Beagle – the Beagle Owner’s Guide

The Beagle has a keen sense of smell and a strong hunting instinct. This member of the American Kennel Club’s hound group actually comes in two sizes, under thirteen inches and thirteen to fifteen inches. Except for the difference in size, both Beagle varieties are identical. The beagle has dark eyes, droopy ears, and a long tail. Its coat is short and most commonly comes in a combination of tan, black and white colors. You can also find orange, black, or tan dogs with white markings.

The Beagle is a sturdy and attractive dog with a full blast of energy. Originally bred to track fox, this breed has a great sense of smell and like other scent hounds, will likely to ignore you and everything else when hot on a scent trail. For this reason, extra care must be taken to make sure that he does not wander off. He is a happy dog that loves children and gets along well with other pets. The breed standard describes this dog as “A merry hound whose essential function is to hunt, primarily hare, by following a scent – bold with great activity, stamina, and determination – alert, intelligent, and of even temperament – a sturdy and compactly-built hound, conveying the impression of quality without coarseness.”

Although this breed is affectionate and intelligent, he requires patients and persistent training from the first day of training because of its stubborn nature in which he is easily distracted. It is very rare to find scent hounds, including the Beagle, in the obedience ring because their nose often overrules their brain. Also similar to other scent hounds, the Beagle was bred to bark, bay, and howl to alert the hunter to his location during the hunt. He may run away and is not likely to come when called so you may need a secure fence that he cannot get under or over. Always keep him on leash whenever you take him out, otherwise he may take off the second hi picks up a scent.

Beagles are among the smaller scent hounds which com in 2 varieties, the first stands about 13in at the shoulder and the other is more than 13 but not exceeding 15in. He weighs between 18-30lb.

The Beagle can adapt to apartment life, but may prove to be annoying to neighbors if he constantly warns you of strange noises. These dogs are tireless hunters and need a way to burn off some of that energy, so you will need to take your Beagle for long walks or go for a romp in the park. Think twice before letting him off the leash, however, since a Beagle who is hot on the trail of a rabbit will forget all of his obedience training while he tracks down his prey.

The Beagle loves children and other dogs, but will probably take every available opportunity to harass the family cat. These dogs are very playful and affectionate, but they do tend to sulk if they don’t get their own way. In fact, these dogs are so sensitive that something as simple as someone laughing at one of them when he has gotten into some mishap can cause the Beagle to brood for days. You may need to warn your children to avoid upsetting your dog’s delicate sensibilities.

Although Beagles occasionally get too caught up in the chase to obey commands, they still should learn at least basic obedience. It will require patience and hard work to teach your dog, and you may want to consider getting some professional help by enrolling your little guy in puppy obedience classes.

Beagles love to eat and they aren’t picky. If you put your dog on a diet, he will happily eat garbage. In fact, even if he isn’t on a diet, he may still hit the trashcans for an after dinner snack.

Your Beagle should be groomed once a week to alleviate shedding. Beagles usually get enough exercise to wear down their toenails on their own, but you may want to check your dog’s nails to see if they need to be trimmed at least once a month.

Beagles are generally a healthy breed. However, some of these dogs can develop dog heart disease or epilepsy. Of course, with their propensity to overeat, Beagles can also develop weight related diseases.

Because this breed is likely to put on weight, 1-2 meals per day are definitley sufficient for an adult Beagle, with no tidbits between meals.

If you want a dog who is a happy, well mannered little companion, then a Beagle may be the right dog for you.

Click Here