Beagles have always been famous as hunting dogs, particularly for hunting rabbits, due to their keen sense of smell and superior tracking abilities. The Snoopy comic strip launched Beagles into the stratosphere of popularity with families. Today, beagle puppies are among the most familiar purebred puppies desired by families.
Beagles are that “in-between size” that makes them ideal for most homes and are easy to groom, with short, sleek coats that only require occasional brushing. They are all-around friendly dogs who love children and are comfortable with other pets. Their sweet faces and soulful eyes add to their appeal. They are enthusiastic, happy dogs who love getting into mischief and snuggling with their owners.
There’s nothing cuter than watching your beagle puppy’s first attempt at the unique baying sound mature beagles make. Your puppy will throw back his head, raise his front feet off the floor, and let out a soft “ba-rooo!” when excited about something or feel threatened. As he matures, the baying will become more confident.
Physical Characteristics of Beagles
Beagles are medium-sized dogs with solid bodies. A beagle generally weighs between 18 – 30 pounds. There are two recognized sizes, 13 inches and 15 inches at the shoulder. The most common beagle color is tri-color, with black and tan coats accented by white on the face and tip of the tail. There are also lovely variations: black and tan or tan and white, red and white, and lemon and white as well as other hound colors such as blue tick.
Beagles shed moderately and don’t drool much, which has great appeal for many homeowners. Their short, sleek coats require minimal grooming beyond occasional brushing, but bathing once a month or when dirty protects their skin and coat.
Beagle puppies are gregarious, playful, and merry little creatures who grow into happy, playful companions. As they reach adulthood, they may become more reserved around strangers, but they are always enthusiastic around children of all ages. They love other pets and are affectionate with their families. Because they were bred to hunt in groups, they are gregarious and friendly with other dogs and will be happy in a household with other dogs.
Beagles are Nosy and Bright
Beagles are curious and will follow their noses anywhere they lead, so keeping them on a leash is a good idea any time you take them for a walk. They are also nosy about what’s happening around them and will stick their noses into any hole they find. Keeping them out of mischief can be a full-time job, so it’s best to challenge them by teaching them tricks and letting them explore whenever possible.
These little fellows are busy-bodies who like to know what everyone is doing and where they’re going. Purebred beagles are natural pack animals, so be sure to include them in your family activities. Because they are so happy and curious, training is essential. They like to please their owners but can be a bit stubborn, so it’s best to work on basic commands early and often.
Beagles are Energetic
These enthusiastic tracking dogs love nothing more than to go on a long walk, sniffing and exploring along the way. They are also happy to curl up on the couch and get belly rubs and ear scritches, making them versatile companions for family members of all activity levels. They do need a fair amount of playtime, and a few long walks each day to keep them from becoming sedentary and putting on weight.
A bored beagle can get into things they shouldn’t or wander off, so make sure your beagle puppy is properly crate trained and given lots of stimulating playtime. A fenced yard is best, as beagles can be escape artists if something beyond their yard catches their attention. Baying (the instantly recognizable “Ba-rooo!” of a beagle) and barking are a beagle’s form of communication but can easily be controlled with proper training. They will bark at an intruder but generally wag their tails at guests. They are not aggressive and aren’t meant to be guard dogs.
Beagles are a healthy breed that usually lives about 12 years. They can be prone to put on excess weight, so control their calorie intake and avoid too many treats. These dogs are chow hounds, so it’s best to manage the number of treats they get each day.
Because they have long, floppy ears, beagles can develop ear infections. Talk to your veterinarian about adequately cleaning the ear canal to minimize the risk. If your dog does get an ear infection, it can be easily treated with antibiotics.
A beagle is a jolly companion for families who appreciate a low-maintenance, enthusiastic pet. The key to successful beagle puppy ownership is plenty of activity, snuggles, and early training.