The history of the Beagle breed begins with the time of William the Conqueror, who brought Talbot dogs to England in 1066. These now extinct dogs are the ancestors of the modern beagle as well as the ancestors of modern fox terriers. In the following centuries, small hounds were very popular among the nobility, some of which were so miniature that they were called “glove hounds”.
During the reign of Edward II (1307-1327), these glove hounds were held in high esteem, as during the reign of Henry VII. Queen Elizabeth simply adored these dogs and she had whole flocks of small hounds, which, however, were almost never taken to hunt. Hunting of such a small breed among the aristocracy was purely entertainment in nature – a mouse with a bow could be released in the room and bet on how quickly the dog would catch it. And will he catch it at all. They can also be seen in paintings from that period.
But where the name of the breed itself came from is not entirely clear, here the researchers are lost in conjecture, since there are versions about the origin both from the French language (begueule – open throat) and from Old English (beаg – small). By the beginning of the 18th century, the beagle began to recede into the background, as its place in the homes of the aristocracy was rapidly taken by the fox terrier – a larger and less toy breed.
The thing is that in the country they began to actively hunt foxes, and here, as you know, the fox terrier has no equal. What, in fact, is evidenced even by the name of this breed. It is worth separating the gloved beagle and the standard version of the breed, since miniature individuals made up a specially reduced variety, which was created through crossing or selection (there is a disease – beagle dwarfism, about which below).
The standard version was large, but inferior to the fox terrier. The standard beagle was kept not only by aristocrats, but also by simple farmers to hunt small game, mainly hares. And it was the simple farmers of England and Ireland who saved the breed from complete extinction in the 18th century, when the nobility lost interest in these dogs.
Philip Honeywood – an English priest and lover of dogs, as well as hunting, created a flock of beagles in the middle of the 19th century, which are considered the direct ancestors of modern representatives of the breed. But he primarily focused on the quality of the dogs, and not on the appearance. Another breeder named Thomas Johnson, who lived around the same time, also cared about the observance of external standards. He tried to give maximum attractiveness to his pets.
We can say that those dogs practically did not differ from the current ones, with a few exceptions. By that time, the overall size of the individuals had increased slightly, as breeders sought to create a more versatile dog that could also hunt foxes. In the second half of the 19th century, the Beagle breed came to America, and in 1884 the ACC began registering these dogs.
The Beagle is a small dog, proportionately built and aesthetically pleasing. The physique is muscular, the limbs are medium, the ears are long, hanging down on the sides of the head. The tail is of medium length, the coat is short.
The Beagle breed is extremely cute and soulful creatures that will certainly make the life of their owners more colorful. The Beagle is a very cheerful dog, he adores his owners, loves the world around him and does not hide it. For complete happiness, he does not need so much – affection, love and walks, preferably in the park.
Beagle has a very harmonious and cheerful character, and very rarely come into confrontation with people or other dogs. He will gladly go for a walk with you, even to the ends of the world, and at the same time he will always maintain the same excellent mood, friendly attitude and love towards his owner. Do not forget that these dogs have a rich hunting past, and therefore, on the street you need to make sure that the beagle does not chase someone’s cat, miniature dog or get hit by a car in an attempt to catch a pigeon.
Despite the fact that he is a very cheerful, harmonious and kind friend, he can often be naughty and act his own way despite your commands or displeasure. At the same time, the dog understands you, since the breed is generally distinguished by good intelligence, but sometimes it can be cunning and pretend that, on the contrary, does not understand what they want from him. Well, or just do it your way.
There are several ways to combat this behavior, but in any case, you must understand that this is a character trait, and it is inherent in the breed, and not specifically in your dog. Therefore, it makes no sense to fight with your pet, punish him severely, etc.
Beagle is great for children, and although not suitable for the role of a nanny, but as a companion, participant in games and just a good friend for a child is an excellent choice. This breed, like most other dogs, needs early socialization. But in this case, this is not necessary in order to make the pet more open and friendly, but in order for it to grow up more flexible and developed as a person.
Beagle perceives strangers well, without hostility or aggression. The attitude of the owner to the person also plays an important role, that is, if this is your friend, your pet will by default perceive him with friendliness, and if the enemy, he will rather ignore him. Now in the CIS, these dogs are not used as hunting dogs, as well as as guard dogs. Rather, it is just a wonderful companion for the whole family with which you will experience many funny moments.
As we said above, the Beagle breed as a whole is distinguished by good understanding, is smart enough, but still has a certain level of stubbornness and sometimes does not want to obey in any way. Physical punishment will not help to establish a leadership position and achieve better obedience. That is, you can achieve some success, but this will create a lot of problems in the character of the dog, make it depressed, and simply break it as a person. We need to be more flexible.
If during a walk the dog does not obey you, first talk to him strictly, and after coming home do not rush to feed. Let it wait about an hour. Perhaps the result will not come immediately, but after a while the pattern of your actions will reach the animal, and your role as a leader. During training, maintain a positive attitude, a sense of humor (without it, there is no way with a beagle), and have enough sweets in your pockets – they will come in handy. Do not make the sessions too long and boring, otherwise the dog will be reluctant to complete the tasks.
The beagle dog breed has short hair that needs to be combed once a week. Always keep your dog’s ears clean by examining them for mites and insects after walking, and cleanse deposits from eyes daily. The pet is bathed at least once a week, claws are trimmed 3 times a month.
This dog does better outdoors, in an enclosed yard, where it can move freely. The beagle is also suitable for an apartment if there is an active owner nearby, but for this you need to take long walks and work with the dog every day.
A beagle tends to be obese, like a Labrador retriever, if food intake is not monitored.
Beagle is a breed of dog prone to many diseases, but it is not a fact that all of them will appear in your pet. Moreover, many dogs, with good care, generally live their entire lives, with little or no visits to the veterinarian. So:
- disease of the intervertebral disc;
- dysplasia of the hip joint;
- cherry eye;
- progressive retinal atrophy;
- “Beagle dwarfism” – a condition in which the dog is smaller than usual. May be accompanied by other physical abnormalities such as extremely short legs;
- knee dislocation.
1. The beagle has 225 million aroma receptors. For example, people have only 5 million of them.
2. Snoopy – a small doggie of the Beagle breed, is a character in the Peanuts cartoon series (in Russian translation Little pot-bellied). He is one of the most famous beagles in popular culture in the United States.
3. HMS Beagle is the name of the ship that Charles Darwin sailed on, collecting inspiration for his theory of evolution.
4. President Lyndon B. Johnson owned three beagles named “Him,” “Her,” and “Edgar.”
5. The Bigley is the main dog breed used in animal testing because of its small size, good behavior, general health and low pregnancy complications.
6. The National Beagle Club was formed in 1888.
7. There are two varieties of beagle within the prescribed height: those below 33 cm, and those above 33 cm but not more than 38 cm.
8. Beagle is a hound used primarily for hunting rabbits and larger hares.
9. The beagle breed loves to hunt. This leads to a strong urge to dig and dig holes, which can be problematic for some homeowners and gardeners.
10. This breed of dog does not drool, sheds little in the spring-autumn period, and has a minimal canine smell.
Did you know?
The beagle is used at US airports to detect contraband. Their trainability and skills allow them to search for weapons, drugs and illegal food without making passengers as nervous as they would at the sight of a larger police dog.