There are a lot of things to think about when you are getting a new dog, and if you are considering a beagle, you probably have a lot of questions – some obvious and some less so. One thing that you need to think about is how easy the dog will be to handle and how you are going to tire it out, especially if you don’t have a big yard for it to play in. The amount of exercise that a dog needs and how quickly it can cover ground is very relevant to dog owners. So, how fast can beagles run?
Beagles can run at around 20 miles per hour (just over 32 km per hour). Some beagles can top this speed if they are in really good shape, while others will not be able to run this fast, but this is a good average. As a comparison, humans jog at between 6.5 – 8.5 miles per hour.
We’re going to look at how fast beagles can run and the sort of running and exercise that you should provide for your beagle so that it stays fit and healthy. You’ll learn the safest ways to exercise with your dog and pick up some information on what sort of distances you should be covering with your dog each day. We will also look at whether running away can be problematic for pet owners, and what prompts a beagle to run away.
How Fast Can Beagles Run?
These little dogs can move surprisingly fast given their short stature and little legs. Beagles were bred to run, however, so it makes sense that they can move very quickly. At one time, they would have been tearing after prey in open country and scrambling down rabbit holes or along fox tracks with lots of other beagles.
Part of the reason that adult beagles (scent hounds) are fast is that they have some greyhound in them, and they were bred from the English Talbot, which was already a speedy creature. Years of selective breeding for the quickest and most effective hunters will have honed these skills further. Modern beagles are therefore very fast dogs.
If your beagle decides to go at full speed, you won’t have a chance of keeping up. A human’s jog average speed is less than half of a beagle’s run. Although the fastest running speed for a human was 45 km per hour, most humans cannot achieve anything like this speed, and your dog will have no problem outrunning you if it chooses to try!
Beagles may not look as though they have been built for speed, but they are actually among the fastest dog breeds. They also have reasonably good stamina, although they can’t sustain their top running speed for very long, and will have to slow down.
Most beagles can only manage about three miles before they start to really slow down. Some may manage more, and quite a few can’t do this much, but that’s still an impressive distance for such a small dog.
Their speed, combined with their curiosity and the prey drive that encourages them to chase anything interesting, means that they are extremely quick movers. They can be hard to keep up with when you’re out walking together! It is a good idea to establish a clear “come” command, and hone this so that you can recall your beagle to your side when necessary.
Can I Take My Beagle Running?
This depends on you and your beagle quite a lot. If you are very fit and your beagle is very young, very old, or overweight or unfit, it’s not a good idea to take them running with you, no.
However, if you think you can match your running pace with theirs and you would both enjoy the physical activity, it’s okay to take them for a short run. As they are a very active breed, they will love the experience of running with their “pack,” but make sure you don’t overdo it, because your dog may not let you know when it needs to stop.
Do not take your beagle on a run that is more than two miles as a maximum, even if the dog is enjoying it and seems capable of doing more. Longer distances could be damaging to your dog’s health and may leave it at risk of injury.
It is a good idea to blend running with other exercises, and not to go running every day. Your beagle’s muscles will need time to recover after a run, so choose a playful, non-strenuous exercise for other days.
If you do want to go running with your beagle, build up to this slowly, and don’t attempt a two-mile run straight away. Instead, go for quick, short jogs, interspersed with plenty of walking breaks. Your beagle may love the activity level, but it needs to build up its muscles just as a human runner would.
No matter how much endurance training you do with your beagle, make sure you pay attention to its limits and don’t push it beyond these. They may be good runners, but they can’t run forever!
Do not run with your beagle if it has sustained an injury; even if its legs are fine, running could jostle and worsen the injury. It is better to choose gentle cardio exercise only while your dog recovers.
Can Beagles Run Long Distances?
Beagles should not run very long distances, no, and they often can’t anyway. They were not bred to keep up a fast pace for mile after mile. They were bred to aid hunters and flush out prey, and while this did involve some running, it would rarely be over a long stretch.
How far a beagle can run safely will really depend on the dog and the terrain. A very fit and healthy beagle that has done plenty of endurance training may be able to manage around five miles.
However, this sort of endurance training is controversial. Many people believe that the dogs enjoy it and it is good for them, while others believe that even if they enjoy it, it puts too much strain on the dog’s body and is unhealthy.
If your dog seems to love running, you can build up to long-distance running, but always be mindful of your dog’s condition, and ensure it stops if it is showing any signs of struggling or heavy panting. Your furry friend should not be struggling for breath or stumbling as it runs.
You know your dog better than anyone else, but be aware that beagles may push themselves harder than they should. They love running, and they are also very keen to please, so it’s easy for them to get over-exerted and injured.
Do Beagles Like To Run Away?
One of the biggest issues with the beagle’s love of running is the fact that they frequently run away from their owners during regular walks. They want to chase things and they are very easily distracted. Once their prey drive engages, it can be hard to get them to return.
Your dog is then at risk of getting lost and injured or possibly stolen. It is crucial to work on good recall practices as soon as you get your beagle, and keep reinforcing these lessons to reduce the risk of the dog getting lost.
Beagles were bred to follow scents, and they have around 200 million scent glands in their noses. Smells are pretty irresistible to them, and they can detect smells from more than a mile away.
If your beagle friend smells something interesting while out walking or while in your yard, it will follow it almost obsessively. Your dog may be overwhelmed by its need to chase down the interesting smell.
With proper training, this can be combated, but bear it in mind as one of the biggest challenges of owning one of these beautiful dogs. They were bred to track and chase, and they will follow any interesting smell, often regardless of you calling them.
You should make sure that your yard is secure if your dog will ever be left unattended in it.
So, hopefully, that has answered the question “how fast can beagles run?” for you. Their top speed is generally between 30 and 40 km per hour, and they can sustain this for a short while. Beagles should not run for more than a couple of miles unless they have been very well trained for running, and even trained beagles should not run for more than four to five miles.