Are you a proud owner of a Vizsla and need information on how and what to feed them? Or maybe you are considering getting one, and you want to know what to expect?
This guide is for you.
After presenting our selection of the best food for Vizslas, we will also give you essential information about the breed, their feeding requirements, as well as potential problems they may face.
Like all large dogs, Vizslas have certain specific needs that can’t be met with cheaper food or one meant for smaller breeds. And, as they were originally bred as hunting dogs, they will benefit the most from a high-quality dog food.
Top Rated Dog Food for Vizsla Reviewed
Taste of the Wild - Best Overall
Our top choice for your Vizsla is this Taste of the Wild recipe based on buffalo. As a valuable source of high-quality protein, buffalo meat should provide all the building blocks to keep your pet strong and active. Since it is further strengthened with lamb, chicken, bison, and venison, you should get an even better deal.
And, to ensure your dog has all the energy he needs to meet his daily needs, this formula uses peas and sweet potatoes as sources of carbohydrates, alongside chicken fat as a source of fat. Peas and sweet potatoes also serve as additional sources of protein.
It also includes natural sources of omega fatty acids, all to make sure your pet’s skin and coat remain shiny and strong, as well as to help preserve their immune systems and nerves. As sources of vitamins, minerals, and antioxidants, it uses fruits and vegetables such as blueberries and raspberries, which are further boosted with supplements.
Alongside all these ingredients, it is also free of artificial colors, preservatives, flavors, as well as corn, wheat, soy, or gluten. That should make it safe for dogs with sensitive stomachs.
All this makes this formula the best choice for your Vizsla. It avoids components that could strain their digestions while providing all the nutrients they need to remain healthy and active.
American Journey – Ideal for Sensitive Stomach
If your Vizsla has problems with their digestion, or maybe some food-related sensitivities or allergies, this American Journey product could help. It is free of any artificial ingredients, and it doesn’t contain any corn, wheat, or soy, as well as any other fillers that could needlessly stress their stomachs.
As this is a grain-free formula, it uses peas and sweet potatoes as a source of carbohydrates. That should provide your pet with all the energy they need without causing any unnecessary complications.
It also contains fruits and vegetables such as carrots, kelp, and blueberries as sources of vitamins and minerals, all to preserve your dog’s overall health and immune system, as well as antioxidants to help keep them youthful and full of energy.
And, in using salmon as its primary ingredient, it provides not only high-quality protein but additional nutrients such as omega fatty acids that protect your pet’s skin and coat, as well as brain and eyes.
This should make this formula an obvious choice for the owners of sensitive dogs. It should provide for all their needs while avoiding straining them with harmful ingredients that may trigger an allergic reaction.
Wellness CORE – Great for Mobility
As Vizslas belong to larger canine breeds, they share several problems that come with their size. Chief among them are potential difficulties with their joints. That’s why a diet that addresses this issue is vital. This Wellness CORE formula based on turkey is just such a recipe.
It is loaded with natural sources of glucosamine and chondroitin, which should help keep your dog mobile and active, as well as take care of his joints and cartilages. That should, in turn, make it easier for them to resume their daily activities even with advancing age.
To provide energy, it uses peas and potatoes as sources of carbs. Those should provide enough calories to feed your dog’s daily adventures. And, it also contains omega fatty acids from natural sources, which, among other things, also help with inflammations, further reducing their symptoms.
It is also free of artificial ingredients as well as corn, wheat, or soy, so it should be safe for dogs with sensitive stomachs. To further aid with digestibility, it also contains probiotics.
So, if your dog has problems with his joints, or maybe isn’t as active as he once was, maybe this formula will help restore him to his full, active self.
Zignature – Great for Picky Eaters
Picky eaters can be tricky. They may eat some foods while avoiding others, all without any rhyme or reason. This Zignature’s formula is tailored for those dogs. It sources its nutrients from a limited amount of ingredients, and it offers a wide variety of sources, so even if your Vizsla doesn’t like a component or two, chances are, they will find something they like here.
