Hungarian Vizsla

A complete breed guide for Hungarian Vizslas


This article is written by Pet Circle's qualified veterinarian, Dr Josepha Cox, BBiomedSc(Hons) DVM

Once used to carry messages in World War 1, the Hungarian Vizsla is a robust and athletic dog. They are highly intelligent and affectionate companions, though their high energy levels makes them best suited to an active household.

Hungarian Vizsla Facts
Top Toy Recommendations
Nutrition Recommendations
Health Concerns
Related Breeds
Further reading

Hungarian Vizsla Facts


Breed size:

Place of origin:

Other Names:



Hungarian Pointer

Breed group:

Energy level:

Weight range:

Sporting/gun dog


Male - 25-28kg Female - 20-25kg

Life expectancy:

Tendency to bark:

Height range:

12-15 years


Male 55.8-60.9cm, Female 53.3-58.4cm

Drool factor:

Social Needs:

Coat length:




Shedding factor:

Overall grooming needs:


Low to medium


Solid golden rust

How big do Hungarian Vizslas grow?

Hungarian Vizsla are bred as medium sized dogs that are robust and agile. They average 55.8-60.9cm tall for males and 53.3-58.4cm for females with a weight range of 20-28kg.

Do Hungarian Vizslas shed?

Hungarian Vizslas have a short, smooth coat with no undercoat. They are low shedders and their coats are relatively low maintenance. Grooming once per week with a rubber brush or firm bristle brush is typically all that is needed.

How long do Hungarian Vizslas live?

On average, Vizlas live between 12-15 years.

How do I choose a Hungarian Vizsla breeder?

It's always recommended to adopt from a shelter or rescue organisation where possible but otherwise finding a reputable breeder with their own breeder registration number is essential. A good breeder should always allow you to inspect their premises and meet the puppies' parents, and will be happy to answer the 10 Breeder Checklist Questions . Good breeders socialise their animals, house them humanely and allow you to inspect their premises. Read our Guide to Finding a Good Breeder for more tips. Buying from online forums or trading sites is generally not recommended.

How much does a Hungarian Vizsla puppy cost in Australia?

The price can vary anywhere from $1000 to $8000 for a purebred Hungarian Vizsla. As with any breed, it is cheaper to adopt an adult dog from a rescue.

Are Hungarian Vizslas good pets?

Hungarian Vizsla are happy, affectionate, highly energetic dogs that are best suited to an active household. Due to their natural hunting instincts they may not be suited around small pets such as rodents and birds.

Are Hungarian Vizslas good with kids?

They can make great family pets especially if well trained and socialised from an early age however, they may be more suited to a family with older children.

Do Hungarian Vizslas bark a lot?

Vizlas typically have a low tendency to bark however, as with any dog without appropriate activity can bark if not properly exercised.

Hungarian Vizsla History

Hungarian Vizsla originated in the ancient tribes of the Magya people (early invaders of Hungary). The Magya warriors required a dog that was fast, agile and tough and this is what they selected for when breeding their dogs. Over the centuries nobility embraced these dogs and refined them into what they are today.

The breed was used in World War 1 to carry messages and the war almost saw the breed extinct. Luckily, they were conserved by Vizsla enthusiasts and were bred and eventually imported into the USA in the 1950's. By 1960 they were accepted and recognized as a breed by the American Kennel Club.

Hungarian Vizsla Personality

Hungarian Vizslas are highly intelligent and affectionate with an abundance of energy! Due to their hunting background they require lots of physical and mental stimulation. They make great hiking and jogging companions and enjoy the outdoors.

They love being around people and are often fondly referred to as Velcro dogs or shadows due to their desire to follow their owners around. Because of this they are not suited to be left alone for long periods.

Vizlas are highly responsive to training and love the attention they receive from it; however, they need consistency in training or can become quite stubborn.

Top Toy Recommendations for Hungarian Vizlas

Fetch and puzzle toys are ideal for burning off any excess energy!

Hungarian Vizsla Nutrition

Hungarian Vizsla Puppies

Your Vizsla pup will benefit from a premium diet that has undergone digestibility testing and is high in protein to support healthy muscle development.

