Both the Basset Hound and Beagle are hound dogs known for their strong sniffing abilities. They are usually taken care of as companions and family dogs due to their petite height and quite friendly attitudes. Their iconic drooping ears and color combination makes them stand out among other breeds. But the question is which should you choose as a pet? Basset Hound or Beagle?
To help you decide, here is our Beagle vs. Basset Hound comparison:
|Calm, easy-going, charming, quiet, patient
|Friendly, yappy, great companion, curious, energetic
|Females: 44–60 lbs
Males: 51–64 lbs
|Females: 20–22 lbs
Males: 22–24 lbs
|Females: 11–14 inches
Males: 12–15 inches
|Females: 13–15 inches
Males: 14–16 inches
|Expensive ($600 – $1,600)
|Budget-friendly ($500 – $850)
|AKC recognition year
Both the Basset Hound and Beagle originated in England where they are trained to sniff animals for hunting. They share similarities in appearance and size, but Bassets usually have droopier ears and a “sadder” look. Bassets also have shorter legs and deep chests compared to Beagles. With this, they can be easily outpaced by their energetic cousin.
These two breeds are excellent pets depending on the personality of their owner. They get along together due to their shared personality and friendliness. Beagles and Basset Hounds rarely become aggressive, especially if their physical and mental stimulation requirements are met.
Here’s a short video from AnimalWised to know more about Beagles and Bassets:
Beagles: For pet owners looking for a doggo with an upbeat and happy personality, Beagles are the best choice. They are balls of energy that can run and fetch for hours. Despite their small built, they are tireless and overwhelmingly charming. A lot of people say that it’s hard not to fall in love with a Beagle. Charlie Brown and I would agree.
Beagles are always curious. You will see them sniffing around searching for rabbits and critters they can chase. Despite their fidgety personality, they are excellent with kids. They aren’t timid but not aggressive as well. Beagles are known to be doting pets. They are also welcoming to other people that’s why they make great family dogs, but not as guard canines, anyway.
Basset Hound: It can be said that Basset Hounds are the cousins of Beagles due to their appearance. However, they aren’t energy bundles. In fact, they are the total opposite of Beagles despite being bred for hunting. They have a calmer and laid-back personality, unlike the always keen and alert Beagle. Bassets are sometimes dubbed as couch potatoes since they prefer resting than jumping all over the place.
If we’re going to talk about Beagle vs. Basset Hound in terms of agility, Basset Hounds can be runners too. But compared to Beagles, they aren’t much of a yappy breed – the best option for those who can’t deal with an energetic doggo. The only caveat is they are less affectionate.
Behavior and Temperament
Beagles: If you want a lap dog that craves for your hugs, Beagles aren’t for you. Their noses are always on the ground, and if not, they are always in the run. They will be affectionate, but you just can’t contain them in one place for long hours. Their independence as a hound dog makes them a bit stubborn and headstrong.
Another thing you have to know is that Beagles are awfully loud. If you leave them unaccompanied, they will howl on top of their lungs. Their barks are ear-piercing too and if that’s not grueling enough, they do it frequently. It’s either you get a pair of earplugs or subject them to intensive training.
Lastly, Beagles will become destructive if they experience separation anxiety. As herding dogs, they long for companionship.
Basset Hounds: This breed is a class clown and they can be active too. If you like the personality and behavior of Beagles toned down a bit, they are the closest you can get. But due to their short legs, their noses are always on the ground.
The good thing is that Basset Hounds are also great with kids but they have lesser guarding potential compared to Beagles. Bassets are also less playful than Beagles which can be both good and bad depending on your preference. But like their cousin breed, they love howling and regular companionship.
Beagles: This breed is stereotyped to be unintelligent. Their strong will and independence are often mistaken to be disobedience and stubbornness. Beagles can be a pain to train, especially if you’re trying to fight off their urge to sniff around. Their major distraction is their noses’ tendency to chase a smell across the street or in the kitchen.
However, this doesn’t conclude that Beagles are not intelligent. You can use their sniffing prowess by giving treats to follow commands. The reward-system can be your edge here, regardless if you’re choosing Basset Hound or Beagle breeds.
Basset Hounds: Like Beagles, Bassets are both stubborn and smart. You have to train them during their puppy years if you want them to follow orders. Bassets are bred to be reliant to the pack instead of following commands. This breed can be a pain in the neck during training, but like any dogs, you can go farther with the help of a reward-based system.
Crate training is better for Bassets instead of the house method if you want to housebreak them. Make sure that you have fenced yards and locked gates. Just like Beagles, Bassets’ sense of smell always gets the best of them.
Beagles: Beagles are AKC’s 5th most popular dog breed. This makes it easier to get a hand on a puppy if you’re planning to purchase. They can be found in a lot of breeders or kennels. But although Beagles are easy to find, you should still practice caution against haphazard breeding.
