Description: The Vizsla is a medium sized dog. This is a more lightly built dog than the Redbone Coonhound with which it is sometimes mistaken. The Vizsla dog has a shoulder height of 22 to 26 inches. The bitch will be 2 inches less. The weight of this dog is 40 to 60 pounds depending on sex. The coat of the Vizsla is a rusty reddish color. The tail of the Vizsla is generally docked to about two thirds of its original length. The Vizsla will generally live for 12 to 15 years. It is also known as the Hungarian Pointer, the Hungarian Short-Haired Pointing Dog, and Rovidszoru Magyar Vizsla.
History: Long, long ago Magyar tribes arrived in what is now Hungary with their hunting dog, the forerunner of the Vizsla. The oldest pictorial reference to the Vizsla is an old stone etching showing the dog with its owner, who also has a falcon for hunting. The Vizsla was first mentioned in writing in 1357. As the aristocracy developed a fondness for this dog, it was also bred in with the Transylvanian Hound and the extinct Turkish Yellow Dog. Down to only about a dozen dogs after World War II, the Vizsla made a comeback thanks to the efforts of dedicated breeders.
Temperament: The Vizsla is very gentle around the family. It is also a dog that has a very high energy level that needs to be addressed every day. This dog does best with children if it has been given enough exercise, otherwise it might be too excitable for young children. This is a working dog and thrives on training and the chance to hunt or perform at agility. Not being given enough exercise can be very detrimental to this dog's mental and physical health. The Vizsla can be socialized to get along with other dogs. Unfortunately, the Vizsla can probably never be trusted with small household pets.
Health Issues: Despite the restricted gene pool from which this dog made a comeback, the Vizsla is surprisingly free of most genetic disorders. This dog can suffer from hip dysplasia and food allergies, however.
Grooming: The grooming requirements of the Vizsla are minimal. The dog should be brushed once a week to keep the coat free of dead hairs and to distribute the natural oils. This dog does not often need a bath, but can be given a dry shampoo instead. As with all dogs with floppy ears, the ears of the Vizsla should be checked regularly to make sure they are clean and dry.
Living Conditions: The Vizsla will be perfectly happy in the house with its human family, as it craves attention. The Vizsla will not mind being able to sleep on its owner's bed, if allowed. This dog is not at its best in an apartment, however, it is quite active inside and with no easy outlet for its energy, it can become highly strung and destructive. Regardless of where it lives, the Vizsla must be given a great deal of exercise every day. It will love a walk of several miles and should have a chance to run off the leash occasionally.
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