You’ve finally gotten that Beagle puppy you’ve been wanting. Now what? When does the training begin? Many Beagle owners start training at the wrong time. Some might start too early when the puppy isn’t quite ready to hold his bladder and is far from being ready to learn basic commands or obedience. Beagles are often characterized as being stubborn to train. That’s partly because some people wait until adolescence to start their training which is much too late. This article is about the when and how of your early Beagle obedience training.
What’s the best age to bring your Beagle puppy home?
Please keep in mind that a Beagle puppy should not be taken from its mother and siblings before 8 weeks of age. Your Beagle will learn many of the basic aspects of their social standing in those first few formative weeks. Puppies removed too early will often have aggression issues and may even become biters or have other social issues. It is very important that you highly socialize your Beagle with people and other dogs while they are young and as they age. Under no circumstances should a Beagle not have interactions with other dogs or people before they reach 15 months of age.
When should you begin housebreaking?
House breaking should not begin until your Beagle is between 10 and 12 weeks of age and only after your puppy has been acclimated to your home. He needs to be old enough to have the physical capability of holding it. Most trainers will tell you that crate training is the best method of house breaking your Beagle. Don’t let your human emotions make you think of a crate training as caging your Beagle. Beagles, like all other dogs, are a den type of animal and they come to regard their crate as a den; a safe place of his own where he will make a nest. Another nice thing about crate training is that it lessens the possibility of your Beagle suffering from separation anxiety. For instructions on crate training click on the link to my website below my name.
When is the best time to start basic obedience training?
Basic obedience training includes simple commands such as sit, stay, lie down, roll over, fetch, etc. This type of training should begin between the ages of 3 and 6 months. Start with the easy ones like sit and work your way up from there. This is also a good time for leash training your Beagle. Beagles are easily distracted while out walking so check out my website for good instructions on leash training your Beagle. You can train your Beagle at home or more preferably you both can take an obedience class. You can usually locate one through a local kennel club or even a local community college. Believe it or not, the human has more to learn than the Beagle when it comes to teaching him to heel and other obedience tasks. The basics are very easy and with the correct approach they can be taught in just a few days. To make the process even easier you may want to consider clicker training. Clicker training is a style of training where you first teach your Beagle that a click is equal to a reward. This can actually be done very quickly, in a matter of minutes. Once he thinks of the click as a reward the training process will be sped up drastically. Check my website for more information on this. The link is below my name.
By teaching your Beagle when he is young you instill into him that your role is that of pack leader. This is very important for a good long term relationship and a well behaved Beagle.
What comes next?
After your Beagle has completed his basic obedience training, you have a lot of time to train him in other ways. The old adage that you can’t teach an old dog new tricks is totally false when it comes to Beagles. Usually the basics are enough for most Beagle owners but other people want to go further with more complex tricks. Beagles are very adept when it comes to agility training. Agility is a sport where dogs are timed as they run through a variety of obstacles and Beagles are one of the favorite dogs for this. Check with your local kennel club to see if there are any agility clubs in your area.
One thing you won’t have to train your Beagle to do is to sniff out game animals such as rabbits. They are scent hounds and have been bred to do this naturally and that is why so many people use Beagles when they hunt. Not only do they have an incredible sense of smell but they also have a remarkable howl to keep in touch with the hunter and communicate their location and what is happening on the hunt.
If you decide to take your Beagle beyond the basics make sure that he is old enough to handle the physical stress. He should be fully developed before you have him jumping, sprinting, or diving.