Beagles have to be one of the happiest little dog breeds on the planet. They are members of the Hound group and have the most beautiful and melodious voices - if you love to hear hounds on the trail, that is.
When planning to add a canine companion to your family, it only makes sense to ask, "How long do beagles live?" A good dog owner makes plans around the animal's best interests and knows what to expect in terms of a Beagles' lifespan.
How Long Do Beagles Live?
According to the American Kennel Club (AKC), a Beagle typically lives from 10 to 15 years. Twelve years is considered average.
What Does the Beagle Life Cycle Look Like?
Puppies are born 58 to 64 days after the female dog ovulates and has been bred. The usual length of a canine pregnancy is 63 days. Beagle litters usually contain between 3 and 6 pups.
Newborn Beagle Puppies
Born with eyes and ears sealed shut, puppies spend the first two weeks of life eating and growing. During this stage, the pups do move around and whimper quite a bit. They require a lot of sleep at this age, and if all goes well, they will grow quickly.
Littermates soon work out who gets which place at the lunch line and even compete with each other for mom's attention. Their eyes will begin to open. and by the time they are 4 weeks old, they can see, hear, and bark! They start to get sharp little teeth, and they can wag their tails and start to play.
A good breeder will have started socializing the pups by this time. Human interaction during these early weeks is critical to raising a well-balanced dog. But they still learn a lot from mom and their littermates, so it's important not to remove a pup from its litter too soon! This is the time that they learn good manners and leave the baby stage behind.
Mom will start to wean them, and puppy food will be introduced. Pups will have their first visits to the veterinarian for those all-important first vaccinations and deworming.
The Beagle Pup at Home
The ideal time to bring a new Beagle puppy home is from 8 to 12 weeks of age. It's normal for a pup to go through a period of adjustment, and even become a little fearful upon leaving mom and littermates. A calm and loving owner can help the pup navigate all the new experiences that a young puppy has to go through.
Keep up with the socialization, but ask your vet to tell you when the vaccinations give your pup sufficient protection from canine illnesses before introducing him or her to the neighborhood dogs.
It's important to start training right away. Crate training will help with both house training and future travel and vet visits. Many dogs find that a comfortable crate offers a safe refuge from an active household.
By 6 months, your pup will be chewing everything in sight, and you may find those sharp puppy teeth on the floor one day! Just like toddlers, the pup will need guidance to stay out of trouble. Puppies learn quickly, and the more that they are trained and socialized, the happier your years together will be.
Continued training will help ease the rigors of those teenage months between 7 and 12 months. Like human teens, the adolescent dog will push the limits to see how much they can get away with. A solid foundation gives a lifetime of enjoyment for both the dog and the owner.
While your dog will be at nearly its full adult size, bones and joints still have some growing to do. It's important not to put too much stress on the growth plates until they harden. Save the serious exercise for later.
Your vet will likely ask you to replace the puppy food with an adult formulation. Regular checkups will help you keep tabs on your pup's milestones.
When Will My Beagle Be an Adult?
A Beagle is fully grown by 18 months. By now, your dog should be fully trained and a pleasure to share your home with. With bones, joints, and growth plates all fully formed, you can begin to do more together.
Your Beagle will continue to mature, losing that puppy clumsiness and gaining new confidence. As delightful as puppies are, there's something to be said for having a well-trained adult dog in the house.
The adult Beagle is small enough to live in an apartment but large enough to be a real companion on your adventures.
How Can I Extend the Life of My Beagle?
As with any canine companion, there are many ways to help your dog live a long and healthy life. Here are some key factors in keeping your dog healthy.
Get Lots of Exercise
Both you and your dog will benefit from an active lifestyle. Long walks or runs every day can be a fun way to get in your exercise.
As mentioned before, the Beagle is a hound and was bred for hunting rabbits. They still excel at this activity! Traditionally, they have been hunted in packs, but a single Beagle makes a fine hunting companion.
Can I Let My Beagle Off-Leash?
It's not recommended. That hunting instinct and fantastic sense of smell can lead your Beagle to take off without you! Hunting dogs can get so into the chase that they fail to pay attention to commands to return.
Strong fences are needed to keep this canine escape artist at home. They are known to dig, too, so make sure that your yard is secure before allowing your pet access to the outdoors without a leash.
For Beagle owners, a Fi GPS collar could be a worthwhile investment due to several benefits. Firstly, the collar promotes safety by allowing the owner to track the dog's location in real-time, preventing the dog from getting lost or wandering too far.
Secondly, it provides peace of mind by enabling the owner to set up virtual fences and receive alerts if the dog leaves the designated safe area. Additionally, the collar has an activity tracker that monitors the dog's daily activity levels, which can help in monitoring the dog's health and ensuring they are getting enough exercise.
