Hear those hound dog yowls all over Fairfield County? See those happy tails wagging through the tall, bunny-filled grass in Newtown? Those are the sights and sounds of our resident beagle population, and an astounding 147 of them are under the care of the doctors at Brookfield.

 

What’s NOT to love about the beagle? That long nose riding around on 4 squat legs inspired one of the most beloved cartoon pets in modern day, Charlie Brown’s faithful companion, Snoopy. In the vet world, they’re known as little tanks of good health. Originally a rag-tag mixture of hounds similar to the dachshund, this breed was bred for its current appearance with the injection of British breeding stock in the mid 1800s.

 

The AKA Breed Standard (it’s 5th most popular dog!)

Click on the circles to find out more about the standards for each body part

Friendly and Good Natured

Kids love this dog and it loves them back. It’s happy in the company of other pets and possesses a sweet, loving, affable personality. It’s a breed that is pulled along by its fantastic sense of smell and driven to find the source of it. It’s a master hunting dog with few equals, loves to track, loves to work in the company of other dogs, and can be tireless in its pursuit of game.

At Risk for Roaming

But it’s that same drive that can make this dog a bit headstrong. The AKA gives it a ‘B’ rating when it comes to trainability. Off lead and out in the open, this dog’s instinctual drive to track often gets the best of it. Beagles can run off despite your loudest commands to return. A microchip is a must for this breed.

Don’t Sit! Please Don’t Sit!!!

There are more than 1300 dogs employed by our nation’s border patrol, many of them beagles. Return to the U.S. after an international flight and one will most likely weave its way through your legs and the legs of others waiting in line at customs. Their keen sense of smell can ferret out drugs, food, explosives, firearms…even foreign currency. What you don’t want to see is one sit in front of your luggage. That’s the beagle’s way of saying to its handler, ‘You need to open up this lady’s bags’.

A Significant Portion of Shelter Populations

Interested in acquiring a beagle? Good for you, but bad for them, this breed is often a resident in shelters. For next-to-nothing, you can acquire a pure breed dog and save a life all at the same time. The right home for this dog must only include an opportunity to blow off some of its intense desire to hunt and track.   Otherwise, it’s a happy addition to any family.  Brush its teeth. Watch its weight. Bring it into you life.

Ladies and gentleman, may I present, the beagle.

They get along with other pets, love to eat and drink…oh and they also dance 🙂

About the author:  Bash Halow is an experienced veterinary practice consultant, veterinary practice manager and author.