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A beagle is a short, sturdy breed with a distinct appearance. It is muscular and its tail naturally stands up which can cause the breed some trouble as typically this is seen in dominant dogs and can also be a sign that the dog may have ill-intentions. The dog will have a white tip at the top of the tail so it can be easily seen by hunters while out on a hunt.
The ears are dropped (pendant shaped). Its skull is Mesocephalic shaped which means it has a square shaped muzzle of medium length. Its legs are stout, and its body is compact. This breed only has two recognized colors which is tricolor (typically a white underneath, with a black saddle which leads onto the tail and brown on the shoulders, head and thighs) as well as lemon and white. However, it is possible to see Red tricolor or Lilac tricolor as well as black and tan outside of show breeding lines.
This is an old breed of dog dating between the 15th and 16th century. It is indetermined what breeds of dog exactly are the creators of this breed although it is thought that Foxhounds and Harriers had a role in its development. It became an exceedingly popular hunting dog used to hunt creatures such as rabbits and hares. Throughout the years it has grown in popularity as a family dog although in some countries it is still worked traditionally. It is a popular sniffer dog for the Military and Police and is often used to detect illegal contrabands and bombs.
This is a cheerful dog breed that has a boisterous and outgoing personality. It will struggle being left alone for long periods so proper care and thought need to be taken when deciding how you will manage the dog when you go to work. Without proper consideration for the dog, it may become bored, destructive and develop behaviour problems. This is a very vocal breed and so proper training and instruction from the owner is a must, so it understands when it is and is not an appropriate time to be barking. It needs lots of activity to prevent boredom so make sure that the dog gets plenty of exercise as well as mental stimulation.
A good game to do with this breed is to scatter its meals across the garden or home (ensuring all bits of food are at nose level or lower to prevent climbing and potentially injuring itself. Make sure all bits of food have been found to prevent it from going mouldy and thus may make the dog unwell if it is found at a later point). This will allow the dog to enjoy a game and a meal, this is especially good for the morning when you are busy trying to get ready for the day! This breed is not reliable off leash in open areas due to its hunting instinct. It is very quick on its feet and can follow a scent for hours.
This is a busy breed and so it does well in busy households. It is generally good with children although the breed can be mouthy especially when it is younger so make sure you teach the dog from a young age what it and is not appropriate to bite. It should not be trusted around small mammals such as rabbits, guinea pigs and hamsters due to its hunting instinct. You can live with cats but proper introduction and management is necessary so they can co-exist peacefully.
It’s typically good with other dogs and can be very playful. Some dogs may find them a bit much due to their bouncy nature and they can be vocal around other dogs. As with any dog, they must be leashed around livestock, this is especially important with this breed due to their hunting instincts. They can live in apartments if they are given adequate exercise, mental stimulation and are taken out regularly to relieve themselves.
Training and Socialization
This is a highly intelligent breed, easy to train and very food motivated. However, just because they learn quickly does not mean they are obedient. This dog will test your patience like nothing has tested you before, especially during their adolescent stage of growth. It also means that they can pick up bad habits quickly so any bad habit your dog starts doing must be nipped in the bud immediately to prevent it from continuing and developing. They need thorough socialization as with any dog however it is especially important to socialize this dog to accept all scenarios and to be calm around other dogs. Due to poor breeding some dogs may struggle with dog-to-dog aggression and they can also struggle with anxiety so proper care and attention need to be made when deciding where to get your dog from and ensuring your dog is properly socialized.
As with almost all purebred dogs, Beagles also have some genetic health problems which can cause them problems. Remember it is important to insure any dog for illness and accident so should the time come you are not put in any financial difficulty. The most common genetic problems known in Beagles are as follows:
- Tumors both cancerous and benign
- Luxating Patellar (Dislocation of the kneecaps)
- Issues relating to the eye
- Heart murmurs and other cardiovascular issues
- Issues relating to the spine
- Some are born with dwarfism in the front legs
- Epilepsy can be seen in lines
- Obesity – this is a major problem for this breed and so proper care must be taken when managing the feeding of the dog
This is not meant to be used to diagnose your dog. It is purely information about what health conditions this breed typically faces. However, any dog can face any illness. If you have any concerns regarding your dog’s health, it is vital that it sees a vet.