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5 Training Tips for Beagles

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Someone always leaves and then we have to say good-bye. I hate good-byes. I know what I need. I need more hellos.

--Snoopy

To be a good hunting companion, the beagle was bred to be intelligent, energetic, independent-minded and to have an overwhelming desire to be part of a pack. These great qualities, if not addressed, can morph into problem behaviors.

- Separation Anxiety:  Beagles crave the attention of their "human pack" more than most other breeds. If left alone for long periods, your beagle will get into trouble. Before heading out the door to work, give your pet a brisk walk, a run around the park or a game of Frisbee to burn off that overabundance of energy. This will help reduce his anxiety and keep your house in one piece.

- Digging: Beagles dig for a variety of reasons -- boredom, to cool off in the freshly dug earth or just because it's fun. Whatever the motive, distract him from the flowerbed by making sure he has plenty of appropriate dog toys while out in the yard. If you have the room, create an area where your beagle can be a beagle and dig to his heart's content.

- Attention-getting Vocalizations: Call it howling, baying or barking, beagles were bred to have a distinctive voice that carried for miles. What better way to alert hunters to prey? Since you probably don't need your dog to point out a downed rabbit, train you dog to know when howling is and isn't appropriate. By teaching your talkative pup the commands "speak" and "quiet," you will have control over when and where he decides to let his presence be known.

- Chasing: No explanation is needed for how this behavior originated. Because beagles will take any opportunity to get a taste of freedom, keeping a beagle on a leash and having a fenced-in yard is important for your sanity as well as the safety of your wannabe hunter. The National Beagle Club of America recommends fences be at least 5 feet (1.5 meters) tall and also suggests installing chicken wire or cement at the base of the fence to deter escapes through an excavated tunnel.

HELLO
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