The rat terrier beagle mix may not be a dog that’s familiar to everyone, but people who own this breed know that there’s a lot to love about these little dogs. Rat terrier beagles are, as the name suggests, a mix of the energetic, long-bodied rat terrier and the friendly, well-loved beagle.
They’re curious, lively, and smart, and because they don’t grow to be very large, they’re often considered to be a good choice for a wide range of owners. Learning more about this mixed breed dog can help people decide whether the dog is the right choice for them.
All About Rat Terrier Beagles
Although they’re often referred to as a rat terrier beagle mix, the proper name for this designer breed is the Raggle. Raggles are produced by breeding a purebred beagle with a purebred American rat terrier.
Raggles are a relatively new breed of dog, and no one is entirely sure when or why they were first bred. It’s suspected that they first originated in the southern United States, where they were designed to be a somewhat sturdier, larger form of the rat terrier. However, the two dogs they’re descended from—the beagle and the American rat terrier—have older, more obvious historical roots.
Both the beagle and rat terrier are working dogs. Beagles are scent hounds and were mostly used to hunt rabbits. These dogs would run the prey down, pinning it in place, until hunters could arrive. Beagles were often used for hunts that took place on horseback, and some beagles even rode atop the horses with their owners. Although they are more often a companion dog now, beagles are still used for hunting in some areas.
Beagles are a very old breed, and their origins can be traced back to the eleventh century. At this time, the beagle was a much smaller dog, and the name “beagle” was used freely for any of the smaller hunting dog breeds. The modern beagle, which is believed to be a mix of the Southern hound, the Talbot hound, and the North country beagle, was developed in the 1830s in Britain.
Beagles are usually gentle and non-aggressive. They’re excellent family dogs, but they can be shy around new people at first. Beagles are incredibly intelligent, which makes them exceptional working dogs, but this can also make training them difficult. They’re often described as stubborn.
Beagles are a popular breed, largely thanks to how often and how favorably they’re portrayed in popular culture. For example, Snoopy, the famous dog in the Peanuts cartoon strip, was a beagle.
The American rat terrier, meanwhile, was bred not for sport hunting, but to kill rats on farms. They came into prevalence in the early 1900s. These dogs soon became companions to their farmer owners and not only drove away rats, mice, and jackrabbits but also acted as watchdogs. Later in the 1900s, they became popular in cities as well. This breed was favored by Teddy Roosevelt.
American rat terriers are not a common breed, and they are actually considered to be rare according to the American Kennel Club. Because they were so often mixed with other dogs during the breed’s development, rat terriers are hardy and healthy and generally don’t encounter very many health problems, even later in life.
Rat terriers are small dogs that are recognized in two sizes. The miniature size rat terrier stands at between 10 and 13 inches, while the standard size is anything above 13 inches and below 18 inches. Rat terriers require moderate exercise and are considered to be a good choice for smaller homes. They also have a hairless version, known as the American Hairless Rat Terrier. Like beagles, rat terriers are smart and can be trained for a variety of tasks. This intelligence also means, though, that they can become bored easily. They’re sometimes considered to be willful and may frustrate owners who aren’t as experienced with dogs.
The rat terrier was first recognized by the American Kennel Club in 2012, while beagles were recognized in 1885. The Raggle, a designer mixed breed, has not been recognized by the American Kennel Club.
Highlights About the Rat Terrier Beagle
Raggles can look like either beagles or rat terriers, but they most often have an appearance right between the two. This breed usually displays the long, low, sleek body of a rat terrier and the head of a beagle. They are a bit sturdier than the average rat terrier, but a bit slimmer and smaller than a beagle. Raggles almost always have white coats with larger spots of black, tan, or cream. They can be patterned in any way, with any mix of these colors. Many Raggles have a head, face, and ears that are very similar in appearance to a beagle.
The fur of a Raggle is short and straight but quite dense. This breed is easy to groom and tends to shed very little. Owners can brush their dog once a week to remove any loose fur from the undercoat. How often the dog is brushed may need to be increased during shedding periods. The nails of the dog can be clipped periodically if they aren’t worn down during walks.
