Getting a beagle is an excellent choice.
They are friendly, energetic, and loads of fun. They are a great family dog, too, and ideal for kids.
But if you are like most homeowners, you are probably also looking for someone who can protect your family if the need arises.
So you ask, are beagles good guard dogs despite their medium size and mild temperament?
You might not be fully convinced yet that a beagle is the best choice for you and your family, but going through the rest of this article might make you more confident with your decision.
Are Beagles Protective?
Beagles are an all-sunshine dog. They have a soulful and loving personality and will be a perfect addition to your home.
This breed makes a fantastic companion, and you can expect them to be loyal to you no matter what happens or what the circumstances are.
When appropriately trained in socializing, a beagle will interact well with other pets and human friends. However, their loyalty is usually reserved for you or the constant person in their life.
Beagles are intuitively protective. Their tender face and amiable personality should never be taken for granted. They can also go all defensive and protective of you if they sense any danger or threat directed at you.
Beagles are considered pack animals, and packs follow and strictly adhere to a social pecking order. Beagles perceive their human family as the pack.
You, who provide him food and other essentials and teach him better behavior and commands, become the alpha of the pack. You are his leader. Your beagle will expect the orders to come from you and will do what he can for you to be pleased with him.
When your beagle feels like something or someone is a threat to his alpha, he goes into a protective and defensive mode.
By nature, beagles are rarely aggressive unless they are under certain specific circumstances. Seldom would a beagle bite or attack his owner. What is usual, though, when the dog senses danger, is barking.
Beagles are known to be barkers, and they bark at the potential threat in the hopes that the barking can scare the other animal or person away.
Although very occasionally, there are some instances when your beagle can be overprotective of you. They would jump and start barking at almost everyone you meet, say hello to, or even shake hands with.
Usually, rescue dogs and beagles that have inadequate social training do this.
Overall, the protectiveness of beagles is just right and fair. They are not overprotective; their protectiveness is generally within acceptable reason.
Are Beagles Protective of Babies and Children?
Getting a beagle to join your family is like having another kid.
Most families with kids would opt to get a beagle than other dog breeds because they are good with children. They have this kind of gentleness about them that makes them forge bonds with kids easily.
Children who grow up with beagles or even just a single Snoopy dog end up treating them as a best friend.
Kids love to play, and beagles love playing with a passion. Both have all the time in the world to play to their hearts’ content. Kids and beagles love to cuddle, snuggle, and create this strong human-dog bond. Your beagle loves and craves that undivided attention that any kid will give. Sometimes, beagles are even more tolerant of the kids than the parents.
A beagle that is well-bonded with a child will happily follow the kid anywhere and everywhere. Expect that where the child is, the beagle is never far behind. The beagle will take it upon himself to be the guardian of the child. When it senses a potential threat, your beagle will start barking and become defensive.
This non-stop barking may not necessarily scare away the threat, but it will be enough to attract attention and call for help.
As far as beagles and babies are concerned, this is another beautiful love story. Beagles are naturally calm and gentle with babies. But, regardless of how gentle your beagle is with your baby, never leave them alone.
You can socialize your beagle and your baby gradually; remind the beagle to be gentle until it picks up the behavior seamlessly.
Are Beagles Good Guard Dogs?
Beagles can be pegged as great companions, as they are highly intelligent and full of energy. But are beagles good guard dogs, too?
Beagles are not intended to be guard dogs. They are protective and great family dogs. They also excel in hunting, but they’re the least breed you want to be with you when faced with an intruder.
They can bark and growl, snarl, and even try to bite, but they are not reliable with actual confrontations.
Still, beagles are not bad at all. You also have to factor in your preference. Beagles are annoyingly loud barkers, which is how they show their defensive side.
If you want a keen dog that can alert or warn you that a stranger is in your territory or something is off, you can rely on beagles for these tasks.
Beagles also lack in size. They are not big enough for combat, and they are too temperate to attack proactively. They will give their warning from a distance but, knowing their size and their chances with a human or a bigger dog, your beagle will just put itself in front of you but at a safe distance from the threat.
