Failing to help…feeling guilty…what would you do?

Thursday had to be one of the most incredibly frustrating days of my life.

Driving to my in-laws’ house to drop my baby boy off, I noticed a dog roaming down their street.  I opened my door and right away knew this wasn’t a pet that had recently escaped…this poor girl had been living on her own for some time.  She looked hungry, dehydrated, and dirty.  She was desperate for help, but obviously extremely fearful.

She was a pit bull.

Having my 4 month old son with me and being on my way to make my daily dog walkin’ rounds, I wasn’t really sure what to do.   Not only did this gal have no collar or tags…she wouldn’t let me get anywhere near her.  (And regardless of breed – it’s never good to force yourself on an unknown dog.)  I left some water for her and politely asked her to hang around until I could figure out what to do.  I worried about her my whole day.

A few hours later, I cruised the neighborhood before picking up my son.  I was hoping to find her roaming around (but praying she had found her way home).  Eventually giving up, I drove to my in-laws’….only to find the sweet girl laying in the shade of their front porch.  She got up and gave me a tiny tail wag when she saw me.  I had come prepared with water AND food this time, but despite being STARVING, would only approach either if I backed up a few feet.

I decided I HAD to do something.  I asked my in-laws to keep an eye on her and drove my kiddo home to begin the quest of finding someone to help.

I had no idea just how hard this would be.

The hours that followed were filled with emails, calls, tears, and lots of Googling.  All pit bull rescues/independently run shelters in Houston (the 4th largest city in the country, mind you) very clearly stated they weren’t accepting dogs as they were filled to capacity.  The ASPCA would take her for a fee (no problem) but I would have to bring her in (BIG problem.)

City animal control would come and pick her up, get her into a vet, and (assuming there were no major medical/behavioral  issues) get her healthy and up on their website for adoption.   The words “animal control” scared me, and they definitely gave me no guarantee that she would not be euthanized….but at this point, it sounded like the best shot.  I spent an hour wondering if I was actually prepared to send her somewhere that didn’t guarantee her survival.  Finally, I decided this was my only real option.  I called…oh,wait…they won’t come to that neighborhood.  (While in the city of Houston it was not in the city limit’s??)

They referred me to the county shelter.  Sounded like the same thing as the city animal control…until I inquired how I could get updates on this specific dog status.  (I was hoping I could help get this dog adopted or at least bring her to the attention of pit bull rescues once she was officially in “the system.”)  I was then notified that she would be held for 3 days to wait for her owner to claim her and then she would be euthanized.  They did not keep ANY pit bulls.  It was their “policy”.

After another round of tears (and a very compassionate woman on the other end of the phone), I was able to get the whole report canceled.  All that point, there was only one thing I could do.

Nothing.

So I went to bed that night wondering where she was.  Wondering if there was anything else I could possibly do (and realizing that there probably was).  Feeling guilty that I did nothing for her…

El Perrito Pequeno – The Chihuahua

The arrival of Baby Sebastian has caused me to spend much more time at home…which equals spending much more time with my pups.  Yesterday  I found myself looking at my little Chihuahua Amigo and realizing I know very little about his breed!  Time to get down to business and educate myself about just where he came from and what his fellow Chihuahuas are like.

My Amigo (modeling one of Sebastian's baby hats)

My own Chihuahua, Amigo (modeling one of Sebastian’s baby hats)

Everyone knows that Chihuahuas originated in Mexico, but I was surprised to find that the history of their origin is often described as “puzzling” or “legend”.  Members of the ancient Mexican Toltec civilization had a companion dogs known as the Techichis, but little is know about that animal.  (Little is really even know about the Toltec themselves…they didn’t even have a written language!  All that we know about them comes from Aztecs.)  A “dog pot” thought to illustrate a Techichi was buried in a tomb in Mexico dates back to somewhere around 300 B.C. Wheeled dog toys thought to represent different varieties of Chihuahuas show up in Mexico around what is thought to be around 100 A.D.  In other words, no one knows when the Chihuahua as we think of it today showed up in Mexico…but it was a heck of a long time ago!

