Breed Group: Sporting Group
Shoulder Height: 21-25 in.
Weight: 40-66 lb.
Life Span: 9 years
Colors: Golden, rust, red, yellow
- The Vizsla is a gun dog that is also known as the Hungarian Pointer
- It is one of the oldest European breeds, with cave etchings appearing in the Carpathian Basin from as early as the 10th Century
- The breed was introduced to the United States in 1950; hence, it was only recognized by the AKC in 1960
- The breed has survived numerous times against all sorts of different calamities including both World Wars, introduction of the English Pointer and German Shorthaired Pointer, and numerous civil wars that rocked the Balkans following the dissolution of the Soviet Union
- It is an ancestor to many breeds, including the Weimaraner
The Vizsla is possibly one of the oldest dog breeds in current existence, so it has a long and extraordinary history as a breed. All the struggles it has gone through has only made this ancient hunting dog more powerful and desirable as a result.
Many hunting dogs have a tendency towards aloofness and territorialism. The Vizsla is not one of those. It is an extremely amiable dog that is as popular with its owners as it is with strangers, though they do bark at the “invader” if they do not have proper training. They form very close bonds with everybody and crave attention almost constantly.
Be careful with training them, however. Their sweet temperaments can be easily betrayed if you have a heavy hand. Quiet authority must be employed in order to make them good dogs.
These dogs are fairly large and have a lot of energy, so you must be ready to take them exercising on a regular basis. They are also one of the few breeds that love to be in the water. Their short coat also means they are easy to groom.
The Vizsla is a hardy dog due to its hunting roots, but some considerations need to be addressed.
- They do not possess an undercoat like most dog breeds, so they cannot be left outside for extended periods of time.
- They are susceptible to a number of genetic illnesses that breeders are trying to weed out. Lymphoma and dwarfism are two of the most common genetic defects.
- Though a fairly large breed, the Vizsla does not suffer from hip dysplasia or arthritis.
- Their lack of an undercoat does make them susceptible to certain kinds of skin allergies.
- Gary Dell'Abate, producer of the Howard Stern Show, had a Vizsla named Murphy.
- Dana Perino of Fox News, who was the Press Secretary of the White House during the George W. Bush administration from 2007 to 2009, has owned two Vizslas so far.
- They are the national dog of Hungary.
Photo ©iStock.com/pick-uppath, ©iStock.com/anopedesignstock