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Best Beagle Cross? Or am I mad....

(24 Posts)
SlightlySeethrough Sat 03-Nov-12 15:53:00

Ok so after years of DH begging but me not being ready to get a dog, I think i am ready. Both Dc at school and feel I now have the time and patience needed to invest in a puppy and can see that a dog could become a much loved part of our family.

DH has always had dogs - rescue dogs of no discernible breed but certainly one lab/collie and another bulldog/something/something else...

I LOVE Beagles. I love how they look, their size, their intelligence and affection. BUT the howling, difficulty training , hunting and escaping worries me.

I wondered whether there is Beagle
mix that is inclined to level out sone of these characterisics? i know a crossbreed is always a bit of a lottery as you don't know which bits the puppy will inherit but is there a cross that has a reputation for helping solve some of these issues ? Also, I know NOTHING about getting a dog but would hate to be persuaded to get a cross that carries the likelihood of health issues for the dog but have no idea if Kennel Clubs ever deal in cross or only pure breeds?

FWIW our house isn't massive 4 bed semi, 50ft garden but we do live a few minutes from Richmond Park which is massive. I don't know if this is a good thing or if Beagle versus Deer Rabbits and miles and miles of places to runaway is a nightmare waiting to happen.

Sorry for all the questions - complete novice and DH has only ever rescued randomly, but do want to try and have the kind of dog I like but source responsibily.

Thanks for any advice.

TheCunnyFuntWearingAPoppy Sat 03-Nov-12 19:28:35

I don't know much about Beagles, but I've heard a few times they aren't a dog you'd want if you're a complete novice owner.

Just out of curiosity, where do you live? I have a Richmond park at the end of my street and you're not allowed to take dogs there.

TheCunnyFuntWearingAPoppy Sat 03-Nov-12 19:35:45

Oh and you won't be sourcing a crossbreed responsibly as there aren't really any responsible crossbreed breeders.

hellymelly Sat 03-Nov-12 19:39:46

I grew up with a beagle cross, she was an absolutely lovely dog. Mother pure beagle, father unknown (she was born in the rescue centre) but looked like a terrier/collie mix. Her recall could have been better, but she was well behaved and really good tempered. She lived to 17 as well which is a big plus of a crossbreed.

bassetfeet Sat 03-Nov-12 20:20:51

I look after a beagle cross and he is lovely . But he is a scent hound .
I will never let him off a long lead ever . Recall in my experience is a nightmare.
They get a scent and are off over the hills and far away blush.
but they are gentle dogs and very loving .......just in my experience hard to train off lead .
I would look for another breed as first time owner to be honest . Good Luck .

SlightlySeethrough Sat 03-Nov-12 22:34:03

Thanks everyone.

Cunny, I live near the massive Richmond Park SW London/Surrey borders. You can definitely take dogs.

Very valuable advice/wisdom. Thank you. I did think a Beagle/Beagle Cross might be a foolish choice for a novice hence my post but was hoping to be told that they're 'not that hard' or have someone suggest a good cross breed. I had.no idea that only pure bred dogs can be got responsibly and that there is no cross breeding at all at Kennel Clubs. I had thought that a few more common crossed (lab/retriever maybe) might be bred properly. That's how much of a novice I am blush

Glad I posted.

TheCunnyFuntWearingAPoppy Sat 03-Nov-12 23:20:50

Ahh, nowhere near me then, I'm up in Lincolnshire grin there is a Richmond park here, it's not massive and it doesn't allow dogs.

Nope, no crossbreeds. There is no point to them tbh. Of course people do breed them, but not with KC. I'm no expert, far from it! But I know from spending time in The Doghouse and reading the numerous Labradoodle threads that responsible breeders don't breed crossbreeds. The people that do breed crosses are the ones you want to avoid.

I honestly think that your best bet would be to go to a reputable rescue, explain what you want, so something ideal for a novice owner (I'd say Greyhound personally but maybe I'm biased wink), and let them match you up with a dog.

