The cross between the beagle and the pug could just as well have been named the cutie, because that's what they are. Appearance depends on which side of the family the puggle takes after, as does behavior. Beagles live to hunt, while pugs live to hang out with their people.
As "designer dogs," not recognized as a breed by the American Kennel Club, puggles don't breed true. That means when you cross a beagle with a pug, or two puggles, the resulting litter runs the gamut as far as size and appearance. Because both breeds have short hair, that's a safe bet as far as the grooming department. When he's full-grown, the puggle puppy could end up a 15-pound lap dog or a 30-pound medium-sized dog. You could purchase two puggle littermates who end up looking like entirely unrelated dogs.
Bred as companion dogs, most puggles do quite well at that job, especially if they take after the pug side. Beagles are ruled by their noses. These happy little dogs make good pets but if they get loose and smell a rabbit or squirrel, they're off and running. Pugs have no desire to hunt unless it's for food dropped under the dining table. Because beagles are escape artists, make sure your yard's fencing is secure and strong in case the beagle side of your puggle comes calling.
Pugs need only moderate amounts of exercise. Beagles are more active, so with luck your puggle is a combination of the two breeds' energy levels. One thing both breeds have in common is an unrelenting appetite -- the so-called "garbage gut." Be sure to feed your puggle a high-quality dog food and keep the table scraps and treats to a minimum, or you could have a very pudgy puggle on your hands, at a weight detrimental to his health.
If you're breeding puggle puppies, the coat color is a toss of the dice. Pug coat colors are either fawn or black, while beagles, those miniature hounds, are a mix of red, white, black, brown or lemon. A puggle's coat can be all of the above. The puggle may have the pushed-in muzzle of his pug ancestry, or the medium-sized beagle snout. His tail may curl up like the pug or stand out long and straight like the beagle. To paraphrase Forrest Gump, "Puggles are like a box of chocolates -- you never know what you're going to get."
- Pug dog image by John Steel from Fotolia.com