Will I be able to handle a Vizsla? - Hungarian Vizsla Forums
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post #1 of 8 (permalink) Old 04-01-2017, 02:39 AM Thread Starter
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Question Will I be able to handle a Vizsla?

Me and my girlfriend are contemplating on this beautiful dog, however we want to make sure the Vizsla will be a happy Vizsla and would like to share our lifestyle as we are willing to make some (but not drastic) changes:

We live in Southern California...
We can provide at least 30 min a day of a light exercise (walk or jogging with the dog) during the week.
Weekends--we can definitely commit to extending the exercise to at least an hour (and possibly more) and will be taking it to our hikes on various local mountain trials.
During the week we may will leave the dog alone ( fearing this will be the deal breaker) for 8 hours where we can check in on the dog twice during those 8 hours.
Being that LA is dog friendly, we would be able to take the dog with us to most places during the day when we are out and about.

Please let us know what you guys think, thank you in advance!
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post #2 of 8 (permalink) Old 04-01-2017, 01:52 PM
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Welcome to the forum!

To be completely honest, based on what you've told us, I think that a Vizsla isn't the best fit for your family. The work week schedule you guys have would be pretty tough for a Vizsla. Yes, it can be done ... but you won't have a very happy dog.

Vizslas need just as much if not MORE mental stimulation/companionship as they do physical exercise. Our Vizsla is a "lazy" V, she doesn't require daily exercise like most Vizslas do. BUT I am home with her all day, she is never crated and she follows me around everywhere. If I happen to have a day where I am out of the house the majority of the day and she is left alone, when I return she's antsy and needs a LOT of attention and some exercise to calm her back down and make her happy.

These dogs really crave and need human companionship.

You said you would be able to come home 2/day and check on the dog. Is this a quick potty break check or would you be able to spend a significant amount of time?

In my opinion in order to make your living/work situation work for owning a Vizsla, here's what I would suggest:
Provide an hour of exercise before you leave for work in the morning, in addition to having enough time to feed/water/put dog in crate/get yourself ready for work. Have a dog walker come 1-2 times a day for at least 30 minutes to an hour, and then when you return home expect to give an additional 30 min - 1 hour of exercise.

I hope this helps!
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post #3 of 8 (permalink) Old 04-02-2017, 04:30 PM
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The 8 hours home alone isn't a problem with an adult dog.

A Vizsla needs far more then 30 mins of light exercise a day though. That would likely be your morning before going to work. Then expect your evenings to revolve around your dog. Minimum 1 hour of exercise, and lots of interaction in the home. These are wonderful dogs, but they are more of a lifestyle than just a pet.

A Vizsla is truly a dog to be proud of owning, and he is forgiving in case, in a moment of forgetfulness, you call him a dog -- he is a Vizsla."

- Versatile Vizsla by Marion Coffman
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post #4 of 8 (permalink) Old 04-03-2017, 11:09 AM
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How much time these puppies actually consume, and what we thought they would consume is a big difference. As a puppy plan on adding a hour to the time you get up in the morning. Potty, food, playtime, potty again, barking puppy while you try to get a shower. Don't even think about putting them outside to potty, while you try to get ready. They will be barking at the backdoor, and then potty in the house. Either you, or someone paid to come in during the workday, and repeat the morning process. In the evening plan on committing plenty of time to the puppy too. Most of the time you are going to be doing this on a lack of sleep, as they have howled off and on during the night. And yes, you will be taking them out to potty at all hours on the night. Your evening, and weekend plans revolve around being back home in time to potty, play, train, and feed the new puppy.
I've come to the conclusion that vizsla puppies can be a pain in the rear. Your either fully committed, and they become the best dog you have ever owned. Or if your not, save yourself, and the puppy from all the frustration, and heartache.

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post #5 of 8 (permalink) Old 04-06-2017, 01:12 PM
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My boyfriend and I recently got our first dog. Pippa is just over 4 months old now. This is just from our experience and from reading this thread I think we lucked out and have an amazing dog.

I think it depends on how much time you have to dedicate to them, at the beginning it is a lot more time but not as much exercise (more playing). You really can't let them out of your site for the first few months while they are potty training and learning what they can/can't chew on.

