Pocket Beagle

Canis lupus

Last updated: May 27, 2024
Verified by: AZ Animals Staff
© bunthaweekan anpunya/Shutterstock.com

Queen Elizabeth I of England once owned several Pocket Beagles!


Pocket Beagle Scientific Classification

Scientific Name
Canis lupus

Read our Complete Guide to Classification of Animals.

Pocket Beagle Conservation Status

Pocket Beagle Locations

Pocket Beagle Locations

Pocket Beagle Facts

Fun Fact
Queen Elizabeth I of England once owned several Pocket Beagles!
Energetic, determined, friendly, and curious

Pocket Beagle Physical Characteristics

  • Grey
  • Red
  • Blue
  • Black
  • White
  • Tan
  • Orange
Skin Type
10-15 years
15 lbs

Pocket Beagle as a Pet:

General Health
Energy Level
Tendency to Chew
Family and kid friendliness
Yappiness / Barking
Separation Anxiety
Preferred Temperature
Average climate
Exercise Needs
Friendly With Other Dogs
Pure bred cost to own
$500 to $1,500 on average
Dog group
Male weight
7-15 lbs
Female weight
7-15 lbs

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The modern Pocket Beagle is an attempt to recreate the smaller old English scent hounds from centuries ago.

Infographic of Pocket Beagle

The Pocket Beagle (also sometimes known as the Old English Pocket Beagle) is the name given to a unique line of miniature Beagles. It isn’t currently recognized as a distinct breed by any organization, but the American Kennel Club does recognize smaller dogs standing under 13 inches tall as acceptable attributes of the Beagle breed.

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Regardless, the Pocket Beagle is characterized by a slender and athletic physique, a long and erect tail, and drooping ears. The smooth medium-length fur is usually tricolor. The three most accepted colors are white, black, and tan, but other colors can be mixed in as well, including blue, gray, silver, red, and liver. There are even silver tricolor and chocolate tricolor coats.

There are usually three methods that breeders use to achieve the smaller size: cross-breeding, dwarfism, and selecting runts or smaller dogs from a litter. The first method disqualifies it from purebred status, whereas the last two methods can introduce health problems into the line. Unfortunately, there are a lot of breeders who aren’t very careful and allow health problems to spread through their litters.

Potential owners should do their research and try to find reputable breeders who have a history of producing nothing but high-quality smaller Beagles. The birth weight isn’t always a perfect indicator of its eventual size, so unless the small size is already bred into the line, you may need to wait until the Beagle is full-grown at around nine months of age to determine its size.

Pocket Beagle lying on the floor in the sitting room.

The Pocket Beagle is characterized by a slender and athletic physique with smooth, medium-length, tricolor fur.

©bunthaweekan anpunya/Shutterstock.com

Health and Entertainment for your Pocket Beagle

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Beagles vs. Pocket Beagles

The main difference between these two dogs is their size. Pocket Beagles generally stand no taller than the 13-inch threshold of the accepted Beagle standard. Depending on how it’s bred, the Pocket Beagle may have other differences in terms of coat color, proportions, and skeletal structure.

3 Pros and Cons of Owning a Pocket Beagle

Friendly and Charming
The Pocket Beagle loves the companionship of people and dogs.
Stubborn Streak
The Pocket Beagle has a mind of its own.
Highly Intelligent
This breed can grasp human commands with incredible ease.
Tendency to Gain Weight
This breed can easily become obese unless you watch its food intake.
Energetic and Athletic
This dog makes for a great exercise companion.
Bores Easily
Without proper mental and physical stimulation, this little dog can be a wrecking ball.

Evolution and Origins

As far back as the 13th century, breeders began to experiment with small hunting dogs created from the Beagle line. The product of their efforts was known as the Glove Beagle, so-called because it was almost small enough to fit on a glove.

The Pocket Beagle was developed alongside it, although it isn’t certain whether they were distinct dogs or simply two different terms that referred to the same thing. Regardless, these small scent hounds eventually disappeared from history. The modern Pocket Beagle is an attempt to recreate these small hunting companions that once strode beside English nobility. Due to their indefatigable nature and their amazing sense of smell (the nose contains some 220 million scent receptors), they are considered to be quintessential hare hunters out in the field.

Types of Hunting Dogs

Pocket Beagles and Beagles are thought of as the quintessential hare hunters in the field.


Size and Weight

The Pocket Beagle is a miniature version of a regular-sized Beagle.

