Beagles are a sensation as family dogs, although they were not created for this role. Their charm, however, means that the owners forgive them a lot – sometimes too much … Beagle does not like loneliness, left alone for long hours can mischief or howl annoying the lives of neighbors.
Beagle has been used for hunting for centuries, it has become a household favorite relatively recently. When choosing him as a family companion, you must remember that his behavior in some situations will be dictated by hunting instincts. This dog has a cheerful disposition, swarthy nature, is full of energy, initiative, and at the same time brave and balanced. Unlike many other hunters, he is strongly attached to the owner.
He is friendly and gentle not only towards family members, but also towards strangers, so he will not work as a guardian or defender. Deprived of aggression, it is great as a companion for older children. He loves petting, he is always willing to play, tireless and prone to pranks.
He does not like loneliness, left alone for long hours can mischief or howl, disturb the lives of neighbors. It feels best when the family is included. He is also happy to be in a group of dogs – especially his own breed; gets along easily with a cat or other pet. It is rare for him to get into fights with strange dogs. An exuberant beagle needs a lot of movement. It is not enough for him to take short walks around the block or stay only in the garden – he will certainly find a way to boredom and, for example, dig a lawn. A runaway dog of this breed usually does not cause major problems.
When going with him for a walk, one must not forget that he has a tendency to chase fast-moving objects, birds or other small animals – unleashing him on a leash may end in an accident. On a meadow or in a field, a beagle can move far away from its guardian, especially when the wind is interesting.
A representative of this breed can live anywhere, although he feels best at home with a garden. It also adapts to living in an apartment, as long as it has the opportunity to discharge its expanding energy.
Beagle is a talented hunting dog – hardy, strong, tireless in pursuit, with a very sensitive smell. These features make him a hound for almost every animal – hares, rabbits, foxes, wild boars, deer and birds. He is great as a fluffer and mountaineer, he retrieves well from the mainland – and after proper arrangement also from the water.
Suitable for independent hunting and to work in a pack or evil. Lovers of the breed organize field trials and competitions to test the inborn skills of dogs, and many beagles are still used.
Airport customs and police sometimes train them to detect smuggled food or drugs. Some individuals work well in dogotherapy. Currently, beagle is increasingly used as a companion dog. He can play some sports, e.g. agility and flyball. He will also be happy to accompany a runner or cyclist.
Training and education
He is an intelligent animal, but at the same time quite stubborn and independent. Training him requires a lot of patience, consistency and positive stimuli – he is very sensitive and treated too harshly, he can become recalcitrant or introverted. The dog of this breed is bored quickly, so the exercises must be varied and can not last too long, at least in the early stages of learning.
Beagle should learn the basic commands, but you should not expect him to be obedient. It happens that its hunting nature makes itself felt at the least appropriate moment. That is why the tight enclosure of the property is important.
Puppies from the first moments in a new home require a firm but warm upbringing. Beagle guardian mistakes can be quickly used, and learning bad habits can be very difficult. Already on the first walk you have to get used to walking on a leash. You can choose a light collar and leash from a tape or a leather set.
As a bed, you can use a folded blanket several times, a sponge bed with walls or plastic, which you can decorate with something – the so-called dry bed; a good solution is a pontoon with a removable cover for washing. We can also get our pet accustomed to a transport cage, useful when traveling by car or traveling to exhibitions.
Small puppies should not be left alone for long. So that they do not hurt themselves and do not squeeze, we can put them in a pen built of ready-made metal elements or in a properly sized kennel cage (we put a bed, toys, a bowl of water there).
Who is this race for?
Beagle is not suitable for people absorbed in work and spending most of the day away from home. People looking for an absolutely obedient friend should also not decide on this race. The owner of a beagle must be active, understanding, patient and at the same time consistent. He should also be able to devote a lot of time and attention to his dog.
Beagle. Advantages and disadvantages
- will not work as a watchman
- his hunting instincts can cause trouble on walks
- requires a lot of movement and attention
- sometimes stubborn and arbitrary
- gentle to people and dogs
- durable and resistant
- easy to care for
- can play dog sports
- is a good working dog
Beagle is long-lived and rarely ill. The most common ailments of this breed are eye problems – too narrow tear ducts and so-called cherry eye, i.e. prolapse of the third eyelid (this disease usually requires a one-time surgical intervention, but breeders warn against complete removal of the gland, because the consequence of such surgery is the so-called dry eye syndrome). Occasionally ear problems, allergies and epilepsy happen.
This dog is resistant to weather conditions, but he shouldn’t stay outside all year round – winter walks won’t hurt him, but he’ll be cold in the garden for a few hours; in summer, a shady place to rest should be provided.
Most dogs of this breed have an excellent appetite and therefore tendency to gain weight. You can give them both ready-made products and self-prepared meals that need to be supplemented with calcium and vitamin preparations. During the molting period, it is worth further reaching for specifics containing biotin.
