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“Snoopy didn’t start off being a beagle. It is just that beagle is a funny word.” – Charles M. Schulz
Schulz was right, beagle is a funny word, which is very fitting since the breed is rather funny as well. Beagles are known for their overall good health and single tracked mind. They like to follow their noses and see where it leads them. This can make them difficult to train but it is not impossible. Beagles are often used to hunt rabbits due to their keen sense of smell. Find out more details about the beagle breed.
The History of the Beagle Breed
The origin of the beagle is unknown because there is no reliable documentation of the bread during the earliest days. There are instances of packs of hounds in England before the time of the Romans and they are thought to be the beginning of both sight and scent hounds. Beagles are scent hounds so it could be that these packs were the first beagles. In the 1860’s the American Beagle became a well-bred strain in England. Due to the popularity of fox hunting, by the 18th century the foxhound was developed by crossing a beagle and a buck hound. Today, beagles are admired for their stamina, companionship and courage. This breed was recognized by the American Kennel Club (AKC) in 1885.
Different Types of Beagles
There is only one type of beagle that is recognized by the AKC, but there are two different varieties. Those under 13 inches and those between 13 to 15 inches. The beagle’s height limit in the U.S. is 15 inches and 16 inches in England. This is the only difference in the two. There are no differences in the breed’s traits or other characteristics.
The Beagle’s Appearance
Beagles are sturdy little dogs that come in a variety of colors including red, lemon, white, brown, tan, black and orange. They have square-shaped bodies with medium-length coats. Their long, droopy ears almost reach their noses and are pretty adorable. Their eyes are often brown or hazel and typically rather large.
Maintaining a Beagle’s Good Looks
Beagles are shedders so it’s important for you to brush them regularly (at least twice a week is recommended). A good grooming can help their coats stay in good condition. You should trim their nails regularly to avoid cracking and overgrowth. Be sure to check their ears regularly, since they are long and hanging they can retain moisture which could lead to infection. Brush their teeth regularly as well.
The Health of the Beagle
The beagle breed can suffer from a few health conditions. Hip dysplasia and hypothyroidism are two of the more common issues. However, the majority of beagles are healthy. In fact, they are are not typically droolers and most don’t have a doggy odor.
The Temperament of the Beagle
The beagle is a breed that likes to follow their nose—so make sure to keep your beagle on a leash or she may run wild following a scent. You’ll laugh at the silly things your beagle does at times but don’t lose your patience because this breed can be difficult to train. They tend to have a naughty streak and can be a challenge for experienced dog owners and trainers. They have an independent nature, which puts them at temporarily obedient.
Beagles are excellent hunting dogs and loyal. As mentioned above, they are funny as well as happy. Their expressions give them a cuteness factor too. This breed was born to hunt in packs so they enjoy being social with other dogs as well as people. These dogs are great with children and other pets but could be better with training and do okay with being left alone.
Exercise Requirements for Beagles
Beagles are active and energetic, which requires plenty of exercise. Due to their curiosity and quickness, they love to play. Their silly antics will give you a giggle and their happy, easygoing companionship makes them extremely lovable. The beagle is the most popular hound breed in the U.S.
How Smart are Beagles?
Unfortunately, beagles rank pretty low on the intelligence scale. However, this is a little misleading. They are very stubborn which makes them difficult to train. This leads many owners to perceive the dog as dumb but they are actually quite smart.. maybe too smart for their own good! But where they lack in trainability they make up for in cuteness. Beagles march to the beat of their own drum. They like to follow their nose, which can distract them from being trained. This breed is driven and hardworking but their bullheadedness makes them difficult to train. It’s important that if you have a beagle that you practice great patience.
Baby Meets Beagle
Beagles are known for being good family pets. We all remember how lovable Charlie Brown’s pet beagle Snoopy was don’t we?! See how great this beagle is with this baby during their first encounter.
Is a Beagle the Right Breed for You?
It’s important when choosing a dog that you choose a breed that fits your lifestyle. If you want a dog to run with or teach lots of tricks to, a beagle is not the right choice for you. However, if you’re looking for a dog for your family to play with and sometimes laugh at her silly antics, beagles are the perfect pet!
What do you love most about beagles?