LadyTurmoil Sat 03-Nov-12 23:30:16

Does you DH prefer a particular breed of dog? How old are your children? I've already written on different threads but I've noticed that men always seem to want "macho" breeds like Golden Retrievers. My friend's children are 11 and 13 but get their arms wrenched out of their sockets because dog is only 7 months but already very strong and only had 6 wks of puppy training. Also, older daughter pestered and pestered for dog but is already not always willing to take dog out for walks etc. I would go for a slightly older dog, maybe 2 yrs old or older, past the puppy phase, you won't have so many issues with chewing, housetraining, doesn't have to be watched like a hawk every minute of the day etc. Look at rescues, please don't buy from breeders unless you're absolutely happy that they are reliable. You can find all ages in some rescues, including puppies, just take a look at www.manytears.co.uk. I know that not all recommend them but they are flexible as regards younger children at home, working people etc. If you read some of the other threads you will see that you need patience and perseverance when applying to rescues. Many are run by volunteers so it can take time. I wouldn't get too hung up on breeds although it's good to do some research so you know breeds like collie or springer spaniel are high energy and greyhounds are pretty relaxed, as others have already said. You may also find that UK rescues are full of Staffie/Jack Russell types and not much else. That's why I love some of the "street" dogs that are being rescued by organisations like www.sos-animals.org.uk/, www.romaniaanimalaid.co.uk, www.desperategreekies.com/ www.streetdogrescue.com/ and www.k-9angels.org/. Dog Watch UK and The Mayflower Sanctuary also work with rescues in Spain and Cyprus respectively and bring dogs over to the UK. You can find all of the above on Facebook as well. There are many more! Dogwatch and Cyprus Pride House have been recommended on other Doghouse threads. I'd much rather have rescue mutt than a pedigree which cost so much and are liable to so many inherited diseases. I reckon if a dog has managed to survive on the streets of Romania (or similar) then they're going to be pretty damn tough! Also, cost of bringing a dog from abroad is usually around £250-300 so not much more than rescues here in UK and a hell of a lot less than you would pay for some pedigree dogs. Good luck in your search (and apologies for length of this post!)

HoneyDragon Sun 04-Nov-12 08:45:24

Lady. Conversely II have young children and was happy to end up with another a Lab. Mainly because they get do strong it means my Ds has to train her, not give into the temptation to manhandle.

I hate seeing children yanking small dogs around on leads sad. which you seem to be seeing more of with an increasing trend for smaller dogs as a lifestyle accessory rather than family member.

HoneyDragon Sun 04-Nov-12 08:49:54

Mind you, don't literally do what I did and take home a puppy that the rescuer categorically states is "completely nutty" - that way madness does lie grin

TheCunnyFuntWearingAPoppy Sun 04-Nov-12 09:31:56

The Mayflower? In Doncaster? I'm about 30ish miles away from The Mayflower sanctuary!

LadyTurmoil Sun 04-Nov-12 13:06:14

Honey I see what you mean but I was just saying that from what I've seen with my friend's dog is that the kids now don't want to be that involved and I don't think they're physically able to do training 'cos they're just not strong enough to get her to heel, for example, when she's pulling and rushing ahead...
Cunny Yes, the Mayflower in Doncaster. I just found them on an FB trawl and I know they sometimes get rescues from Noah's Ark in Cyprus.
Slightly read this about beagles on another rescue website! "Beagles are very independent and can be difficult to train so please research the breed before considering adopting a Beagle." dogrescues.org/ppar/dogs/bailey5ppic.htm

HoneyDragon Sun 04-Nov-12 13:08:15

Lady

The difference is though it sounds like those kids want to be involved smile

SlightlySeethrough Sun 04-Nov-12 14:05:37

Hello

So the DC are 7 and 5 and whilst they obviously not expected to be responsible for the dog (that will be DH grin), we have had long talks about what having a dog really entrails and it's not a toy you can drop just because you're tired or it's raining and you don't feel like walking. They are still keen and in a way, i think it will be good for them to see that the care and training is not optional and that they have a responsibility towards a living thing. The love, cuddles, novelty factor, I am not concerned about. Our neighbours cat has practically moved into our house because we feed it and they cuddle and play with her until the cat is bored grin

What I am struggling with is the breed. I am not naturally a dog person - although I like them well enough - and of the whole family, I am the least enthusiastic, so realistically, I know that I need to find a dog who offers the things I find appealing in the dogs I've liked - affectionate/bright/attractive etc. And yes that probably sounds shallow, but whilst DH would fall in love with any dog, I think I would enjoy our dog more if I picked carefully. In the past, the dogs that I have always fallen for have been mongrels/mutts and I've never been fussed about pure-breeds, but I've lurked a bit in the doghouse and don't want to fall for (nor encourage the breeding of) a dog that is going to have loads of health problems because it was bred irresponsibly. I had always though pure breds were the ones with the most health problems so I obviously need to research more.

A Cypriot rescue is quite an appealing thought. DH is half Cypriot and we've come across many dogs whilst over there who just needed some love and care.

But any more advice would be welcome.

