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Hungarian Vizsla

Hungarian Vizsla

The Hungarian Vizsla, also known as the Magyar Vizsla, Hungarian Pointer or Smooth-Haired Vizsla come from the ancestors of the tough Magyar war dogs. They were bred to be incredibly fast, tough and resilient as they pillaged through Western Europe in the mid 800’s, eventually settling in Hungary. Hungarian Vizslas were used as hunting dogs for centuries and in World War I were used to deliver messages. Although they were invaluable service dogs, they were also cherished companions. 

In modern times, their impeccable sense of smell and trainability has landed them roles in drug detection and search and rescue, as well as continuing to be an enthusiastic agility and sport dog and beloved family member. 

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Hungarian Vizsla Facts and characteristics

Origin

Hungary  

Bred for

Gun dog – pointing and retrieving 

Size 

Medium; 54-64cm

Weight Range

20-30kg 

Colours

Shades of russet-gold with white patches on the chest and toes 

Life expectancy

12-14 years 

Coat

Short, shiny, no undercoat, sheds  

Temperament

Energetic, loyal, affectionate  

Exercise requirements

High 

Best suited for

Active households with time for plenty of play and exercise 

Apartment Friendly

Better suited in a home with a backyard 

Grooming

Hungarian Vizslas have a short, silky coat that does shed, but requires minimal grooming. Occasional brushing will help remove loose hairs and provide an opportunity to examine the skin which is susceptible to allergic skin disease. Infrequent bathing, approximately once a month is generally all that is required, unless they have been frolicking in the mud! Cleaning the ears with a suitable dog-friendly ear cleaner, especially after swimming helps keep the ear canals clean and dry, as the breed is also susceptible to ear infections. Otherwise, they need basic care including nail trims and flea and tick control year-round to prevent parasites. 

Personality 

Hungarian Vizslas famously approach life with incredible joy and verve! They relish the opportunity to run, frolic and play. As hunting and companion dogs throughout their history, they are used to life close to their humans. This generally means they are devoted family pets but also predisposes them to loneliness and boredom if left alone for long periods of time with inadequate entertainment. Their energy, inquisitive nature and intelligence may result in a rambunctious troublemaker if they are not properly trained and socialised. Brain games and early, consistent training will help the Vizsla become a well-mannered and happy family member.  

Vizslas will thrive in a household where they can remain in close contact with their family, as well as have plenty of exercise and mental stimulation. They make a great jogging companion, or agility dog. Apartment living is likely to cramp the Vizsla’s style and having suitable backyard to space for them to romp around in will be appreciated. Once they are ready for down time, they will gladly curl up indoors with their favourite people. 

Feeding

When choosing a food for your Vizsla, select a premium dog food appropriate to your dog’s life stage. Follow the recommended feeding guides on the food appropriate to your pets’ size. Make sure your dog always has a supply of fresh, clean water available. 

Common Hungarian Vizsla health concerns 

According to PetSure data from 2020, the five most common reasons for Hungarian Vizsla to require a vet visit (excluding for routine visits like vaccinations) were: 

Rank

Condition

Average cost for single treatment

(average pet insurance claim amount)

Highest cost for single treatment

(highest pet insurance claim seen for this condition)

1

Skin conditions, including allergic skin disease 

$213

$2,670

2

Tumours and cancers, including melanoma 

$547

$7,332

3

Gastrointestinal conditions, including Canine Haemorrhagic Gastroenteritis 

$346

$3,253 

4

Ear infections

$159

$1,366

5

Traumatic accidents, including wounds and broken toes  

$406

$6,054

* Disclaimer: Reimbursement for these claims would be subject to limits, such as annual benefit limits or sub-limits, benefit percentage, applicable waiting periods and any applicable excess. Cover is subject to the policy terms and conditions. You should consider the relevant Product Disclosure Statement or policy wording available from the relevant provider.

Most popular Hungarian Vizsla names (PetSure data, 2020)

  1. Chilli 
  2. Luna
  3. Lenny
  4. Lexi
  5. Ruby
  6. Honey
  7. Maple 
  8. Vinny
  9. Ziggy
  10. Harvey

Female 

  1. Chilli 
  2. Luna
  3. Lexi
  4. Ruby
  5. Honey 
  6. Maple
  7. Nala
  8. Olive
  9. Willow 
  10. Dolly 

Male 

  1. Lenny
  2. Vinnie
  3. Harvey
  4. Murphy
  5. Rusty
  6. Wally
  7. Ziggy
  8. Alfie
  9. Archie 
  10. Arlo 

Did you know? 

The Wirehaired Vizsla although similar in many ways is a separate breed from the Hungarian Vizsla.  

Hungarian Vizsl FAQs

Where can I get a Hungarian Vizsla?  

Although they are a pure breed of dog, breed specific rescues may have Hungarian Vizslas for adoption. It may also be possible to find a wonderful dog for your family at the local shelter or rescue organisation who is looking for a loving home. 

Do Hungarian Vizslas bark a lot?

Hungarian Vizsla’s will bark to alert you of activity around the house, such as someone at the door. Excessive barking may occur out of boredom or loneliness, so it is important that your pup has lots of exercise, entertainment, and company to keep their mind and body occupied. Vizslas are also known to be vocal and make all kinds of whines and noises for attention. 

Are Hungarian Vizslas easy to toilet train?

Every puppy is unique, and some will pick up toilet training quicker than others. Hungarian Vizslas are known to be very clever and trainable so most will pick up toilet training quickly. Start early, be consistent and patient and your Vizsla will get the hang of it. Check out our article – Tips to Calm Happy Toilet Training For your Puppy!

Are Hungarian Vizslas indoor or outdoor?

The optimal situation for a Hungarian Vizsla is access to indoors and outdoors. They’re an active breed, so a good romp around the yard will be appreciated, but they also love company so during their downtime will love to lay at your feet while you watch telly. 

Can you leave a Hungarian Vizsla home alone?

Hungarian Vizslas are sometimes called a Velcro dog because they love company, so long days at home may result in a lonely pup. With exercise, plenty of great chew toys and company, it may be possible to leave your Vizsla at home alone but if you are out all the time, a Hungarian Vizsla may not be the pup for you. 

How much should you exercise a Hungarian Vizsla?

At least 60 minutes of exercise a day is recommended. Running or biking is a great way to burn off energy with your Vizsla but games that challenge your Vizsla’s mind. 

Who is best suited for a Hungarian Vizsla? 

They are best suited to an energetic household with plenty of time for activities!

References 

  1. American Kennel Club , Hungarian Vizsla, accessed on 05/07/2021
  2. Australian National Kennel Council Ltd, Hungarian Vizsla, accessed on 05/07/2021
  3. Wikipedia, Vizsla, accessed on 21/07/2021

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Kylie Mitchell is a veterinarian with over 17 years experience in animal health and welfare, including in the veterinary and pet insurance industries

She has three rescue cats (Noah, Bei Bei and Meeka), four very old cockatiels and a pond-full of fish.

Kylie's pets

Noah
Noah
Bei Bei
Bei Bei
Meeka
Meeka