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12 Incredible Vizsla Facts (Breed Explained & FAQs)

Kathryn Copeland

By Kathryn Copeland

vizsla lying on grass

If you haven’t heard about the gorgeous Vizsla, we’re here to rectify that. These sleek and high-energy dogs can make great companions for the right home.

If you’ve been considering adding this breed to your family, you’re probably trying to learn everything about them, which is an excellent idea!

We did all the research for you and have 12 fascinating facts all about the Vizsla.

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The 12 Amazing Vizsla Facts

1. High Energy Galore

The Vizsla is exceptionally high energy! These dogs generally need a minimum of 1 to 2 hours of intensive exercise every day.

So, this doesn’t mean just a long walk and throwing a frisbee around for a bit — Vizslas need plenty of off-leash running time.

vizsla running
Photo Credit: Ivanova N, Shutterstock

2. A Long History

The history of this breed technically goes back over 1,000 years. The ancestors of the Vizsla are thought to have been the hunting dogs of the Magyars, who settled in Hungary sometime around the end of the 9th century.

They were bred to be exceptionally fast and well-rounded hunting dogs that eventually became the Vizsla that we know today by the mid to late 1800s. They made their way to American shores in 1925 and were recognized by the AKC 5 years later.


3. Vizslas = Velcro

Vizslas form powerful bonds with their humans and have been often called “Velcro dogs” because they tend to follow their people everywhere. This also means they are prone to separation anxiety.

These dogs do best with owners who aren’t away frequently and for long periods of time.

Vizsla-puppy
Photo Credit: henriethaan, Pixabay

4. Bred for Hunting

The Vizsla is an exceptional hunting dog! They were bred to be fast and acted as pointers and retrievers. Throughout history, the Magyar and eventually, Hungarian warlords and nobility worked on the breed until they became the ultimate hunting dogs.


5. Almost Didn’t Exist

In the 1800s, the Vizsla almost went extinct, with records showing only about a dozen Vizslas in Hungary. The numbers were built up, but they nearly went extinct again after World War II.

Fortunately, their numbers were brought back once more, and now there are plenty of Vizslas. They aren’t the most popular breed, but as of 2023, they rank 32 out of 284 popular breeds.

Vizsla
Photo Credit: TMArt, Shutterstock

6. Third-Fastest Dog

The Vizsla is one of the three fastest dogs in the world. The Greyhound is the fastest, with speeds of 45 miles per hour, followed by the Saluki at 42 miles per hour. The Vizsla clocks in at 40 miles per hour.

When you look at the bodies of the fastest dogs, they are quite tall and lean, but the Vizsla’s body isn’t quite the same, so their speed is a testament to their breeding and enthusiasm.


7. Only One Color

Vizslas are all some form of golden rust in color with the occasional white markings. They also have red noses and light brown eyes that blend in with their coat color. This makes it easy for them to blend in with their surroundings when hunting.

Vizsla lying on the ground looking up
Photo Credit: Ferenc Novák, Pixabay

8. Job Dogs

Other than hunting, Vizslas are accomplished as sniffer dogs at airports with the Transportation Security Administration. They also work as search-and-rescue dogs and were used after 9/11 at Ground Zero.


9. Webbed Paws

Having webbed feet makes them exceptional swimmers, but they lack an undercoat, so they won’t have insulation in cold water. So, only let your Vizsla swim in warm water.

HEP_Webbed feet in dogs
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10. The First AKC Triple Champion

For a dog to become a triple champion, they must earn the Champion of Record title in either Herding or Field and one more in Tracking, Agility, or Obedience.

In 1980, a Vizsla by the name of Kai became the first triple champion ever by winning in Field, Show, and Obedience.


11. Crossbreeding Skills

The excellent skills of the Vizsla have contributed to two other breeds: the Weimaraner and German Shorthaired Pointer. The Vizsla was used to develop their hunting abilities and trainability.

Vizsla
Image Credit: Anna, Pixabay

12. Wirehaired Vizslas = Separate Breed

Did you know that there is a Wirehaired Vizsla? They are almost exactly the same as the smooth-coated Vizsla, except they have wirehaired coats and sport bushy eyebrows and a jaunty beard. But the temperament and golden rust color are the same.

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Is the Vizsla the Right Breed for You?

High Energy

One of the most important things that any prospective dog owner should know about the Vizsla is their exercise needs.

Vizslas are highly energetic dogs. If you’re looking for a dog to take for one walk a day and a bit of playtime, you’ll need to keep looking. Vizslas will need a minimum of 1 to 2 hours of exercise every day.

Specifically, you’ll need to find a place where they can run off leash. You can take them hiking, running, biking, and even swimming. Vizslas also need a job to keep them both physically and mentally busy.

Vizsla jump
Image Credit: Ivanova-N, Shutterstock

Family Dogs

These make excellent family dogs, but be careful with the little ones, as the exuberance of the Vizsla can lead to them accidentally knocking kids over. But young children should always be supervised around dogs, anyway.

Vizslas are gentle dogs with no aggressive tendencies. Their playful and affectionate nature makes them an excellent fit for active families.

Separation Anxiety

Vizslas are Velcro dogs, which means they will suffer from separation anxiety if you’re away too often. These dogs will do best with owners who are home most of the time, so if you work from home and are active outdoors, the Vizsla might be the right breed for you.

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Conclusion

The Vizsla is a unique and amazing dog! They aren’t quite as popular as some other breeds out there, as their almost constant need to be near their people and high exercise requirements aren’t for everyone.

But there’s no question that if you decide that you’re the right family for a Vizsla, you won’t regret it. You should also consider yourself quite lucky to have a Vizsla as your new companion!


Featured Image Credit: photohun, Pixabay

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