Beagles are the most iconic of all the so-called “scent hounds”. With their gentle disposition and loving, playful nature, they quickly became one of the most popular pet breeds. But do they have what it takes to be a good house and family pet? To best answer that question, we need to lay out all their positive and negative traits – so you can decide for yourself.

Beagles were bred as pack scent hounds, with the intention of hunting rabbits. And that’s the role in which they excelled. Agile and smart, they were a prized possession of hunters across Europe. But over time, as generations passed, Beagles became loved as household pets as well! Plenty of their positive aspects make them perfect in that role as well. But, before you make the big decision, it helps to know more about Beagles and just how well they fit as house pets.

Low Maintenance Coat but High Energy Levels

These are some of the most handsome dogs around! Beagles have a convenient, medium size and weight, they are really easy to groom, and have lovely pattern coats that don't require expensive visits to the grooming salon. Their coats are quite low maintenance, especially compared to long-haired breeds. However, as pets, they have an energy requirement that you will need to meet. Bred as hunting hounds, they are really agile and full of energy. This means that they require plenty of exercise, running, play, and regular walks. Otherwise, they are at risk of becoming obese. It isn’t rare to see a chubby Beagle, especially a senior one. This is a clear sign they haven’t been given a chance to exercise enough. All this being said, it means that a Beagle just can’t be kept in the house all the time.

Need Plenty of Space, But Curiosity Can Get Them in Trouble

A Beagle just isn’t meant to be kept in a small apartment or a tiny house. They do so much better in a spacious yard where they can run and play all they want. It’s those natural instincts that dictate this need. Keep in mind, if your house has a yard, it needs to be fenced in. Otherwise, the Beagle will use the first chance to wander off. They’ll pick up a scent – and off they go. And there’s no guarantee that they will respond to your calls when this happens. Beagles have “selective deafness”, which is a part of their scent-hound background. That means that in a sea of noises, they can hear only a single sound and that’s usually the one they want to hear.

Good with Kids and Strangers, But Don’t Like Being Alone

Beagles are great around children, being surprisingly gentle and really playful companions that your young ones will enjoy spending time with. Kids and a Beagle playing in the yard – it’s the perfect combination for the parents to get a peaceful afternoon inside. It is important to note that Beagles work well in a crowded environment, and won’t get overwhelmed or anxious. A house full of people with tons of attention is right up their alley. On the other hand, this means the possibility for separation anxiety issues if they are left on their own for hours on end. They also have deep booming voices characteristic of hound dogs. If left alone or cooped up, they might get a bit barky – so keep that in mind. But overall, Beagles are wonderful family pets. Just make sure you’re giving them a good environment to live in – small apartments, little activity, and solitude just won’t do.

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