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Well, beagles are an extremely lovable and affectionate breed. They are known for their gentle and even-tempered personality. But they are still dogs. So do beagles bite?
Just like every other dog, a beagle may bite or nip playfully. In most cases, playful biting does not cause any damage. It is very rare for a beagle to bite out of aggression.
Further, in this article, we will look into the reasons why a beagle might bite and how you can stop it.
Reasons why Beagles Bite
As I said, beagles are affectionate dogs, and they are anything but aggressive. They are known for their lovable and playful personality. So why would beagles bite? A beagle may resort to biting in the response of fear or stress. Lack of socialization and poor behavioral training during puppyhood can also be a reason behind the beagle’s biting.
If your beagle is just a puppy, then it is normal for him to bite or nip on your fingers, hand, or even feet. Puppies don’t know the correct way to interact with you. It is more common in puppies who are teething. While teething, puppies’ old temporary teeth get replaced by the permanent ones. This process can cause irritation in their gums. To ease this, a puppy may resort to biting and nipping anything he can, including human hands. You can read this article to know more about puppy biting and how to deal with it.
Lack of Socialization
Every puppy should be socialized as early as possible. Every new dog owner must teach his puppy to socialize with other people as well as dogs. A beagle should be comfortable meeting new people and animals and behave appropriately with them.
Lack of socialization can make a beagle anxious and fearful of new faces. A poorly socialized beagle would jump of people, try to bite their hands, or even try to show dominance by barking at them. This can be dangerous and intolerable for every owner.
Fear: This is more common in rescue dogs due to some of their past experience and lack of social skills. A fearful beagle may get frightened and uncomfortable in the presence of another dog or person. And as soon as someone unknown comes near, he may get protective and bite aggressively.
Stress: A poorly socialized beagle may get anxious or get stressed in some situations and become protective. Situations like visiting the vet or a noisy place can easily put such beagle under stress.
Few things you can do to socialize your beagle:
- Put a muzzle and take your beagle out for walks daily.
- Start introducing your friends and other family members.
- Ask one of your friends with a dog to visit you guys.
- Gradually start taking your pooch to dog parks.
- Take things slowly and do not punish your pooch; it will just make things worse.
Beagles are an energetic breed who loves to play. A beagle may sometime bite in excitement while playing. Playful biting is normal in beagles. This is more common in puppies as they don’t know the correct way to interact with you. However, without proper behavioral training, a puppy may take this habit to his adulthood, which can be dangerous.
You need to teach your puppy how to interact with others and make him understand that biting hurts. One way to do that is to teach your beagle Biting inhibition, which we will look into in the next section.
Teaching Bite Inhibition
The dog’s ability to control the force of his bite is called bite inhibition. Beagles usually learn bite inhibition when they are with their mother and siblings. When the puppy bites his mother or siblings too hard, they yelp and ignore them. In this way, the puppy understands what amount of force is not okay to use while biting. But puppies usually don’t get enough time to learn this from their mother.
You can teach a beagle puppy bite inhibition using the same technique. While playing, allow your pup to mouth on your hand, and when he bites too hard, make a high-pitched noise, let your hand go limp, and stop playing with him. Of course, it will take more than one try until your puppy understands it. When you yelp and your puppy stop and start licking your hand, give him a treat. Always motivate your pooch’s good behavior with a reward.
Teaching bite inhibition to older puppies and adult beagles can be difficult because if you give them your hand for mouthing, they will surely make you bleed. Fortunately, beagles do not have a jaw structure that can make their bites super dangerous. For them, you can use the time-out method. Whenever your pooch bites you or tries to bite you, say “NO” or “BAD DOG” loud and firm and ignore him for 30 seconds. If your pooch continues to bite you, give him a time out by putting him in a room alone for some time.
Note: Do not use a crate for time-outs. Your beagle will start associating crate as a punishment place and sooner won’t feel comfortable inside.
Train your Beagle to Stop Biting
Well, teaching your beagle biting inhibition is just the step-one; the next step is to teach him to stop biting at all. If your beagle bites you when he is playfully or excited, it doesn’t mean that he is aggressive. Your pooch just wants to interact with you, but he doesn’t know the correct way. This is how to train your beagle to stop biting:
- The main objective here is to teach your beagle what’s okay to month on and whats not.
- Whenever your pooch tries to bite you, distract him with a toy, and let him chew on it.
- You might have noticed your beagle trying to bite every time you pat him or even touch. Get some treats in your semi-open fist, and offer it to your pooch. While he is struggling to eat all the treats from your fist, pat him. In this way, you are associating good things with your touch. Sooner or later, you will be able to cuddle your beagle like a teddy bear without getting bitten.
- Beagles have a lot of energy that needs to be released. If failed to do so, they can get aggressive sometimes. Give your pooch proper exercise daily. Take him on long walks and short runs every day. Remember, a tired beagle is a happy beagle. Here is a list of 12 fun exercise for your beagle.
- If your beagle is teething, provide high-quality chew toys to help him ease his gum irritation.
Do Beagles Bite their Owners
Yes, sometimes, a beagle may bite its owner while playing. But with proper bite inhibition training, its bite won’t be harmful at all.
Even after teaching bite initiation, redirection method, and time-outs, if your beagle continues to bite, then you can apply a deterrent liquid on your hands and any other place that your dog prefers to bite. Deterrent Sprays are liquid, which is safe for a beagle to consume, but it tastes awful, and dogs hate it. Many owners have tried this, and it has worked. After a few weeks of testing this bitter liquid every time your dog bites, he will eventually stop doing it. You can use this method while distracting him with a toy.
It’s not just beagles, but every other dog breed bites. They are dogs, after all. It’s the owner who needs to teach them the correct behavior. Beagles can be a little stubborn sometimes and may take a little longer to learn this. So be persistent and do not give up on your pooch.