How Fast Can a Beagle Run?

The Beagle is a beloved breed known for its friendly, curious nature and impressive hunting abilities. These hounds were originally bred for rabbit hunting, and their speed and endurance played a crucial role in their success. Despite their small size, Beagles are energetic and athletic dogs with a strong prey chase instinct.

Top SpeedUp to 20 mph
Average Speed10-15 mph
Distance CapabilitiesBetter at sprints than long distances
Best OverShort distances, usually under a few miles
Factors Affecting SpeedHealth, age, weight, diet, terrain
How to Time SpeedElectronic timing gates, stopwatch, tracking apps
Ways to Improve SpeedProper nutrition, regular exercise, agility training
Sports Suited for SpeedLure coursing, straight racing, agility trials
Comparisons to Other AnimalsSlower than greyhounds, faster than most humans

Can You Take Your Beagle Running?

Absolutely! Beagles make excellent running partners, as long as you understand their strengths and limitations. While they are not built for marathon distances, Beagles can happily jog or sprint alongside you for shorter outings. Their compact size and muscular build make them sprinters ideal for short bursts of speed.

What Affects a Beagle’s Running Speed?

Several factors can influence a Beagle’s running speed:


Beagles have a sturdy, compact body shape that is not particularly aerodynamic. Their short legs and long, floppy ears create more wind resistance, which can slightly reduce their top speed.


Like humans, a Beagle’s speed and endurance will decline with age. Puppies and younger Beagles tend to be faster and have more stamina than their senior counterparts.


Beagles excel at short distances but may struggle to maintain their top speed over longer runs. Their sprint speed is impressive, but their endurance for long distances is more limited.


A Beagle’s overall health and fitness level will impact its running speed. Factors like weight, muscle tone, and any underlying medical conditions can either enhance or hinder its performance.


The terrain you run on can affect a Beagle’s speed. Flat, smooth surfaces allow them to reach their full potential, while rougher or hilly terrain may slow them down.


Like any athlete, a Beagle’s weight can significantly influence its speed. Obesity will undoubtedly make it harder for a Beagle to run quickly or for long periods.

How to Improve Your Beagle’s Running Speed

If you want to help your Beagle become a faster runner, consider the following tips:

  1. Provide a Proper Diet: Ensure your Beagle is getting a high-quality, protein-rich diet to build and maintain lean muscle mass.
  2. Engage in Regular Exercise: Gradually increase the intensity and duration of your Beagle’s exercise routine to build its stamina and endurance.
  3. Ensure Good Health: Regular veterinary check-ups and preventative care will help keep your Beagle in top physical condition for running.
  4. Join an Agility Club: Agility training can help improve your Beagle’s speed, coordination, and overall athletic skills.

What Kind of Races Can Beagles Run?

While Beagles may not be the fastest dogs out there, they can still participate in various canine sporting events:

  • Lure coursing: This simulated hunting activity allows Beagles to chase a lure around a course, showcasing their speed and prey drive.
  • Drag racing: Beagles can compete in straight-line races over short distances, often chasing a lure or rag.
  • Electronic timing: Some events use electronic timing systems to accurately measure a Beagle’s running speed over a set distance.

How Do You Train Your Beagle to Run?

Training is essential for any activity involving your Beagle. Here are some tips:

  1. Start with short distances and gradually increase as your Beagle builds endurance.
  2. Use positive reinforcement techniques, like treats and praise, to encourage and reward good running behavior.
  3. Invest in a quality harness or leash designed for running to keep your Beagle secure and under control.
  4. Incorporate mental stimulation and scent work into your training to keep your Beagle engaged and motivated.

How to Time Your Beagle’s Speed

To accurately measure your Beagle’s running speed, you’ll need some specialized equipment:

  • Electronic timing gates: These are the most precise way to clock a Beagle’s speed over a set distance.
  • Stopwatch: A simple handheld stopwatch can give you a rough estimate of your Beagle’s speed, but it may not be as accurate as electronic timing.
  • Tracking apps: Some smartphone apps use GPS to track your Beagle’s speed during a run, though accuracy can vary.

Why Are The Different Factors That Affect The Running Speed of A Beagle?

The factors affecting a Beagle’s running speed are diverse and interrelated. Here’s a breakdown of why each factor plays a role:

  1. Aerodynamics: A Beagle’s compact body shape creates more wind resistance, which can slow them down.
  2. Age: As Beagles age, their muscles and endurance naturally decline, impacting their speed.
  3. Distance: Beagles are sprinters, so their speed may drop off over longer distances.
  4. Health: Underlying health issues or poor fitness can significantly hinder a Beagle’s running performance.
  5. Terrain: Rough or hilly terrain makes it harder for a Beagle to maintain its top speed.
  6. Weight: Excess weight puts more strain on a Beagle’s muscles and joints, reducing its speed and endurance.

