Beagle Thinking

Beagle thinking is enthusiastic, ingenious, and not always what a human might want their dog to be thinking.

Sandy is darling, mischievous, and way too smart. She is only half-beagle and yet she has given me a new perspective on beagle thinking. And a new admiration for people who welcome these outgoing party animals into their homes.

The difference

Beagle thinking is dramatically different from my former dogs.

My herding dogs thoughts were straightforward : “Keep the pack together at all times.”

Then there was Ashes, my keeshond who when the backyard gate was left open, quite indignantly came to the front door and barked to be let in, “I could have gotten lost!” he seemed to say.

Beagle thinking is so very different from my border-aussie mix Huff who was afraid of so many things. Unfortunately, experience had not been kind to him. He never lost his sweetness, but he was always watchful for trouble.

Here are five things your beagle will never think:

1.   “That smells too bad to roll in.”  

Silly human. 

The more aromatic the better. Dead things. Swampy decaying things. Things that were once inside other animal. Maybe (maybe!) you shouldn’t eat it, but a beagle will definitely roll in.

Even Sandy realizes that certain things might not be a good dietary choice. What to do? Roll in it!

Apparently leaving it alone is not an option.

This thought process taught Sandy about karma. If she rolls in something smelly, I will give her a bath. Karma.

Like many of us, Sandy rails against karma, fights it, even hides from it. And yet, karma will have its way.

Also like many of us, when a similar choice presents itself again, karma will be unlikely to deter her. Beagle thinking is not concerned with karma.


“Maybe I should wait for my human.”

Beagles are busy dogs. They do not have time to waste on waiting for humans, a notoriously slow breed.

This is why so many of them end up in shelters. They were not abandoned or abused. They were busy.

They caught a scent followed it. Or saw a rabbit and chased it. Or went out for a run and then discovered they had no idea where they were or how to get home. But oh, there’s another smell.

“I’m not hungry, I’ll save it for later.”

Said no beagle ever.

If it is edible (or might be edible), Sandy will eat it. She will eat it faster than a human can figure out she has found something she is considering eating.

If she is wrong about the item’s edibility, and sometimes she is, she figures her digestive system will sort it out. It does.

And the human will clean that up. Ugh.

“I need a bath.”

After going to all the trouble of rolling in a pungent smell or trotting through a muddy ditch, Sandy is distraught when I insist on a bath. Beagle thinking does not respect karma. She has done all this work and I am going to ruin it.

Yes. Yes I am.


5.   “That’s a stranger I will avoid them.”

There are no strangers. Everyone is a potential admirer.

The other day we were sitting at a stop light with all the car windows up. Suddenly I notice the kids in the next car – and then the adults in the car as well– waving at us. I smiled and tried to figure out who these people were.

Then I realized they weren’t waving at me. They were waving at Sandy who was making serious eye contact and wagging her tail furiously.

She is that good.


Bonus beagle thinking  

The question on every beagle’s mind:

Where’s the party?

Where’s the party?

Where’s the party?


Yes, a bit compulsive there.

Beagles live for a party.

For people to meet. Food to eat. Dogs to play with. Food to eat.

Yes, I meant that twice. Because: beagle!

Sandy loves a party. If the garage door is open at the neighbor’s house, that means it’s time to visit. It doesn’t matter if she knows them. After all that’s the purpose of a party: to meet new people. And food.

Funny not all humans realize that their open door is an invitation.

And I am the person dragging my reluctant dog, whining and looking back to see if anyone is coming to give her a reprieve.

If you are considering adding a beagle to your family, this is what you can expect. Also expect lots of love and silliness. And be prepared for your daily walks to become more beagle-like.


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