As it is using trout and salmon as the primary source, this formula ensures it is safe for dogs who either don’t like usual animal meats or for those that have protein-based intolerances. And, at the same time, trout and salmon provide a wide variety of nutrients, from vitamins and minerals to omega fatty acids so you can be sure your pet will get everything he needs.
And, to make sure it is safe for picky or sensitive pooches, it also doesn’t contain any artificial ingredients or corn, wheat, soy, or other such low-quality filler. Additionally, peas and chickpeas provide the carbohydrates, which give your dog all the energy he needs.
That’s why we recommend this formula to the owners of dogs with refined palates. Its limited number of ingredients should ensure that you know what you get, and the components that are present all provide more than enough nutrients that your Vizsla needs.
Blue Buffalo – Ideal for Active Dogs
Vizslas were bred as hunting dogs. That means that they require regular exercise unless they get bored or anxious. And, to feed all the activity they need, they require highly caloric food. This Blue Buffalo formula should provide them all they need.
Most of its calories come from potatoes and peas, which supply the carbs. They should provide enough energy to feed your dog’s daily needs. And, since it’s using chicken as its primary source of protein, it should supply enough building blocks to maintain his muscles.
It is further enhanced with natural sources of glucosamine and chondroitin, which should strengthen their joints and ensure their mobility. It also contains omega fatty acids, which have a wide variety of positive effects on dogs, from maintaining their skin and coat, boosting their brain and eyes, and helping with inflammation when necessary.
All that is boosted with vitamins and minerals, all to make sure your pet remains healthy and strong. That’s the reason we recommend it to the owners of active or working Vizslas. It should feed them all the calories they need without harming them with harmful ingredients.
If you want more information, you can also check out our guide to the best dog food for active and working dogs.
Earthborn Holistic – Best for Nutrient Absorption
For the owners looking for a formula that will ensure the best absorption of all the beneficial nutrients, we recommend this Earthborn Holistic recipe. Most of its fiber, the ingredient which ensures digestibility, comes from peas and flaxseed, both of which are soluble and easily digestible.
That will also make sure that everything your dog needs from his food will get absorbed properly.
In addition to that, this formula provides plenty of needful nutrients. The protein comes from chicken and turkey, while the peas provide the carbs, which provide your dog with energy. Vitamins and minerals come from fruit and vegetables such as apples, cranberries, blueberries, spinach, and carrots, which also deliver the antioxidants your dog needs to stay healthy.
And, to avoid straining your pet’s digestion, it is also free of wheat, soy, or corn, as well as artificial ingredients.
All that should make this an easy choice for those looking to feed their active or working Vizslas. This food should provide your pet with everything he needs, from high-quality protein, calories, and other useful nutrients, all packed in easily-digestible kibbles.
Merrick – Best Grain-Free
While grain in dog food will not cause problems for most pooches, but they can cause issues in the long run as they aren’t ideal sources of energy for dogs. That’s why grain-free food is gaining popularity, and this Merrick formula is our choice in that category.
As an alternative source of carbohydrates, it uses potatoes, peas, and sweet potatoes. That means that it won’t unnecessarily stress your dog’s digestion with wheat, corn, or soy, as well as any artificial ingredients that could cause harm.
Alongside that, it uses chicken as its primary source of protein, and it provides enough to feed the muscles of even active dogs. And, to round this formula out, its vitamins and minerals come from real fruits and vegetables, and it contains enough omega fatty acids to feed your dog’s daily needs.
So, if you’re looking for a best grain-free formula for your Vizsla, this one has our recommendation. Your pet will get everything he needs from it, all without exposing him to grains and other ingredients that are difficult to digest.
Instinct by Nature's Variety – Great for Digestion
This Instinct by Nature’s Variety formula prides itself on its ease of digestibility. It comes loaded with probiotics to ensure proper function of your Vizsla’s digestion, and it is made with only 30% fruits and vegetables, with the rest providing protein and fat.
To further boost the health of your pet’s digestion, it is full of antioxidants and omega fatty acids, all coming from natural sources. At the same time, it is free of ingredients that may negatively impact your pet’s digestion, such as grains, wheat, corn, or soy. It also doesn’t have any artificial flavors, preservatives, or colors, which means it is even easier to digest.
