Beagles are one of the most popular dog breeds in the world, and for good reasons. They are friendly, loyal, curious, and adorable. But they also have a distinctive trait that sets them apart from other dogs: their howl.
Beagles are known for their loud and long howls, which can be heard from far away. But why do they howl so much, and what can you do to manage it? In this article, I will explore the reasons behind beagle howl, and give you some tips on how to cope with it.
Why Do Beagles Howl?
Beagles are descendants of ancient hounds that were used for hunting small game, such as rabbits and hares. They have a strong sense of smell and a natural instinct to track and chase prey. When they found their target, they would howl to alert their human companions and other dogs in the pack.
Beagles still retain this hunting instinct today, even if they live in urban environments. They may howl when they see or smell something interesting, such as a squirrel, a cat, or even a leaf blowing in the wind. They may also howl when they hear other dogs howling, as a way of joining in the chorus.
Beagles howl also for other reasons, such as:
- Separation anxiety: are very social animals that love being around their family members. They may howl when they are left alone at home, or when they are separated from their favorite person or dog. This is their way of expressing their distress and loneliness and hoping for a response.
- Boredom: Beagles are energetic and intelligent dogs that need plenty of mental and physical stimulation. If they don’t get enough exercise, playtime, or attention, they may howl out of boredom and frustration. This is their way of asking for something to do, or someone to play with.
- Attention-seeking: Beagles are smart enough to learn that howling can get them what they want. They may howl to get your attention, to ask for food, treats, toys, or affection. This is their way of communicating their needs and desires, and manipulating you into giving in.
- Pain: Beagles howl when they are in severe physical pain, such as from an injury or an illness. This is their way of expressing their suffering and asking for help. This type of howling has a different tone than normal howls; it’s more urgent and pitiful.
How to Deal With Beagles Howl?
Beagles howl can be cute and charming at first, but it can also become annoying and disruptive over time. It can disturb your neighbors, your sleep, and your peace of mind. Fortunately, there are some things you can do to reduce or prevent beagle howl, such as:
- Provide enough exercise: Beagles need at least an hour of physical activity every day to burn off their excess energy and keep them healthy and happy. You can take them for walks, runs, hikes, or play fetch with them. This will help them release their pent-up excitement and reduce their urge to howl.
- Provide enough mental stimulation: Beagles also need mental challenges to keep them from getting bored and restless. You can give them puzzle toys, interactive games, training sessions, or new experiences. This will help them use their brain and satisfy their curiosity and intelligence.
- Provide enough socialization: Beagles thrive on human and canine companionship. They don’t like being alone for long periods of time. You can provide them with a friend, such as another dog, a cat, or a pet sitter. You can also enroll them in a doggy daycare or a playgroup. This will help them feel less lonely and anxious when you’re away.
- Ignore unwanted beagles howl: Beagles may learn that howling can get them what they want if you reward them with attention or treats. You should ignore their howling when it’s inappropriate or excessive. Don’t look at them, talk to them, or touch them when they howl. Wait until they stop before giving them any attention or reward. This will help them understand that howling doesn’t work.
- Teach quiet command: You can also teach your beagle to stop howling on cue by using a quiet command. You can use a word like “quiet” or “hush” or a hand signal like covering your mouth. When your beagle is howling, say the command calmly and firmly, and reward them with praise or treats when they stop. Repeat this process until they learn to associate the command with the desired behavior.
- Consult a vet: If your beagle is howling excessively or unusually, it may be a sign of a medical problem. You should take them to a vet for a check-up and rule out any possible causes of pain or discomfort. Your vet may also prescribe some medication or therapy to help your beagle cope with their howling.
How do I stop my Beagle from howling?
Neutralize your dog’s attention-seeking howling by practicing complete disregard. When your dog initiates howling, consciously refrain from acknowledging their behavior. Avoid eye contact, physical contact, or verbal communication with your furry friend. It’s crucial not to scold or reprimand them as well. Remember that dogs, akin to children, may perceive any form of attention as a reward, even if it’s negative attention. By consistently ignoring your dog’s howling, you can discourage this behavior and prevent unintentionally reinforcing it.
Are dogs happy when they howl?
The joyful and exuberant nature of dogs often leads them to howl in moments of happiness and excitement. Specifically, hunting breeds like beagles, foxhounds, and basset hounds utilize howling as a means of alerting their human hunting companions when they have discovered prey, as explained by Dr. Kasten. These clever canines may continue to howl persistently at the base of a tree until their human partner arrives, ensuring effective teamwork and communication in the pursuit of their hunting objectives.
Why does my Beagle howl when I leave him alone?
Although separation anxiety in dogs is relatively uncommon, it can be an extremely distressing experience for both the dog and their owner. Recognizable signs of separation anxiety include whining and restlessness as you get ready to depart, dilated pupils, excessive panting, and drooling. Additionally, the dog may engage in undesirable behaviors such as soiling the house, howling, barking incessantly after you’ve left, and even causing damage to door and window frames in their distress. It is essential to address and alleviate separation anxiety to ensure the well-being and harmony of both the dog and their owner.
What do dogs think when humans howl?
When you engage in howling and your dog joins in, it can be a bonding experience between the two of you. Beyond simply being in close proximity to you, your dog may have a natural inclination to imitate your actions as a way to establish a sense of familiarity and connection. Howling is a behavior that dogs excel at, so they may eagerly participate in this shared activity to strengthen the bond between you and create a sense of unity. Embrace this unique form of communication and enjoy the special connection it fosters with your canine companion.
Beagles howl is a natural and normal behavior that has its roots in their hunting ancestry. It can be a way of expressing their emotions, communicating their needs, or joining in the fun. However, it can also become a nuisance and a problem if it’s too frequent or loud.
You can deal with beagles howl by providing them with enough exercise, mental stimulation, socialization, and ignoring unwanted howling. You can also teach them a quiet command and consult a vet if necessary.
Beagles are wonderful dogs that can bring joy and laughter to your life. By understanding and managing their howling, you can enjoy a harmonious and happy relationship with your furry friend.