Before working with dogs professionally, I was relatively unfamiliar with the Vizsla. I did have one friend, older than the rest of our circle, who got a dog (a Vizsla) as a substitute for the family he wanted. (He was a sweet guy, but he just couldn’t find it in him to commit to more than a dog.) He took that dog with him EVERYWHERE (as you can only do in NYC) and dressed her in hats, shirts, coats, costumes…whatever he could find. He made YouTube videos featuring her and posted endless pics on social media. All I could think was “That is one sweet, patient dog.”
Not long after I met another Vizsla, Sadie. She came to my dog daycare every day. We all called her “Sweet Sadie” because she was just that. Never barked, rarely played (she was an older pooch)…she was affectionate and well mannered. A perfect dog.
Vizslas originated in Hungary, and stone etchings confirm they have been kept as pets for over a thousand years. As Hungarians at this time lived a nomadic life, these dogs were not just companions but herded and guarded livestock, tracked wild animals, and hunted (often alongside falcons.) In other words, they were essential to human survival. Later, Vizlas would accompany lords and barons when they hunted for sport. They were such a sign of aristocracy, it wasn’t until 1825 (when breed standards were established and Vizslas were named the Official Pointing Dogs of Hungary) that non-nobles were permitted to own them.
So you know that they are a competent noble breed, but what makes them good pets? Well, first of all, they are gentle mannered and extremely loyal. They are quiet and affectionate. They are great with children. Best of all (as if you didn’t already think they were the perfect dog!) they are incredibly easy to train – both in basic obedience and hunting.
If you are lazy and don’t want to spend any time with your dog, the Vizsla is not for you. These dogs want to be outside hiking and biking. They are intelligent, so they need to be stimulated. They will not be content to sit inside and watch tv all day, and they will not be happy to be left alone much of the time. (I am the same way myself!)
I have always been drawn to this breed. I think they are amazingly beautiful creatures and (while I know it is a dangerous game to make assumptions about an entire breed off a handful of examples) I have never met a Viszla who wasn’t he absolute sweetest, most gentle and loving creature.
So, I’m curious. What do you think of Vizslas….are they the perfect pet?