Another interesting historical fact about this breed – Christopher Columbus was probably responsible for bringing the Chihuahua to Europe.  He even references the itty-bitty dog in a letter to the King of Spain.

Unlike most breeds recognized by the AKC, the Chihuahua breed standard does not specify Chi Bodyheight but only weight – which cannot exceed 6 pounds.  (If you were wondering about my Amig0, he is not a pure bred, but what my husband likes to refer to as a “hybrid”…a.k.a. mutt/mix.  He tips the Chihuahua scales at 14 pounds!)  Other AKC qualifications include “muscular” hindquarters, a “slightly arched, gracefully sloping” neck, and a “saucy” expression.  (Yes…the official American Kennel Club stance on a Chihuahua’s expression is that is should be SAUCY!  I love that!!)

I think we all know about the temperament of Chihuahuas.  Unfortunately, they aren’t exactly well-known for their sweet, easy-going personality.  They tend to be very loyal to one member of the family.  They can also be easily provoked…which means they aren’t exactly patient with the poking and prodding of small children.  They are, however, much smarter than most of us give them credit for!  They often mimic the personality of their humans…so in the right family, they can be much more relaxed.

Chi

Look at those ears! (Picture from DogBreedInfo.com)

I did not know that Chihuahuas actually prefer the company of other Chihuahuas in what is often described as a “clannish nature”.  They (allegedly) do not get along with other breeds.  (Although Amigo has yet to meet a dog he didn’t like…regardless of breed or size.)  I also found that Chihuahuas especially love their dens – which explains why Amigo can be found burrowed under all the sheets and blankets at the foot of our bed.Amigo Pillow

I feel like my little Amigo does possess some of those stereotypical Chihuahua attributes, but he is very much his own man.  As I mentioned before, he loves Sebastian…and despite many accidental kicks and punches by tiny fists, Amigo has shown absolutely no signs of snapping (or even being slightly annoyed!  He still just seems fascinated.)  The only thing that gets him worked up these days are the frogs that come out at night in our back yard.  He thinks himself quite the frog slayer.  For better of for worse, he has been a perfect addition to our family…as I write this, he is snuggling up to me with his head on my lap.  I can’t imagine life without him.

He’s a Real Dandie! – The Dandie Dinmont

Dandie Dinmont

The Dandie Dinmont

This week marked a special occasion in my family – my mom and dad got a new PUPPY!  I was shocked to hear that this new addition would be joining the fam…not because they aren’t dog lovers, but because I didn’t know they were interested in doing the puppy thing (again.)  Little did I know about my dad’s dream: being the proud father of a Dandie Dinmont.

While I never claim to be an expert when it comes to dog breeds, I can honestly say that (until two days ago) I had never come into contact with a Dandie Dinmont.  I probably wouldn’t have even heard of the breed if it wasn’t for my dad’s beloved Pepper – his “once-in-a-lifetime” dog.  Even then, all my Dandie knowledge was Pepper-specific, other than the fact that they were hard to come by.  After years of searching for the perfect Dandie Dinmont, my dad found his pup…but I was still clueless about the breed.

Dandie Dinmonts are terriers from Scotland who look suspiciously like dachshunds to me (long bodies, short legs.) In fact, it is suspected that certain Dandie-Dinmont-Terrierlines did interbreed with dachshunds at one time or another.  The Dandies unique characteristics are (1) the “top knot” (or “poof” as my mom eloquently puts it) on the top of their head along with (2) their hind legs – which are significantly longer than their front legs (quite adorable!) They are only found in two colors: pepper (dark black to light gray…and I’m assuming where Pepper got his name) or mustard (a reddish brown…but really almost white.)  They rarely weigh more than 25 pounds and are only about 8-11 inches high.

I was surprised to read numerous sources described this breed’s temperament as “tough”…it looks like such a little fluffy dog!  They are terriers, though…and terriers that were meant to hunt badgers and otters.  Dandies are intelligent, fond of children, and relatively easy to train.  They are adaptable – meaning they will be happy in an apartment or a house with a big back yard (though be mindful of their proficiency in digging!)  These little guys are great family dogs.

