If you spread your fingers apart and look at the skin between, you’ll notice a little bit of that’s loose. That small amount of skin is what many dogs have too. This is a type of webbing. It’s not the same as a platypus, duck, or a frog, but it is a means of comparison. So, do beagles have webbed paws?
Yes, all beagles have this webbing between the digits on their paws. Actually, most dogs have some degree of webbed feet. Not only does this help them swim but it also helps them gain traction and stability in various terrains.
While it may be a strange notion to consider that beagles have webbed feet, it’s not all that odd. As a matter of fact, you can determine how well they can swim by the prominence and appearance of webbing on their paws.
Is it true that Beagles have webbed feet?
It’s true that beagles have a meager amount of skin wedged between the digits of their paws, like many other animals. Actually, every dog all over the world has this webbing to some degree or another. It’s just that some dogs have evolved more than others from their ancestral builds which have severely decreased the pronouncement of webbing.
If you have never seen it on your beagle before, take one of your pup’s paws and spread the digits apart. You should notice that wee bit of skin between them. It’s the same membrane as you have on your paws too (oops . . . hands).
Why do Beagles have webbed paws?
This webbing is what gives them great traction during hunting, a sport they are naturally built for. So, one would think it means they’re good swimmers too. But it doesn’t translate that well to moving about in the water, unfortunately.
Beagles evolved to develop physical characteristics to help them do all the things they’re good at. Running, jumping, climbing rocky environments, going uphill, and digging are just a few situations where beagles put this webbing to good use.
Webbed Development – For healthy beagle puppies and humans alike, webbing develops as they grow in the mother’s womb. Before their birth, some of the webbings will actually reduce or disappear entirely. This leads researchers to believe that the prominence of the webbing during gestation helps the baby during its stay until it’s ready to come into the world.
The amount of webbing that remains is what nature intends through DNA programming. So, if the species needs to maneuver through the water, the webbing will be more prominent. For beagles, they don’t have to do their hunting in water, so they don’t require nearly as much webbing as others.
What is the webbing between your Beagle’s toes?
For beagles, that thin skin membrane connecting the toes together at the top of their paw is webbing. As this webbing is more prominent in animals like ducks, frogs, and platypuses, it helps them move through the water. This is because the webbing provides a nice, flat surface to move quickly with a lot of agility.
This is the same for beagles too, just not so much in the water. It allows them to run up hills with great east and gain traction with the earth under their feet to chase the game and other prey in the most narrow and difficult of spaces. While this doesn’t translate well to a beagle being a great swimmer, it does help on slippery, wet, and muddy surfaces.
Webbing Is Evolutionary – This is simply an evolutionary characteristic beagle have. It’s the natural order of things. It’s what has helped them to thrive and adapt to the world. Even science has proven that all land, sea, and air animals have a certain degree of webbing between their toes.
In the case of beagles, the webbing doesn’t help them get through water in the same way as a beaver. As a matter of fact, they’re not very strong swimmers by nature. However, you can train them to be excellent swimmers if that’s what you want to train your beagle to do.
What dogs have webbed feet?
Now, while beagles may not have webbing on their paws that’s not very obvious, there are other canine medium-sized breeds that very much do. Most of these kinds of dogs need such webbed feet to help them retrieve objects from the water. The following is a small list of nine top dogs that have very pronounced webbing on their feet.
These sweet and docile giants love being in the water and they have sizable webbing on their feet to assist with this. Newfoundland dogs look like big teddy bears and are often part of many coastguard teams to assist with water emergencies.
But, this is what nature intended for this modern breed. Originally bred in Canada, they help fishermen retrieve gear that fell overboard and nets. Their powerful swimming ability also translates to being able to rescue full-grown adults from the water too.
Labs are a famous family dog. They’re cute, kind, friendly, and easy to train. You can literally teach these dogs to do almost anything. Their paws are duck-like in shape, which makes them perfect for swimming in the water or hunting on slippery surfaces.
When you see them go in the water, they’re fast, agile, and acute. They can retrieve anything, from a duck and fishing nets to chasing a ball or rescuing a drowned adult. While they make a fantastic family pet, they’re also very useful fowl hunters.
Known for their adorability and endurance, otterhounds have one purpose: to hunt down otters, of course. These dogs were very common for people to have in 1800s Britain. Their accurate ability to take on such feisty and intelligent prey as otters means they not only needed bravery, but also intelligence and an ability to move through water with ease.
Because people bred these dogs for water hunting purposes, otterhounds have hugely webbed feet. This is probably more prominent than in most other breeds on this list. But, as otter populations lowered to near-extinction levels, the otterhound fell out of fashion. Today, they’re rare with only a few hundred that exist in the world.
Portuguese Water Dogs
As the name portends, Portuguese water dogs are the ultimate companion for fishermen and sailors. They can retrieve nets, tackle, swim between ships, and can even help herd fish into nets. This is all due to the large and lovely webbing they have between their feet.
Portuguese water dogs are intelligent, independent, and athletic. So, today they are not only useful to marine duties but also make great family pets.
Chesapeake Bay Retriever
Chesapeake Bay retrievers are awesome swimmers with enormous webbed paws. They can nab almost any game on land or water and make great companions for the consummate fisherman.
Their loving loyalty and devotion mean they’re easy to train and socialize with. Their courage, happy disposition, and work ethic guarantee they’re great at any job you give them, wet or dry.
Irish Water Spaniel
As quite possibly one of the oldest breeds known to us, Irish Water Spaniels are one of the best swimmers around. They’re excellent hunting dogs with a massive amount of webbing between their paws. This means they can hunt over huge swaths of land or through even the most turbulent waters.
German Shorthaired Pointers
German Shorthaired Pointers are superb hunting dogs. They have broad webbed paws that make them capable of retrieving, pointing, and tracking a wide range of games and animals. These dogs move across the water just as easily as they do moist, slippery soil.
For a dog that can hunt, chase, dig and dive, the webbed feet of a dachshund is quite efficient. While they aren’t good long-distance swimmers, they give their all when only going a short way. But their accuracy at finding vermin and rodents is absolutely amazing due to their small stature and narrow snouts.
The webbing on a Weimaraner is perfect for swimming. This medium-sized breed has strong hunting instincts and can move about through bodies of water with ease and agility. It makes them great for smaller games like fowl and foxes but you can also train them for boar, bear, deer, and wildcats. This is a great form of exercise and by keeping up with regular exercise you will help to avoid any long-lasting health problems.