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  • Beagle advice

    I recently became the proud owner of a AKC 1 year 2 month old Beagle. I mainly wanted an outdoor friend to go on hikes and runs as I am an active outdoor enthusiast like many of you. I liked the breed mainly for the size and hardiness. The dog is well trained with the basics (sit, down, shake, potty). Cons: He does not like to stay and does not always respond when called by name because he is too distracted with his nose to the ground. He also does not like to run unless he is hot on a scent. I hate using the pincher collar and having to douse myself with bug dope because my quick runs have turned into 1/2 hour geriatric walks due to him sniffing. I have found running on the pavement helps, due to less scent, however running on pavement is not ideal for either of us for obvious reasons. I have taken him on many mountain hikes and start to get frustrated when he holds our progress up because he has to sniff every 2í.
    I realize he is a scent hound and his sniffing is hard wired. I know there has to be some sort of distraction technique out there to help us both enjoy the wilderness and stay in shape.
    I am open to any suggestions for training advice, secrets you used on your Beagle, reputable Beagle trainers, etc.

    Thx
    2012 Hewescraft Ocean Pro 22'
    150Hp Yamaha

  • #2
    Please don't take this the wrong way, but if you wanted a dog that isn't going to smash it's face in the ground and sniff everything around, then you shouldn't have gotten a beagle. I am no expert with training beagles, or beagles in general, but as you pointed out, they are a scent hound. I grew up hunting with beagles in Iowa. My grandpa and uncle run them on rabbits. At one time they had around 8. My uncle still has and runs 4. They search relentlessly. My friend has one right now as a house pet. The dog has zero hunting training, and the little thing still smells everything, and searches/tracks everything. Itís what a beagle is, and what a beagle does. They are great dogs! Like I said, Iím no expert, and just wanted to throw what I had to say out there. I hope someone can offer better advice, and some good training tips.
    "If I could shoot a game bird and still not hurt it, the way I can take a trout on a fly and release it, I doubt if I would kill another one." George Bird Evans

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    • #3
      By the way, that is a good looking dog!
      "If I could shoot a game bird and still not hurt it, the way I can take a trout on a fly and release it, I doubt if I would kill another one." George Bird Evans

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      • #4
        I have had a beagle 8 years now and been around a few others. I have come to the conclusion that a beagle is about worthless to do anything with other than hunt or sit on the couch. Mine drives me nuts. I have to take him camping, fishing, hiking ect. And no matter what he ruins the trip cause he is always on the hunt. I have only run across one beagle that stays close (fairly) and will follow the owner along.
        Sorry about the news.... I dont think that your dog will be the jogging partner you want. But keep trying. Maybe try a shock collar. give him a zap everytime he gets to distracted. With any luck he will learn that smelling animals means a zap. Mine is so hard headed he ignores his bark collar.

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        • #5
          Not much advice there, but I appreciate the input. I did purchase a Sportdog Field Trainer 400 and we seem to be making some progress. Still need to get him into an obedience class fairly soon.
          2012 Hewescraft Ocean Pro 22'
          150Hp Yamaha

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          • #6
            I got tired of the same thing on walks and always saying "what are you eating, drop it" . I have 4 dogs, retrievers and sight hound mixes (does not mean they don't scent ),that I take out on walks in the flats and woods. If we are on a leash I keep them coming along with leash pressure and "lets go" followed by happy "good dogs". Why should they stay with you if you're no fun? "Let's go " can also be used when bikejoring and pulling. If they are off leash they are always on an ecollar for the same reason as your problem. I used "On by" (stole that from the mushers) or "Leave it" depending on what they are after but you have to have the ability to make them do it. I only have to use the vibrate mode on the collar or a very low stimulation. UNLESS, they get into a dead rotten carcass or something dangerous. Then I ramp up the collar. You also have to be aware that there maybe traps and trappers and dog lovers often do not see eye to eye. It's really unsafe to let your dog wander more than 10 ft off the trail. Every year there is a big fight in the newspapers about loose dogs and traps. At the same time give your dog oppertunities to "hunt it up". Add training in the yard to "Leave it" or "On by" and "Hunt it up" with rewards for doing it with collar corrections. If you can start off in an area with less distraction, for instance I see runners on paved bike trails having no problem with dogs and I find my dogs less distracted, almost bored there. I can hardly run so they get bored with me. Taking a sporting dog to the woods is like taking an 8 year old to Disneyland.
            You have to get a very good recall even if you use the collar with a beagle Im guessing. I know of a few who ran through e-collars and invisible fences on high.

