Beagle adult standing in black and white


Beagles are active and attentive dogs, that make very loyal and loving family pets.

About the Beagle

When socialised and exercised well Beagles are good with other pets and children, which combine to make them a popular family breed.

However, it’s important to remember that Beagles were initially bred as hunting dogs and they can easily become distracted when out on walks. This makes Beagles one of the more difficult dog breeds to train.

Source: key facts and characteristics sourced from Fédération Cynologique Internationale (FCI)

Breed specifics

United Kingdom
FCI Group 6, AKC Hound Group
Size category
Avg life expectancy
12–15 years

Enthusiastic / Lively / Athletic / Friendly / Confident / Resilient / Determined / Alert / Intelligent / Even-tempered

Key facts

  • Needs a lot of training
  • Needs a lot of exercise
  • Makes a great family dog
Breed origins illustration

Origin of the breed

Beagles have been bred in Europe for centuries. During the reigns of King Henry VIII and Queen Elizabeth I there were wire-haired Beagles, some of which were small enough to be carried in the pocket of a hunting jacket. Size has increased over the years but smaller versions of the breed, called “Pocket Beagles”, can still sometimes be seen. 

The Beagle Club was founded in 1890 and the breed standard followed soon after. Demand for Beagles only started to pick up in the U.K. in the 1960’s. The number of Kennel Club registrations grew at pace in a 15-year period from 154 in 1954 to around 4,000 in 1969, when it became the most popular breed in the country.