How Long Do Beagles Live?

Before you get a beagle puppy, you may want to know how long you can expect the dog to live and be a part of your life. The great thing about beagles is that they have relatively long lifespans. Making sure they get enough exercise, feeding them a high-quality diet, and regularly taking them to the vet will maximize a beagle’s lifespan.

beagle laying on floor
Jack russel lying with her owner in his house

Beagles generally live for between 12 to 15 years. However, this is just an average. Some beagles have lived for as long as 20 years! Sadly, some beagles live for much shorter than average due to health complications, only making it to around 6 years of age.

Getting a beagle from a reputable breeder who can show you records of the puppy’s and parents’ health records is the best way to ensure you get a beagle pup that will live a long, healthy life. There are a few health conditions that beagles are prone to, so it is important to be aware of these.

What Is A Beagle’s Life Expectancy?

beagle running in field
Close up of dog running at full speed against camera. Motion blur. Copy space.

Beagles are relatively long-lived dogs. In fact, they have one of the longest lifespans among dog breeds.

On average, beagles live for between 12 and 15 years. However, if a beagle is well taken care of, it can live for 15 to 20 years.

Beagles that are born with genetic issues live for shorter than average. Beagles that suffer from health complications may only live for 6 to 10 years.

Can Beagles Live For 20 Years?

beagle laying down
Beagle puppy lying on a white background.

Beagles can make it well into their 20s with the right care. The oldest beagle to ever have lived was 28 years old when it died! Butch, a beagle from the US state of Virginia, was born in 1975 and died in 2003.

It is not common for beagles to get as old as Butch. Very healthy, well cared for beagles may make it to 20, but most make it to around 16 to 18 years old.

How To Maximize A Beagle’s Lifespan?

If you make an effort to give your beagle the best possible care from when they are a puppy, you can boost its life expectancy. A healthy diet, regular exercise, and mental stimulation are important for beagles’ health.

Beagles are high-energy dogs that require daily exercise. If they do not have their exercise needs met, beagles are prone to obesity. Being overweight puts strain on their joints, and it can lead to chronic heart disease.

Give a beagle daily exercise by playing with them, taking them for walks or runs, and allowing them to socialize with other dogs. Aim for 60 minutes every day.

Beagles are prone to dental problems, so you need to provide them with proper dental care from early in life. A build-up of tartar can cause infections, and these can contribute to heart disease.

Take your beagle to the vet at least once a year to have their teeth checked. Get into a habit of cleaning their teeth regularly. Give them dental chews, and train them to allow you to brush their teeth from when they are a puppy.

Feed a beagle a high-quality diet and control their portion size. Ensuring they get the right nutrition from an early age will keep their eyes, joints, and brains functioning well into old age.

What Is The Main Cause Of Death For Beagles?

The top cause of death for beagles is cancer. This is true for almost all dog breeds. A 20-year-long study conducted at the University of Georgia found that 23% of beagles die from cancer. The study looked at 82 different dog breeds, and the sample size was 74 566 dogs.

Neurological complications are the second major cause of death for beagles. The study found that 13% of beagles die from diseases that affect the brain and spinal cord. Intervertebral disk disease causes seizures, paralysis, strokes, and brain inflammation, all of which can be fatal.

Common Health Issues In Beagles

Epilepsy is something that beagles are prone to. If detected, epilepsy can be controlled with medication, and the dog can live a normal lifespan.

Beagles are prone to Chondrodystrophy if it is in their genes. This is a skeletal disorder that can cause intervertebral disk disease.

Beagles are commonly affected by ear infections. Their big floppy ears trap moist air, making their ear canals vulnerable to infections.

Beagles are also prone to two types of eye problems – glaucoma and corneal dystrophy.

How To Take Care Of Senior Beagles

As beagles get older, they require a bit of extra care to make sure they live long and enjoy a good quality of life. Beagles are considered senior when they are between 8 and 12 years old.

As beagles get older, you may notice their hearing declines, they are more prone to tooth and gum issues, and they may develop cataracts in their eyes.

From the age of 9, take your beagle for annual geriatric veterinary examinations. The vet will do a thorough physical examination (eyes, ears, teeth, gums, skin, muscles, bones, nervous system, heart, lungs, kidneys, abdominal organs). They will also take blood, urine, and fecal samples for analysis, and they will give them an X-ray.

Feed senior beagles a high-quality, specially formulated diet. Dial back on the exercise – you will notice a decline in their energy levels. Invest in a good orthopedic dog bed to keep them comfortable.

Take senior beagles outside more often, or ensure they have an accessible outdoor toilet area. As they age, their bladder and bowel control weakens, and they are more prone to accidents.


Beagles live, on average, for 12 to 15 years. However, if they are taken care of well, they can live well into their teens and even reach the ripe old age of 20! The oldest beagle ever to have lived was 28 years old!

To make sure your Beagle lives a long, healthy life, provide them with a high-quality diet and make sure they get an hour of daily exercise. This will prevent obesity, which they are prone to. Take your beagle for regular vet check-ups, especially once they reach 8 to 10 years old.


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