How Do I Feed My Beagle Properly?
Your veterinarian is the best source of information about a well-balanced diet. There are a lot of things to consider when feeding a dog. Many commercial dog foods work well for most pets. Today, you can purchase foods that meet the requirements for sufficient nutritional value.
Things to look for on the label are the kinds and amounts of protein, the vitamin and mineral composition, and the presence of important fats and essential micronutrients.
Some people choose to feed a raw diet, and your vet can give you information on that.
Can I Give My Beagle Table Scraps?
It is not advisable to give your dog food from the table. Some human foods are toxic to dogs, such as onions, chocolate, and artificial sweeteners. Most table scraps contain too much unhealthy fat and salt for your pet to digest leading to issues like pancreatitis.
Be sensible and only feed your dog foods and treats that are approved by your vet.
Stimulating a Beagle's Mental State and Reduce Stress
Beagles are intelligent and active dogs. They do well when they have a job to do. Beagles enjoy activities that allow them to use their noses. Hunting is one such activity, but beagles have also been used as drug detection dogs and have sniffed out termites and located earthquake victims.
And they love to play games. Obedience trials might not be the best idea because a Beagle can be stubborn, but games of fetch and hide-and-seek or puzzle toys are welcome diversions. Just don't think that you will be able to hide from that nose for long!
Beagles make great therapy dogs because of their gentle manners and small size. Beagles come in under 13 inches and 13-15 inch varieties and weigh no more than 30 pounds.
Does My Beagle Need to Be Neutered or Spayed?
Unless you plan to breed or show them - and you really shouldn't unless you are committed to improving the breed - your pet should be neutered or spayed. Your vet will discuss it with you and help you determine when to have the surgery done.
Regular Vet Checks Important
Yes! A good relationship with your veterinarian is so important to keeping your pet healthy. A routine schedule of vaccinations and preventative care makes it easier to spot trouble early.
Many health issues can be successfully treated when caught early.
Ear infections are common among dogs with floppy ears. Eye problems are not uncommon, either.
Beagles are known to suffer from epilepsy and hypothyroidism, which can be treated with medication. They can also develop a type of immune system arthritis that may require steroids.
And hunting dogs sometimes suffer injuries and can be exposed to parasites that house dogs do not encounter.
How About Canine Dental Care?
Just like humans, dogs develop dental plaque and cavities when oral hygiene is neglected.
There are special kinds of toothpaste and toothbrushes made just for dogs, and your vet can teach you how to use them. Your pup can be taught to allow you to clean its teeth just like you trim its nails.
Another reason to keep up with those routine vet visits is to check those teeth. Some dogs, especially older ones, will need the occasional dental cleaning. This is done under general anesthesia, so you'll need to schedule that in advance.
What Is the Oldest a Beagle Has Ever Lived?
A Virginia Beagle named Butch lived to be almost 28 years old! He was once the oldest dog in the world, according to the Guinness Book of World Records, but he no longer holds that record.
When Is a Beagle Old?
At age 8, most Beagles are beginning to slow down and show some signs of aging. But there's still a lot of life in most dogs of that age.
Slowing down is not necessarily a bad thing. You'll want to watch the joints for pain, and make sure they don't overeat. Vet visits might come a little more often, but age alone is no reason to despair.
A well-cared-for older Beagle can still be a joy to be around, and can still enjoy life with a few accommodations.
How Do Other Breeds Compare in Life Expectancy?
As a general rule, large dogs do not live as long as smaller ones. Large breeds don't mature as fast as smaller ones, either. And some breeds are known to have serious genetic health problems that reduce their lifespans.
A Chihuahua has a life expectancy of 14 to 16 years, and an Australian Shepherd is expected to live 12 to 15 years. But the German Shepherd's lifespan is only 7 to 10 years, and Saint Bernards generally live 8 to 10 years. The massive Dogue de Bordeaux has a short lifespan of only 5 to 8 years.
No dog ever lives as long as we would wish. The Beagle, being a small to medium-sized dog without a lot of genetic health issues, can live 15 years. That's a pretty long life for a dog.
Beagles are delightful dogs that nearly everyone recognizes. They are handsome little fellows with cheerful demeanors and kind eyes. They get along well with children and other dogs.
Snoopy, from the Charles Schultz comic strip, is undoubtedly the most famous Beagle of all time. He demonstrates the white and black coloring, but the tri-colored black, tan, and white dogs are the most common. They also come in several other color combinations.
A Beagle can be your best buddy and your confidant. They're ready for adventure, or to snuggle on the couch.
If you choose to make a Beagle a part of your family, you can expect him or her to be around for many years. And that's only one of the reasons to love a Beagle!
Get more expert advice on pet-parenting by visiting the Off Leash blog at TryFi.com.
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