Have you heard? Cold Nose Lodge is hosting our annual Beaglefest (2019) on Saturday, March 16th from 12:30 – 3PM! An event totally dedicated to beagles and beagle mixes? That’s right! Click here for more info. As you mosey around our boutique you’re sure to spot beagle decor here and there, and many of our adorable foster dogs are beagles from SOS Beagle Rescue. You also may have noticed that on any given day when you stop into the Lodge, you might be greeted by a sunbathing beagle named Blue who once was a foster before finding her home right here with our founder, Rayne. In her younger years, one of Rayne’s other beagles, Betty, would be the first to greet every new dog during daycare introductions. What you may not know is that beagles are a very special part of the Lodge’s story.
A Very Special Beagle
As a child, our founder Rayne received Henry, a stuffed toy beagle dog, and her adoration of the breed blossomed. She couldn’t wait for a real beagle of her own. However, Rayne had to wait until junior year of college because when her family brought home a furry friend, lo and behold, it was a cocker spaniel! The very special beagle that found her way into Rayne’s heart as a junior at JMU was more than worth the wait.
Winnie, a beagle/border collie mix, inherited the build of a beagle and the brilliance of a border collie. She was a black and white puppy in a litter of tricolors that were born on a local farm. While visiting the litter, Rayne locked eyes with Winnie and she knew she wouldn’t be going home without her. She had found her beagle.
During her almost 16 years of life, Winnie was the most wonderful companion. She was right by Rayne’s side as she volunteered in rescue, including fostering beagles with B.R.E.W. a beagle rescue in Virginia. Winnie was also there as Rayne married her husband Kerry, welcomed her two children, and many other dogs over the years, and opened Cold Nose Lodge. She was the quintessential best friend and couldn’t have been more loved. Winnie is our cover girl, Rayne’s love for her commemorated in our logo.
History of the Beagle Breed
Rayne is not alone in her love of beagles. The breed continues to be one of the most popular in America. So where did they come from? Although dog breeds bearing resemblance to the beagle can be traced all the way back to ancient Greece and Celtic Ireland, the beagle we know and love came to be in the 1830s in England. Reverend Phillip Honeywood developed the modern beagle in Essex for hunting hare. Although the breed’s original lineage isn’t documented, the mix is thought to include Harriers and two English breeds that no longer exist–a tall, bony hound called the North County Beagle, and a large, heavy hound called the Southern Hound. Along with Honeywood, Prince Albert, and Lord Winterton had beagle packs and the new breed was quickly exported to America.
The breed exploded in popularity in America and has always been more popular here than in its native England! By 1888, the National Beagle Club of America was formed, and by 1901, a beagle snagged a Best in Show title. However, America’s adoration of the beagle was just beginning. From the breeds presence in pop culture with lovable and infamous Snoopy to beagles in the White House, we’ve opened up our hearts and homes to these wonderful companions.
Why Beagles Make Wonderful Pets
Some of the reasons why we love beagles:
- They’re hardy & are a good size for a convenient companion dog
- They have low-maintenance coats
- They’re even-tempered, gentle, and get along with everyone
- They’re energetic and determined–a combination that is adorable, and hilarious at times
How did we find this wonderful companion in a little hunting dog? When you look at “beagling,” the hunting of hares that the breed was created for, the purpose of these characteristics that we love so much in a pet also make sense within the context of hunting. In beagling, a pack of over 10 and up to 40 beagles (wow!) relentlessly pursue a hare. This takes the wealth of energy we see in the breed. The chase can lead through all sorts of terrain led by their sense of smell, often including thick brush where their small, hardy builds, and short, but smooth and dense coats come in handy. The pack runs close together, preventing any of the dogs from getting lost in the woods so it’s very important that they all get along! The hare will eventually circle to the hunters, sometimes after a very long and strenuous pursuit, taking a ton of determination on the beagles’ part.
Challenges Beagle Owners May Face
These characteristics also produce challenges that we often beagle owners facing. A dog that can navigate difficult terrain on a rigorous chase for hours often won’t be satisfied by a short walk around the block. They may even be an escape artist yearning for an adventure led by their nose. Many beagles crave exercise and stimulation and can be destructive when these needs aren’t met. They can also seem to be stubborn without ample motivation from their owners. Remember, they were bred to learn within a large group taking cues from the other dogs and also were trained with a clear sense of purpose. For some beagles it may be a puzzle to figure out what, other than food, makes them tick. Trial and error in training is important to find out what works for a specific beagle and it’s very rewarding when you get it right!
If you own a beagle, I’m sure you know what baying is! For those that don’t, baying is a unique, loud vocalization that beagles use to communicate. It sounds like the combination of a bark and a howl. The amusing breed is also known to yodel! Their loud vocalizations were crucial in communicating during a hunt not only with each other, but with the huntsman from a distance. Some owners find that the noise they can make may not best fit for certain living situations. If you need direction or just want to strengthen the bond you have with your beagle, check out our training services. We only use positive, kind methods, so you can be sure that you’re doing right by your best friend. Call us to sign up for training today at (610) 965-3647.
Beagles and Daycare: A Match Made in Heaven
What beagles ARE a good fit for is doggy daycare. With secure indoor and outdoor areas filled with play equipment to explore, toys to play with, and plenty of friends to pal around with, daycare satisfies a beagle’s eagerness for adventure and exploration, as well as canine companionship. Of course, all this excitement is the perfect outlet for the endless energy our beagle friends seem to harbor and we’re happy to send them home sleepy and satisfied after a long day of play. It felt like a sign when Cold Nose Lodge welcomed our first daycare client–Molly, a beagle! Over the years we’ve loved caring for so, so many beagles and can’t wait to continue to welcome them into the Lodge family. If you have a beagle, you know it’s mind-beagle-ing how sweet they are. They will always be our bay-bies. Want a beagle of your own? Check out our fosters, maybe you’ll find that welcoming a beagle into your heart is meant to bea(gle). Okay–I’m done with the cheesy puns, I hope at least one of them made you smile!
Don’t forget to bring your beagle or beagle mix to Beaglefest on March 16th from 12:30 – 3PM at Cold Nose Lodge. Our address is 235 W. Penn Ave., Aburtis, PA 18011. You can RSVP online here.