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Beagle

Life span: 10-15 Years

Height: 36-41cm (Male); 33-38cm (Female)

Weight: 18-30 pounds

This loving breed is known for vocalizing through barks, growls, bay howls and half bay howls. They are generally very friendly with other animals and humans, although they can be a little territorial. They also love following scents, tracking them down due to their hunter nature.

Physical Characteristics

Its body is small and lean although muscular as well, appearing to always be at attention with its stance. The ears sit low on its head and fall down, rounding at the tip, the tail is medium length and with a slight curve to it, especially when wagging it. Their eyes can be brown or light brown with a black or brown nose. Its coat is short and smooth to the touch. It can be a variety of color mixtures including black and brown; black, brown and white; brown and white; red and white; black, red and white; and with ticking.

History

It is believed that the Beagles had ancestors from pack hounds from even before the Roman era, although the breed we now know originated in the 1800s in England, its known ancestors the Talbot Hound, North Country Beagle, and Southern Hound. Early 1900s there was a demand for a more centered Beagle in both temperament and size, leading to reports that claim the Harrier might be an ancestor to the Beagle too, along with dogs used for hunting deers and hares. The Beagle was popular among hunters due to its small size, but soon the breed became popular in the media as well, for example Snoopy, or a Beagle living in the White House with President Lyndon B. Johnson. In 1840 it came into the United States, being recognized by the American Kennel Club in 1885. Its club was formed in 1888 and soon the Beagle was popular as a pet as well.

Personality

This breed is friendly and loves to have company, especially from its family. It enjoys following scents everywhere, sometimes getting it into trouble. They need plenty of exercise and will feel the most comfortable outdoors, although being indoors after they have exercised is also something they love. They are tolerant and playful, meaning they enjoy being around children. One of its most noticeable personality traits is its barking, growling, howling and baying. They are stubborn when it comes to training and are most likely to respond when food is involved.

Health

Beagles tend to be a very healthy breed, but may suffer from:

Hip dysplasia, a hereditary disease in which there is an abnormal formation in the hip socket, that may eventually cause painful arthritis. It may also be affected by the environment they reside in.

Luxating Patella, in which the kneecaps may dislocate or move from its proper place.

Cherry Eye, in which the gland from the third eyelid extends and looks like a cherry in the corner of your dog’s eye, which can be surgically removed.

Intervertebral Disc Disease, in which the discs that separate the spine bones degenerate, causing pain and back problems.

Ear Infections, which can be prevented by constant cleaning of any debris or excess wax.

Epilepsy, a neurological disorder that can produce seizures.

Glaucoma, which causes pressure to build up in the eye and may lead to blindness or cause severe harm in just a few hours. Symptoms can include squinting, red eyes, tearing, eye rubbing, etc. It must be treated as soon as possible.

Progressive Retinal Atrophy (PRA), in which the dogs may become night blind at first and progressively lose their day eyesight as well.

Hypothyroidism, a disease that affects the thyroid gland, its symptoms are ear infections, skin infections, hair loss, lethargy, and depression.

Distichiasis, which causes an additional row of eyelashes to appear along the edge of the eyelid, causing irritation of the eye. It can be corrected through surgery.

Dwarfism, which is when the dog is born smaller than normal and can include other physical abnormalities.

Chinese Beagle Syndrome, causing the dog to be born with a wide skull and small, slanted eyes, but otherwise normal. It can, however, cause heart problems or toe abnormalities.

Care

Their coat is dense during the winter and shed heavily during spring, shedding at a lower level throughout the whole year as well. They need to be brushed weekly, and need their nails trimmed regularly. Bathing should only be done when necessary. Daily exercise is required for this breed, and a few minutes of playtime will not suffice to satisfy this need. Running or walking an hour a day is recommended. The play area must, however, be fenced and when walking they must be kept on a leash. They cannot be left alone for long periods of time or will become destructive. When it comes to training, they respond best when treats are involved and can otherwise be very stubborn. Early socialization is highly recommended. Their ears need to be checked for any dirt and their teeth brushed.

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