Understanding these factors can help you optimize your Beagle’s training and running routine for maximum performance.

How Do Beagles Compare to Other Animals?

While Beagles are undoubtedly fast for their size, they don’t quite measure up to some of the speediest animals on the planet. Here’s how they compare:

AnimalTop Speed
Cheetah120 mph
Greyhound45 mph
Beagle20 mph
Rabbit35 mph
Human28 mph

As you can see, Beagles are no match for the lightning-fast cheetah or even the rabbit they were bred to hunt. However, their speed is still impressive compared to the average human runner.

Can Beagles Run Long Distances?

While Beagles are capable of short bursts of speed, they are not built for long-distance running. Their compact bodies and sprinting abilities make them better suited for short distances and quick hunts.

That said, with proper training and conditioning, some Beagles may be able to tackle longer distances at a more moderate pace. But in general, their endurance is more limited than breeds specifically bred for long-distance running.

Are Beagles Athletic Dogs?

Absolutely! Despite their small size, Beagles are incredibly athletic dogs. Their muscular build, boundless energy, and hunting instincts make them well-equipped for various canine sports and activities.

While speed is not their sole strength, Beagles excel in agility, scent work, and other activities that require quick bursts of energy, coordination, and a keen nose.

Are Beagles Scent Hounds?

Yes, Beagles are classified as scent hounds. Their exceptional sense of smell and tracking abilities were originally developed for hunting purposes, specifically for trailing rabbits and other small game.

Beagles’ scent glands are highly developed, allowing them to pick up even the faintest of smells and follow a trail for long distances. This trait makes them invaluable not just for hunting, but also for various scent work and tracking activities.

Can you go for a run with a Beagle?

Absolutely! Beagles can make excellent running partners, as long as you take some precautions:

  1. Keep it short: Stick to shorter distances or multiple short runs, as Beagles are not built for long-distance running.
  2. Use a leash: Beagles have a strong hunting instinct and may bolt off if they catch an interesting scent.
  3. Bring water and snacks: Hydration and fuel are essential for both you and your Beagle during a run.
  4. Watch for overheating: Beagles can be prone to overheating, so avoid running in extreme heat or humidity.
  5. Build up gradually: Start with short distances and slowly increase as your Beagle’s endurance improves.

With the right preparation and precautions, running with your Beagle can be a fun and rewarding experience for both of you.

What dog sports can beagles participate in?

Beagles’ unique blend of athleticism, scent tracking abilities, and high energy levels make them well-suited for a variety of dog sports:

Tracking Tests

These events test a dog’s ability to follow a specific scent trail over various terrains and obstacles. Beagles’ keen noses give them an edge in tracking tests.

Scent work or Nose work

Scent work challenges dogs to use their sense of smell to locate specific odors in various environments. Beagles excel at this sport due to their exceptional scent glands and hunting instincts.

Dog Agility Trials

Agility courses require dogs to navigate a series of obstacles, jumps, and tunnels with speed and precision. Beagles’ compact size and agility make them natural competitors in these events.


This relay race involves teams of dogs racing over a jumps course and retrieving a ball from a spring-loaded box. Beagles’ speed and enthusiasm make them well-suited for flyball.

Field trials

These events test a dog’s ability to locate, track, and pursue game in a simulated hunting environment, playing to the Beagle’s natural strengths.


While not a traditional hunting sport, Beagles’ athleticism and drive make them excellent candidates for frisbee catching and other disc dog competitions.

With proper training and socialization, Beagles can thrive in a variety of dog sports that showcase their unique talents and abilities.


In conclusion, Beagles are energetic, athletic dogs with an impressive burst of speed for their size. While not the fastest breed out there, their compact muscular build and hunting instincts make them natural sprinters capable of reaching speeds around 20 mph over short distances. Factors like age, health, weight, terrain and distance can all impact a Beagle’s top speed and endurance.

With proper care, diet, exercise and training, Beagle owners can help their four-legged friends reach their full running potential. Activities like lure coursing, agility training, and canine sporting events provide great outlets for a Beagle’s need for speed and physical activity. Engaging in these sports responsibly allows these high-energy hounds to showcase their incredible athleticism and hunting prowess.

Ultimately, while Beagles may never outrun a cheetah, their impressive speed combined with their excellent scenting abilities and boundless enthusiasm make them truly unique companions – both as family pets and as formidable hunters and athletes in their own right. By understanding their capabilities and adapting activities to their strengths, Beagles can run, play and thrive for many years to come.

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