Most Common Health Problems in Beagles - Yahoo Voices

posted on 03 Jul 2014 04:43 by abnormalclaw3674

Since 1999, the beagle has been consistently in the American Kennel Club's Ten Most Popular Dog Breeds list. The beagle reached the number 3 spot in 2012. Beagles are easy-going, intelligent and friendly dogs. Unfortunately, record numbers of dogs, including purebred beagles, are being abandoned or surrendered to animal shelters since the worldwide recession of 2008.

If you are thinking of adopting a beagle, keep in mind that they can be prone to some health problems. According to Beagles on the Web, the average cost of keeping a beagle is about $1000 ( US) per year. This figure can quickly rise if the beagle suffers from an illness. The companionship of a beagle is priceless.

Birth Defects

These will be present at birth or before the puppy is weaned, so they will not suddenly pop up as a surprise. Most of these will not kill the beagle but certainly veterinary care or corrective surgery may be needed. These defects include a cleft palate, being born with a stubby tail (brachuary) and micropthalmos. This is when the eye is too small for the eye socket. Another strange condition is alopecia universialis, which means that the beagle's hair all or mostly falls out. Beagles may also be born deaf or become deaf through illness or injury. Deaf dogs can be trained and live out full lives.

Obesity Related Problems

Beagles love food. They also are very cute. Beagles learn very quickly how to train their owners into feeding them whenever they act cute. Unfortunately, these leads to a beagle getting overweight or even obese. A fat beagle is more prone to developing diabetes and heart problems than a beagle at a healthy weight. If a beagle also has epilepsy, then controlling the diet may help to reduce seizures, but not always.

Neurological Problems

Beagles can get epilepsy, narcolepsy and spina bifida. However, except for spina bifida, there can be many different causes of seizure disorders in beagles. There is still a lot about canine epilepsy that is unknown. But in some cases seizure disorders can be managed and the dog can lead a relatively normal life.

Eye Problems

"The Veterinarians' Guide to Your Dog's Symptoms" notes that sometimes beagle puppies are born with cataracts or develop cataracts before they are six years old. It seems to be inherited, but mostly the cataracts go away suddenly. Not so with micropthalmos. This is when the eye is too small for the eye socket. The eye may need to be removed.

Beagles can also develop glaucoma. This appears after the dog is one ear of age and may require the eye to be removed. Another problem which can cause blindness with retinal dysplasia, but this happens to many breeds and mixed breed dogs. Blind dogs are not as handicapped by the loss of vision as are people. Blind dogs have been known to figure out how to move around confidently through uses of their senses and supervision by their owners.


American Kennel Club. "Dog Registration Statistics."

"The Veterinarians' Guide to Your Dog's Symptoms." Michael S. Garvey, DVM, et al. Villard; 1999.

Beagles on the Web. "FAQ." "The Role of a Natural Healthy Diet in the Management of Canine Epilepsy." Chris Alderson, et al. 2003.