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Our guide to the breed

My ideal owner | Exercise | Temperament | Health | Appearance | Cost | History

Key facts

Height: 33cm – 40cm

Weight: 8 – 14kg

Life Expectancy: 13 years

Exercise Needs: High

About Beagles

Hey there! I’m a Beagle. I’m a fun-loving hound that will make a great companion with the right training and attention. I was bred to sniff out small game like rabbits and hares, but these days I’m commonly seen using my incredible nose to sniff out contraband at international airports. I’m not just a working dog though – I’m a true pack animal, so my family will be getting showered with my loyalty and affection.

My ideal owner

With the right care and training, I’ll be a wonderful companion for people from all walks of life. Even so, there’s a few groups of people that I would make a pawfect companion for. I’m a pack animal, so I get on well with everyone young and old. I’m looking for owners who can be around for most of the day because I don’t like to be alone. They’ll need to be committed to my training and exercise to make sure I show off my best side at all times.

Tennis Ball graphic

Active lifestyle

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Families with kids

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Constant companionship

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Committed to training


There’s all sorts of personalities amongst Beagles – some of us are friendly, whilst others are more shy, some of us are independent whilst others are reliant. It all comes down to our experiences, especially in our early years.

On the whole though, it’s fair to say we’re a even-tempered sort with a gentle nature. We love to play but can be a little stubborn, so make sure you make training especially fun and engaging for us!

Beagle temperament scales


On the whole, we’re a fairly hardy bunch, but since we are purebred dogs, there are a few conditions which we might be more likely to inherit or be more prone to.

What is meningitis?

Meningitis is a condition where the membranes covering the brain and spine cord become inflamed. 

There are a number of potential causes, including infections, parasites and disorders relating to the immune system.

How is it diagnosed?

Your vet will use a variety of methods to reach a diagnosis of meningitis. This will include a physical exam, blood tests, urine tests and other specialised testing.

If meningitis is suspected, your vet may carry out a cerebrospinal fluid tap, often carried out under general anaesthetic. The fluid they collect will be tested for indicators of the disease. 

Your vet may also choose to carry out an MRI or CT scan.

What are the treatments for meningitis?

Treatment for meningitis will depend on the underlying cause. This will often include a stay at the veterinary hospital to undergo treatment. 

Some types of meningitis cannot be effectively cured. In these cases, your vet will be able to recommend ongoing care to maintain an acceptable quality of life for your dog.

*This information should not be considered to be veterinary advice. Please always consult your vet if you have any concerns about your dog’s health.

What is hypothyroidism?

Your dog has thyroid glands in their neck that produce thyroid hormones. These hormones have a variety of different uses in the body. 

Hypothyroidism occurs when the thyroid glands do not produce enough thyroid hormones.

How is it diagnosed?

Hypothyroidism has a number of symptoms that develop gradually. A dog with this condition may develop only a small selection of these symptoms.

  • Weight gain or difficultly losing weight
  • Fur loss, especially on the tail
  • Low energy
  • Dandruff
  • Skin infections
  • Struggling to keep up on walks
  • Feeling cold
  • Coma (in severe cases)

If you notice these symptoms, you should consult your vet. They may take a blood test to confirm the diagnosis.

What are the treatments for hypothyroidism?

If your vet diagnoses hypothyroidism they will need medication for their life to replace their missing hormones. With this, your dog will be able to live an otherwise normal, happy life.

*This information should not be considered to be veterinary advice. Please always consult your vet if you have any concerns about your dog’s health.

What is epilepsy?

Epilepsy is a condition that causes regular seizures. These seizures may be triggered by the environment – for example, loud noises, flashing lights or high stress or excitement.

How is epilepsy diagnosed?

Dogs will usually start to display symptoms of epilepsy around 2 or 3 years old, but it can occur in dogs of any age.

Make sure you can recognise a fit and apply appropriate first aid. Seek advice from your vet immediately if your dog suffers from one.

What are the treatments for epilepsy?

There is no cure for epilepsy. However, your vet can prescribe medication to help manage epilepsy and allow your dog to live an otherwise healthy and happy life.

*This information should not be considered to be veterinary advice. Please always consult your vet if you have any concerns about your dog’s health.

What is intervertebral disc disease?

Intervertebral disc disease is a condition that commonly affects dogs with a long back and short legs. It occurs when a disc in their spine ruptures or herniated, leaking its contents and causing inflammation and pain. 

How is it diagnosed?

There are a number of symptoms that could indicate that your dog has intervertebral disc disease. If you spot any of these symptoms, you should visit a vet immediately to confirm the diagnosis.