LadyTurmoil Sun 04-Nov-12 16:17:11

Oh, that would fit in nicely, if you go on hols there, you could visit some shelters! Have a look at www.facebook.com/pages/Sirius-Dog-Sanctuary/311021472551?ref=stream they have some lovely dogs. Also Noah's Ark (FB is better as they never seem to update the website), Argos Animal Sanctuary, Rescue a Dog from Cyprus, all on Facebook. They have lots of hound type dogs, as well as the Cyprus poodle types.

mum47 Sun 04-Nov-12 16:27:10

Hi, we have a four year old female Beagle (not a cross). We did our research before getting her, but it is like babies, nothing can prepare you! They are fab dogs, but as you say, they howl, are strong willed and hard to train, and not to be trusted off the lead! We have worked very hard training our dog - we both grew up with dogs but this is our first together. We can let her off the lead but her recall is pretty rubbish. That said she is beautifull, cuddly and constantly makes us laugh with her antics. Another beagle trait is chewing things - I lost quite a few shoes ini the early days, but on the plus side, it has encouraged my dcs to tidy things away, or lose them! They are also very food driven and you have to constantly watch their weight. (not selling them really, am I)

People often stop to speak to me to comment on our dog, and a fquite a few have said to me that they would like a beagle.It is almost always because they like the way the look, and in ignorance about the breed itsself. I would not recommend them unless you research thoroughly and are prepared not to have an easy dog. Also, you have to consider if the dog will be left in the house alone. I work partly from home, but an leave ours for four hours and she is great and just sleeps, but I have heard of others who have chewed the house apart when left (you could find that with a lot of breeds)

A cross breed is in a way as much of a risk as a pure breed as each dog has its' own personality regardless of breed. Good luck!

MagratGarlik Sun 04-Nov-12 19:22:19

As others have said, in your case I'd go to a rescue without a specific breed in mind, be completely honest about what you want from a dog and what you don't and see if they have anything suitable. It may involve quite a few visits to a few different rescues, but even buying a puppy from a breeder would also involve lots of leg work.

Rescues don't only have staffies and JRT's though there may be more of these than some other breeds. Lots of labs, spaniels and collies end up in rescue as people don't expect them to require as much work as they do. Many will also end up in rescue due to changes in family circumstances e.g. our whippet who ended up in rescue when his previous family had a baby. FWIW both our dogs are rescues, from reputable UK rescue centres, we got both whilst the dc's are very young and neither are staffies or JRT's.

glasscompletelybroken Mon 05-Nov-12 15:37:49

We have a beagle and I would say that for the 1st 16 months she was hard work and my DH thought we had made a big mistake!

She is now 19 months old and has really settled down in the last few months. Her recall is not briliant on her own but with other dogs she is 100% so I tend to just let her off when walking with a friend at the weekends. She is a thief with food and that will never change - you just have to be sure never to leave anything where she can get it. She doesn't howl but does bark for attention - she doesn;t bark at people when they come to the house.

She is without doubt the most loving, funny, entertaining dog I have ever known and absolutely loves children. I work from home so am here most of the time but we have left her for up to 41/2 hours and she is fine.

LadyTurmoil Wed 07-Nov-12 21:43:14

If you do decide on a beage, there are three lovely ones at www.manytears.co.uk including this sweetie www.manytearsrescue.org/display_mtar_dog.php?id=5357

pugmill Wed 07-Nov-12 22:33:23

Message withdrawn at poster's request.

SlightlyJaded Thu 08-Nov-12 12:19:36

Pug. Is she a Beagle/Lab cross?

GetOrfAKAMrsUsainBolt Thu 08-Nov-12 12:31:19

Hello OP.

I started a thread about this very csubject last year - lost of posts and some brilliant advice, worth a look www.mumsnet.com/Talk/the_doghouse/1366056-DP-would-love-to-get-a-beagle-please-can-you-give-some-advice

i didn't get one in the end (not because I was put off beagles, but because of wiorking FT, and then me and DP split up anyway <doom-monger> grin)

SlightlyJaded Thu 08-Nov-12 12:42:16

Thanks GetOrf. Will have a look now.

Smallgreenone Thu 08-Nov-12 19:05:06

We have a beagle and he's wonderful. I'd ways wanted one as love the way they look and their personalities, I'd heard rumours about naughty traits but I didn't care. In real life he is the best dog for children. You can pull his ears and tail all day long and he's so pleased to get attention he doesn't care, he will play all day, he comes back when he is called as long as you have food and he only howls when it's his breakfast or dinner time.
If you want a beagle get one but only if you are at home most of the day and are prepared to train him when he is a puppy. It will take time but it will be worth it.

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