The most interesting thing I found about the Dandie Dinmont has nothing to do with the dog itself, but rather with where the breed got its name.  Originally they were known as Catcleugh or Hindlee terriers (or often just pepper or mustard terriers depending on their color).  Dandie Dinmont is actually a character in Guy Mannering, a novel by Sir Walter Scott.  The fictional Dandie Dinmont, a “jolly farmer”  was thought to be based on the real life James Davidson – who claimed that all Dandies were descendants of who of his own two dogs and is therefore credited with being the father of the modern Dandie Dinmont breed.  I just love the fact that this dog is named after a character in a book!

IMG_1170

The Newest Member of the Family (many more pictures to come!)

The thing about Dandie Dinmonts….they are incredibly rare!  In the United States, less than 100 new Dandie pups are registered each year.  That’s crazy!

My mom and dad’s pup came with the name Dakota, but we will have to see if that sticks.  Even at only 4 months old, his expressive eyes and scruffy “beard” make him look so wise…I think he needs a dignified name befitting his gentlemanly qualities.  Only time will tell exactly how he will fit into the family (long haired dachshund Scarlett is the current queen of the castle), but after only a few hours with this little guy, I’m a Dandie Dinmont fan for life!

Houston Chronicle Pit Bull Hatred UPDATE

Many of you will remember the post Why Does the Houston Chronicle Want Me to Hate Pit Bulls? from a few months back.  It definitely got a lot of people talking.  Every single one of my family, friends, and faithful blog readers (strongly!) agreed – it was a ridiculous article and should have never found its way to the front page of a major news publication.

Houston Chronicle

Me

Despite my disagreement with the Houston Chronicle’s views on pit bulls, I still subscribe to the paper.  (Reading the paper first thing in the morning over a cup of coffee is one of my absolute favorite things to do.)  And this past Tuesday, on Page 3 of the City & State section, on the very bottom of the page in the “Around the State” section a heading caught my eye: “Dad accused of negligence in mauling death.”

Turns out, the 4 year old boy who was mauled to death (the one that I mentioned in my earlier post) was missing for SEVERAL HOURS before his dad decided to contact authorities.  It was not until the NEXT DAY that the little boy’s body was discovered in the neighbor’s yard.  (The boy’s father, Michael Cole Johnson, was detailing his truck when the boy wandered off.)

While this story – when it was the grizzly tale of pit bull brutality –  was considered the #1 story on the day the paper gets the most reads; it was an 8 sentence blip in the City & State section on a Tuesday – when it was simply the story of just another idiot father.  The last sentence being: “The dog was euthanized.”

I was livid when I read this story. How could the Houston Chronicle print a story with the title “Man’s Best Friend?  Beware” on the front page…and then not find the time or the space to recant their bias reporting?  Obviously, I understand everything is a business…and if “sex sells” in advertising, “fear sells” the news…but we aren’t talking about a hurricane or terrorism.  Pit Bulls are something that we as a society encounter in our day-to-day lives.  Instilling meaningless fear in the subconsciousness of the masses will only perpetuate the problem!  

But should I be so upset?  At least the paper printed something!  While the small article doesn’t even mention that the poor, euthanized Pit Bull was originally blamed for the boy’s death, it does say that Michael Cole Johnson was indicted on charges of negligent homicide, injury to a child and child abandonment in the “mauling death.”

So, what do you think?  “Ridiculously too little” or “At least they tried“?

High IQ & Super Cute – The Labradoodle

When I first heard the term “designer dog” I thought it was about the most ridiculous thing I’d ever heard.  Never one for labels or trends, to me these pups seemed to be nothing more than overpriced mutts. (In reality, mutts are dogs of unknown origin while designer dogs must have purebred parents.) In just the past few years, media and pop culture have led us to believe that hybrid dogs are the new thing – Puggles (Pug/Beagle), Cheweenies, (Chihuahua/Dachshund), Cockapoo (Cocker Spaniel/Poodle).  Are you kidding me?!?