  • Stiff neck
  • Back pain
  • Crying, especially when handled
  • Shivering
  • Reluctance to run and play
  • Inability to walk or an abnormal gait
  • Paralysis
  • Partial loss of movement or weakness

To diagnose the condition, your vet will perform a thorough physical exam. They will be likely to recommend further testing including:

  • Neurological examinations
  • X rays
  • Myelography
  • MRI or CT Scans

What are the treatments for intervertebral disc disease?

Treatment for intervertebral disc disease will be recommended based on the severity of the condition and what is best for your dog. It can include:

  • Medications
  • Rest
  • Surgery
  • Physical therapy
  • Weight management

*This information should not be considered to be veterinary advice. Please always consult your vet if you have any concerns about your dog’s health.

What are ear infections?

Ear infections can occur throughout a dog’s life and are often the result of a build-up of bacteria, yeast, or mites. 

How are ear infections diagnosed?

There are a few major symptoms of an ear infection that you can look out for. If your dog displays any of these symptoms, you should visit your vet as soon as possible to confirm the diagnosis and get treatment.

  • Your dog starts itching their ears more than normal
  • Your dog is shaking their head
  • Their ears become red and inflamed
  • Their ears develop a strong smell
  • A black or yellowish discharge is seen coming from their ears 

Once at a vet, they will use an otoscope to look into your dog’s ear canal to assess if an infection is present, and if it has been caused or exacerbated for foreign bodies, such as a grass seed, that have become wedged in the ear.

Your vet may also take a sample of ear wax and/or discharge for assessment in a laboratory. This will help your vet understand the type of ear infection and the appropriate treatment.

What are the treatments for ear infections?

Treatment for ear infection will depend on the type of ear infection your dog has, and its severity. At your first vet’s appointment, they will often clean and syringe the ear canal, and if possible, remove any foreign bodies. 

Your dog will usually be prescribed medication based on the type of ear infection they have, which will often be in the form of ear drops. Your vet will show you how to administer these properly and give you instruction on how regularly and for how long you need to use them.

In the most severe circumstances, where the ear infection has gone untreated for a long time, surgery may be required to provide relief for your dog.

*This information should not be considered to be veterinary advice. Please always consult your vet if you have any concerns about your dog’s health.

Exercise needs


I’m a high energy pup, and without enough daily exercise I’ll quickly put on weight. I love my daily walkies and I’m partial to canine sports like tracking and scent work where I get to use my incredible sense of smell as well. Off lead time is ideal, but you’ll need to get my recall perfected first because I’ll happily get lost for miles following a smell!

Get your dog’s tailored exercise goal by downloading the free PitPat app


I’m a small hound dog with a distinctive look. I have a short, waterproof double coat perfect for spending long days out on the hunt. You’ll probably be used to seeing me as a black tan and white dog, but I come in range of others colours as well.

I shed my coat all year-round, with to big shedding seasons in early summer and autumn as I prepare for the changing seasons. You can manage this easily with regular brushing and deshedding tools, so that my hair doesn’t end up all over your home!

I have characteristic long ears and a balanced, muscular body and I hold my waggy tail high up for all to see.

Beagle silhouette



Badger Pied

Hare Pied

Lemon Pied

Lemon and White

Red and White

Tan and White

Black and White


Grooming needs

Regular brushing

Bath when needed


No. We shed our coats year-round.


One off costs


This includes the average cost of a puppy, and all the gear they will need, like their collar, bed and grooming tools.

Ongoing costs

£23 per week | £99 per month | £1188 per year

This includes your ongoing costs such as insurance, food, toys, and standard veterinary care, but not dog sitting, training or veterinary costs not covered by insurance.


Us Beagles have a rich history, with the origins of our breed starting as early as 400 B.C. Beagle-like hounds were described in contemporary Greek documents and it’s thought that our ancestors were brought to England with the Romans.

As far back as the medieval periods, the term ‘Beagle’ was used for all small hounds – but some of these looked very different to us modern day Beagles. Many were popular companions of royalty, including the tiny Pocket Beagles kept by Queen Elizabeth I, which stood just 9 inches tall. 

Even back then we were put to work chasing small game like rabbits and hare through the undergrowth, and as fox hunting became more popular, we were crossed with larger hounds to create the Foxhound. The Foxhound became so popular that we almost went extinct as a breed – luckily, a small group of farmers continued to breed us for rabbit and hare hunting.

The breed you recognise today started to come about in the mid-19th century, but by the end of the century, we faced the threat of extinction once again. In 1890 The Beagle Club was formed and did a lot to promote us and recover Beagle populations in the UK. 

Since then, we’ve gone from strength to strength, becoming a popular choice for dog owners in the UK and abroad thanks to our intelligence and family orientated nature.

Beagle wearing a harness

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