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Beagle Standard
 

AKC MEET THE BEAGLE

A sturdy hunting dog, the Beagle should look like a foxhound in miniature. His hunting ability, combined with a merry personality, has made the Beagle one of the most popular dogs in the United States according to AKC® Registration Statistics. The most famous Beagle of all is Snoopy from the comic strip "Peanuts." Today's Beagle comes in two height varieties (13 in. and 15 in.) and any true hound color, including tri-color, red and white and lemon.

A Look Back

In the 1500s, most English gentleman had packs of hounds. Larger hounds tracked deer, while smaller ones went after rabbits. These were the first Beagles. The origin of the name "Beagle" may have been derived from the French term "be'geule," referring to the baying voice of the hounds when in pursuit of game, or possibly the diminutive size of the hound.

Right Breed for You?
Beagles are happy-go-lucky and friendly, making them a wonderful family pet. They are also favored for their compact size and short easy to care for coat. Since they lived in packs for hundreds of years, they naturally enjoy the company of other dogs and humans. Curious and comedic, they often follow their noses-which can lead to some mischief if they are not provided with daily activity.

If you are considering purchasing a Beagle puppy, learn more here.

  • Hound Group; AKC recognized in 1885.
  • Must be 15 inches tall or under.
  • Rabbit/hare hunter, family pet.

© The American Kennel Club, Inc.


Beagle Breed Standard

Hound Group

Head
The skull should be fairly long, slightly domed at occiput, with cranium broad and full. Ears--Ears set on moderately low, long, reaching when drawn out nearly, if not quite, to the end of the nose; fine in texture, fairly broad-with almost entire absence of erectile power-setting close to the head, with the forward edge slightly inturning to the cheek--rounded at tip. Eyes--Eyes large, set well apart-soft and houndlike--expression gentle and pleading; of a brown or hazel color. Muzzle--Muzzle of medium length-straight and square--cut--the stop moderately defined. Jaws--Level. Lips free from flews; nostrils large and open. Defects--A very flat skull, narrow across the top; excess of dome, eyes small, sharp and terrierlike, or prominent and protruding; muzzle long, snipy or cut away decidedly below the eyes, or very short. Roman-nosed, or upturned, giving a dish-face expression. Ears short, set on high or with a tendency to rise above the point of origin.

Body
Neck and Throat--Neck rising free and light from the shoulders strong in substance yet not loaded, of medium length. The throat clean and free from folds of skin; a slight wrinkle below the angle of the jaw, however, may be allowable. Defects--A thick, short, cloddy neck carried on a line with the top of the shoulders. Throat showing dewlap and folds of skin to a degree termed "throatiness."

Shoulders and Chest
Shoulders sloping--clean, muscular, not heavy or loaded--conveying the idea of freedom of action with activity and strength. Chest deep and broad, but not broad enough to interfere with the free play of the shoulders. Defects--Straight, upright shoulders. Chest disproportionately wide or with lack of depth.

Back, Loin and Ribs
Back short, muscular and strong. Loin broad and slightly arched, and the ribs well sprung, giving abundance of lung room. Defects--Very long or swayed or roached back. Flat, narrow loin. Flat ribs.

Forelegs and Feet
Forelegs--Straight, with plenty of bone in proportion to size of the hound. Pasterns short and straight. Feet--Close, round and firm. Pad full and hard. Defects--Out at elbows. Knees knuckled over forward, or bent backward. Forelegs crooked or Dachshundlike. Feet long, open or spreading.

Hips, Thighs, Hind Legs and Feet
Hips and thighs strong and well muscled, giving abundance of propelling power. Stifles strong and well let down. Hocks firm, symmetrical and moderately bent. Feet close and firm. Defects--Cowhocks, or straight hocks. Lack of muscle and propelling power. Open feet.

Tail
Set moderately high; carried gaily, but not turned forward over the back; with slight curve; short as compared with size of the hound; with brush. Defects--A long tail. Teapot curve or inclined forward from the root. Rat tail with absence of brush.

Coat
A close, hard, hound coat of medium length. Defects--A short, thin coat, or of a soft quality.

Color
Any true hound color.

General Appearance
A miniature Foxhound, solid and big for his inches, with the wear-and-tear look of the hound that can last in the chase and follow his quarry to the death.

Scale of Points

Head
  Skull
5
  Ears
10
  Eyes
5
  Muzzle
5
25
Body
  Neck
5
  Chest and shoulders
15
  Back, loin and ribs
15
35
Running Gear
  Forelegs
10
  Hips, thighs and hind legs
10
  Feet
10
30
  Coat
5
  Stern
5
10
Total
100

Varieties
There shall be two varieties:
Thirteen Inch--which shall be for hounds not exceeding 13 inches in height.
Fifteen Inch--which shall be for hounds over 13 but not exceeding 15 inches in height.

Disqualification
Any hound measuring more than 15 inches shall be disqualified.

Packs of Beagles

 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
Score of Points for Judging
Hounds
General levelness of pack
40%
Individual merit of hounds
30%
70%
Manners
20%
Appointments
10%
Total
100%
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
Levelness of Pack
The first thing in a pack to be considered is that they present a unified appearance. The hounds must be as near to the same height, weight, conformation and color as possible.

Individual Merit of the Hounds
Is the individual bench-show quality of the hounds. A very level and sporty pack can be gotten together and not a single hound be a good Beagle. This is to be avoided.

Manners
The hounds must all work gaily and cheerfully, with flags up--obeying all commands cheerfully. They should be broken to heel up, kennel up, follow promptly and stand. Cringing, sulking, lying down to be avoided. Also, a pack must not work as though in terror of master and whips. In Beagle packs it is recommended that the whip be used as little as possible.

Appointments
Master and whips should be dressed alike, the master or huntsman to carry horn--the whips and master to carry light thong whips. One whip should carry extra couplings on shoulder strap.

Recommendations for Show Livery
Black velvet cap, white stock, green coat, white breeches or knickerbockers, green or black stockings, white spats, black or dark brown shoes. Vest and gloves optional. Ladies should turn out exactly the same except for a white skirt instead of white breeches.

Approved September 10, 1957

 

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