If you are looking for a top-of-the-line guard dog, it would be best to consider larger dog breeds like the Great Dane, Doberman, or German shepherd.
What Makes Beagles Bad Guard Dogs?
Your soulful beagle, whose love can be seen plainly in its eyes and evident in its ears, is all you need after a bad day. But you will need reinforcement when you need to fight off someone or if real danger is right in front of you.
A beagle is not an entirely wrong choice, but again if you want a guard dog, a beagle may not live up to your expectations and you might not enjoy having a dog around.
Here are some obvious reasons why beagles are not ideal guard dogs:
Beagles Are Intimated With Confrontations
Blame it on their sweet, friendly, and mild temperament, but beagles will not attack even if danger is up ahead. It will bark its head off but will not initiate a vicious and upfront confrontation. Beagles tend to bark while backing off from the source of the threat. It will not fearlessly charge a stranger.
For a medium-sized dog, beagles may not do well in restraining another animal or a person. Most guard dogs will bark in warning, and if the barking doesn’t do the job, they are trained to take action and restrain the intruder. Sometimes, they are also trained to incapacitate.
Meanwhile, beagles are relatively too short to take on a full-grown man, and their size can’t very well be solid enough to weaken a person.
Beagles don’t look intimidating at all. It is one of those dogs that are too friendly and incapable of hurting anything. This might be a perceived perspective, but would you even consider a house that keeps a Dobberman or a Rottweiler if you were a burglar?
Dark, tall, and lean dogs are deemed dangerous, and there are dog breeds that fall under that category. Considering the beagle’s evident qualities, looks, and reputation, burglars would choose to enter a home with a Snoopy.
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Are Beagles Good Watch Dogs?
Beagles would be an ideal part of your family. It is one of the best options when you are looking for a family dog.
Although beagles don’t make good guard dogs, they are considered excellent watchdogs because they are brilliant and usually have superb social skills.
Watch Dogs are naturally alert, and they are the best living alarm systems when there is a potential danger or threat.
Beagles were initially bred to alert the hunters and let them know the location of foxes and other possible prey. With their floppy ears, these dogs have great vocals and are very confident in vocally expressing that someone is about to enter your property or that a stranger is near you.
With its unique bark coupled with excellent training from you, your beagle can be an accurate and reliable watchdog for your home. You can even train it to become your children’s or baby’s personal watchdog, and they’ll love this responsibility.
Again, you need to differentiate that beagles, due to their non-aggressive personality, will not attack other animals or strangers. Still, they can alert you with their superb barking if they sense something amiss.
Why are Beagles Good Watch Dogs?
When an American family is considering getting a dog, the beagle is always included as an option. Beagles rank as the fifth most favorite and popular breed in the United States, and who can blame these families who want their very own Snoopy in their home?
Aside from a furball of sunshine and energy that you will get from your beagle, you also gain a reliable watchdog for yourself and the rest of your family. Beagles are good and can even be excellent watchdogs with a little training.
If you are still having second thoughts, here are some reasons why beagles make good watchdogs.
Beagles Love You
In general, beagles love humans. They love being around you and being involved in your human activities. They love the attention that kids give them, and they live for endless hours of playtime. These traits make them perfect watch dogs because, stranger or not, they consistently show excitement when a human is approaching or near them.
Beagles Are Loyal To You
When your beagle sees you as the alpha of your pack, you will earn its obedience. Most importantly, you will earn your dog’s loyalty to you. The mere gesture of you giving it food and shelter is enough for it to be devoted to you. For your beagle, even if you are the alpha, you are part of his pack, and loyalty is innate in a pack.
This is one reason why beagles are good watchdogs because they are driven by their dedication to you. They will do whatever their pudgy, medium-sized frame can do to warn you and others around you that there is a potential threat or danger.
This would explain why beagles, and even other breeds, would often put their lives at risk to protect you and the rest of the family; their pack instincts necessitate this from them.
Beagles Are Barkers
Another reputation of a beagle is its love for barking. Some might find this amusing and frustrating, especially if the slightest movement can lead to non-stop barking. Beagles know that they can’t do much physical confrontation with their size, so they use their distinct vocals to express their warning. They can go on barking for hours at a time until you finally relent and find out what the barking is all about and assure them that all is well.
