Side-profile of Beagle, looking off into the distance at sunset.
Side-profile of Beagle, looking off into the distance at sunset.

Beagle

avatarChristy McDowell, LVT, VTS (ECC)

Height13 - 16"
Weight18 - 30 lbs
TypeHound
Life Expectancy10 - 15 years
Area of OriginGreat Britain

Energy Level

Playfulness

Friendliness to dogs

Friendliness to strangers

exercise requirements

affection level

friendliness to other pets

watchfulness

Grooming Requirements

Vocality

The Beagle is America's most popular hound breed. British in origin, these lovable pack hunters are always curious about their surroundings and have boundless energy. They also make wonderful family pets, since they get along very well with children and other dogs.

Energy Level

Playfulness

Friendliness to dogs

Friendliness to strangers

exercise requirements

affection level

friendliness to other pets

watchfulness

Grooming Requirements

Vocality

Where Are Beagles From?

The true origin of the Beagle is unknown, though a rabbit hunting dog similar to the Beagle was around as early as the 14th Century. In the mid-19th century, a British hunter named Parson Honeywood developed a pack of dogs that is now thought to be the beginning of the modern Beagle. These dogs were bred to track with their noses and, when hunting in a pack, they alert with baying cries that can echo across a field.

Prior to the 1860s in the American South, small hounds called Beagles were popular, but they were quite different from the aforementioned British dogs. Their coats were mostly white, with a body closer to that of a Basset Hound or Dachshund. Their temperament was also not as friendly. Around 1880, the importation of British Beagles brought changes to the American bloodline, which produced the dogs we know and love today.

Where Are Beagles From?

The true origin of the Beagle is unknown, though a rabbit hunting dog similar to the Beagle was around as early as the 14th Century. In the mid-19th century, a British hunter named Parson Honeywood developed a pack of dogs that is now thought to be the beginning of the modern Beagle. These dogs were bred to track with their noses and, when hunting in a pack, they alert with baying cries that can echo across a field.

Prior to the 1860s in the American South, small hounds called Beagles were popular, but they were quite different from the aforementioned British dogs. Their coats were mostly white, with a body closer to that of a Basset Hound or Dachshund. Their temperament was also not as friendly. Around 1880, the importation of British Beagles brought changes to the American bloodline, which produced the dogs we know and love today.

Care

What Kind of Diet Does a Beagle Need?

Beagles need a high-quality commercial diet, but beware of those pleading eyes; they are very prone to begging and overeating.

Caring for a Beagle

What Kind of Diet Does a Beagle Need?

Do Beagles Shed?

Are Beagles Healthy Dogs?

Can You Train a Beagle?

How Much Exercise Does a Beagle Need?

What Kind of Diet Does a Beagle Need?

Beagles need a high-quality commercial diet, but beware of those pleading eyes; they are very prone to begging and overeating.

What Are the Physical Characteristics of a Beagle?

Beagles are often referred to as “big for their inches,” thanks to their enthusiasm for life. American Beagles range in size from 13 – 15″ in height. British Beagles stand under 16″. Both British and American dogs generally weigh 18 – 30 pounds.

Beagles have hazel or brown eyes, which give off a soft expression. Their heads are slightly rounded and wide at the top. Beagle ears are long (reaching almost to the tip of the nose), broad, and rounded.

The body of the Beagle is compact and strong, though not bulky. The chest is broad and deep, and the back is short and muscular.

Beagle tails are carried high when they are tracking a scent. They are short in proportion to the body.

The forelimbs are straight and proportionate in length to the body. Feet are compact.

Beagles have dense fur with an undercoat that sheds in the spring. They come in several colors, including the traditional tri-color, red and white, and lemon.

The hindlimbs are strong and well muscled for running after their quarry.

Beagle Facts

1

Beagles began as members of the toy breed and were small enough to carry in a purse. This miniature version of the Beagle was very popular in 16th Century England and commonly referred to as the "Singing Beagle," likely due to the timbre of their bark.

2

President Lyndon B. Johnson owned Beagles named Him, Her, and Edgar.

3

Due to their trainability and charming nature, Beagles are frequently featured in movies. Examples include "John Wick" and "Shiloh."

Other Breeds to Explore

Choosing an American Foxhound
Basset Hound
Dachshund

References

  • American Kennel Club. The Complete Dog Book. Random House Digital, Inc., 2006.
  • Morris, Desmond. Dogs: The Ultimate Dictionary of Over 1,000 Dog Breeds. Trafalgar Square, 2002.
  • Wilcox, Bonnie and Chris Walkowicz. The Atlas of Dog Breeds of the World. T.F.H Publications, Inc., 1995.

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