10 Incredible Beagle Facts

Dog Beagle
© iStock.com/Przemysław Iciak

Written by Emmanuel Kingsley

Updated: August 14, 2023

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Beagles are popular pet dogs loved by pet owners worldwide for their cute faces and unflinching loyalty. Their relationship with humans dates back to 5th century Greece, and during this time, they famously went everywhere with their owners. In the 16th century, they became very popular in England, and their popularity spread across Europe in later centuries.

Beagles have become one of the most loved pet dogs across the globe. Besides their cuteness, friendliness, and loyalty, there are other intriguing facts about beagles, and we have listed 10 of them below.

Infographic of 10 Beagle Facts
Beagles have an excellent sense of smell and about 220 million scent receptors.

1. Humans Once Bred Pocket-Sized Beagles

There was a point in history when humans had beagles that could literally fit in pockets. These beagles were called “pocket beagles,” and they were about 8-9 inches tall. Admittedly, pockets back then were much roomier than what we have today. Also, Queen Elizabeth I was reportedly a big fan.

Pocket beagles went extinct in the 1800s due to their many health problems. Now that’s a bummer — it would have been nice if they lasted until the 20th century so we would at least have pictures of them.

Pocket Beagle lying on the floor in the sitting room.

Pocket beagles were about 8-9 inches tall.

©bunthaweekan anpunya/Shutterstock.com

2. The White on a Beagle’s Tail Tip Is There for a Reason

It doesn’t take a long hard look to figure out that beagles have a white-tipped tail. This is because beagles were originally bred for hunting, and the white tips helped hunters to spot them easily. That’s a really smart move because the white tip always stood out on hunting grounds, making hunting a lot less strenuous for hunters.

Now that beagles are kept more as pets rather than for hunting purposes, the white tips still stand out, and they add to their overall aesthetic.

best dog food for beagles

The white tips of beagles’ tails helped hunters to spot them easily.

©Przemek Iciak/Shutterstock.com

3. Beagles’ Ears Aid Their Senses of Smell

Alongside their beautiful noses, beagles’ ears also help their smelling ability. You might be curious as to how that works, right? Well, beagles have long floppy ears, and these ears create micro air currents that stir up scent molecules and funnel the scent towards their noses. They also have about 220 million scent receptors, which make their olfactory abilities about 44 times better than humans (who have 5 million scent receptors).

Beagles are very good at tracking scents, so if you have a beagle, you can put that to good use. The downside to this characteristic is they sometimes struggle with selective hearing.

Types of Hunting Dogs

Beagles are very good at tracking scents, and their ears also help their smelling ability.


4. Beagles Are Commonly Used for Lab Tests

One of the most beautiful things about beagles is their level of trust for humans. This quality has made them the preferred dog breed for animal testing in many scientific laboratories worldwide. Even when they aren’t exactly comfortable with the situation, they are inclined to trust that humans wouldn’t hurt them. Cute little things, aren’t they?

Beagle looking up

Due to their level of trust, beagles are the preferred breed for animal testing.


5. Beagles Are Prone to Obesity

One of the not-so-great qualities of beagles is their proneness to obesity. This stems from their inordinate love for food that sees them consuming anything edible, especially since they are omnivores.

So, if you have a pet beagle, you should have a healthy meal plan for them and also have them exercise from time to time. Take it from us; you don’t want an obese beagle that can’t even carry itself on your hands.

Dog, Pasta, Eating, Spaghetti, Food

Beagles’ inordinate love for food can see them consuming anything edible.


6. Beagles Make More Than One Sound

Beagles have a voice, and like humans, they want their voice to be heard. They also communicate their feelings with sounds. The most obvious beagle sound is the bark by which they alert their owners of another human’s presence. They can do this repeatedly and jarringly if they are unfamiliar with the person or distrust their intentions.

Beagles also make rather sad howls when they feel bored or tired. For a beagle owner, that would be your cue to take them for a walk or something.

Search and rescue dogs - Beagle

If beagles make sad howls, they may be feeling bored or tired and need exercise.


7. Beagles Are Not Exactly Low Shedders

As one would expect from a dog breed, beagles shed their hair all year long. The idea that they do not shed at all is not true. Beagles shed moderately, and this is due, in part, to their double coat. In fact, they could become heavy shedders if there is a drastic change in temperature, especially when they are moved from a cool climate to a warmer climate.

beagle shaking its head

Beagles could become heavy shedders if there is a drastic change in temperature.


8. Beagles Are Low-Maintenance Pets

One of the many reasons why beagles are so heavily loved is the relatively little amount of work it takes to groom them. For instance, they only need to be brushed once or twice a week, and it often takes up to a month before they need a new bath. They also require occasional nail trimming and frequent ear inspection. The bottom line is that caring for and grooming a pet beagle comes with relatively minimal stress, and that says a lot.

Beagle puppy plum

Beagles are low-maintenance and only need to be brushed once or twice a week.


9. Beagles Are Social Animals

Beagles enjoy the company of people and being alone could make them develop separation anxiety and do harmful things for a little entertainment. As this breed likes to roll with other dogs, some vets recommend having more than one beagle around. Beagles generally become a lot more joyful and vivacious when there is another one around — kind of like how humans become bubblier when their friends and folks come around.

boy and faithful beagle sharing a loving embrace in a charming snapshot. Picture perfect moment of a dog lover cuddling with his furry companion, radiating happiness

Beagles love the company of people and being alone can create separation anxiety.


10. Beagles Have Different Sizes

Beagles are often classified as medium-sized and small-sized dogs, which shows they are different in terms of size. There are beagles under 13 inches, while some are exactly 13 inches, and others reach up to 15 inches.

The height limit of a beagle is 15 inches in the United States and 16 inches in England, pointing to slight differences in size across the two countries.

Why are dogs are better than cats?

Beagles are often classified as small- and medium-sized dogs.


Bonus Facts About Beagles

  • President Lyndon Johnson had three beagles and named them “Him,” “Her,” and “Edgar.” According to him, Edgar was named after former FBI Director Edgar Hoover.
  • Some beagles are employed by government agencies like Homeland Security, and their job description often revolves around their excellent smelling abilities.
  • A hybrid of a Chihuahua and a beagle is called a Cheagle. Cheagles are known for having floppy ears like beagles while taking on the body of a Chihuahua.
  • Beagles have diverse colors, with brown, white, and black being the most popular. There are also beagles with shades of lemon and tan.

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