The Beagle is a sturdy, hardy little hound dog that looks like a miniature Foxhound. The body is squarely-built while the skull is fairly long and slightly domed. The square muzzle is straight and medium in length. The large eyes are brown or hazel and are set well apart. The wide, pendant ears are low set and long. The black nose is broad with full nostrils. The feet are round and firm. The tail is set moderately high and never curled over the back. The coat is of medium length, close, hard, sleek and easy to care for. Any hound-type of coloring is acceptable including lemon, tricolor, black and tan, red and white, orange and white or lemon and white, blue tick and red tick. Beagles have a distinct howl / bay of a bark when they are on the hunt.
The Beagle is loving, sweet and gentle, happy to see everyone, greeting them with a wagging tail. It is sociable, brave and intelligent. The Beagle is excellent with children and generally good with other dogs, but because of its hunting instincts, should not be trusted with non-canine pets, unless socialized with cats and other household animals when young. Beagles have minds of their own. They are determined and watchful and require patient, firm training. It is important you are this dog's pack leader and that you provide the proper amount of mental and physical exercise, including daily pack walks, to avoid separation anxiety. With enough exercise they will be calm. You can also purchase animal scents and play tracking games with your Beagle to help satisfy its instinct to track. The Beagle does not have a normal sounding bark, but rather a loud bay cry that almost sounds like a short howl. Beagles are curious and have a tendency to follow their noses. If they pick up a scent they may wander off and not even hear you calling them back, or care to listen, as they will be too busy trying to find the critter at the other end. Take care when letting them off leash that you are in a safe area. Beagles that are allowed to be pack leaders over their humans can develop a varying degree of behavior issues, including, but not limited to, guarding, obsessive barking, snapping, biting and destructive behaviors when left alone. These are not Beagle traits, but rather behaviors brought on by lack of leadership and/or exercise from their humans. The behaviors can be corrected when the dog’s instincts are met.