Basset Hounds: This breed is a bit difficult to find and is one of the possible reasons for its hefty price. Only a few breeders get to produce quality Bassets. One reason is that this breed is AKC’s 40th most popular pick for a dog breed.
Activity Requirement: Beagle vs. Basset Hound
Beagles: With a yappy and energetic doggo, you have to be in the move all the time. You have to take them on brisk walks or runs every day while letting them romp on your yard afterward. If you fail to do this, they’re going to be unhappy and channel their attention to your sofa or carpet. Make sure that you have them microchipped as their strong sense of smell can bring them to lots of places. There’s a high chance that they’ll get lost.
Wait until your Beagle turns 18 months old before taking him to long jogs. Take note that as Beagles grow old and close to their senior years, they get less active. By the time they turn 8 or 10 they will prefer lazying on the couch.
Basset Hounds: If you’re not the type who would go for runs and endless fetching, Basset hounds will be the perfect fit for you. They have very low energy levels and it’s not a good idea to subject them to intense running and jumping. Bassets have very short legs and stocky bodies. They can easily get hurt if you try to pit them on a Beagle level.
This breed is also an awful swimmer. Most of their weight is in front of their bodies plus their limbs are tiny. Putting them on the pool for some exercise is the worse idea (they will drown!). Letting them roam on your yard (FENCED as always) will be enough. As they grow old, they would turn lazier.
Beagles: In terms of grooming, Beagles aren’t really demanding. They have a short coat and small bodies that require fewer visits to the groomer. The only ugly thing about Beagles is they shed heavier than the Bassets. Although you rarely have to bathe them, you have to brush regularly to keep the fur from sticking to your furniture. Beagles have undercoats so be careful with DIY grooming.
Feeding a beagle isn’t as costly as feeding a large hound. Basset Hound or Beagle, take note that both of them are prone to overeating. Make sure that you keep an eye on the serving so they won’t end up bloated or fat. This breed is prone to obesity so don’t allow them to munch incessantly.
You also have to keep up with their daily physical activities. If you’re not the owner who can spend at least an hour fetching and running, Beagles aren’t for you.
Basset Hounds: Just like the other breed, they aren’t a pain to groom. The cost of maintenance is almost the same with Beagles. The good thing about Bassets is they are less shedding and they have no undercoat.
However, you have to get their ears checked from time to time. They have larger and droopier flaps which can harbor all kinds of dirt and dog parasites. When it comes to their diet, it’s best to feed them three small meals a day to prevent bloating and flatulence. Don’t subject them to exercise for at least one hour after eating.
Since they have small legs, Bassets might develop joint problems in the future if you exercise them a lot. Slow your roll with jumping and running regardless if you have a pup.
Beagle vs. Basset Hound: Health and Lifespan
Beagles: Beagles live pretty long for up to 15 years. Since they are small and light, their bodies aren’t prone to the “wear and tear” large hounds experience. However, like any dog breeds, they are prone to some health issues.
Some Beagles inherit hip dysplasia from their parents where the thighbones don’t fit properly to the joint. To prevent this, ask the breeder for a health clearance and proof that the parents of the pup have been tested for this disorder.
Other health issues associated with adult Beagles are glaucoma, patellar luxation, hyperthyroidism, Beagle dwarfism or when the dog is smaller than usual, and Chinese Beagle Syndrome. CBS is when the skull of the pup is wide and the eyes are slanted. Dogs with this condition grow with toe abnormalities and heart problems. It’s important that you get your Beagle from a trusted breeder to avoid this.
Basset Hounds: Again, not all Bassets will develop the diseases and disorders mentioned here. But taking proper caution won’t hurt so they can live up to their maximum lifespan of 10 years.
First, Bassets are prone to gastric torsion. This happens when the Basset is overfed, overdrank, and overexercised after meals that excessive flatulence starts to form inside the tummy. The life-threatening problem starts when the stomach becomes too distended with gas that it starts to twist. Such a condition can either be inherited or developed.
One rare health issue in young Bassets is Panosteitis. It’s when the pup becomes suddenly lame and lethargic. This can be misdiagnosed by vets as hip dysplasia so it’s important that you seek for a second opinion.
Beagle vs. Basset Hound
Major causes of the death among Beagles: Trauma: 16%, Cancer 23%, Neurological problems 13%
Major causes of death among Basset Hounds: Cancer 38%, Trauma 8%, Neurological problems 15%
If the price is your basis in choosing Basset Hound or Beagle breeds, the latter will be pocket-friendly. Beagles are popular and a favorite among breeders which makes them more affordable. If we’re going to factor in health cost per year, Beagles will still be the winner of the match.
The keeping cost of Beagles is also way cheaper than Basset Hounds for both premium and standard breeds. One probable reason is that Basset Hounds have a higher risk of developing joint and stomach problems due to their deep-chested and petite gait.
So Basset Hound or Beagle? After contemplating about the points we discussed here, you probably have an idea what suits you best. What’s important is you become a responsible pet owner for any doggo. Do you have thoughts? Let us know below!