Are Rat Terrier Beagles Good Family Dogs?
Whether a Raggle will make a good family dog depends on a few different factors, including the dog’s personality and how it has been socialized. Beagles are very friendly dogs and are often even described as cheerful. Rat terriers are also loving and affectionate with their owners, but they can sometimes be shy with strangers or aggressive around other dogs. Rat terriers can also be very protective of any family members they consider to be part of their pack. Raggles can inherit any of these personality traits. Some Rat Terrier Beagle Mixes are quite outgoing and warm up to new people quickly, while others are shy or standoffish.
Socializing a Raggle when it’s a puppy can help the dog become comfortable around new people, children, and other dogs. Dogs that are well socialized and have been given time to feel relaxed around new family members are often gentle and loving. They can be very affectionate and they also make great watchdogs.
When it comes to children, this breed is often a great choice. They’re small and have boundless energy for play. However, Raggles that will live with children must be properly socialized and trained so as to avoid any roughness or over-protectiveness.
Raggles, like rat terriers, can be defensive and aggressive when they are around other dogs. Socializing is also key here and can help to tone down any aggression. However, it’s always important to introduce new dogs to a Raggle with caution and ensure that both dogs feel safe. Bringing a puppy to a public place such as an outdoor coffee shop or a dog park during quiet hours is a great way to gently socialize a Raggle, getting the dog used to see lots of new sights, sounds, people, and animals.
It’s important to note that, because both the beagle and the rat terrier are hunters, Raggles have strong prey drives. This means they’ll chase nearly anything, particularly animals such as squirrels. This can sometimes be a problem in homes with other pets, including cats. If the dog and any cats are raised together, however, this instinct to chase is sometimes decreased. Raggles should never be let off their leashes unless they are in an enclosed space because they’ll chase any small animals they see.
Rat Terrier Beagle Personalities
If given ample time to warm up to strangers, Raggles are generally loving and friendly. They are very energetic dogs, so they’re often a great choice for families with children. This also means, however, that they’ll require a good amount of exercise and frequent walks in order to remain healthy and happy.
Raggles, like both beagles and rat terriers, are very smart. Because they’re so intelligent and have such a large capacity for learning, they can be trained to perform a number of tasks, and they’ll work diligently at any job they’re given. These dogs are sometimes used as watchdogs, sniffer dogs, or hunters.
The downside to this cleverness of this breed, however, is that Raggles will often try to get their own way. They can be willful, and this can make training them frustrating. Owners will need to be very patient while attempting to train this dog. Offering the dog new challenges, however, will keep the dog mentally stimulated. A well-trained Raggle is generally very obedient and takes direction well.
Because they’re so quick and lithe, and because they love anything that involves both physical and mental stimulation Raggles are often seen in agility competitions.
Rat Terrier Beagle Health Information
Both rat terriers and beagles are small dogs, so Raggles usually don’t grow to be very large. Once mature, a male will usually stand between 8 and 12 inches tall and will weigh somewhere between 10 and 20 pounds. A female will be slightly smaller, standing between 7 and 11 inches tall and weighing between 9 and 19 pounds.
Raggles are largely considered to be sturdy, healthy dogs. However, later in life, these rat terrier beagle mixes can encounter a few health problems. Common issues are hip dysplasia and patellar luxation. These dogs may also face intervertebral disc disease, which is common in dogs with long bodies, such as rat terriers. These issues can cause mobility problems. Anti-inflammatory medications can sometimes reduce symptoms, particularly in the early stages of the condition. For more severe cases, dogs may require surgery or may need assistance to move around comfortably.
The Rat Terrier Mixed breed also sometimes have congenital heart defects or congenital heart disease. The symptoms of this condition can appear at any time in the dog’s life. These conditions can affect the dog’s overall health and quality of life, but some dogs can receive treatment for symptoms.