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            • #7
              I love my beagle and wouldn't give her up for anything. If your ready for a different dog let me know, Poor Tiffany gets lonely all by herself sometimes... that being said, I used a shock collar for about a year and now she listens very well. When she gets in a mood with my wife she will put the collar back on to remind the dog why to listen. I don't think a beagle is a good dog for hiking because of their nose and the fact that they seem to tire out easy, atleast my little fatty does. She does great for bunnys but then again i always use a Ecollar or I would never get her back. You have to remeber that since the dog is hard wired to sniff everything that they shut out everything around them when they get onto something. it's hard to explain but I rarely see my dog even look around when her nose is on the ground. I would think that it is not right to train a dog not to do what it is breed to do, Sniff everything. They are amazing pets and kids just love them. Their only downfall that I have seen in the beagles I have owned is when they get exited when you get home and start singing the song of beagle till they calm down. They seem to have seperation anxiety. Once again, if you need to find it a new home let me know. I will spoil it just like I spoil mine
              Ignorance is not Bliss, it's insanity

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              • #8
                Here is a couple pictures of Tiffany, you gotta agree they would make a great pair!
                Click image for larger version

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                Ignorance is not Bliss, it's insanity

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                • #9
                  my advice to you is to use the shock collar all the time but only for the "come" command.....it looks like you hike in fairly open country......if thats the case let him run but when you want him to come back fry him until he does.....also your sportdog will not last two years max....mine wore out by then but the damage was done and my dog knew when it had it on and it listened ok without actual stimulation......now in the woods she wears no e-collar...just one i made with a bunch of bells sewn to it....if i am hiking or fishing or something in the summer when it is thick she is always on the leash or staked out on a lead....if we are hiking in open country like the mountains i let her run...she will stay within sight or hearing distance....just get used to always calling for your beagle...if you can't see it or hear it start hollering for it...sometimes it will come back....if not start heading to where you last heard it and look/holler from there...mine will be about a hundred yards away and staring at me cuz im yelling and it seems to just be saying "why are you yelling dummy i can see you" then darts back off in the search for a critter...and it will chase things...birds, rabbits, squirrels, moose, bears, people, dogs, leaves...whatever is moving.....i have always said that i never had to teach or train my dog to hunt i just had to learn how to catch it....i hope that it works out for you....i love my beagle and they are great dogs...you just gotta make it work some how....good luck
                  "early to bed, early to rise, fish like hell, and make up lies"

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                  • #10
                    You have to be careful. A "Fry" is so ineffecive when the dog does not know what it's for. Of course there is a time for a high # 5. The stimulation needed is the highest that gets the dogs attention and response. The response has to be trained and to be fair to the dog, you have to know the dog heard the command unless you're training aversion and your intent is to completly rattle the dog out of his boots, make the spot or thing HOT, otherwise you make all kinds of problems you have to then correct. Out in the woods is not the place to start training with a collar. With my rescued dogs, all different breeds, I started in the house on a leash, stimulation on vibrate. Worked with a long line outside with only the pressure needed, then on a long rope on the trails, so that when Daisy was running down the middle of a busy state highway I could "Fry" her and she knew what to do.
                    Though with the same effort and training my Saluki mix on free run seems uneffected by any level and I want to get him on rabbits but in a spot where I can watch him. I knew a beagle who busted through Invisible Fence on high for rabbits and would just take the burn until she was killed by a car. There may be some dogs that the collar just cant break through the drive.

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                    • #11
                      I agree you have to train the dog with the shock collar. Not something you just strap to a dog and expect wonders. One word of warning is to never zap a dog when he is real close to people, mainly children, they might think that person is hurting them and bite... We started with audible tones and then low voltage and worked our way up as we felt was enough, Enough is when the dog listens, not what a book says. Every dog is different. I find that beagles like to look at you when you call them and then give you a middle paw and keep walking, that is when the audible tone comes on. If she doesn't stop, a quik zap. Workes 100% of the time. If she is chasing something and won't stop she gets the zap till she does turn around and come. The whole time I am zapping her I am calling her. I will turn it up one setting if needed. When she gets to me I praise her. When hunting and she is out of sight I will call her and then give an audible beep and usually she comes right to me, if not I call while I zap and then praise when she comes to me, as in at my feet, not in view.
                      Ignorance is not Bliss, it's insanity

