Frequently Asked Questions

Why do you breed?

1. I love the Beagle breed.

2. I want to preserve the type of Beagle that I love for future generations.

3. I want to raise Companion Beagles for myself and my family.

4. I love the joy that my Beagles bring to Families and Individuals.

5. I feel that the Beagle breed needs preservation breeders who care about the future of the Beagle breed, and that most Beagles become family companions. Therefore, I prioritize traits that make my Beagles more suitable to life as Companion Dogs (selective breeding). 

Where do you raise your Beagles?

My Beagles are born and raised in my home with my family. 

What are your credentials?

1. I have owned Beagles since 1992.

2. I have been a breeder of AKC registered Beagles since 2002.

3. I actively began developing my own bloodline of Beagles as Companion Dogs in 2016.

4. I am a member of The Charleston Kennel Club (all breed club), a member of the Purina ProClub, an AKC Bred With Heart breeder, and I participate in the OFA Health Tested Parents for Healthier Puppies program. 

What traits do you selectively breed for:

1. Temperament - The first trait that I select for is temperament and personality.

I prefer a Beagle who has a lower drive to wander off and hunt (Don't get me wrong, all Beagles have a tendency to follow their noses, but I want a Beagle who tends to prefer human companionship or working with a human more than hunting independently). 

I also prefer a Beagle who shows less dominance towards humans and wants to work with me. I do not like a very independent or self-serving Beagle. 

Due to these selective factors, my Beagles do not make as good of "independent style hunting dogs" or "top winning show dogs"; as they usually prefer Companionship, Therapy dog work, Agility, and Obedience. 

2. Health - First off, most dogs are not perfect; however I try to breed for the lowest risk of future health problems as possible. With this goal, I test my potential breeding dogs through a full-panel dna test (currently Embark, previously Optimal Selection) to determine what genes they carry. Through this testing, I can determine which dogs carry which genes and choose the best mate for them based on dna testing. This helps me to (ideally, when possible) not breed two dogs who carry the same recessive gene for a potential health problem. In the Beagle breed, the most difficult health problems to breed away from (that are testable with Embark dna testing) are currently Factor VII Deficiency (around 40% of the tested Beagle population carries this gene) and Type I IVDD Intervertebral Disk Disease (almost the entire Beagle population is dominant "at risk" with this gene). If we were to eliminate all of the Beagles who carry these genes, we would be left with a small population of Beagles which would cause significant inbreeding (and low genetic diversity). Therefore, I feel that we should choose each potential mate based on the lowest risk to future puppies and not "throw the baby out with the bathwater". As each future generation is born, I dna test my puppies to help me decide which puppies to keep for future breeding. 

The best method of breeding for good health (in my opinion) is for a breeder to do their best not to breed two dogs who carry the gene(s) for the same problem(s) and select the best puppies from each generation to breed away from known problems.

I also selectively breed for higher genetic diversity, longevity (longer life spans), and stronger immune systems; based on my knowledge of bloodlines over my years in the breed. It is not a perfect science and all reputable breeders will continue to try their best to produce the healthiest puppies possible.

3. Conformation - I breed with an eye towards the AKC Beagle breed standard. As with all breed standards, they were written by breeders who came before us and are open to interpretation by the breeders who followed. Some breeders will breed with the standard in mind, but have a tendency to breed more towards the trends (in breed type) that are winning in the show rings in their area. Some breeders will breed with the standard in mind, but have a tendency to breed more towards the trends (in hunting ability) that are winning at field (hunting) trials or performance events, etc.

I personally breed with the standard in mind, but I have a tendency to breed more towards suitability as a Companion Dog. You should choose a breeder who breeds the type of Beagle that best suits what you want your Beagle for (Show, Field, Companionship, Performance, etc). 

Are your dogs health tested?

Yes, all of my Beagles are full panel dna tested (currently through Embark, previously through Optimal Selection). Their results are submitted to OFA (Orthopedic Foundation for Animals). 

The testing through Embark gives results for over 170 diseases, including MLS.

