The Wirehaired Vizsla is the sturdier, spikier version of the beloved Hungarian Vizsla. These are proper hunting dogs, built to be agile and fast. At home, the make brilliant companions who can temper their athletic pursuits. Although this is a relatively uncommon breed in the United States, they can be a calmer alternative to some of the more common pointing breeds. Read on to learn more about the Wirehaired Vizsla.
Description of the Wirehaired Vizsla
Muscular, but not bulky, these dogs look like true athletes. Traditional Hungarian Vizslas were mixed judiciously with German Wirehaired Pointers to create a sturdier breed for hunting. The resulting dogs are slightly stouter than their cousins.
Their coarse, kinky coat makes them very well suited to the forest. They can simply slide right under brambles and other underbrush while remaining unscathed. Most Vizslas are a beautiful golden-rust color. The Wirehaired Vizsla’s eyes give off its loving personality: alert, but with a surprising depth.
Life Expectancy and Size
These dogs are of medium to large size. The stand between 21 to 25 inches at the shoulder, and weigh between 45 and 65 pounds.
Unfortunately, they have some significant genetic problems that hinder their life expectancy. Healthy Wirehaired Vizslas can live between 12 and 14 years, although many have problems far before that. Maintaining this breed’s weight and fitness can help them to stay healthy for as long as possible.
These dogs are not ideal for protection. They are simply too friendly! For most families, that’s a good thing. Some Vizslas may alert their owners to new sights and sounds, acting as a reasonable watchdog. However, most are not known for being quick to bark.
The Wirehaired Vizsla approaches everything with a big grin on his face. These dogs are eager and willing to learn. If they have any faults, it’s that they are simply too eager. They may move on to the next activity without you if you’re not careful. Keep training sessions short and sweet to maintain their attention.
As sporting dogs, this breed appreciates a good job. They prefer structured training sessions with clear direction and goals, rather than corrections when they’re wrong. These intelligent workers enjoy feeling a sense of accomplishment and completing jobs.
Bred for the outdoors, this breed still has the endurance that helped them succeed as hunters in Hungary. They need plenty of exercise in order to remain sane and manageable. Of course, keeping these dogs fit will also help them to live long, healthy lives.
What Living with a Wirehaired Vizsla is Like
This breed is a good choice for vivacious owners that want a loyal companion to keep up with their active lives. This is in athletic dog that enjoys being occupied, especially in the outdoors. They are also happy and loving family members. These dogs are friendlier than many other breeds are with strangers. Early socialization can ensure that they’re polite with everyone.
Care of the Wirehaired Vizsla
The Wirehaired Vizsla was bred to be versatile and sturdy, and they still show those characteristics today.
This breed’s coat means that they are adapted for almost all weather conditions. Their hair wicks water and its wiry texture keeps them warm and safe. Although they can tolerate hot weather, ensure that they have adequate shade and water to stay comfortable.
These dogs are very adept at hunting, tracking, and agility. They would be the perfect choice for an owner that enjoys taking canine companions on bike rides or runs. Barring that, make sure to take them for adequate walks whenever they do not have the space to run around. Ideally, this dog should have access to green space at least once a day. Be careful to monitor them, as their hunting instincts may lead them to chase things.
Shedding and Grooming
The Wirehaired Vizsla does shed, but not as much as many other breeds. Their rough coat is easy to keep. Simply brush them occasionally to remove dirt and dead skin. They only need baths when they begin to smell. It’s perfectly fine to simply wipe them down with a grooming mitt until that point comes. They may need more attention during times of seasonal shedding.
Ideal Home Environment
With the right owner, this breed will thrive. It is important that this dog’s family is active and attentive. The Wirehaired Vizsla should not be left alone for significant periods. Adequate land, or access to trails, is also advised.
These are friendly dogs that should be fine with other family pets. They’re good with kids, too. Early in life, they may be boisterous so be careful with very small children. Early socialization will help these dogs to become polite adults.
Unfortunately, these dogs have some serious health issues, and many are inherited. Like with many dogs, joint pain and eye problems can develop, especially later in life.
The Wirehaired Vizsla is also susceptible to epilepsy, urinary stones, heart disease, and some forms of cancer. Working with a reputable breeder and maintaining the Vizsla’s fitness are the surest ways to keep them as healthy as possible.
Most behavior problems are completely preventable. Ensuring that these dogs receive proper exercise can decrease the likelihood that they become destructive or barky. The Vizsla is known to chew when bored or lonely. Besides providing enough social time and exercise, and offering chew toys can be a great way to keep your Vizsla busy.