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Gun Dog Group

The goals and purposes of this breed standard include: to furnish guidelines for breeders who wish to maintain the quality of their breed and to improve it; to advance this breed to a state of similarity throughout the world; and to act as a guide for judges.

Breeders and judges have the responsibility to avoid any conditions or exaggerations that are detrimental to the health, welfare, essence and soundness of this breed, and must take the responsibility to see that these are not perpetuated.

Any departure from the following should be considered a fault, and the seriousness with which the fault should be regarded should be in exact proportion to its degree and its effect upon the health and welfare of the dog and on the dog’s ability to perform its traditional work.


The Vizsla was developed in Hungary. Written descriptions and drawings that depict dogs similar in type to the Vizsla can be found in documents dating as far back as the 14th Century. Dogs of this type became extremely useful as hunting dogs and by the end of the 19th Century they were successfully competing in organized competitions for pointing dogs in Hungary.

The Vizsla was recognized by the United Kennel Club in 1984.

General Appearance

The Vizsla is a medium-sized, short-coated hunting dog, with a distinguished appearance and bearing, and a docked tail. They are rather lightly built, but robust. The coat is an attractive golden rust. This is a dog of power and drive in the field, yet is a tractable and affectionate companion in the home. Field-conditioned coats, as well as a brawny or sinewy muscular condition, and honorable scars, indicating a working hunting dog, are never to be penalized. The qualities that make a “dual dog” are always to be appreciated, not depreciated.


The Vizsla is a natural hunter endowed with a good nose and an above average trainability. Although they are lively, gentle mannered, demonstrably affectionate and sensitive, they are also fearless and possessed of a well-developed protective instinct.

Faults: Shyness. Nervousness. Timidity.


The head is lean and muscular, with a moderate, but not deep, stop.


The skull is moderately wide between the ears. There is a median line down the forehead.


The square, deep muzzle tapers gradually from the stop to the tip of the nose. In profile, the muzzle (foreface) is of equal length to, or slightly shorter than, the skull. Whiskers serve a useful purpose; and their removal is not permitted. The jaws are strong. The lips completely cover the jaws, and are never loose or pendulous.

Serious Faults: Muzzle turning up (dish face). Muzzle turning down.


A full complement of strong, white teeth meet in a scissors bite.


The eyes are medium in size, and medium in depth of setting. The surrounding tissue covers the whites of the eyes. Eye color blends with coat color. The lower lids are neither entropic nor ectropic, as these conditions are not conducive to the best interests of a hunting dog.

Faults: Light yellow or yellow-colored eyes. Prominent, pop, eyes.


The nose is brown, with any other color considered faulty (with the exception of black, which is a disqualification). The nostrils are slightly open.


The thin, silky, proportionately long ears have rounded leather ends. They are set fairly low and hang close to the cheeks.


The moderately long, strong, smooth, clean, muscular neck is arched and broadens nicely into moderately laid-back shoulders. This type of neck and set of shoulders balances the moderately-angulated hindquarters.


The long shoulder blades are moderately laid back and are fairly close at the top.


The muscular forelegs are straight. The elbows are close. Dewclaws are to be removed from the forelegs.


The strong body is well-proportioned, slightly longer than tall when measured from breastbone to buttocks and withers to ground. The moderately broad, deep chest reaches to the elbows. The withers are high. The back is short and straight. The topline is slightly rounded over the loin and the set-on of the tail. The ribs are well-sprung. There is a slight tuck-up beneath the loin.

Serious Faults: Roached backline. Shallow chest. Straight shoulders.


The Vizsla is not excessively wide when viewed from the rear. Too wide a rear is as faulty as one that is too narrow.


When viewed from behind, the hind legs are straight. The thighs are well-developed. The stifles and hocks are moderately angulated in harmony with the moderately angulated forequarters. The hocks are let down; and the rear pasterns are parallel to each other. Dewclaws are to be removed from the hind legs.

Faults: Too much hock angulation. Too little hock angulation.


The cat-like feet are round and compact. The close toes have short, brown nails. The pads are thick and rough.

Fault: Hare feet.


The tail is docked, with about one-third being taken off. The tail is set on just below the level of the croup and is carried at or near the horizontal. It is thicker at the root, reaching to the back of the stifle joint.


The short, smooth coat is dense and close-lying; without a woolly undercoat.


Solid golden rust in different shadings is the acceptable color. The solid coat actually ranges in shadings from lighter on the chest and turning darker in a saddle marking down the back over the withers, on the base of the skull, the ears and to the nose. Small white spots on the chest and occasional white hairs on the toes are acceptable. White that is due to aging is not faulted.

Serious Fault: Any noticeable area of black in the coat.
Faults: Solid dark mahogany.


Height is measured at the highest point of the shoulder blades. Ideal height ranges are: Males, 22 to 24 inches; Bitches, 21 to 23 inches.


Proper movement is one of the most important factors to be considered in the Vizsla. The smooth, graceful gait is far reaching and light-footed. As speed increases, the dog single tracks.

Faults: Side-winding. Crabbing.

Eliminating Faults

(An Eliminating Fault is a Fault serious enough that it eliminates the dog from obtaining any awards in a conformation event.)
Males under 20½ inches or over 25½ inches in height. Bitches under 19½ inches or over 24½ inches in height.


(A dog with a Disqualification must not be considered for placement in a conformation event, and must be reported to UKC.)
Unilateral or bilateral cryptorchid. Viciousness or extreme shyness. Black nose. Massive areas of white on the chest or anywhere else on the body. Solid white extending above the toes. Albinism.

The docking of tails and cropping of ears in America is legal and remains a personal choice. However, as an international registry, the United Kennel Club is aware that the practices of cropping and docking have been forbidden in some countries. In light of these developments, the United Kennel Club feels that no dog in any UKC event, including conformation, shall be penalized for a full tail or natural ears.

UKC Breed Standards: Vizsla

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Official UKC Breed Standard

Revised July 1, 2009

©Copyright 1992, United Kennel Club