Seriously….does it get ANY cuter?

…then I met a Labradoodle.

If you feel like you just started hearing about Labradoodles, it’s because they just burst onto the dog scene in 1988.  Breeder Wally Conron created the hybrid so that people with allergies (Poodles have a hypoallerginic coat) could have guide dogs (Labradors are know for being easy to train.)

Because the Labradoodle is a designer dog and not a breed,  no one can officially define their temperment or list their character traits.  Let me tell you this, though – these dogs are AWESOME.  They (they being all the “Doodles” I’ve ever come in contact with) are friendly and full of energy.  They are playful and great with kids.  They adapt easily to different environments and are smart.

…they are SUPER smart.

Poodles are know to be the brainiacs of the dog world.  Labs are also known for their intelligence and their trainability.  When those two breeds get together – you are pretty much guaranteed they are creating the smartest dog on the block.  Yay!  Great!  But remember…this also means that you need to keep your super-smart dog’s mind stimulated.  (That means a simple walk won’t do!)

Who turned out the lights?

So, you’re sold!  You’ve got your keys in hand and you’re ready to go get your new companion from Labradoodles-R-Us.  If only it were that easy!  Unfortunately, the AKC does not recognize the Labradoodle as a breed and therefore no breed standards have been set.  This means it is easy to get tricked into buying and adorably fluffy and sweet pup that is not an official Labradoodle.  Luckily, the Australian Labradoodle Association of America (ALAA) and the Australian Labradoodle Association (ALA) can help you find repudable breeders.  (Oh, and if you want to see Labradoodle puppy cuteness click here!)

I am lucky enough to walk a little Labradoodle pup every day, and let me tell you – his cuteness stops traffic on the daily!  I can’t walk half a block without someone stopping to comment on his cuteness or pet his abundance of chocolate brown curls.

I’d love to hear from some Labradoodle parents out there!

Why does the Houston Chronicle want me to hate Pit Bulls?

I’m old enough to know by now not to believe everything I read.  I also know that all media is slightly bias in some way or another, but what I read in the Houston Chronicle a few weeks ago was simply ridiculous.  (I expect more from a newspaper!)  On the front page of the Sunday paper was an article:

Man’s best friend?  Beware

Another picture of the same "vicious" pit bull featured on the front page of the paper.

Below that was a picture of a pit bull (of course!) with his front paws resting on the bars of his crate.  I think he was suppose to look mean, but he actually just looked like there was an unfamiliar man in front of his cage (which there was!) holding a foreign object in his face (a camera!)

The first sentence of the article (in big print) read: 70% of 12,000 bites by animals here were unprovoked, with kids most often targeted.

ARE YOU KIDDING ME!  So right there, I knew that this article was going to throw a bunch of random statistics at me that no one can back up.  I would like to know who decides which bites are “unprovoked.”  As we dog lovers know, 99% of the human population doesn’t know the first thing about what messages our body language is saying to members of the canine persuasion.

Yang Wang, what the heck were you thinking when you wrote this?!?  I’m thinking that she must have been traumatized by a dog when he was a child, because the article feels like it’s trying to create fear with little facts to back it up.  For instance: the 12,000 bites the article is referring to happened over the span of 5 years and all the statics cited are based not on any animal affiliated organization, but on “a Houston Chronicle analysis of data.”  And those bites include cats….and skunks….and beetles?  Wow, even monkeys.  Then why are there pictures of pit bulls throughout the article??  After explaining about the “dangerous dog” list that Houston has (and you BETTER be careful, because there are lots of pit bulls on that list!)…there are only 5 dogs in the entire Houston area that have been declared “dangerous”.

Oh, but wait….it gets better.

“Just Monday, a missing 4 year old boy was found dead….the prelimiary autopsy report indicated the cause of death was canine mauling.”  OH MY GOSH!  I’m thinking.  That is horrible!  Reading further into the paragraph, the child had been “left unsupervised” and “wandered away from his home” into a “FENCED-IN yard filled with pit bulls.”  Then the real hard-hitting reporting starts.  An animal control supervisor gives us some valuable information – “Kids should never be left alone with dogs.”  I thought kids were never supposed to be left alone, period.

