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Proper Breeding of Beagles

by Von Locklear :: Featured: October, 2002

The proper breeding of a beagle is difficult process that breeders and hunters go through searching for the perfect hound. The perfect hound is the hound that can jump and run a rabbit with no losses in any condition (hot, cold, dry, flood, snow, ice and desert). Also, have relentless hunt and drive on a rabbit giving good mouth on the track, with no trash running and be the best handling dog in the country. What a Dog! Unfortunately, the world as I know it does not have this dog. But, each and every breed should be to the accomplishment of that dog. What to look for in the choice of breeding beagles is a beagle that has no faults in the hunting, genetic background and the handling.

Desirable traits that hunting dogs must have is first and foremost the ability and desire to hunt a rabbit. This is the number one mistake that most breeds make when determining a pair to breed. A rabbit must be jumped before it can be pursued by any dog. I believe it is inconceivable to feed, water and worm a dog that would not hit the briar patch or any brush to find a rabbit, but instead will look at you when the tailgate is dropped for you to find the rabbit. Next, the dog must have the ability to run the rabbit. Here is a tricky one, because a lot of traits are involved such as line control, good nose, packing and remarkable sense. A lack of any of these will result in the loss of a rabbit that should have the eyes ran out of it. Unfortunately, a pack or single dog will lose a rabbit, then a dog must have the ability to “check” and bark when the dog encounters the track. The dog must have the endurance to be competitive with running mates hour after hour and rabbit after rabbit. Lastly, but definitely not the least, the dog must be manageable and handle well. These are the fundamental traits that a dog must posses before the breeder or hunter contemplates using the dog in the process of breeding for hunting proposes.

The breeder or hunter must try to find out as much information about the health of the beagles in the background of the male and female as possible. Information that would affect the health of the beagle is back, hip, leg and poor conformation problems. This is the one that most people are keen on, but a problem that usually slips is the question how high is the mortally rate from zero weeks to 52 weeks. The question inquires about the dogs immune system that is passed from the parents regardless of the required shots that puppies must obtain. Also, females that have a hard time getting pregnant and rasing puppies along with males that have a low sperm count are not advisable to breed. In other words, once you get the perfect rabbit dog breed that dog again and again to get more perfect rabbit dogs.

The handling of a dog is an important part of the breeding process of a rabbit dog. The whole idea of a rabbit dog is to have a companion that will accompany you on a hunt. A rabbit dog must be a friend that will make the hunt as enjoyable as possible for you. That when called comes, listen for important commands and ready to respond in the hunting action. The hardheaded dog is a fault that dogs get some from training and mostly from breeding. This is a fault that dogs should not have, because hardheadedness can make running beagles a dread.

Undesirable traits that a dog should not have listed:

Cold Nose - a dog should not trial a rabbit from last week.

No Nose - a dog must smell that rabbit to run it.

Shy - that dog will disappear and you are on a dog hunt. What happens to rabbit hunting?

Back tracking - what happen to forward process?

Traveler - a dog looking for the other end of the interstate and pulling good dogs with it.

Racing - a dog that just wants the front at all costs even if the rabbit is tossed away.

Quitting - How many days to you have to hunt?

Undesirable traits are long and very complicated, but we as hunters and breeders must use sense in the breeding process to produce the best dogs possible for the improvement of our sport, “Beagling”.

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