Though the earliest references to Beagles were in 15th-century writings, there are those who believe this breed harks back to 400 BC when similar small hounds were used for hunting by the ancient Greeks. Beagles are thought to have descended from dogs brought from France at the time of the Norman Conquest in 1066. The most accepted explanation of the name relates it to the Celtic word ‘beag,’ meaning small. Rabbit is the chief quarry for Beagles used for hunting.
An endearing family pet with a warm personality, the gentle Beagle is especially good with children. Having been worked in packs, they tend to get along well with other dogs.
True scent hounds, Beagles will inevitably follow their noses if an inviting odour leads them away so they should be kept in securely enclosed areas or exercised on lead for safety’s sake. A breed of incredible stamina, daily outdoor exercise is a must for the Beagle.
For field trialling and conformation shows, Beagles are divided into two classes – 13 in (33 cm) and under, or over 13 in (33 cm) but under 15 in (38 cm).
The Beagle wears a close, hard hound coat of medium length.
Any true hound colour or combination of colours is acceptable.
A weekly rubdown with a hound mitt will suffice.