Wednesday, January 16, 2008

AKC confirms vizslas are popular

The AKC has issued its annual registration report which indicates that people like vizslas. Less than Labradors, but more than Swedish Vallhunds. Which is a shame because I've never met a Vallhund I didn't like. But then again, I've never met a Swedish Vallhund.

As for the most popular dogs in New York City, these are apparently:

1. Labrador Retriever
2. Yorkshire Terrier
3. Dachshund
4. Havanese
5. Poodle
6. Cavalier King Charles Spaniel
7. French Bulldog
8. Golden Retriever
9. Bulldog
10. Pug

I haven't scrolled through all 50 of the US's largest cities to find out if vizslas make any of their respective top-10s, but I feel almost happier that our golden boys and girls are coming in under the radar. The folks at SmartDogs have a nice post on breeds and brand names and why dogs aren't a handbag or a hammer. And here's a good post essay posted at Widdershins on why you should think two or three times about getting a Vizsla.

Update from training camp:
Jozsi continues to romp around and get psyched about looking for birds. He really is living the life of Riley -- although, largely unbeknownst to him I suspect, he is playing a very reassuring role for Momo. As folks are probably aware, Momo is at Cliffside to learn the force-retrieve. While his first week was low-pressure, he has moved into the first 'force' phase of the retrieve, where he learns to take a stuffed soft-toy duck in his mouth because he's told to, not because he wants to. And, as Bob has now learned, Momo for all his softy, sensitive boy side is also a strong-willed son-of-a-gun. But the breakthrough apparently came today, when Momo reached for the stuffed duck on command instead of being obliged to take it in his mouth.

In honor of his achievement, here are a couple of his puppy pics. The upper one is of Momo at roughly 13weeks old; the lower one is of him at almost six months.


Dan & Margaret said...

Patrick had a good piece on this subject today... focusing on the bulldog. As a Scottish Deerhound owner, I know that the majority of the owners and breeders of our breed would be exceedingly happy if our breed didn't show up anywhere on the AKC list. As a Galgo Espanol owner, I'm ecstatic that they're not even an AKC breed.

Andrew Campbell said...


Thanks for the comment. I'll probably write something longer in a bit about my experience with the AKC. In short, I think it's a Catch-22 -- and as such, has merits as long one also realizes its significant demerits.

And I think that one major challenge to folks like Pat (whose willingness to run contrary, I greatly admire) is that while the AKC might have been a catalyst for some of the breed 'destruction' that can be laid at their door, there is primary evidence to suggest that humans began breeding dogs for specific, 'useless' or superficial purposes before things like the AKC or UKC were created.

The irony is that the first Westminster show was for working dogs, primarily for setters and pointers.

Keep running your dogs! It's good for all of us.


Rocket said...

Thanks for the link to the essay. We are Vizsla Club of Michigan memebers. I'll be making some proposals to our group about posting some "honest information" on the VCM website. When we are out with Rocket everyone comments how beautiful he is. When people ask what kind of dog he is I let them know he's a Vizsla but right away follow up with "this breed takes significant time & understanding and they are not for the common household; please do your research before choosing this breed." Rocket sure re-arranged our life .... but we would not trade him for the world.

Eric said...

I agree that popularity is not a good thing for this breed. Ours has been a very demanding pet, but once we put in the effort, a very enjoyable one. I wouldn't mind seeing a few more around, but a breed doesn't go from unheard of to the top ten in a few years on the efforts of ethical breeders. A slow rise in popularity will allow the breeders to increase and provide a viable option to the puppy mills that will spring up if this breed becomes popular too fast.

By the way, thanks for stopping by my brew log!

denise garro said...

I think the top breed is not mentioned. The beautiful healthy mixed breed. Yes the Mutt. that would be far the breed of choice for Flagstaff Arizona. hey thanks for the old chub ale ..I am enjoying my 2nd after a good sedona day with steve.

Andrew Campbell said...


I was pleasantly surprised by the Old Chub as well. Some breweries make a 'Scottish ale' which is frankly disgusting. The Oskars was actually quite tasty. Glad you're enjoying it.

And yes, as you know, until we had vizslas, we had pound-puppies. I couldn't agree with you more. There's a lot of good dogs that need homes -- and it's a shame that many end up in shelters that aren't genuinely committed to finding them homes. Sally and Cody (and their feline companions, Gus and Susie) are lucky to have you guys.

love from here
A + M

Dan & Margaret said...

My Staghound girls heartily agree with the "mixed" thing... but so they don't feel left out I've given them a "Country of Origin"... one of them "'stan" countries... umm, oh yeah: Backyardistan!

Andrew Campbell said...

We used to describe our previous dog (who was a street-dog in Baja, Mexico) as either being of 'mixed and uncertain heritage' or as a 'Mexican Schweinhund'. (Her primary food source came from fighting a local pig for food from its trough; she had awesome scars on her left cheek as a result.)

Ordered Donald McCaig's book on Border Collies and the AKC. Still not entirely sold that the AKC is, in its entirety, an Evil Empire, but still trying to resolve what the alternatives are.


Dan & Margaret said...

OK.. I will allow one good thing the AKC does. A good friend up in Florida (NY) was recently diagnosed with an inoperable brain tumor. His insurance company is doing its best to avoid all involvement.. (anybody seen "Sicko"?). The AKC's Take the Lead Foundation is probably going to do something to help, as Mike's hospital bills are already over $200,000 and piling up. Not exactly dog related, but it is AKC-related. Other than that, I don't have much use for them. UKC, at least, is still more of a performance related org.