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10 Problems With Your Beagle

We are hot on the trail of beagle issues today, so let’s run headlong into this rabbit hole. As always, I’m not a veterinarian, just a researcher. The links you see highlighted in the article will take you to reference materials and a deep dive into each condition. This is a just curated list and isn’t absolute. Please let us know in the comments if we missed anything that beagle owners should know or that you want to share. Let’s get to the chase.

Unfortunately, it is quite common that your beagle is unable to produce enough thyroid hormone in the bloodstream. This can lead to weight gain, lethargy, and skin problems. These issues often are long duration, as opposed to an acute disease. Hormone replacement therapies have shown success, so it is crucial to get your beagle’s blood tested by your doggy doctor. No known cause has been found, so make sure you are dealing with a reputable and ethical breeder.

Patellar luxation means that your beagle’s tendon is slipping around over the top of its kneecap, allowing the kneecap to become dislocated. It is quite common in beagles and is often signaled by your pooch switching back and forth between limping and seeming fine. Surgeries are often successful, speak with your veterinarian if you are noticing these symptoms. If left untreated, patellar luxation can often lead to hip problems as your beagle modifies its gait and walking motion. This can place unnecessary strain on the hip and lead to alternative problems.

Beagles are susceptible to many eye diseases, including dry eye, conjunctivitis, and cherry eye. Allergens are a common cause of bloodshot eyes in beagles, but some hereditary factors can be at play as well. If your beagle has excessive discharge or crusting, a veterinary ophthalmologist might be necessary to find the root cause. If left untreated, some eye conditions could lead to blindness.

Beagles can suffer from a variety of skin conditions, including allergic reactions, folliculitis, impetigo, yeast infections, and mange. In addition, some beagles can have reactions to fleas and ticks. A good hypoallergenic shampoo is essential, and there are flea, tick, and skin medications available. Of course, if you don’t see improvement on your beagle’s skin after these treatments, you need to be getting to the vet.

This is a fancy and scary way of saying that your beagle’s heart valves weren’t formed correctly at birth. It’ll cause issues with your beagle’s circulation and result in fatigue, lethargy, and possible heart failure. Beagles with mild cases often don’t display any issues and live a long life. If your dog is collapsing or seems excessively fatigued from mild exercise, you should get to your vet immediately.

Epilepsy is the most common cause of seizures in beagles. Seizures usually begin when beagles are between 1 and 3 years old. Alternative reasons for seizures are severe ear infections, hypoglycemia, and heartworm infestation. Diabetes can also cause seizures. If your vet can isolate the reason for the seizures, medications are available for most causes.

Just like in humans, your beagle might not be able to produce enough insulin to regulate its blood sugar. If your beagle has increased appetite and thirst, is still losing weight, and has problems with control of its urinary function, you should get into a vet quickly. Medications exist and can help your beagle’s quality of life.

As with most floppy-eared cuties, beagles suffer from somewhat frequent ear infections. You will notice excessive head shaking and extended itching sessions. If the behavior is persistent, treatment is necessary as a very severe infection can result in deafness. Consistent gentle cleaning is recommended.

Unfortunately, about a quarter of beagles will be diagnosed with cancer at some point in their lives according to the Gardner Animal Care Center. Skin lesions that won’t heal, strange bumps on the skin, or changes in your beagle’s eating patterns are all signs to watch for. Osteosarcoma, lymphoma, and cancer of the bladder are the most common. Surgeries are sometimes possible if the condition is found and treated quickly.

Beagles can suffer from weak bladder control and it is often the source of much frustration for their owners. This can be due to a number of factors. UTI, canine kidney infection or stone development, and bladder infection can all cause urinary problems. The aforementioned diabetes can also create frequent urination issues. If your beagle’s urinary issues are severe, talk to your vet immediately.

So what did we miss? What didn’t we explain properly? Please leave a comment so other beagle owners can benefit from your wisdom and experience. I am not a vet and this list is not exhaustive, merely a curation of available information. Please click the hyperlinked subheadings for a deep dive, and of course your veterinarian is the best source of information. Beagles are awesome dogs and we hope the information contained here helps you and your pup have the best life possible. Until next time, keep being a different breed.

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