Beagles are medium-sized dogs that are within the hound family. They are usually used for their strong sense of smell in hunting.
They look similar to Foxhounds, but have longer, softer ears and are smaller.
It is believed that Beagles are the ancestor of the Talbot Hound, which William the Conqueror brought to Great Britain in the eleventh century.
The origin of the name "Beagle" is not known for certain, but it is believed to come from the French word "beguele", which means "loudmouth".
Another possibility is the Old English term "beag", which means "small".
Beagles were primarily used for hunting in the past and they often emit a noise when in pursuit, known as "Beagle music" or tonguing.
They are still used for hunting in some areas, but it is not as common as in the past.
Beagles are of medium length and have an oval skull and square muzzle. They have long, big ears and big brown eyes. Their tail is short and slightly curved and they have a smooth coat.
The practical color of Beagles is white with some black and tan spots, but they come in a variety of colors along with white such as lemon, red and liver.
At their birth, however, Beagles are usually born white and black and then other colors develop later.
Beagles are gentle and usually have good tempers. They are intelligent and strong murdered, but that can lead them to be stubborn.
Beagles were, and are still excellent hunting dogs due to their sense of smell and tracking abilities. In fact beagles hunt foxes!
The question of "what can beagles hunt" is quite a wide range - From foxes, to small animals. They can even help hunters track large animals like bears and deer!
Friendly and loyal, Beagles usually do not show aggression towards their owners. If socialized properly, they get along well with children and other dogs.
If not properly watched, Beagles can become stray as they will try following scents to their destination, often ignoring cars and strangers.
Beagles may suffer from separation anxiety if they are alone for a while and are not around other dogs much.
Fortunately, Beagles are usually healthy dogs who live from 12 to 15 years. Some health problems, such as air not reaching past their ears, can be treated with daily cleaning or medication.
Beagles can stay healthy with a diet of lamb and rice and by staying away from water which can cause ear infections.
Their eyelashes can also grow too long, which is a condition known as distichiasis, so they must be cut.
Beagles can suffer from obesity because of careless owners who want to reward them too frequently. Beagles are prone to epilepsy and seizures as well, but it can be treated.
Beagles have been used to detect drugs and food passing through the United States. Unfortunately, due to their passiveness, Beagles are the dog breed most used in animal testing.
Popular Beagles include Snoopy from Peanuts, The Beagle Boys in Disney's DuckTales, Lou in Cats and Dogs and Buckley in The Royal Tenenbaums.
One Beagle is known for being a hero as it saved its owner's life by dialing an emergency number. Beagles make great pets because they are highly intelligent, easy to care for and are very lovable and playful dogs!