If you cannot tell, this article really rubbed me the wrong way.  I feel like the media is trying to get everyone all worked up over something that is a non-issue.  I’m sorry, but if you go up and get up in any dogs face (be it cocker spaniel, a chihuahua, or a pit bull) you are asking to get bit.  I would also like to know how the Houston Chronicle can be so confident in the fact that the bites were “unprovoked” when apparently a majority of them happened to children who were left unattended.  Shame on the Chronicle and shame on Yang Wang.

There is a little humor in all of this, though.  The article was printed with some “Dog saftey tips.”  Would you like to hear some?  They will make you chuckle:

**DO NOT chase dogs
**DO NOT leave a child alone with a dog
**DO NOT challenge a stray dog
**DO NOT break up a fight with your hands

You can email Yang Wang at yang.wang@chron.com to let her know what you think about her bias story.

Czech Mates – The Cesky Terrier

Back in 1949, Frantisik Horak was just a lonely research assistant at the Czechoslovak Academy of Science.  Living in communist Czechoslovakia was no picnic…so he did what any lonely intelligent communist would do – he bred Scottish Terriers.  No seriously!

After a while, though, Frantisik decided to apply his research assistant skills to dogs instead of test tubes.  To create a dog that would be more suitable to hunt in packs and more aggressive at hunting bigger game than a Scottie (think fox instead of rat), he bred a Scottish Terrier with a Sealyham Terrier.  The result was the Cesky Terrier.  This terrier would go on to become a star in the Czech Republic – featured on postage stamps, television, and even on the big screen.  (An interesting side note: In Frantisik’s time, the popularity of his breed brought praise and a bit of fame….and a lot of mail from outside the country.  Unfortunately, communists frown on this sort of thing, so Mr. Horak was visited by the secret police of Czechosolvakia on more than one occasion.)

The Cesky Terrier is mellow….well, mellow compared with other terriers.  The Cesky is going to want to play a lot, chase a lot, and dig A LOT.  (Almost everything I read about this breed included a clause about making sure you have a “safe play area” or a “secure backyard” before inviting one into your family.)

Another interesting tidbit about this breed – they aren’t exactly easy going….unless you work at it.  Socialization seemed to be a key word that I kept reading over and over again.  They are fine with strangers as long as they get “continued socialization.” You must provide Cesky Terriers with “enough socialization” – exposing them to unfamiliar sounds, sights, and people – to help them overcome their natural cautiousness.   (Isn’t this true of any dog…any animal, really?)  These terriers (like all terriers) also need someone to discipline them.  They suffer from “small dog syndrome”….in other words, they are going to rule your house unless you show them who’s boss!

So you want a Cesky Terrier?  Well, I hate to break it to you, but they are hard to come by.  In an effort to discover how many of these little Czech guys and gals there are running around the U.S., all I could discover about their current population was ” The Cesky Terrier is one of the six most rare dog breeds worldwide.” (and that came from Wikipedia!)  Every source I checked, though, did confirm they were indeed “rare.”

As you already know from reading our post about the new AKC breeds, the Cesky Terrier made it’s official debut at this year’s Westminster Dog Show.  They also have their own club here in the states, the American Cesky Terrier Fanciers Association.

I don’t know if I will ever have the pleasure of meeting one of these terriers and getting the chance to judge their personality for myself….but there is one fact I’m sure of after my research.  The Cesky Terriers have the best beards in the world!!

A Presidential Hound – The American English Coonhound

The American English Coonhound might have only been formally recognized by the AKC last year, but their origins can be traced back to hounds brought to America by settlers as early as the 1600.  It’s seems fitting to be discussing this breed on Presidents’ day, as the American English Coonhound developed from “Virginia Hounds” imported to these United States by (among others) our first President, George Washington.  (Across the pond, they were known as English Foxhounds.) This breed can be described as loyal, athletic, loud, never shy, super smart, and energetic.