Want to learn more about caring for your new Hungarian Vizsla puppy? Check out our other articles:

  • New Puppy Guide
  • What is the best puppy food?
  • 10 Frequently Asked Puppy Questions
  • Common Mistakes Puppy Owners Make
  • Best Food For Hungarian Vizsla Puppies

    Top food recommendations for adult Hungarian Vizslas

    Although there are no specific feeding requirements for an adult Hungarian Vizsla, it is very important that you feed a suitable premium diet. This food needs to be age appropriate and meet all of their daily nutritional and energy demands. Most premium brands including Hills Science Diet, Royal Canin, or Advance are suitable for Hungarian Vizslas. These scientifically-formulated diets also contain balanced levels of protein, fat and carbohydrate plus vitamins, minerals and antioxidants for health and wellbeing. Because of their high energy levels some Vizsla's struggle to keep weight on, in this case an active dog or working dog diet may be more suitable as these contain a higher energy content than normal adult maintenance foods.

    Hungarian Vizsla Health Concerns

    In general Hungarian Vizsla are quite healthy however they can be prone to a number of different diseases.

    Hip Dysplasia

    Hip dysplasia is the abnormal growth and development of the hips. A healthy hip joint operates as a smooth 'ball and socket' type joint, whereas hips affected by dysplasia typically have a flattening of the 'socket' component of the joint, resulting in a shallow joint where the 'ball' or head of the femur is not held securely. This leads to instability of the joint which may cause pain in the young dog (juvenile hip dysplasia) and ultimately causes development of osteoarthritis.

    The condition is primarily genetic in origin with varying degrees of disease seen between dogs due to a combination of factors such as body weight, exercise, nutrition, and hormonal factors. Rapid growth due to incorrect diet can worsen the dysplasia of the hip joint in affected puppies making correct nutrition so vital at this important stage of growth and development.

    To learn more, check out our article on Hip Dysplasia

    Eye issues

    Vizslas can suffer from distichiasis, progressive retinal atrophy (PRA) and cataracts. Distichiasis is where hair grows on the inside of the eyelid and irritates the surface of the eye. PRA is a disease where the retina (the structure in the eye that interprets light) gradually deteriorates and leads to vision loss. Cataracts are a cloudy change in the lens of the eye which, in its advanced stages, leads to vision loss. Regular and prompt vet visits when eye issues occur are essential.


    A possibly inherited condition that manifests as altered consciousness or seizures. Treatment is available and most dogs with epilepsy live a good quality of life.


    A hormonal disease where an abnormally low level of thyroid hormone is produced. This leads to lethargy, weight gain and hair loss. It is a treatable condition with a good prognosis.


    Cancer can affect any dog and is one of the leading causes of disease and death in our senior pets. Vizslas are more likely to suffer from a type of cancer called lymphosarcoma. This type of cancer makes the body form abnormal white blood cells. Treatment is with chemotherapy and sometimes surgery. It typically has a good prognosis with the majority of dogs going into remission.

    Related Breeds

    Hungarian Wire-haired Vizsla

    This is the cousin to the Hungarian Vizsla. Although very similar they have a longer, wiry coat and are larger and more solidly built than the Hungarian Vizsla.


    The Weimaraner is the most similar to the Vizsla in terms of looks and personality. Both belong to the sporting/gun dog family and both have an athletic build with a short coat. Weimaraners are grey in colour and are slightly larger than Vizslas.

    German short-haired pointer

    Also belong to the sporting/gun dog family but are a much newer breed compared to the Hungarian Vizsla. German short-haired pointers are slightly taller and also come in different colours (black, brown and white) and are often spotted.

    Shop All Dog Toys Now

    Further Reading

    New Puppy Guide

    Premium Pet Food: Is it Worth it?

    Heavy Duty Dog Toys for Power Chewers

    The Benefits of a Slow Feeding Bowl

    Arthritis in Dogs


    Hungarian Vizsla Dog Breed Information | Temperament & Health - Bow Wow Insurance

    Vizsla Dog Breed Information - AKC

    Vizsla Dog Breed - Facts and Personality Traits - Hill's Pet

    Hungarian Vizsla - Purina Australia

    Wirehaired Vizsla - Vet Street