Using chicken as its primary source, it will provide high-quality protein to keep your pet lean and healthy, and peas and chickpeas will give him enough carbohydrates to feed his daily needs.
Overall, this formula should satisfy owners looking for a dog food that doesn’t strain their Vizsla’s digestion, while ensuring easy digestibility and sources appropriate for their metabolisms.
CANIDAE – Fit for Puppies
Vizsla puppies have specific dietary needs, as do other larger breeds. If they get too much protein and certain minerals, such as calcium and phosphorus, they will grow too rapidly, which could cause problems with their joints. That’s why they need a specific mix of nutrients to keep them growing at a healthy rate.
At the same time, puppies do require higher amounts of protein than adults, and they also need more calories. This CANIDAE formula should provide your pup with everything he needs to grow into a strong and healthy adult.
It has an appropriate amount of vitamins and minerals, all sourced from natural sources. Alongside that, it also has omega fatty acids, among them DHA, that are vital to the growth and development of puppies’ eyes and brains.
To make it digestible, it uses only whole foods, and it avoids artificial ingredients, as well as grains, corn, soy, or wheat. It also comes loaded with probiotics, making its digestibility even easier.
That’s why this formula should be ideal for Vizsla puppies: it provides them with everything they need while minimizing additional fillers and potentially harmful ingredients.
Solid Gold – Best for Weight Management
If your Vizsla puppy is having problems with weight gain, this Solid Gold formula could make a difference. It is balanced specifically for medium and large breed puppies. It provides them with just the right balance of nutrients – not too much, which might cause rapid or improper growth, or too little, which might slow their development and cause other, more serious problems.
As it uses bison as a primary source, it should provide your pup with all the protein he needs to maintain his growing body. Ocean fish, on the other hand, further boost that protein and add valuable vitamins, minerals, as well as omega fatty acids, which help your dog grow healthier.
It is also using rice and oatmeal as its primary source of carbohydrates, which should provide enough easily-digestible calories to feed your pup’s daily adventures. And, to further enhance digestibility, it comes with a variety of fruits and vegetables.
Those also provide the necessary vitamins, minerals, antioxidants, and fiber, all to maintain your pup’s overall health and to ensure his healthy development.
That’s why this formula provides your pup with all the nutrients he needs while containing fewer calories and helping them maintain their healthy weight without risking their growth and development.
Common Health Issues in Vizsla Breeds
Vizslas are usually a healthy breed, but they do share some potential conditions with other large dogs. They are also more prone to a small number of diseases. This guide should help you understand what problems your pet can encounter, and what you can do if that happens.
This condition is caused by the lowered activity of the thyroid gland. As that gland regulates metabolism, problems with it can cause a wide variety of other related issues. Your Vizsla may suddenly become tired, sensitive to cold, he may gain weight or develop itchy skin.
While this is a progressive disease, the good news is, if caught on time, the disease is manageable. It is usually treated with medication and thyroid-related supplements, such as iodine. That’s why it’s vital that you consult your vet if you notice any of these symptoms.
Cancer is the number one cause of death among elderly dogs, and Vizslas are, sadly, not an exception. Furthermore, they are more prone to certain forms than other dogs, primarily hemangiosarcoma and lymphoma.
The former is a tumor that develops in the spleen and causes internal bleeding, while the latter makes the body develop abnormal white blood cells, which can cause tumors everywhere.
Both of these forms are treatable if caught on time, so if you suspect your Vizsla may be developing them, consult your vet.
One way to help your dog in fighting cancer cells is to provide him with top rated dog food for cancer, click here to see.
Canine allergies don’t manifest themselves as they do in humans. Dogs develop sensitive or itchy skin (check our selection of best dog food for itchy skin), and it is the primary indicator that they may have a problem with something either in their environment, such as dust, pollen, or mold, or something in their food.
And, since Vizslas are more prone to allergies than other dogs, you should see your vet if you notice your pet spends more time scratching and licking his paws.
