The Beagle is a small, robust and audacious and friendly dog, compact and sporty. These dogs have a short, dense and weather-resistant coat, available in a wide variety of colors and patterns.
This is one of the medium-sized dogs that has always been a popular choice of companion dogs for decades, which is understandable because it has so much to do with this breed of dog. The Beagle was also a staple favorite in the ring with judges and crowds. Although it has retained a strong hunting instinct, the Beagle is reputed to be a relaxed and happy dog in a family environment and nothing puts these little dogs in sync, no matter where they are.
There is nothing more appreciated by a beagle than being involved in everything that goes on in a household and he very quickly becomes a precious member of a family.
The Beagle is an ancient breed, bred back in the Middle Ages by the British, who loved hunting and wanted to see dogs nearby that could help them in this matter. It was at that time that the aristocracy and the corresponding way of life of the nobles were born. Rich people didn’t have much entertainment then, therefore hunting was a popular pastime.
Officially, this dog breed dates back to the 14th century in the UK. Externally, the beagle is somewhat similar to a dog breed such as a harier, as well as other hound breeds. Initially, the beagles were bred and intended to be used in hunting for hares and to track deer. Thanks to this, they became faithful helpers of the foggy Albion nobles, who could not imagine their lives without hunting.
Regarding where the word “beagle” came from, that is, several versions. One of the most popular says that it is taken from the French language and is similar to the word “begueule”, which translates as “open throat.” Allegedly, the breed representatives received such a name due to their unique voice. But, there is another version, which says that the Beagle breed got its name from a word from the Gaelic language, which is an adverb of the Scottish Celts.
Accurately tracing the history of the emergence and development of the breed is not easy. The reason lies in the fact that until the XIX century, almost nothing was known about her. In Greek writings from the fourth century BC e. there is a mention that the ancient Romans had dogs that looked very similar to the beagles.
It is believed that it was the Romans who brought to the territory of modern Great Britain the first ancestors of modern beagles specially for hunting small rodents, in particular rabbits. And already in England began the continuous development of the breed by crossing it with other local breeds of hounds.
In addition, there is historical evidence that tells that the appearance of the beagles in the UK took place thanks to William the Conqueror. It was he who brought the beagles to England from his campaign in Normandy. It was in 1066. It is also believed that these dogs are the ancestors of Foxhound.
Beagles gained popularity among the local aristocracy during the reign of Edward II and Henry VII (XIV-XV centuries). Surprisingly, then these dogs were so small that they corresponded to the size of an ordinary glove. Elizabeth I even had a real pack of “pocket” beagles. We can judge the exterior of dogs of that time thanks to paintings in which beagles are often captured by artists – tiny dogs with a sharp muzzle and short legs are surprisingly small.
In the eighteenth century, fox hunting became especially popular. Too small beagles could no longer compete with these animals on equal terms. However, thanks to the efforts of farmers in Ireland, England and Wales, the breed did not sink into oblivion and was able to save it. They continued to take advantage of the beagles while hunting for hares and rabbits. Dogs coped with this task perfectly.
The XIX century was marked by attempts to breed, and this, however, was successful. Thomas Johnson was responsible for the hunting dog breeding process. It was in that period that the breed called the “beagle” was formed as we know it today.
Physical characteristics of the Beagle
It can be said without a doubt that the Beagle is a dog full of elegance and beauty, with a unique way of walking, a firm and decisive step. Outstanding among the characteristics of Beagle dogs are their gait, with a gentle waddle and their raised tail, as a sign of pride. It is a medium-sized breed, very well proportioned and firm in its natural position, with a square and muscular shape that gives an idea of the power of this animal when necessary. Its chest is deep and pronounced, and shows a rather elongated head, with a striking black truffle.
Another of the characteristics that most attract attention in the Beagle is its long and large ears, which fall to both sides in a very funny way. Its skull is smooth at the top and ends in a medium-sized muzzle. Large and expressive eyes stand out on his face, generally dark, brown or hazel, which are not sunken nor are they bulging. They also have an extremely strong neck and legs, although the legs are not too long, something that allows them to easily reach the ground with the nose to track an odor. A breed that attracts attention in every way, capable of doing its job, but also an excellent companion animal.
The height of the Beagle is between 33 and 41 centimeters in height up to the withers, the females being slightly smaller than the males. The weight is maintained between 8 and 16 kilos, making it a medium breed that can sometimes seem even smaller. Its size originally made it perfect for chasing a trail at high speed and also for entering spaces where other larger dogs would fail, while being robust enough to defend itself if needed. Hence, these characteristics were deliberately sought in breeding and to the detriment of others that they traditionally had.