My boyfriend works from 7:00 - 5:00 and I work from 8:00 to 5:00 Monday - Friday. For the first month or two my boyfriend was waking up early with Pippa and playing with her/taking her outside and feeding her before he went to work. When he left, I would take her dog bed/toy into the bathroom while I showered and then while I got ready. I would try to give her a special toy that she only got during this time so she didn't get bored with it. Then we would go outside,play a bit and then she was crated for the day. She whined the first day or two but doesn't make a sound in there anymore. For the first month or so I came home on my coffee breaks to let her out (twice a day) and then would be home for an hour at lunch when I would feed her again, play with her and let her out. Now I only come home at lunch and I let her out and take her for a 20-25 minute walk. We do the majority of our exercising in the evening, either I take her for an hour/hour and a half walk (both on leash and off leash) or my boyfriend takes her into the field to run around for an hour. My parents, when they are around, will come over and take her during the day for another hour walk/play session. She crashes every night around 8:00-9:00pm now and becomes the most cuddly thing in the world. She also isn't a morning dog, so now she sleeps in until I go to work now and I let her out/feed her shortly before I leave.

Like I said, I think we lucked out with having a well behaved dog; however we put a lot of time into watching her and making sure she was housetrained and knew what her limits were. She sleeps in a crate in our room at night and can go about 8-10 hours without needing to go outside. The first few months we were waking up once or twice and letting her out. She is allowed to come into our bed after about 7 am, but knows she doesn't get to sleep all night in there (even if she wants to!). If you're not willing to change your lifestyle then I would say this breed probably isn't for you. Pippa has been great and loves people, so we have taken her to our friends house for parties and just let her sleep in her crate. She likes socializing and then when we put her in the crate she just lies down and goes to bed. She is pretty playful and likes to chew on hands right now so we are careful who we bring her around at the moment. They do change your life - we weren't able to go on a hot winter holiday this year and they keep you tied down for the first few months of their life. We don't regret getting her though, she has been a wonderful addition to our family and brings a ton of love/smiles into this world. We get stopped on every hike by someone who wants to give her some attention and comments on how beautiful/kind she is.

Before you get one just make sure you know it is a lifestyle change. You also would want to consider getting a dog walker to come while you are at work during the day, especially if you can't do more than 30 minutes of exercise a day. I think Pippa needs about 1.5-2 hours a day of activity (walking-off and on leash, running after sticks/balls).
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post #6 of 8 (permalink) Old 04-06-2017, 02:13 PM
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I forgot to mention that Pippa follows myself or my boyfriend around the house the rest of the evening. So even if we aren't walking her or playing with her outside, we are playing fetch with her while we cook (or trying to avoid tripping over her) or fetch/tugowar while we watch tv. You might be able to get her a bone to chew that will consume some time but realistically you can say goodbye to your alone time haha.
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post #7 of 8 (permalink) Old 04-08-2017, 12:18 PM
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Others have given you a good idea of the schedule you should expect. Once not a puppy, the 8 hours a day with 2 check ins isn't a deal breaker (assuming they are at least 30 minutes), but the 30 minutes a day of exercise is. You'll need to plans for the puppy stage, or a reputable breeder won't consider you.

The other thing to note is that just because LA is mostly dog friendly doesn't mean your Vizsla is LA friendly. What I mean by that is that Vizslas generally aren't dogs that calmly walk along your side as you go about your business. You have to train them specifically to be able to be calm in public, and it takes a while. It's doable, but they are very interested in the environment, and the first many many times you go out in public you'll spend a lot of your time monitoring the dog and training it to behave properly.

I assume your relationship is solid. If you work full time, you really need two vizsla "parents" or you will be totally overwhelmed. A joint dog is a big commitment.

Getting through the first year would be the hardest, but if you are willing to increase the exercise commitment and spend your evenings and weekends devoted to your dog, it is doable. If you aren't willing to change your lifestyle, another breed will be a better fit.
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post #8 of 8 (permalink) Old 08-11-2017, 12:02 PM
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We do exactly the same here... No issues so far. Bruna is 5 months now

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