Why Beagles Are the Worst Dogs?


Beagles are known for many things including their cute floppy ears and friendly ears, and kind nature. However, there are many people that believe beagles are the worst dogs you can possibly own and their reasons and there any many people who agree these reasons are valid. In today’s article, we will explore these reasons but remember! When it comes to pets opinions are often diverse so let’s dive into this with an open mind and explore the theory behind why people think “beagles are the worst dogs”.

Why are beagles the worst dogs?

Beagle Stereotypes – Why Are Beagles Known by Some as “The Worst Dogs”

Many people find beagles to be a handful for several reasons. The main reason which comes to mind is that beagles are stubborn dogs. Generally, when a beagle sets its mind on something, it is unlikely to change it. This can make routine tasks such as going for walks or even a simple game of tug of war challenging. Secondly, beagles are infamously known for their noisy nature, they have an extremely loud bark or “bay” which they don’t hesitate in using. This can be extremely annoying for many owners, especially in quieter neighborhoods. Thirdly beagles are high-energy dogs and need a significant amount of exercise every single day. If they don’t burn off their energy they tend to become stressed and restless, and this is when the bad behavior comes into play. 

Beagles are also known in a positive way for their strong sense of smell but this sense of smell causes them to become distracted easily, which is especially frustrating for many owners. And of course, beagles are known for their intelligence and independent nature, this presents challenges too as in some ways they can be more difficult to train and are more likely to be disobedient. These factors combined with an inexperienced owner are a recipe for disaster which is where the term beagles are the worst dogs most likely stems from. 

Reasons Why Beagles Are Called “The Worst Dogs” Explored:

High Energy and Exercise Needs

Beagles are bundles of energy and crave stimulation. Originally bred for hunting their bodies are naturally wired for endurance and constant action which means they require way more than the occasional walk to be satisfied. The truth is a lot of owners who decide to get a beagle don’t understand what they are getting themselves in for and don’t have the ability to provide the right environment for to keep a beagle happy. 

Beagles need lengthy strolls, off lead where they can run to their heart’s content, a slow jog around the park just isn’t going to cut it. Beagles are not really pets for casual dog owners, they require ALOT of attention and commitment and the truth is that most people don’t have the time, patience, or understanding to take proper care of these animals in the way that they need. This lack of understanding leads people to think they are the worst type of dogs to own, and in a sense they are, if you don’t provide them with what they need then they’ll most often than not start to drive you crazy. 

hyper beagle

When a beagle’s exercise needs or mental stimulation is not met, all of its pent-up energy can cause a whirlwind of issues, beagles are prone to restlessness and anxiety and are known for engaging in destructive behaviors such as destroying furniture and digging holes. Well-exercised and entertained beagles are happy-loving dogs, but a restless one can be a dog-owners worst nightmare. 

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Scent Hound Instincts

A beagle’s sense of smell is nothing short of extraordinary. Beagles have 225 million olfactory receptors compared to humans’ 5 million receptors. Let that sink in. Beagles can pick up scents in ways that most humans couldn’t even begin to imagine. It’s because of this amazing sense of smell that beagles become easily distracted. A small whiff of something interesting and there off on an adventure. This might seem charming to some but to others, it’s extremely frustrating to have a dog that can never control their impulses. 

reasons why beagles are the worst dogs

The major issue this creates is when it comes to recall. It’s often very difficult for owners to get their beagles to come back and listen to commands once they’re zoned into a scent. Beagles will often wander off on their own adventures which no regard for safety risks such as traffic and busy roads. It’s important for owners to understand these risks and take necessary precautions against their instinctive behavior in unsecured areas to ensure their safety and prevent them from getting lost.

Vocalization and Baying

Beagles are not “quiet dogs” to say the least. They absolutely love to express themselves vocally and they are known for a distinctive sound they make known as a “bay” This bark is a throwback to their hunting days where they were used for alerting hunters to the location of prey. While “baying” might be music to a hunter’s ears its certainly not for the average dog owner. It’s certainly not appreciated in modern living environments, especially in densely populated areas.