Height (Male)7 to 12 inches
Height (Female)7 to 12 inches
Weight (Male)7 to 15 pounds
Weight (Female)7 to 15 pounds

Common Health Issues

Depending on how it’s bred, the Pocket Beagle may be at risk of several health conditions, including epilepsy, dwarfism, hypothyroidism, cancer, obesity, and developmental disorders of the hip, legs, or kneecap. While no dog will ever be perfectly healthy, it’s still a good idea to find a breeder whom you can trust to produce a healthy dog with minimal problems. Ask them to provide proof that their dogs have been tested for common genetic and developmental issues. You should also set up an early appointment with a vet to go over common issues. If well-cared for, the Pocket Beagle has a typical lifespan of 10 to 15 years old.

To sum up the most common health problems of the Pocket Beagle:

  • Obesity
  • Cancer
  • Dwarfism
  • Epilepsy
  • Hypothyroidism.
Female vet using an otoscope to examine the ear of a beautiful beagle dog. Sick cute pet sitting at the examination table at the animal clinic

Pocket Beagles, like Beagles, may be at risk of several health conditions including epilepsy and dwarfism.

©Beach Creatives/Shutterstock.com


If you’ve ever had any experience with the spunky and energetic Beagle, then you should know what to expect from the Pocket Beagle, except perhaps even more hyperactive. This is a friendly, charming, and fun-loving dog that will form a deep bond with just about any member of a family. The one caveat is that it does need frequent mental and physical stimulation throughout the day. Otherwise, if it’s left alone for long periods of time, it might suffer from acute separate anxiety and resort to destructive behavior.

Adorable pocket beagle sitting with his head tilted.

The Pocket Beagle is friendly, charming, and fun-loving dog that will form a deep bond with family members.


How to Take Care of the Pocket Beagle

Despite its small size, the Pocket Beagle is a bit of a responsibility to care for, at least in terms of its exercise and social needs. While this dog will be satisfied with just being your companion, rather than a hunting dog, you should be aware that the Pocket Beagle has retained strong hunting instincts that may overwhelm even the best training. Fortunately, as long as it receives enough exercise and play, it can adapt reasonably well to different living arrangements. If you have any other questions or concerns about dog ownership, then you should talk with your vet.

The Best Dog Food for Pocket Beagles

A full-grown Pocket Beagle will probably need around a cup of high-quality dog food every day, taking into account its size, age, and activity level. This breed has a strong tendency to consume anything it can, so you should keep food away from its prying mouth in order to maintain a proper weight.

A-Z Animals believes the best dog food for Pocket Beagles is Wellness CORE Small Breed Dry Dog Food with Wholesome Grains, High Protein Dog Food.

All in small enough bites for your little pal, real turkey and chicken ingredients provide joint-maintaining chondroitin and glucosamine. Since it combines high-protein with fiber from healthy grains like oatmeal and barley, this food helps keep dogs full to minimize overeating and excess weight.

Think about adding Wellness CORE Small Breed Wholesome Grains High Protein dog food to your Chewy or Amazon cart.

Best High Protein for Small Breeds
Wellness CORE Wholesome Grains Small Breed Original Recipe High Protein Dry Dog Food
  • Chicken and turkey meal, deboned chicken recipe for small dog breeds
  • Levels of taurine for heart health
  • Promotes lean muscles and lean body mass
  • No legumes, potatoes, fillers, artificial colors or flavors
Check Chewy Check Amazon

Maintenance and Grooming

These dogs should be groomed with a medium-sized bristle brush or hound glove at least once a week to remove or loosen up dead hair; grooming may increase in frequency during the spring shedding season. This breed is vulnerable to ear infections and needs frequent cleanings at least once every two weeks. You should also trim your dog’s nails if they start clicking on the floor. Finally, you should brush its teeth on a regular basis.


These dogs have a reputation for being somewhat difficult to train. It may take nearly a full year to properly house train them. Owners should also work on curbing some of their natural instincts to wander off or bark excessively. Positive reinforcement methods and plenty of patience will go a long way with this dog. If you are struggling at all, then you might want to hire a professional trainer.

Young woman with Beagle dog in the summer park. Obedient pet with his owner practicing paw command

Like the Beagle, the Pocket Beagle benefits from positive reinforcement methods when training.

©Maria Sbytova/Shutterstock.com


These dogs need at least an hour of exercise every single day. These sessions should be a mixture of intense exercise, games, playtime, and long walks. Because of their tendency to wander off, it’s a good idea to keep your dog on a leash unless it’s been specifically trained to come back to you.

Search and rescue dogs - Beagle

Beagles and Pocket Beagles need at least an hour of exercise every day.



These dogs are a bit rambunctious and destructive as puppies. They will need early training and socialization to become well-rounded full-grown adults, beginning preferably at around a few months old. Crate training is also very much recommended to curb its anxiety and to help with house training.

Beagle puppy plum

Like Beagles, Pocket Beagles need early training and socialization to become well-rounded full-grown adults.


