Your Beagle, Sadie, cracks you up. She tends to sit in very awkward positions, and even your friends comment on her wacky relaxation techniques. She’s been that way ever since she was a puppy. She usually sits with all of her weight on her front legs, which not only looks strange but also seems uncomfortable; however, Sadie never seems bothered. She also sits with her legs to the side, which reminds you of a side-saddling rodeo star. You wonder why she doesn’t rest like other dogs. Does it have something to do with the fact that she is a Beagle? Should you be concerned that Sadie sits weirdly? You are eager to find answers to your Beagle's quirky behavior.
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The Root of the Behavior
There are positive and negative reasons as to why Beagles sit weirdly. Some of these reasons have to do with Sadie’s particular breed. In addition to loud howling, Beagles are known to be an extremely active dog breed. Sadie requires a lot of play time and action, and her high level of activity sometimes leads to severe exhaustion. Think of a small child who runs around all day only to crash mid-run onto the floor. Beagles present similar behavior. They will sometimes go, go, go all day and then plop down in exhaustion. When this happens, they may put their legs in an odd position or sprawl out awkwardly on the ground. Beagles are also known for being incredibly loyal, and if you sit down to binge watch Netflix, Sadie will probably want to sit down beside you and may even try to imitate you. This can also make Sadie appear to be sitting weirdly.
Beagles are a smaller dog breed, and tinier dogs have more difficulty sitting in common positions than larger breeds. Think about it, a lot of it has to do with physicality. Sadie’s butt is close to the ground, and she has long legs; sometimes it’s easier for her just to swing them to the side to get comfortable. It’s much easier for her full-size Retriever friend to plop down. Sitting in funny positions is also common for puppies who are just learning how to function in their own bodies and who have limited mobility and coordination. Although Sadie’s weird sitting habits seem funny, they could be a concern. Some medical problems such as obesity, herniated discs, hip dysplasia, pain, and arthritis are all more serious issues that Sadie is prone to because she is a Beagle. So make sure you figure out if Sadie’s wacky sitting behavior is caused by her posture, a medical problem, or just exemplifies her quirky personality.
Encouraging the Behavior
If Sadie is sitting awkwardly due to her posture, but she seems to be comfortable, let her be. She has found a way to sit that works for her and her Beagle physicality, so no harm was done. But if Sadie seems to be sitting weirdly due to pain, it’s time to investigate. Did you know that the amount of calories your dog consumes in the first 3-6 months of life has a dramatic effect on whether she will acquire to hip dysplasia? Did you also know that Beagles are a breed that is plagued by hip problems? Hip dysplasia in Beagles is partially due to their genetic makeup. The tissue surrounding the hip joint sometimes abnormally develops in one or both hips. This results in your poor Beagle running around with an awkward gait or bunny hopping on your morning walk. For comfort, it also can cause your Beagle to sit in weird positions because of pain. Herniated disks or other back problems can also cause Beagles to sit in weird positions.
Moreover, knee pain in small dogs, such as your beloved Beagle, is also quite common. And arthritis can be a culprit of odd sitting behavior causing your dog to drag her legs behind her and have issues sitting comfortably. Don’t freak out yet. There are some active steps you can take to prevent Sadie from having the above medical problems. Two of the most critical actions you can do for your Beagle is to exercise her regularly and feed her a quality diet. Since Beagles can be hyper and crave activity, it's not beneficial to constantly feed her ice cream and double up on her servings. It's also not a good idea to just leave her sitting on the couch all day. These behaviors may lead to medical problems in your Beagle. Make sure to walk Sadie at least once, if not twice a day and try to get her out for outdoor play such as retrieving that tennis ball in the yard. Also, make sure to feed her the proper serving of food according to her weight and limit the snacks. Smaller breeds of dogs need a strict diet and exercise regimen.
Other Solutions and Considerations
If your Beagle has existing arthritis or hip problems, a glucosamine supplement might be on order. Glucosamine alleviates inflammation and encourages flexibility in the joints. You also could provide your Beagle with an orthopedic bed. Yes, they make these comfy things for dogs too. This could provide Sadie with the moldable cushioning she needs to sit properly. Additionally, you can massage Sadie to help relax her muscles and relieve any pain that might be a problem. Circular movements all over your Beagle’s body sounds a bit strange but has been proven to do wonders for arthritis and hip and back problems. And if Sadie’s awkward sitting really bothers you, or effects her ability to receive a blue ribbon at the upcoming dog show, then you can always use a clicker to try to get her to sit normally. Still, Sadie might not have any medical issues at all and just seems more comfortable sitting in a weirder way than other dogs. If this is the case, enjoy her Beagle ways.