Beagles are conveniently-sized, handsome and easy-to-groom, friendly with people, peaceful with other pets. And with their appealing soulful expression, it's perfectly natural that many people consider them as potentially wonderful pets.
Beagles are not easy to train. Truth be told, they are independent thinkers who don't particularly care about pleasing you. Food is a great motivator with Beagles, but too many cookies equals a fat Beagle. Also you don't want a dog who only obeys when you're waving a biscuit. Instead you should establish the right relationship between the two of you, where you are the leader and he is the follower. Read more about Beagle Training.
Beagles are stout and sturdy and usually grow to between 30 and 40cms.
They have square, medium muzzle and wide pendant ears.
The most common colouring is the tricolour of white, black and light brown but several other colours appear in the breed.
The beagle’s bark and how they sound is very distinctive, particularly when they are on the hunt.
Beagles are energetic and have plenty of stamina so need a good exercise regime. A daily walk is a minimum requirement.
Beagles enjoy plenty of space, so ideally owners will have a large fenced garden, but as long as they get plenty of exercise, Beagles are usually comfortable in smaller homes.
Their short fur is relatively easy to look after with regular brushing and a bath every couple of weeks.
Beagles bond with everyone in the family, especially children. They can be rambunctious when playing, however, so they need to be properly socialized and supervised with very young children. In addition, Beagles tend to be "mouthy," grabbing things, including your or your child's hand, with their mouths to play. They do this in fun and can be trained not to do this. As with every breed, you should always teach children how to approach and touch dogs, and supervise any interactions. Teach your child never to approach any dog while he's eating or sleeping or to try to take the dog's food away. No dog, no matter how friendly, should ever be left unsupervised with a child. Because of their pack dog heritage, Beagles enjoy company and don't like to be left alone. Another dog or even a cat will help meet their companionship needs.
Beagles are scent hounds and that makes them liable to chase off after a scent at any time! Often called 'stubborn', it may really be more their 'persistence' or 'single-mindedness' that keeps them from being easily-trained...and from coming when called. We recommend that beagles not be let off-lead outside unless in an area that is completely fenced. They are programmed to chase prey and will do so if given the opportunity. In addition, most beagles really don’t like water and are not normally swimmers. If you want a retriever, get a Golden!
Got a beagle myself, she is now old and her blatter starts to fail, so she sometimes leaks a bit in the middle of the night, which is quite sad :(
Beagles will test your patience, they will run away, they will snatch stuff of the table, they will chase wild animals, they will roll in mud, they will smell bad and they will put a smile on your face every single day.
raised a beagle from a little pup. He was very quiet in the beginning but then he found his voice. I love the pup but when he is going ape-shit over someone walking down the street that he can no longer see, I question my decision.
I have a 14 year old beagle that has gone senile. Up until about a year ago, shortly after we had to put his brother down from lymphoma, he was a damn good dog. Neither one of them were that loud, they were both well behaved. We could even let them out without a leash and they'd stay in the yard and come when called. We have two neighbors with beagles that both were floored when we moved in. But lately, holy hell. The moment we walk in the door, it's nonstop for like 5 minutes. It hurts your ears. And like I said, senile... stands and barks in to the corner. To make things even more fun, he's gone almost completely deaf, so he doesn't hear us yelling at him to stop.
Don't worry, your beagle is small and cute now. He'll get there. But even for as obnoxious as they can be, they really are damn good dogs. They are smart, they are loyal, and they are about the kindest dog you'll find. Unless you're a bunny, then fuck you, they'll eat your ass right off.
Just remember as he grows up that Beagles are a tracking breed. They have a mainline from their nose to their brain that trumps all other input. A lot of dogs get frustrated and bored because they don't have enough opportunity to do what comes naturally to them. Try to find activities that let him use his nose to track and find things and he'll be a happy dog.
We had lots of beagles growing up ( my dad hunted) but Molly was our only house dog beagle. Till the day she died, she was naughty. She would get on the couch and drag all the pillows down to one end, then flop down on them as if exhausted. She constantly shit just over the property line onto our neighbors' yard. She ran away more than once only to be found by someone who was nice enough to call the phone number on her tags. She got into the garbage every day and one Christmas, ate 3 giant chocolate bars. Yes, I know chocolate is toxic to dogs but she survived just fine. I can still hear her "baroo" and miss seeing that white-tipped tail wagging as she explored every inch of our yard with her busy beagle nose. She was without a doubt the best dog we ever had. The day my parents had to put her down, they came to see me. I was married by then. My dad had to choke back tears to tell me the old girl was gone.
Beagles are wonderful little dogs.
After 20 years of beagle ownership, I can tell you: A lot of the negative comments about beagles here are most likely due insufficient training rather than any actual breed traits.
Yes beagles can be food-stealing machines, but only if you teach them to eat people food in the first place. Yes beagles will bark, and yes it's a particularly attention-grabbing sort of bark. But it only gets incessant if they get bored i.e. if they're left out alone in the yard all day while you're at home. Other things like digging, chewing etc are problems that can be found in almost any dog breed.
Some good-natured riffing on the breed is certainly in order, but don't let it scare you off from the cuddly goodness and eternal puppydog eyes that is the beagle!