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                      • #12
                        I have not been on here in a week or two and was surprised to see all of the activity, thanks for all the input. The Sport Dog collar has been great. I watched the training dvd and we have made some great progress. I mainly put it on him just before we go outside and he is not reluctant at all to wear it. I do seldom use it in the house as a training aid. I usually keep it on level 2 and have only used level three on maybe two occasions. I do not know who would ever use level 8!! That would take down a grizzly bear. I have been taking him on runs on the paved asphalt and we can really move. It is about a 1/2 mile loop we have been running and we can do it no problem, I just need to keep him away from the curbs where all of the scent is. I will start expanding our distances and blending in some dirt/grass trails. He does not whine and all of the exercise has not given him much of a chance to have separation anxiety. We will definitely not give up and who knows one day he may be able to run a marathon ( :

                        Did I mention he likes to fish? ( :
                        2012 Hewescraft Ocean Pro 22'
                        150Hp Yamaha

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                        • #13
                          I am still in the training mode for my 11 month Poodle/Beagle mix and have found that routines work best. I use a e-collar and have had to get his attention with it. A standard choke collar is the best on leash tool I have found, he backs out of the over the snout collars I have tried. On the choke collar his nose witl activate and with a small tightening of the collar he respones quickly after the first few checks he got. Glad to see he is getting better. I hope with age my puppy will settle down but for now I am trying to channel his spunkiness to keep him for under cars. By the way, he loves the island we are on for the summer, mostly freedom...

                          George

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                          • #14
                            Originally posted by wesmeister View Post
                            I have not been on here in a week or two and was surprised to see all of the activity, thanks for all the input. The Sport Dog collar has been great. I watched the training dvd and we have made some great progress. I mainly put it on him just before we go outside and he is not reluctant at all to wear it. I do seldom use it in the house as a training aid. I usually keep it on level 2 and have only used level three on maybe two occasions. I do not know who would ever use level 8!! That would take down a grizzly bear. I have been taking him on runs on the paved asphalt and we can really move. It is about a 1/2 mile loop we have been running and we can do it no problem, I just need to keep him away from the curbs where all of the scent is. I will start expanding our distances and blending in some dirt/grass trails. He does not whine and all of the exercise has not given him much of a chance to have separation anxiety. We will definitely not give up and who knows one day he may be able to run a marathon ( :

                            Did I mention he likes to fish? ( :
                            Glad to see all is going well. Sounds like things are going to work out just fine. Some high power hard headed dogs would be the type that an "8" may come in handy. My "soft" setter rarely ever sees anything more than a vibrate. One time he did chase after another dog at my father in laws. He ignored my "here" command (very rare), and I went up to 13 (first time ever) on my DT systems collar (different collars have much different numbers and levels of stim). That was after calling to him a couple times (he knew what I was saying, and was ignoring me). He was back at my side in a second. He doesn't have an option to disobey, and my father in law has horses and sled dogs (safety issues), thatís why I went that high. Have you ever tried the collar on yourself? Most donít, which I find as odd, since we are willing to strap collars on our fury friends and shock them! The reason I ask, is that I cannot even feel the first three levels of my DT collar (dogs have sensitive skin, and can feel the lower levels). I start to feel it at 4, and even then it isnít that horrible. The ď8Ē on your collar probably isnít as bad as you thinkÖÖ.. who knows? Again glad to see him working out for you!!!!!
                            "If I could shoot a game bird and still not hurt it, the way I can take a trout on a fly and release it, I doubt if I would kill another one." George Bird Evans

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                            • #15
                              I tried it on 8 on my arm..youch!!! not a recommended practice. I have only one quam about the Sport Dog FT400. The re-chargeable batteries do not seem to hold very well. I followed the manual for the initial charge and now they seem to last only 1 1/2 days. For the little amount of time I actullay use it and for following the guidelines that is not very impressive. I guess I got what I paid for. It was $170 and seemed to be a bargain price compared to the Cadillac models. If I end up ever purchasing another, I will look for a model with the vibration feature.
                              2012 Hewescraft Ocean Pro 22'
                              150Hp Yamaha

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