The Pocket Beagle and Children

These dogs are a great choice for a household with children. Its charming personality, easy-going temperament, and its fun-loving nature will endure it to people of all ages. Unfortunately, on account of its size, the Pocket Beagle may not do well with particularly rough play.

Dogs Similar to the Pocket Beagle

If you are a fan of scent hounds, then you might want to check out the following breeds:

  • American Foxhound – As a quintessential American hunting dog, the Foxhound is a medium-sized breed with long, slender legs and a smooth coat of black, tan, and white fur. They have a friendly, easy-going temperament that makes them ideal, though high-intensity, companions.
  • Basset Hound – Originating from France, the Basset Hound is like the opposite of the noble-looking American Foxhound. It has drooping skin, disproportionate features, and very short legs, so its stomach is almost touching the ground. But the Basset Hound does have a docile, gentle personality (great for families with babies or toddlers) and an amazing sense of smell.
  • Bloodhound – Among the largest of the scent hounds, the Bloodhound is a European breed, possibly originating from France, with the tenacity and power to track larger prey like deer and boar. It has wrinkly skin, drooping ears, and a short coat composed of black and tan hair.
basset hound

Like the Pocket Beagle, the Basset Hound has an excellent sense of smell as well as a docile, gentle personality.


Famous Pocket Beagle Dogs

The Pocket Beagle is not quite as well-known as its larger brethren. Nevertheless, there are a few famous examples of Pocket Beagle ownership throughout history. Queen Elizabeth I, who ruled England between 1558 and 1603, was said to own several Old English Pocket Beagles. She apparently entertained guests with their baying voices. This earned them the nickname of Singing Beagles.

If you are looking for an appropriate name, then you might want to choose one of the following options:

  • Hunter
  • Molly
  • Penny
  • Charlie
  • Cooper
  • Lucy
  • Sadie
  • Tucker
  • Bella
  • Milo.

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What's the right dog for you?

Dogs are our best friends but which breed is your perfect match?


If you have kids or existing dogs select:

Other Dogs

Should they be Hypoallergenic?

How important is health?
Which dog groups do you like?
How much exercise should your dog require?
What climate?
How much seperation anxiety?
How much yappiness/barking?

How much energy should they have?

The lower energy the better.
I want a cuddle buddy!
About average energy.
I want a dog that I have to chase after constantly!
All energy levels are great -- I just love dogs!
How much should they shed?
How trainable/obedient does the dog need to be?
How intelligent does the dog need to be?
How much chewing will allow?
About the Author

Catherine Gin has more than 15 years of experience working as an editor for digital, print and social media. She grew up in Australia with an alphabet of interesting animals, from echidnas and funnel-web spiders to kookaburras and quokkas, as well as beautiful native plants including bottlebrushes and gum trees. Being based in the U.S. for a decade has expanded Catherine's knowledge of flora and fauna, and she and her husband hope to have a hobby farm and vegetable garden in future.

Pocket Beagle FAQs (Frequently Asked Questions) 

What is a Pocket Beagle?

The Pocket Beagle is a miniature version of the full-sized Beagle. It may or may not be a purebred dog. Many different colors may be allowed, including some unusual ones like silver or liver. The temperament is generally sweet, good-natured, and curious.

How big do Pocket Beagles get?

The Pocket Beagle does not weigh more than 15 pounds and stand 12 inches at the shoulders.

How healthy are Pocket Beagles?

Depending on how they’re bred, the Pocket Beagle may be at risk of some hormonal and developmental disorders. Unfortunately, some breeders may completely neglect the health of their dogs; or even worse, deliberately create health problems in the process of engineering a Pocket Beagle. This can be resolved somewhat by doing your research and asking the breeder for evidence of their dogs’ health.

What is the difference between a Pocket Beagle and a Beagle?

The main difference is their size. The Pocket Beagles are less than 13 inches tall.

What is the lifespan of a Pocket Beagle?

The Pocket Beagle has a typical lifespan somewhere between 10 and 15 years.

How much is a Pocket Beagle?

The price of new Pocket Beagle puppies will normally cost anywhere between $500 and $1,500. If cost is a concern, however, then you might want to consider adoption. This dog will sometimes show up at a shelter or rescue group. Rescue groups usually take good care of their dogs. It’s even possible to find a Beagle-specific rescue group that may carry smaller varieties.

What is the difference between a Beagle and a Pocket Beagle?

The most noticeable difference between the pocket beagle and beagle is their size! The pocket beagle is almost exactly half the size of the regular beagle, coming in at as little as 7 inches tall and the same weight.

Thank you for reading! Have some feedback for us? Contact the AZ Animals editorial team.


  1. Dog Time / Accessed July 17, 2021
  2. The Happy Puppy Site / Accessed July 17, 2021
  3. American Kennel Club / Accessed July 17, 2021

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