Breeders recommend that the dog get used to all sorts of foods. It happens, however, that despite his covetousness, the beagle will refuse to eat dry food, if until now it was fed only in a natural way (meat, white cheese, rice). It’s good to divide the meal into two portions.
Beagle molts usually once a year, but quite intensely. His hard hair easily sticks into rugs or furniture upholstery. Outside the replacement period, the dog’s coat only needs to be combed once a week with a rubber glove. We bathe him in shampoo for short-haired dogs.
Every day you can wipe it with a damp towel with hair and under the hair – in this way, we will remove dust and dead hair. Every once in awhile we check the ears and shorten the claws – if the dog does not rub them naturally.
It is also worth getting used to your brush and toothpaste. If tartar builds up strongly, you may need to remove it by a veterinarian. Beagle does not require complicated preparations for the exhibition, but a slight correction of the coat is advisable.
The tail should be rounded, so you should line up with scissors with thinning scissors to project the hair on the bottom, and those at its end should be cut in the shape of a thumb. We also model fur on trousers and remove protruding hairs on the chest. We must also teach our dog to stand still in the exhibition position. For such a vigorous quadruped like a beagle this is not an easy task, so you have to get used to it from a puppy.
Beagle toys must be made of solid materials – the best are hard rubber, e.g. balls or rings, while small, easy to chew and swallow should be avoided. Kongi, or toys with holes, in which dry or moist food is placed – work well for a long time.
Beagle is an old English hound breed. Her story is not exactly known. Some sources derive it from ancient Greece – mentions of small beagle hounds appear in the writings of Xenophon, their images can also be seen on ceramics from that period. Other hypotheses say about the Vikings and Celts, who, taking to the conquest of Britain, took with them small quadrupeds. There is also a theory that the beagle progenitor reached the British Isles in 1066 along with William the Conqueror.
Apparently, among the dogs brought back then were white hounds called talbots. Probably the so-called southern hounds, being the ancestors of many English hounds, including a beagle. English hounds were supposedly crossed with greyhounds to improve their speed and effectiveness in hunting large game. Later, perhaps, the blood of hounds from southern France, which were famous for their excellent sense of smell and good work on the trail, were also added.
The name “beagle” first appeared in a book from 1475 describing the everyday life of petty nobility. It is not known where the term came from – some believe that it comes from the Celtic word “beag” (small) or that it comes from a medieval French, in which the word “beaquele” meant a throat or howl.
Beagle-type dogs quickly gained recognition and popularity among wealthy nobility and kings. Since the reign of Henry VIII and his daughter Elizabeth I – a great fan of the breed – they also appeared in the rough- and even long-haired version. Greater emphasis was placed on the functional qualities of dogs, and less was worried about their appearance. Queen Elizabeth I bred her own miniature type – her beagles could easily be taken to hunt in her coat pocket, and allegedly 10 in the baskets by the saddle. Kings of I, Charles II and Charles were also famous for hunting with these quadrupeds. George IV.
Over time, beagles began to be kept in great hardships of several dozen dogs. Only rich owners of large estates could afford such kennels. Less wealthy landowners usually had several quadrupeds with whom they hunted small animals. In parallel, two different types of dogs used to hunt rabbits developed: southern hounds – slower working, with long ears and a deep, low voice – and smaller and faster – northern countries beagles.
In the mid-eighteenth century, among English hunters, horse hunting foxes with the participation of foxhounds aroused increasing interest, which is why the beagle significantly lost its popularity – only a few malfunctions remained in Wales and Ireland.
He took up contemporary Beagle breeding in the mid-nineteenth century. Reverend Phillip Honeywood on his estate in Essex. His quadrupeds were working dogs, but they already showed a fairly even type. The first breeder who noticed their appearance was Thomas Johnson – his dogs not only worked well, but were also effective.
In 1890, the Beagle Club was established in England, and in 1895 a template was developed, which with some corrections is still valid today. The breed reached the United States in the mid-nineteenth century. In 1888 the American Beagle Club was founded, later transformed into the National Beagle Club. The first specialized exhibition was organized in 1891.
During World War II, beagle in Great Britain almost became extinct. Rebuilding the breed was possible due to bringing quadrupeds from the United States, where dogs from leading English kennels once got.
Beagle – group VI FCI, section 3.1, reference number 161
- Country of origin: Great Britain
- Size: minimum height at the withers – 33 cm, maximum – 40 cm
- Coat: short and dense, resistant to weather conditions
- Ointment: any acceptable for hounds except for liver; the tip of the tail must be white
- Maturity: 1.5-2 years
- Lifespan: 12-16 years
- Weather resistance: medium
Beagles are known to often run away. Although they look like teddy dogs, in fact, they are animals with a very strong hunting instinct.