Beagle Dog

Is a Beagle the Right Dog for You?

Compact, hardy and small, the beagle is an active companion for both adults and kids. This breed of dog is fun loving and merry, but since they are a part of the hound family, they can also be quite stubborn and require creative and patient training techniques.

It is their nose that will guide them through life and they are never happier than when they find an interesting scent to follow. Originally, the beagle was bred to be a scent hound that was used to track small game, such as hare and rabbits. They are still used for this purpose in a number of countries, including the United States.

Common Characteristics of the Beagle

It can be quite difficult to resist the appeal of the hazel or dark brown eyes of the Beagle and their pleading, soft expression. They are loving, outgoing and happy dogs, which are characteristics that are balanced by their hound nature, which is focused on food, determined and inquisitive.

Characteristics of the Beagle

While the beagle is not a yappy dog, they do have three types of vocalizations:

  • A half baying howl
  • A baying howl
  • A bark or growl

The half-howl vocalization is typically reserved for when they are intrigued or if they believe it is time for everyone to get up. Since the beagle is a pack dog, they can easily get along with other animals, as well as their human friends. They also like to become best friends with everyone they meet.

One of the most important things to note about the beagle is that they are a scent hound. The nose of the beagle is the most important part of the dog and you will likely notice that their head is virtually always down looking for some scent trail to follow.

The beagle has about 220 million scent receptors in their nose. When compared to the 5 million in the human nose, this is quite impressive.

Beagle Health Issues

While beagles are considered to be a relatively healthy breed of dog, there are some issues that may arise. The most problematic areas in beagles include the skin and ears. Some of the issues that can occur include:

  • Since the ears are folded over, their narrow ear canals may be prone to hematoma or chronic ear infections.
  • Beagles can suffer from allergies that cause itchy skin, as well as bacterial infections.
  • Seborrhea, as skin infection, is extremely common.
  • Skin growths, such as cysts and lipomas may occur.

Beagles are also susceptible to almost every eye disease that can occur, including glaucoma, retinal dysplasia, corneal dystrophy, dry eye, cherry eye, eyelash abnormalities, lens luxation and pupillary membranes.

Another problem that beagles can suffer from is intervertebral disk disease, which is especially prominent in dogs with long back legs and shorter front legs. Even though the beagle is a small dog, hip dysplasia is also a common problem.

Beagle Size

A newborn beagle is quite small, in fact, right after birth, the beagle typically weighs between five and 10 ounces. Healthy puppies will be able to gain weight continually day after day. From birth to about six months old the beagle will experience the greatest amount of growth.

Cute Little Beagle Puppy Dog

Between six months and a year, there will be a slow yet steady change in the weight of the beagle. Just like humans, beagles can go through growth spurts. When the growth is full grown, the males will weigh between 22 and 25 pounds, or 10 to 11 kilograms and females will weigh between 20 and 23 pounds, or nine to 10 kilograms.

There are always going to be dogs that are either heavier or lighter than the AKC standard range. There are a number of reasons this may occur. For example, in a litter, if there is a lighter puppy, it may be the result of a smaller bone structure.

This is typically referred to as the runt. Technically, there is nothing wrong with this puppy, it is just smaller.

Personality Traits

Beagles are a convenient size, easy to groom and handsome. They are peaceful with other pets and friendly with people, in general. They make great pets for many people. However, beagles were originally developed as a hunting dog and they can have these behaviors hardwired into their genes.

It is important to give your beagle plenty of exercise so they do not become overweight. A common trait that you will likely notice with your beagle is that they suffer from “selective deafness.” If they do wander off, they may not come back if you call them. This is why it is important to either keep them on a leash or in a fenced-in area so they do not become lost.

Beagles are also considered to be chowhounds, which means that you need to keep your trash cans out of their reach and never set food down where they can reach it – because they will get it.

The stubbornness of the beagle means that you have to be consistent and persistent when it comes to obedience training. Using food as motivation can be ideal for a beagle, but if you base all of your training on having food, then you may find that your beagle only behaves when you have some type of treat in your hand.

Care Instructions

A beagle is a type of dog that has a medium length, a dense and waterproof coat that is easy to care for. It does not require the same complicated grooming of some longer-haired breeds of dogs. These dogs are considered to be little scent hounds, originally bred to hunt all types of small game.

Beagles not only like following an interesting scent, they also like rolling around in fun smells, which can be quite messy. Be sure to bathe and brush your beagle regularly to keep them clean.

Clean Beagle Dogs

Due to the eye issues that beagles are prone to, it is important to avoid getting any type of running water in the dogs face during their bath. Instead, use a damp bath to wipe the face. Be sure that you also carefully clean your dog’s ears to prevent issues from developing.

Common Coat Colors

The colorings of beagles can be quite complex and confusing. They have a number of color combination options and there are shades within each color group.

Some of the most common colors of beagles include merle, tan and white, red and white, lemon and white, lilac, blue and silver, hare pied, chocolate tri and typical tri colors. Each color combination is unique and offers a unique look for the dogs.

Temperament

The beagle is a sweet, loving and gentle dog who is happy to see everyone and greets you with a wagging tail. They are brave, sociable and intelligent. The beagle is an excellent dog for children and usually good around other types of dogs.

However, due to its natural instinct to hunt, it may not be a good idea to have around non-canine pets, unless it has been socialized with these animals from a young age.

Beagles have a mind of their own. They are watchful and determined. In order to be a great dog, they will require firm and patient training. It is important that you assert yourself as the pack leader and provide plenty of physical and mental exercise, which includes walks with you to prevent issues with separation anxiety.

Happy Beagle Dogs In Park

When you beagle is able to get plenty of exercises, they will be calmer. You can also purchase animal scents to play tracking games with your dog. This is fun for them since they love picking up and following trails.

It is important to be careful if a beagle is let off the leash in an area that is not quarantined. Also, if you fail to assert yourself as the pack leader, your beagle may develop a number of undesirable behaviors, such as snapping, obsessive barking, and guarding, biting and other types of destructive tendencies.

These are not traits of the typical beagle, but rather ones that are developed due to inadequate leadership and not receiving exercise with their human. When the dog’s needs and instincts are met, the behaviors will be able to be corrected.

Conclusion

There is no question that the beagle is a popular breed of dog. It makes a great dog for families with kids and is very intelligent. You can teach your beagle to track scents and a number of different commands. While beagles are stubborn, with a bit of time and patience, you can help ensure your dog is well-behaved and trained.

Be sure that you take some time to get to know all about the beagle to ensure this is the dog that is right for you. Doing so will ensure that you get the dog that you and your family want. Keep this in mind to ensure the beagle is right for your family.