Hungarian Shorthaired Pointer or Vizsla - Origin, Characteristics and Behavior

Hungarian Shorthaired Pointer or Vizsla: find out what this animal is like, its physical characteristics, character, behavior, etc. The Hungarian Shorthaired Pointer, or simply...

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The Hungarian Shorthaired Pointer, or simply Vizsla, is an excellent hunting dog. Nowadays, it is a dog that excels in all kinds of activities and exercises. Its fine nose and penchant for water make this dog an excellent companion for dynamic and active people.

In this breed sheet on the Hungarian Shorthaired Pointer, we will tell you everything there is to know about it in case you are considering adopting one! We will tell you about its main characteristics, its character and the type of care it needs to be happy.Be aware that however, he is a very active dog who will need a family that looks like him!

Find out if the Vizsla is for you or not!


  • Europe
  • Hungary

FCI Nomenclature

  • Group VII

Physical Characteristics

  • End
  • Muscular
  • Lying
  • Short ears


  • Average


  • 55-70

Adult Weight

  • 10-25

Life expectancy

  • 12-14

Recommended physical activity

  • High


  • Balanced
  • Smart
  • Active
  • Affectionate
  • Quiet
  • Docile

Ideal for

  • House
  • Walking
  • The hunt
  • Sports


  • Harness

Recommended climate

  • Temperate

Hair type

  • Short
  • Hard
  • End

History and origin of the Hungarian Shorthaired Pointer

The ancestors of the Hungarian Shorthaired Pointer were dogs that accompanied the nomadic tribes of the Magyars (tribes that occupied central Europe).There are documents from the 14th century that refer to dogs very similar to the vizsla, but it was not until the 18th century that it began to be used as a hunting dog and as a pointer.

The breed lived happily he althy in Hungary for a long time until it was affected by World War II. After this war, the population of Hungarian pointers had almost disappeared. A group of Hungarian breeders then recovered the breed and it was not until 1936 that it was recognized by the International Cynological Federation as the Hungarian Shorthaired Pointer.

The Hungarian name is rövidszöru magyar vizsla, but outside of Hungary the breed is simply known as Vizsla. This word simply means pointer, but it has become popular to refer to the breed outside of its country of origin.

Characteristics of the Vizsla or Hungarian Shorthaired Pointer

The Hungarian Shorthaired Pointer is an elegant medium-sized dog and, according to the standard accepted by the International Cynological Federation (FCI), its coat must be short and yellowish. He is a light and lean dog who is also very muscular and powerful.

Its body is slightly longer than it is tall, giving it an almost rectangular profile. His back is firm, straight and muscular. His loins are short and rather broad. Its croup is broad and a little long. His chest is wide and deep. Its lower line forms an elegant curve at the level of the belly, where it is slightly gathered.

The head of the vizsla is lean and almost aristocratic. Its skull is broad and slightly domed. It presents a delicate furrow which goes from the occiput to the nasofrontal depression (stop). This depression is moderate. His nose, large and well developed, should be a little darker than the coat. Its muzzle is straight, its eyes are oval, medium in size and lively. They are preferably brown and dark, but amber or yellow eyes are also common in dogs of this breed. Its ears are thin and hang down the sides of the cheeks. Its tail is of low insertion and is rather thick at the base.It is long enough to reach the hock. When the dog is active, it lifts it horizontally.

The hair of this Hungarian pointer is short, thick and hard. It covers the whole body and there is no undercoat. It can be any shade of yellow and a small white patch on the chest and small white markings on the fingers are allowed ( although not desirable).

The height at the withers, according to the FCI standard, must be between 58 and 64 centimeters for males and between 54 and 60 centimeters for females. This standard does not indicate an ideal weight, but males generally weigh between 20 and 27 kilograms, while females generally weigh between 18 and 25 kilograms.

Hungarian Shorthaired Pointer Character

Vizslas are dogs that form a very close bond with their human families. They tend to follow someone in the family all the time. They are also very intelligent, curious and dynamic dogs.

Of course, they are very good hunters and they are always ready to chase small animals, especially birds. One of their most notorious behavioral qualities is their fascination with water. These dogs really like jumping in water and swimming. Another quality of these dogs is that they are usually not very barkers.

Hungarian Shorthaired Pointers are not good pets for sedentary people and families who prefer to spend Saturday afternoons watching movies. Instead, they make great pets for families or people who enjoy sports and outdoor activities.

Caring for a Hungarian Shorthaired Pointer

The coat, due to its short length, is very easy to care for and occasional brushing is usually enough to keep it in good condition. These dogs shed regularly, but one nice feature is that they don't have a strong odor, even when wet.They should be washed just when they are very dirty.

These dogs need a lot of exercise and they don't tolerate loneliness very well. To have a vizsla, it is necessary to provide him with enough physical and mental exercise. For example, intelligence games are very appropriate for this breed.

Due to their dynamic temperament, these dogs do not adapt well to apartment life and to a life that is too sedentary. The best thing is that they have a fenced yard where they can run around freely. This doesn't eliminate the need for walks, but it does provide your Hungarian Shorthaired Pointer with a better quality of life.

Education of the Hungarian Shorthaired Pointer

Their temperament is very friendly with their own, but they tend to be very protective of their territories and families. Therefore, it is very important to socialize these dogs from a young age. Well socialized, they can get along with adults, children, dogs and other pets.It is very important to work on this aspect to have a sociable adult dog, without fear or phobia and not at all aggressive. Well educated, he is an excellent dog.

Although they are very brave on the hunt and protective of their families, Vizslas are very sensitive dogs who do not tolerate physical punishment. It is therefore preferable to avoid traditional training techniques and instead focus on positive reinforcement. When training is done in a positive way, like clicker training, these dogs learn very quickly and the results are great.

The most common behavior problem in this breed is destructiveness. These dogs are very dynamic and need lots of exercise and companionship. When left alone for a long time with nothing to do, they will become frustrated and destroy anything they find. For this reason, the use of the kong is highly recommended, which calms them down and can help with separation anxiety.

Long daily walks and playtime are helpful in keeping vizslas from becoming destructive. Practicing canine sports like agility can also help channel their energy.

Hungarian pointer he alth

This breed is not particularly susceptible to disease, but in some lines certain hereditary diseases may occur more frequently, including: progressive retinal dystrophy, craniomandibular osteopathy, hemophilia A, hip dysplasia, skin allergies and epilepsy.

With a regular veterinary visit every 6 months and strict compliance with the vaccination and deworming schedule, your dog will be with you for a long time!

Pictures of Hungarian Shorthaired Pointer or Vizsla

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