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How to Train Your Beagle to be a Watchdog
Most homeowners and pet owners have this immediate notion that you automatically have a watchdog once you have a dog.
However, you have to consider your dog’s overall personality. If your dog, for instance, a beagle, loves people and would be happy to see and greet all people, it may need some reinforcement to be a better watchdog.
Beagles already know how to watch over you, the rest of the pack, and its territory, a.k.a. the family home, but they might still need a little help.
Here are some suggestions on how you can train your beagle to be a better watchdog.
- Basic obedience always goes a long way. If you have a spacious area in your property, like a yard, maximize this area and use it in training your dog. Your beagle will discover which area is considered his territory while learning to follow your commands. The basic commands of “come,” “down,” “leave it,” “sit,” and “stay” are necessary. You can also teach your Snoopy to bark on your command.
- Impulse control training is also an excellent supplementary training. The objective of this is to control your beagle’s impulse to jump up, run over, and try to play with your visitors.
You can teach your beagle to sit on command or to lie down when someone comes in. Your dog should stay put or lie down, and watch and observe from afar. This might be difficult the first few tries, especially if the visitor is someone he is familiar with.
Like humans, your beagle will also get excited to see an old friend and automatically approach in greeting. But be consistent with your command and reward obedience.
- Let your beagle run the property boundaries. Getting in some exercise and doing this every day after your obedience training will always remind your beagle of his territory’s extent.
Your beagle will be more familiar with your home area and protect the whole perimeter. This is easier done when you have your property fenced in, but if it is just a wide-open space, daily walks are very much required.
- Give your dog more independence. Try to leave your beagle alone in one of your property areas when he is old enough. At around eight months old and with obedience training on-going, let him have a feel of his territory.
Another characteristic of a beagle is it is full of resolve and wit; thus, it can concentrate on something like a command for a very long time.
- Do dry runs with your dog. Get with a friend who your beagle is unfamiliar with and let this person try to come up to your home. If your dog is outside, let your friend come up and knock.
If your dog is inside your home, ask your friend to knock or peep in one of the windows. You can see how your dog would react. As a watchdog, seeing a stranger this close to the territory he is supposed to protect will send him into a frenzied barking—alerting you that someone who’s not supposed to be there is inside your property.
From here, you can take over the situation.
- Continue with your practice. You will need another unfamiliar face for this bit of training. When your beagle sees the stranger and starts barking and growling, your friend needs to appear frightened. This will boost your beagle’s morale.
You also have to praise your dog for keeping watch and being alert. Your beagle craves to please you, and this action that yielded reward and praise is something that he will keep on doing.
However, if your beagle met the stranger halfway and, instead of barking, is doing lots of excited tail wagging, then it’s best to try again.
- Know your beagle’s limit. If your dog shows fear during your dry runs and practice sessions, then make adjustments with your training pace. Your future watchdog is getting overwhelmed. Let your beagle play and relax, and then try again with another accomplice.
If you don’t have the time or you are not confident with your patience and skill in training your beagle to be a watchdog, then you always have the option to get assistance from professional dog trainers.
You have to understand that your sweet beagle is not a top security dog that can provide you with full protection. Your beagle will be an additional pair of eyes that can warn you when there is a possible danger.
However, it is ideal that you take the time to train your beagle personally. Your beagle looks up to you as its alpha and getting someone, a.k.a. the dog trainer, who will be there temporarily might cause your beagle to be confused and overwhelmed.
A beagle makes the perfect family dog. It is tolerant with children and is a great companion. With their floppy ears and unlimited energy, these dogs get along with almost all humans and animals they meet, making them one of the favorite dog breeds. They love to express themselves through barking.
These sunny characteristics, though, also make them not-so-ideal guard dogs because they love people too much and are not aggressive by nature.
You can rely on your beagle to be a reliable watchdog for you and the rest of the pack. Your beagle can keep an eye on your property and alert you by barking if it senses any danger.