I also have my Beagles tested for OFA Hips, Thyroid, and Eyes.

Embark DNA testing can be done at any age.

OFA Hips can be officially scored at 24 months old or older.

OFA Thyroid can be officially reported at 12 months old or older.

OFA Eyes can be tested at any age, but is recommended at 12 months or older.

PennHip (instead of OFA Hips) can be officially scored at 4 months or older. 

The recommended OFA Testing for Beagles can be viewed HERE.

Are your dogs registered? What registry?

All of my Beagles are AKC Registered and my Beagle Puppies are eligible for AKC Registration. 

Can you verify the parentage of your puppies?

All of my Beagles are AKC DNA profiled (males AND females) for the integrity of my pedigrees. My puppies can also be AKC DNA profiled to verify their parentage. 

How big are your Beagles?

My Beagles currently vary in height from 11 to 15 inches and weigh from 18 to 28 lbs, due to the wonder of mother nature and large variance in the breed. 

The average (and my preferred) size is around 13 inches tall and 24 lbs. 

Males tend to be larger than females and weight is dependent upon bone structure as well as diet!

Can I meet the parents of your puppies?

Those who purchase a puppy from me will have the opportunity to meet the parents of their puppy. My Beagles (the parents) both reside at my home with me, I own both parents (and some other relatives too!). I do not allow outside visitors for the health and safety of my Beagles and family. 

How do you socialize your puppies?

My Beagle Puppies are born and raised in my home with my family as family pets. I handle my Beagle Puppies every day from birth and perform early neurological stimulation (the super dog method). 

My Beagle Puppies are raised around other Dogs, a house cat, adults, and children. They are well accustomed to the signs and sounds of a home and a family. I play a Doggy Socialization CD 24/7 to acclimate my Beagle Puppies to many sounds as well. 

Some of my Beagle Puppies (only when necessary) are hand-raised on a bottle. 

Are your puppies vaccinated and wormed?

Yes. My Beagle Puppies receive their first vaccination (Vanguard Plus 5) at 6 weeks old. As my Beagle Puppies usually go to their new homes at 8 weeks old, typically they will receive their second puppy shot by their new owner's Veterinarian at their well puppy checkup. Vaccination schedules vary by Veterinarian and region. 

Our "keeper" puppies receive Vanguard Plus 5 at 6 weeks, 9 weeks, 12 weeks, 15 weeks, & 18 weeks. Our adults (actively breeding) receive annual re-vaccination. Retired adults receive boosters every 3 years. 

We vaccinate for Rabies around 4-6 months old and 16-18 months old, then every 3 years.

My Beagle Puppies are dewormed with Pyrantel Pamoate and Fenbendazole. They also receive Toltrazuril as a coccidia preventative. 

You should ask your Veterinarian what vaccination and deworming schedule they recommend for your Beagle based on the area you live in and your individual risk factors.

Have your puppies been vet checked?

Yes. My Beagle Puppies receive a full veterinary checkup (well puppy exam) and a signed Veterinary Health Certificate at 8 weeks old to verify their good health prior to leaving for their new homes. This is at no additional cost to their new owners. 

Do you offer a Health Guarantee?

Yes. I require new owners to sign my Puppy Sale Contract at the time of pickup, which covers the details of my health guarantee. 

I offer a 72 hour Guarantee and a 12 Month Genetic Health Guarantee. 

Can you provide references from previous buyers?

Yes! Please check out my "Testimonials" page and my "Facebook" page. 

Do you take your Beagles back if the new owner can no longer care for them?

Yes! You can view the details of my "return policy" in my "Puppy Sale Contract".

Do you offer Breeding Rights, Limited Registration or Full Registration?

My Beagle Puppies are typically sold with NO Breeding Rights (AKC Limited Registration) at a lower cost as Family Companions. 

For those interested in future breeding or dog events, I offer Breeding Rights (AKC Full Registration) at a higher cost.

In certain circumstances, I will consider an equal puppy trade with another breeder.