American English Coonhound - one good lookin' hound dog!

Sounds great!  So you want an American English Coonhound as a pet?  Well, you better be willing to provide high levels of exercise….and LOTS of attention.  And LOTS of exercise.  I found it amusing that a few sources warn against getting this breed as a pet if you are a person who does not want to have your pooch on your furniture or in your bed…as they are “incessant nesters.”  They are great pets, but might not be for you if you already have a small animal in your family.  They have a “strong instinct” to hunt.  In other words, don’t let them off leash if there are squirrels or kitties about!

An American English Coonhound "Treeing"

That strong instinct is what makes this breed (like most hounds) so popular with hunters.  That nose of theirs can track big and small animals alike.  I read about them hunting everything from raccoons to bears, foxes to deer, cougars to your neighbor’s cat.  Maybe the most interesting thing I learned when researching the American English Coonhound is that this breed is used for “treeing.”  Treeing is a method of hunting where a dog chases an animal up into a tree and does not stop barking until the hunter has shot the (poor!) animal down.  The American English Coonhound is tenacious (their main health problem they have is overheating due to the face they have a hard time pacing themselves.) Sometimes  they just won’t let up – even when they are mistaken and there is no prey….or the prey has jumped to another tree.  This is where the expression “barking up the wrong tree” comes from.  You learn something new every day!

Now that you’ve read up on just what it takes to be accepted into the American Kennel Club, you might be interested to know that the American English Coonhound joined the Miscellaneous Class on January 1, 2010 and official became part of the AKC’s hound group on June 30, 2011 (as the 171st breed.)

2012 Westminster Dog Show's American English Coonhound Best of Breed - GCH Alexanders Color Me Bad Ginn

New Editions to Old Traditions (New breeds & how they get recognized by the AKC)

As a dog lover, you would have to be living under a rock to not know that Malachy, the Pekingese, took the coveted Best in Show title at this years Westminster Dog Show.  I must admit, I’m not the biggest Pekingese fan.  (In all fairness, though, I haven’t met too many of them!)

You have to love the tradition of the dog show!  This year was  the 136th Westminster Dog Show…which means it’s the second longest continuously held sporting event in America.  (The Kentucky Derby holds the top spot; it was first held in 1875.)  Way back in its first year, the Westminster Dog show drew 1200 entries.  (Now held at Madison Square Garden, 2500 dogs are able to participate. )

All pup participants must be registered with the American Kennel Club.  The AKC now recognizes an incredible 185 unique breeds.  How does a breed become recognized by the AKC?  That’s a very good question!

First of all – you have to prove people are interested in your new breed.  That means you must have a breed club with at least 100 members.  Then you have to prove that there are at least 300 dogs with a three generation pedigree in your shiny new breed.  THEN you have to prove that your new breed (and its fans) are spread over at least 20 states.  Once the AKC reviews all this info – along with the breed’s standards AND all the details about your breed’s club – you still aren’t even recognized!  Now your breed is allowed to compete in the Miscellaneous Class.

Dogs of new breeds usually complete in the Miscellaneous Class for one to three years.  After the first year, the AKC follows up with the breed club and makes sure they are still hosting events and adding new members.  Once the AKC is confident the long list of criteria has been met, the breed is presented to the Board of Directors to be officially recognized.

Xoloitzcuintli - We suspect they are behind the phrase "so ugly they're cute"!

This year, six new breeds made their debut at the Westminster Dog Show: the American English Coonhound, the Cesky Terrier, the Entlebucher Mountain Dog, the Finnish Lapphund, the Norwegian Lundenund, and the Xoloitzcuintli.  Over the next week or so, we are going to be exploring these new (and strangely named!) breeds to find out what makes them different from the other 179 already established.  Stay tuned!

Possibly the PERFECT Pet – (The Story of the Vizsla)

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.

So, Vizslas!  I don’t think they are as popular as the lab, and I don’t think they are as well known as the retriever.  They are a fascinating breed, though, and ideal pets for family life.

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?