The reality is that beagles are often bothersome to neighbors and others who prefer a more relaxed, calm, tranquil environment. Their barking can easily penetrate walls and carries over long distances, making beagles incredibly disruptive in certain situations. This trait is also quite challenging to manage, especially for new dog owners, or owners who lack experience in correctly training dogs. Beagle owners often have to think outside the box and find creative solutions in order to minimize the noise. 

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Independent Nature

Beagles march to the beat of their own drum and are known for their independent nature which often gets interpreted as a kind of stubbornness or desire to follow their own agenda. The truth is this isn’t necessarily defiance as such but a reflection of their inquisitive minds and backgrounds as hunting dogs where their decision-making and problem-solving were paramount

This type of nature is what leads many people into thinking beagles are the worst dogs you can own because they prioritize their instincts over listening to commands unless trained effectively which in most cases they are not. 

Using positive reinforcement techniques, like treats and praise, can be very effective. It’s also important for beagle owners to understand and respect their dog’s independent nature and work with it, rather than trying to suppress it. Establishing a bond of trust and cooperation is key in guiding a beagle through the training process.

Managing Beagle Behavior

Handling the absolute hurricane of energy and emotions that is a beagle requires a well-thought-out strategy: To manage and address these common behavior challenges in beagles we need to focus on four key areas. If we can manage these effectively beagles are certainly not the worst dogs to own and rather some of the best. 

  1. Regular Exercise: As previously mentioned, beagles are extremely high-energy dogs, engaging them in regular physical activities such as long walks, playtime, or even agility training. This not only keeps them physically healthy but also helps in curbing restlessness and destructive behaviors. 
  2. Training: Training and consistency is the name of the game when it comes to beagles, you need to employ positive techniques and reward good behavior with treats or praise. Be patient and remember that beagles can be a little more difficult to train because of their natural behaviors. Professional help might be needed to correct mistakes and bad habits. 
  3. Mental Stimulation: Beagles are intelligent and curious. Keeping their brains engaged is just as important as physical exercise. Puzzle toys, scent games, and obedience training are great ways to keep them mentally stimulated. This will also help in reducing instances of boredom-induced baying and destructive behavior.
  4. Socialization: Exposing your beagle to different environments, people and other dogs from a young age is essential for them to develop a well-rounded temperament. Socialized dogs suffer less from anxiety and fearfulness of unfamiliar situations. So take your beagle to the park! Invite your friends over or even just enroll them in doggy daycare. The earlier the better. 
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Expert Opinion: Are Beagles the Worst Dogs? Who Should Own a Beagle?

“Beagles are best suited for individuals or families who lead an active lifestyle and have the time, patience, and commitment to engage in consistent training and socialization. These dogs thrive when they have ample physical exercise and mental stimulation. It’s important to understand that beagles have an innate drive to follow scents, which, coupled with their high energy and vocal nature, can be challenging. Many people find beagles difficult to deal with because they underestimate the level of commitment required to keep these intelligent and spirited dogs content. It is paramount that prospective beagle owners have a clear understanding of the breed’s characteristics and are ready to provide a structured environment where the dog’s physical and mental needs are met.”

Dr. Olivia Thompson, Veterinarian and Canine Behavior Specialist

Appreciating Beagle Qualities

Among the wild mix of traits that make up a beagle their friendly nature, loyalty, and affectionate personalities stand out clearly. Beagles are some of the friendliest dogs known to man and their wagging tails can light up a room. Beagles often form tight-knit bonds with their families offering a steadfast companionship that’s hard to match. 

However, this bundle of joy comes with a set of difficult responsibilities and demands that some owners find too much. For someone thinking of adding a beagle to their lives, you need to do ample research and truly understand what you are getting yourselves in for. Beagles for some people are certainly the worst dogs, but for those who understand the challenges and responsibilities that come with owning a beagle and are willing to put in the time and effort to understand the challenges, they easily become one of the best dogs to own. 


In conclusion, beagles, with their boundless energy, keen sense of smell, and vocal nature, can be challenging for some owners, particularly if they are not prepared for the commitment these dogs require. However, by understanding and embracing the beagle’s intrinsic traits, and through regular exercise, consistent training, mental stimulation, and socialization, beagles can be joyful and rewarding companions. It’s essential for potential owners to recognize and adapt to the needs of these intelligent and spirited dogs to ensure a harmonious and fulfilling relationship.