The beagle personality is marked by some sharp contrasts. Living with this four-legged friend demands bit of a balancing act. Those big, sheepish eyes look ready to cry—and it might be up to you to do something about it. Read on to explore the beagle personality.
The beagle temperament
That thoughtful look on a beagle’s face? It’s inspired fictional dogs from Snoopy to Gromit, Mr. Peabody, and Brain from Inspector Gadget. And it’s not just a look: beagles are a genuinely smart breed.
We might assume a beagle temperament is marked by a life of silent, sedentary contemplation, but remember: the drooling, fun-loving Odie from the Garfield comic strip is also a beagle! These dogs like to have fun, and a purpose, with hunting instincts built into their bones.
These clever canines need several walks and time to run each day. Yet many beagles are left at home without enough exercise, and as a result, they pack on the pounds. That image of Snoopy laying on top of his doghouse? Those soulful eyes are thinking “I want to run! Take me out!”
Beagles—the perfect apartment dog?
The relatively small size of a beagle makes many apartment owners see them as perfect fit for their lifestyles. That’s only accurate if they’re committed to hitting the dog park twice a day.
The good news: beagles are fast friends. Even if your beagle is older or a rescue, this breed is noted for an initial wariness toward strangers, but ultimately being “easy to win over.” Creating a rapport and enjoying time together shouldn’t be too hard. Obedience, however, might be an issue: stubbornness can set in if training isn’t early and routine.
Beagles to the rescue
That ability to be wooed by a relative stranger, of course, is great when it’s your first meeting with your beloved pet, or if you’re acclimating them to a friend. The downside of that quirk, however, is that beagles don’t make great guard dogs. They might be easily won over by that guy who broke into your apartment.
I mean come on, he brought me a snack… —Flickr/Corey Seeman
A watchdog role better fits the beagle temperament—it’s a similar but different job description that makes all the difference. When your beagle is simply warning you that something unfamiliar is afoot, their sharp senses almost always generate a bark. Knowing that bark, and seeing what they’re sensing, will help protect you from the unexpected.
On the lookout…—Flickr/fauxto_digit
Smell you later
Beagles’ have an acute sense of smell, and you’ll need to keep equally keen eye on your beagle if he or she picks up a scent. Once used to hunt rabbit, a beagle will lock on and focus exclusively…meaning they’ll turn off their hearing and won’t listen to your calls to come back. We call that beagle personality quirk selective deafness. On top of that, smells easily distract these dogs, so to keep up with your beagle, you need to be a smart cookie…as in have a sweet-smelling cookie on hand.
A great companion
Understanding the ins and outs of a beagle personality won’t just mean doling out a ton of food rewards. They might not exhibit all the attributes of the fictional characters they’ve spawned, but the rewarding relationship between human and beagle goes both ways. The right beagle can be a great companion for your life story.