Some of these mixed breed dogs may also have misaligned teeth. Most dogs with misaligned teeth do not experience any issues from it aside from appearance differences. Owners with dogs that have misaligned teeth generally only need to consider the issue when keeping up with their dog’s dental hygiene. However, misaligned teeth or overcrowding can sometimes cause a dog to have trouble eating. This condition can also sometimes lead to a great deal of pain.
Dogs that are having trouble eating or are in pain can have some of their teeth removed. This helps to free up space in the mouth and will allow the teeth to settle into a more comfortable, natural position.
The rat terrier beagle mix generally lives for between 12 and 15 years. Dogs will live healthy lives when they are fed high-quality food and are given plenty of exercise. Raggles can sometimes be prone to obesity, so it is important to never overfeed this breed.
Raggles should see a veterinarian yearly and should be kept up to date on their shots. Regular checkups at the vet can help vets and owners detect any potential health issues before they become dangerous. Owners should also consider spaying or neutering their dogs to avoid any hormone-related problems later in life. Having a dog fixed can also curb aggressive tendencies.
Rat Terrier Beagle Mix Breed Care
Aside from having patience with a dog that can sometimes make training tricky, Raggles are mostly low-maintenance dogs. Because their fur is so short, and because they don’t have a strong odor, they don’t need to be bathed too often. They also only require infrequent grooming to keep their coats sleek and shiny.
Raggle owners should periodically check the dog’s ears to look for any signs of dirt. Dirt can be gently wiped away with a soft cloth or cotton pad. These dogs tend to have floppy ears, and ears like this are sometimes prone to infection, so it’s a good idea to also check for any signs of pain or inflammation. It’s also important that no water enters the dog’s ear canals during bath time.
Raggle owners should also develop a dental hygiene routine. Their teeth should be brushed daily. This is a must for dogs with misaligned teeth but will help to keep teeth and gums healthy in all dogs.
Raggles love to run around and go for long walks. They’ll need between 45 minutes and an hour of exercise time each day, and always seem to have more energy for even longer exercise periods if time permits. Throwing a frisbee or ball can be a great way to burn off some of this breed’s excess energy. Dog parks are also a good option when it comes to exercising, but it’s important to remember that they can sometimes be intimidated by or aggressive towards other dogs.
Because they’re so smart, this breed needs not only physical exercise but also plenty of mental stimulation. Daily training, learning new tricks, or offering the dog a new task can help to keep it engaged and can prevent boredom. Dogs that are bored can begin to display troublesome behavior, such as continuous barking or digging. Once these habits start, they can be difficult to break, so mental stimulation is crucial. This is especially important in dogs that will live in smaller spaces.
This rat terrier beagle mix will do well when given plenty of room to roam, so a home with a backyard or garden is ideal. However, as long as these dogs receive plenty of exercise each day, they can also make excellent apartment pets.
Where to Find a Rat Terrier Beagle
Because they are a designer breed, a Raggle must most often be purchased from a breeder. Raggle puppies generally cost between $250 and $600. When looking for a Raggle, it’s important to ensure that the puppy comes from a reputable, responsible breeder. Good breeders ensure that the dogs they are breeding are well cared for and live happy, healthy lives. The puppies should also be lively, friendly, and without any illnesses.
Instead of purchasing a puppy, people searching for a Raggle can also look into rescue centers. Raggles can be stubborn and difficult to train, and this, combined with their high energy level, can be too challenging for less experienced dog owners. Rescues can help to match owners with dogs that suit their personalities, lifestyles, and training experience. Rescuing a dog from an adoption center can often save the dog’s life. Adopting a dog is also usually less expensive, as it often only entails paying an adoption fee.
The rat terrier beagle mix is an excellent dog for people who lead energetic lifestyles and have plenty of time for play and training. They’re a good option for anyone living in a smaller space or anyone who isn’t interested in a large dog. These dogs are low-maintenance. They can be very good watchdogs, alerting their owners to anyone in the vicinity they don’t recognize. Raggles also tend to be very loyal and are often protective of and affectionate with their owners. However, these dogs should only be taken on by people who are experienced with dog training and are willing to be patient and spend a good deal of time with the dog while learning basic commands and rules.