I do not and will not participate in co-ownerships, guardian homes, etc.

All of my Beagles are owned outright (full ownership) by myself.

All of the Beagles that I sell are sold outright (full ownership) to the new owner(s).

Do you require your Beagle Puppies to be spayed/neutered?

No. While I recommend spaying/neutering when the new owner has no intentions of breeding (to prevent unwanted litters, heat cycles, marking, certain health concerns, etc), I acknowledge the rights of the puppy's new owner and their Veterinarian to choose what is best for their dog. There are arguments for both spaying/neutering and leaving intact (not spaying/neutering). My adult Beagles that are retired from breeding or that don't meet my standards to breed are spayed/neutered by my Veterinarian. 

How long do your Beagles typically live (life span)? 

My Beagles usually have an average life span of 12 to 15 years. A few have passed away at 8-10 years of age and a few have lived to 17 years of age. This can be affected by lifestyle, diet, and exercise. The most common causes of death have been old age and various forms of cancer. 

What food do you feed your Beagles?

All of my Beagle adults and Beagle puppies are fed Purina ProPlan Sport 30/20. 

My adults usually average 1 to 1.5 cups of food per day.

I free feed (food available 24/7) my Beagle Puppies until 12-15 weeks of age, then they are fed the same as my adults. 

At what age do you allow your Beagle Puppies to leave for their new homes?

My Beagle Puppies can leave for their new homes at 8 weeks old after they have received their Veterinary examination. 

Are you available to answer questions after you sell a Beagle?

Yes! I offer Lifetime Breeder Support. When someone purchases a Beagle from me; they can call, text, facebook message, or email me with their questions and concerns throughout the lifetime of their Beagle. I love to receive updates and pictures!

What are your requirements from someone looking to purchase a Beagle from you?

First, you should send me a "Puppy Application" so that I can get to know you and find out what you are looking for in a Beagle. I look for families and individuals who will be a good match for the type of Beagles that I breed. 

How do you decide which puppy does to which family?

I usually decide which puppy or puppies that I am keeping at 4 to 6 weeks old. After I have decided which puppy or puppies that I am keeping, I go in the order in which families joined my waiting list and paid their holding fee. I provide pictures and a personality description of each puppy that the family has to choose from. I try to help match families with puppies based on compatibility in temperament, energy level, and personality traits. Ultimately the new owner chooses their puppy, I just try to help guide them by providing as much information as possible to help with their decision. I want the best for each of my Beagle Puppies and each family on my waiting list.

Do you provide tours of your facility?

No, because I do not have a facility or large-scale breeding operation. I operate a small-scale, hobby-based, in-home, selective breeding program. I breed primarily for myself. My Beagles live in my home with my family. New Owners are required to pick up their new Beagle here at our home, so they will see where their puppy was raised. 

How many times do you breed your females?

My females usually average 2-3 litters in their lifetime. I have retired some females after one litter and one female years ago (Lady, an exceptionally good mother) had 4 litters. 

This is determined based upon how quickly a female recovers after a litter (body condition), how easy (or difficult) of a time she had with delivery (whelping) and raising her puppies, the quality of her offspring, if I want more of her offspring for myself, and her age.

For example, a female that has to deliver by c-section may be bred again, but will be spayed if she has a second c-section. 

I prefer to breed my females while they are young, fertile, and playful with puppies; then retire then while they are still young enough to enjoy a full life as a family companion. 

At what age do you retire a Beagle from your breeding program?

I prefer for my female Beagles to be retired (spayed) by 3 to 5 years of age, 6 years old at the latest unless under a special circumstance; such as the potential loss of a bloodline. 

Males are typically fertile from 7-12 months of age and into their teens. I retire them after they have sired (fathered) the offspring that I wish to add to my breeding program, which varies greatly. 

Website Last Updated On: 01/21/2019  2:00pm EST

Short Acres Beagles

Breeder: Laura Short

laura@shortacresbeagles.com

Bonneau, South Carolina

© Copyright 2017-2020 by Laura Short 

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