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Owners often get confused by the sad look on their beagles. My neighbor, who recently adopted a beagle, told me that she thinks her beagle is sad. Well, in reality, her beagle is the happiest pooch I have ever seen. So why do beagles always look sad?
Beagles look sad because of their sagging face and drooping ears and lips. Their flopping eyelids and soulful eyes contribute to their sad appearance too. This is more common in healthy beagles. That’s why even after being a happy and joyous dog, beagles can look sad by their appearance.
It’s in their DNA
Their long droopy ears and sagging face actually has a purpose to serve. Beagles were bred to be hunting companions. With their super-powerful nose, beagles would track down the scent trail left by an animal, chase it and tired it down, until their owner takes the shot.
While tracking the scent on the ground, their droopy ears would help stir the scent up towards their nose. Their loss and sagging face also contributed to trapping the scent and giving them better tracking skills.
Their droopy ears serve one more purpose. They minimize interfering sounds, allowing them to concentrate better on following the scent.
It’s Human Perception
It’s not that beagles look sad, it’s our perception that makes them look sad. We tend to project human emotions on every being. We analyze faces based on human reactions and emotions that we have grown up seeing. We have a perception that if someone has a sagging face, he is sad. And that’s why dog breeds like beagles and basset hounds who have sagging faces look sad to us even if they are not.
Things got a little more philosophical there, but I hope you get the idea.
Check if your beagle is really sad
Humans are not the only one who gets depressed. Dogs get sad and depressed too. Unfortunate events, loneliness, physical illness are some reasons that can make your beagle depressed. Let’s look into a few signs to check if your pooch is really sad and depressed.
NOTE: This website does not constitute any pet medical advice, kindly consult a licensed veterinarian for pet medical advice.
Sudden Change in Behavior
If your happy and playful beagle’s behavior suddenly changes, then this could be a sign of concern. However, some health concerns like upset stomach and gas can also be the reason for the sudden change in his mood.
Study your pooch’s behavior for a couple of days. Look for other signs of depressions before concluding.
Change in Appetite
A depressed beagle can either refuse to eat his food or start overeating.
Change in sleeping habits
Depressed and sad beagle may start sleeping more. A drastic change in the sleeping schedule can be a sign of depression in beagles.
Depression can make a beagle inactive. Activity once enjoyed, would no longer excite him. He may lose interest in playing or even going out for walks.
Beagle suffering from depression might prefer to be alone and odd-man-out himself. He may start hiding from family members. Beagles are pack animals, and they don’t do well alone. So if suddenly a beagle stops interacting with the family is never a good sign.
True Story: One of our subscribe mailed me this few months back and I think you need to hear this “My beagle Poochy who just turned 6 years, suffered from depression. Last year we lost Moon, our 10-year-old Labrador. And this was really hard for all of us. Poochy didn’t react much for the first couple of days. But on the third day, we noticed that she didn’t eat her food. She would spend most of her time sleeping or just lying around awake. She would not play or go outside and just stare at the Moon’s bed all day long.”
Things that can make Beagles Sad and Depressed
Depression usually doesn’t happen without reason in dogs. Let’s look into some causes of depression.
A physical illness that is causing your beagle pain can be a cause of making him sad. If you notice any sign of depression in your pooch, the first thing to do is to rule out any chances of physical illness. Take your beagle to the vet immediately and have him checked.
Beagles get attach to the family members easily. They are capable of understanding the absence of their loved ones. A beagle may get sad and depressed if his loved one moves out of the house.
Beagles have high social skills. They get along with almost every animal. A beagle will grief if one of his dog friends passes away. Losing someone close is often the cause of depression in beagles.
Fear or Trauma
If the beagle recently had some traumatizing situation, than this can make him sad and depressed too.
He may also have some fear or phobia of something. Different dogs react differently to their fear. Some dogs may bark, while others may not show any signs at all.
You, yes, you heard it right. You can be the reason why your beagle is depressed and sad. Beagles are very attached to their owners. They can sense how their owner is feeling and pick it up. If you are sad, low in energy, or sick, your beagle can feel it and somewhat start feeling something similar.
What to do to make your Beagle Happy
If you think that something is bothering your pooch, then you need to do something to make his life fun again. After you have consulted your vet and sure that your beagle doesn’t have any health concerns, you need to bring his life back on track.
- You will definitely need to start spending more time with your beagle.
- Start by exercising him. Start going on walks. Find new ways to exercise your beagle.
- You need to stay motivated even if your dog is not in the mood.
- If you have time and resources, then introduce a new dog in your family to cheer your beagle. If not, then take him on playdates with other dogs. Consider visiting dog cares regularly.
- Get some new and more tasty treats to motivate your pooch. If he shows any sign of excitement, then maybe teach a few tricks.
- Try not to comfort or cuddle your dog while he is still sad. This may just reinforce the behavior. Instead, they portray motivation and happiness.
- If these things do not help, then consult your vet. Medications can be the last resort.
If your beagle is playful and happy by heart but just looks sad, then I don’t think there is anything to worry about. They just have a puppy face for their entire life. Oh wait, this is something to worry about: Do not meltdown by their puppy face and give away all the food and treats.
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