If your dog is having similar problems you may take in consideration one of the best hypoallergenic dog food from our list.
There are several eye problems Vizslas can encounter. The most common are cataracts, prevalent among elderly dogs. There, the lenses of their eyes become opaque with time, possibly leading to blindness. It is treatable surgically.
They can also develop glaucoma, an issue in which the pressure in the eye increases. While the symptoms aren’t obvious, glaucoma is considered a medical emergency, and if you notice your dog is squinting, has watery eyes, or the whites have become red, seek veterinary help as early as possible.
There are other, minor problems Vizslas can face. Distichiasis is a condition in which extra hairs grow inside the eyelid, causing minor annoyances. Similarly, in entropion, some of your dog’s eyelashes can grow inwards, towards the eye.
Both of these aren’t as serious, but they can cause difficulties, and in more serious cases, they may need to be treated surgically.
Bone & Joint Issues
Like all large dogs, Vizslas are prone to joint issues, especially when growing up, and in their elderly years. They can develop dysplasia in their elbows and hips, for instance, which lead to arthritis, which is another condition they can develop, especially in their old age (we prepared special guide for best dog food for senior dogs, click here to see).
Those are usually treated with medication, and food rich in glucosamine and chondroitin (you can check best food for dogs with hip dysplasia here) can help ease the symptoms and return some mobility.
Their kneecaps can also pop in and out of their proper position, either thanks to genetics or due to trauma. In mild cases, this can be treated with arthritis medication and food supplements (click here to see our guide for top rated dog food for arthritis), but more serious instances may require surgery to correct.
If your dog is dealing with these issues check it out our best dog food for joints list here.
Diet & Nutritional Requirements of Vizslas
As Vizslas belong to large canine breeds, their weight can vary between 45 and 65 pounds, and their height is usually around 23 inches. And, like all large dogs, they require about 20 calories for each pound they weigh.
That means that an adult Vizsla weighing about 55 pounds will need to get a minimum of 1100 calories from their food every day. However, as they are an active breed originally bred as hunting dogs, they require a bit more the more activity they get, even approaching 2000 calories a day.
That number further varies by age. Puppies need more to feed their growing bodies (our selection of best rated puppy food here), while elders require less, as they become less active.
They also require a good source of protein, all to maintain the integrity and strength of their muscles. More is needed when they’re puppies, but you can get away with less for adult maintenance. Elders will need more protein once again to help combat age-induced damage.
Ingredients to Look For & Avoid
When choosing dog food, you should primarily pay attention to sources of protein and carbohydrates. For the former, you should make sure the primary source is whole meat, usually chicken, beef, lamb, or salmon, as well as novelty meats such as bison, buffalo, or venison.
Meat meals are also acceptable as secondary sources. What you should avoid, however, are anonymous meats, meals, or by-products, as those labels usually include mixed leftovers from various sources.
As for carbs, if your dog doesn’t have digestive problems, he can eat food with wheat, corn, or soy. However, if that food doesn’t sit well with him, you can try finding a formula with alternatives such as peas, sweet potatoes, or rice, as those are generally easier to digest (some of the top choice of dog food for digestive problems you can find here).
You should also make sure he gets enough vitamins and minerals. Omega fatty acids are also required since dogs can’t metabolize them themselves, and they need to get them from their food. Also, since Vizslas can have problems with their joints, glucosamine and chondroitin are desired, as well.
Overall, Vizslas are a healthy large breed with long lifespans, sometimes over 16 years. That makes them a great family pet or a companion to single owners.
While they are more prone to certain conditions than other dogs, with a proper diet and enough exercise, they can lead a long and fulfilling life.
That’s why we recommend Taste of the Wild’s formula, our choice, for your Vizsla. It will provide all the nutrients he needs, while avoiding harmful ingredients. He will get all the protein, fat, and carbohydrates he needs to feed his active lifestyle.
And, if he doesn’t like that formula, or is allergic to some of its ingredients, we have provided a wide variety of alternatives. You’re sure to find something he likes there.