Do Vizslas make good guard dogs? This is a common question asked by current vizsla owners and prospective owners. In this article, I’ll cover all frequently asked questions on vizslas and their guard dog suitability.
Do Vizslas Make Good Guard Dogs?
In general, Vizslas do not make good guard dogs. Though willing to protect, Vizslas are a non-aggressive breed by nature and couldn’t be relied upon in an attack. They do however make excellent watchdogs and will eagerly alert owners to anything unusual.
Vizslas, due to their hunting background have a few key traits like loyalty, bravery, and alertness which make them almost good guard goods. But unfortunately, they lack having any substantial aggression, which hinders them from being an effective guard dog.
I will explain in a further section, how Vizslas might still protect their owners, despite not being natural guard dogs…
The Trait That Separates Vizslas From Guard Dogs
Vizslas pretty much have everything apart from Aggression. Vizslas are somewhat territorial, protective over their owners, and are naturally alert and wary.
Most Vizslas will act as if they are guard dogs, barking and growling at any unsavory characters entering your property. But when it comes to real confrontation, most would likely back down.
Contrary to this, a genuine guard dog has enough aggression to get physical. German Shepherds, for example, wouldn’t hesitate to go right ahead and attack an intruder. Vizslas (most of them) would likely bark and growl without taking it further.
Vizslas Make Better Watchdogs Than Guard Dogs
At the very least, all Vizslas make excellent watchdogs and will faultlessly let their owner know when someone comes onto their property, knocks at the door, or when a new vehicle shows up.
You can consider watchdogs as being the next step down from a guard dog.
The good news is that having an attentive watchdog can be all you need to deter any would-be burglars or attackers. The size of a Vizsla, the huge bark, and lion-like growl is certainly enough to put A LOT of people off.
There Will Always Be Exceptions
It’s important to acknowledge the fact that some Vizslas, by nature or design will have a very legitimate aggressive streak in them and would attack if necessary.
You can’t paint all V’s with the same brush and natural temperaments can vary depending on how they were raised.
I have seen only a few accounts of Vizslas attacking (in forum groups online) yet, they still do happen, so it’s worth keeping in mind.
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Can You Train a Vizsla To Be a Guard Dog?
The majority of Vizsla owners are not looking for their Vizsla to be a guard dog. Most will play the role of an active, happy-go-lucky family pet. And that’s what they’re best at.
The idea of making a naturally non-aggressive breed, aggressive, is not a good one, and should never be tried. So although possible, it’s certainly not recommended.
The methods of training required to make this happen are likely punitive-based. The issue with this (apart from the fact it’s utterly unfair on the dog) is that this training is very much fear-based. This leads to an overly anxious dog, that shows aggression through fear. This is uncontrollable, unreliable, and dangerous.
If someone is interested in owning a dog purposefully for guard dog duties, then this needs to be a breed that already has well-known guard dog capabilities.
Would a Vizsla Protect Their Owner?
When people ask the question about whether a Vizsla would make a good guard dog, what many are actually asking is whether or not they would protect their owner.
The answer to this question isn’t as straightforward…
Even though Vizslas are not aggressive enough to make all-around guard dogs, there are have been numerous situations reported where a vizsla has actively tried to protect its owner once an attack has been initiated.
Whether this attack came from another person, or another dog or animal, Vizslas have been known to intervene. To what success they have in effectively protecting, we don’t know, but we do know that many have at least tried.
Once again, however, due to the fact that Vizslas aren’t natural guard dogs, this shouldn’t be relied upon or counted on.
How do you know if your Vizsla would actually protect you? Unfortunately, there’s no way of knowing until you are in a moment that calls for such dramatic action. But of course, that certainly isn’t a recommended test!
Recommended Read: When do Vizslas go grey? What owners should prepare for
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