are excellent motivators for this breed.

It is important to enroll your Vizsla in puppy training so that he can start learning to socialize young.

This will help inhibit any unhelpful behaviors as he gets older.

Establish early on who is the pack leader in your home.

This will give your pooch a sense of awareness and security that will enable him to be well-behaved.

Vizslas will become destructive and emotionally manipulative if bored or left alone for long periods of time.

The best way to make sure you and your Vizsla both stay happy is to provide plenty of exercise and mental stimulation.

Experts recommend that you continue to utilize different trainings for your pup throughout their lifetime.

Making this training a part of his everyday exercise will fulfill your pooch’s mental needs.

Remember that the most important thing to the Vizsla is spending time with his humans!

 

Health

The Vizsla is generally a very healthy dog.

He doesn’t have many expected health problems.

This makes the Vizsla a popular option for many people.

There are a few potential health issues that might pop up.

These include hypothyroidism, epilepsy, and hip dysplasia.

Another thing to be aware of is the possibility of cancer.

Many breeds have the possibility of cancer, and Vizslas are no different.

The most effective step you can take is to ask the breeder for a medical history before adopting a puppy.

Any breeder worth their salt will happily provide official documentation regarding potential health issues.

This will include any hereditary problems your puppy might have inherited.

Keep an eye out for seasonal allergies or hip dysplasia.

Be proactive and make sure your Vizsla has regular check-ups with your local veterinarian.

This breed has a healthy weight 44-60 pounds.

Females tend to be smaller than males.

Since the Vizsla is an active dog, they generally don’t have weight issues unless they are fed too much.

Feed your pup an appropriate amount for his age and activity level to maintain a healthy weight.

As always, being aware of potential health-risks and being proactive is key.

Your Vizsla has a typical lifespan of 12-14 years.

Give your Vizsla his best life and take care of his health.

 

History

dog in his bed

This dashing breed has a long and noble history.

The Vizsla can trace his origins all the way back to the mid-800’s.

Companions to the fierce Magyars, these dogs followed their masters as they fled the Russian steppe and pillaged through Europe.

The Magyars were a horse warrior culture.

The predecessors of the modern Vizsla were bred to be able to keep pace with the galloping horses of the Magyar warlords.

The Magyar conquerors eventually settled in what is now modern Hungary.

The sleek red dogs that had followed their masters into battle were now bred to emphasize their hunting prowess.

The skills of pointing and retrieving were emphasized in breeding, leading to the Vizsla being nicknamed ‘The Hungarian Pointer’.

Depictions of the Vizsla can be found in ancient etchings and manuscripts.

As the breed developed, it spread throughout Europe.

During World War I, these hardworking pups were used as messenger dogs.

The Vizsla almost went extinct through the general devastation of the two World Wars.

However, Vizsla enthusiasts were able to bring them back through careful breeding.

Now this beautiful and dedicated breed is among the most treasured and beloved dog breeds in the world.

 

Where Can I Find Vizsla Puppies?

As always, it is important to only purchase Vizsla puppies from a verified and reputable breeder.

A reliable breeder will be happy to provide paperwork regarding your puppy’s heritage, health history, and personality quirks.

Avoid puppy mills and internet scams!

Only purchase a puppy from a safe and ethical breeder.

You must be fully informed before making the commitment to a puppy.

There may be underlying health or personality issues that you are not made aware of.

Take the time to ask questions and request the proper paperwork for review.

You want to know that your puppy has a solid breeding background and is completely healthy.

Get started with our list of breeders here.

Our breeders are all thoroughly vetted to ensure you will not fall prey to a puppy mill.

Look at our puppies for sale today!

 

FAQ

Q: Are Vizslas a good fit for apartment life?

A: No. A Vizsla requires a lot of room to run around. If you don’t have a large yard for your pup to run around in, the Vizsla might not be for you.

Q: How do I pick the best puppy from a Vizsla litter?

A: Ask your breeder questions about each puppy’s health and personality. Pick the one that suits your lifestyle!

Q: Can I leave my Vizsla alone for long periods of time?

A: No. Vizslas adore their humans and want nothing more than to be with you. If left alone, they can become destructive.

Q: Are Vizslas easy to train?

A: It depends. If you have experience training dogs, you will be fine. If you are new to puppy-parenting, you might want to pick another breed.

Q: Can I let my Vizsla off his leash in public?

A: That depends on where you are, who else is there, what kind of training your pup has, and his personality. It is always safer to keep your pup leashed just in case.

 

In Closing

The hardworking Vizsla is not only a looker, but a gentleman as well.

He will be loyal and loving to his family.

You will be hard-pressed to find a more devoted dog.

Descended from dogs owned by raiding Magyars of the 9th century, the Vizsla will be a lively and intelligent addition to your family.

Thank you for learning about this beautiful breed with me!

Until next time!
-Heather

Dr. Heather Venkats Signature

References

American Kennel Club. (2021, 11 9). Vizsla. Retrieved from American Kennel Club: https://www.akc.org/dog-breeds/vizsla/

Daily Paws. (2021, 11 9). Vizsla. Retrieved from Daily Paws: https://www.dailypaws.com/dogs-puppies/dog-breeds/vizsla

Dog Time. (2021, 11 9). Vizsla. Retrieved from Dog Time: https://dogtime.com/dog-breeds/vizsla#/slide/1

Hill’s Pet. (2021, 11 9). Vizsla Breed Information. Retrieved from Hill’s Pet: https://www.hillspet.com/dog-care/dog-breeds/vizsla

Hungarian Vizsla Club. (2021, 11 9). Frequently Asked Questions. Retrieved from Hungarian Vizsla Club: https://www.hungarianvizslaclub.org.uk/faq-owning/

Vetstreet. (2021, 11 9). Vizsla. Retrieved from Vetstreet: http://www.vetstreet.com/dogs/vizsla#overview

Your Pure Bred Puppy. (2021, 11 9). Vizsla. Retrieved from Your Pure Bred Puppy: https://www.yourpurebredpuppy.com/faq/vizslas.html

Profile photo of the author Heather Venkat, DVM, MPH.Dr. Heather Venkat has been a veterinarian since 2013, working in companion animal medicine with dogs and cats, as well as veterinary public health. Her passion is in prevention, One Health, and strengthening the human-animal bond. A bonafide animal-lover, she competes in dog sports and currently shares her home with a border collie mix named Luna, three cats, and two leopard geckos.

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