For centuries, dogs have been our hunting companions, helping us track our game. Crossing different breeds through time has allowed us to bring out those hunting and tracking traits that we like best.
Through advances in breeding and animal husbandry, we’ve become quite adept at choosing the best breeds to combine for the results we want. One such outcome of this knowledgeis the Treeing Walker Coonhound Beagle mix.
Crossing two of the most incredible hunting dogs in history might notseem very creative, but some subtle benefits may not be apparent at first glance.
Not only is this crossbreed friendlier and more social, but they’re also much healthier overall and are a step towards eliminating somehereditary diseases that are in their bloodline.
So what is this breed like? Why should you choose them over a Beagle or Coonhound? And are these dogs the best choice for you?
Keep reading to find out!
Origins And History
Here’s a fun fact:
The Treeing Walker Coonhound Beagle Mix is a crossbreed of a crossbreed!
That’s right! The Treeing Walker Coonhound is a crossbreed of the Walker Coonhound anda dog of unknown origins in 1945!
And with crossbreeding becoming more refined, a new type of coonhound mix has emerged, the Treeing Walker Coonhound Beagle Mix!
But when did this designer breed came into being? And where do the Beagle and Treeing Walker Coonhound breeds originate? Let’s find out:
History Of The Treeing Walker Coonhound
For most people, the name of this breed might be a mouthful. But each part of the ‘Treeing Walker Coonhound’ name represents how the breed originated from its roots.
There are currently six different types of Coonhounds in the world, five out of which are officially recognized by the AKC. Treeing Walker Coonhounds are the most recent addition to the AKC’s list of official breeds, being recognizedin 2012.
The Coonhound breed first came to the USA when Thomas Walker exported a couple of English Coonhounds to Virginia in 1742. These dogs possessed keen hunting instincts and an unmatched sense of smell. They particularly excelled at hunting raccoons, hence the name ‘Coon-hounds’, but were also used in tracking down large game such as deers and bears.
English Coonhounds soon became known as Virginia Coonhounds, and then slowly developed into the Walker Coonhounds. They crossed the Walker Coonhounds with an unknown breed sometime during 1945,the resulting dogsbeing named Treeing Walker Coonhounds.
While the ‘Walker’ part pays homage to the founder of the breed and ‘Coonhound’ describes their primary prey, the ‘Treeing’ part represents their style of hunting. These dogs chase and track their prey till they mount a tree and patiently wait beneath it while calling out the hunter.
History Of The Beagle
Beagles are perhaps one of the oldest canine breeds that exist today. The exact origination of the breed is a mystery, but a few records indicate the presence of a beagle-like hound since 400 B.C!
Their progenitors were brought to England as hare and rabbit hunting hounds and were subject to centuries of crossbreeding with local hounds to create larger trackers.
While the breeding also resulted in larger hounds, it also gave birth to smaller species of the breed called Pocket Beagles, which were even smaller than the original ones. It is reported that Queen Elizabeth I kept packs of Pocket Beagles!
During the 1700s, trends changed, and Foxhounds began to take over from Beagles as the primary hunting dogs. However, the Beagle breed continue to exist and grow in population as they were better at hunting small game and didn’t require riding on horses as they weren’t as fast as Foxhounds.
Just a couple of decades later, Beagles started reaching the United States and quickly gained popularity for their efficiency in hunting rabbits. The AKC registered the first Beagle in 1885, and the breed has been growing in popularity and size since then.
When Did The Treeing Walker Coonhound Beagle Mix Originate?
As with every mixed breed, there’s a possibility the Treeing Walker Coonhound and Beagles have been crossed before. However, the breed has started making an appearance in public ever since the creation of custom crossbreeds has become more practiced.
One of the main reasons for crossing these two breeds was to breed out some of thehereditary diseases that Beagles suffered. The resulting breed also turned out to be much friendlier and developed even more enhanced hunting skills. Because of this, the crossbreed gained popularity amongst hunters for their ability to track both big and small game.
In terms of appearance, both parent breeds of this dog are so similar that the Beagle looks like a shrunken version of the Treeing Walker Coonhound!
Both of them have a white base coat that appears at about eight weeks of age. The rest of their body eventually becomes covered with tan and black spots. These spots also change in color as these dog’s age. So apart from the size, itisn’t easy to distinguish these breeds from each other.
Beagles are naturally on the smaller end of the spectrum. They stand between 13 to 15 inches in height at the withers and weigh between 18 to 30 pounds on average. They have large, bulbous puppy eyes and big ears that swing as they run. These dogs have a very well-balanced frame with strong legs that they’ve developed through centuries of tracking and hunting.
Treeing Walker Coonhounds are slightly taller and heavier than Beagles. The average dog stands at about 20 to 27 inches in height at the withers and weighs about 45 to 80 pounds. They share a similar facial structure as Beagles, though their eyes are slightly smaller. As for their body structure, they have a very sleek body shape with long, muscular legs that help them cover miles of distance at a time.
What Does A Treeing Walker Coonhound Beagle Mix Look Like?
Like both Coonhounds and Beagles, the cross also has an overall houndy appearance. They have a slim and lean body with super-strong legs that allow them to run at incredible speeds. In terms of height and weight, they will probably be somewhere between the average of both parent breeds.
Their coat also has a strong resemblance toCoonhounds and Beagles, with a white base coat with tan and black spots all over the body. They have the same floppy ears and alluring puppy eyes as their parents do.
Personality and Temperament
Treeing Walker Coonhound Beagle mixes tend to be exceptional hunting dogs that also make for fantastic family pets. They are super-friendly, very affectionate, great with kids, and easily adjust to new people and pets in their lives. And being pack animals, they mainly thrive in social environments.
But these dogs possess a lot more interesting personality traits that they inherit from both parents. Here are some of the most prominent characteristics of this crossbreed:
Motivated and Strong-Willed
Because this breed is conceived from hounds revered as trackers, they are very motivated and strong-willed. They can keep tracking a scent non-stop for hours at a time.
But while these traits might be useful on chases, they can make these dogs slightly challenging to train due to their headstrong nature. However, their intelligence surely makes things easier.
Friendly and Welcoming
These dogs are some of the most affectionate and welcoming breeds you’ll ever come across. They love meeting new people and other pets and will readily accept them into their lives.
Also, despite their reputation as trackers, these dogs make excellent companions for children. They’ve non-aggressive and even-tempered and love playing and spending time with young children.
Probably the best thing about this breed is its ability to switch from hunting mode to family mode seamlessly. These dogs love playing indoor games with their family or simply relaxing in their owner’s lap.
These dogs are also not as dependent on their owners as other breeds. They can easily spend some time alone as long as they get mental and physical stimulation regularly.
Training and Exercise
One of the first things you should keep in mind while choosing this breed is that they require a ton of exercise regularly. Both parents of this dog are bred to cover long distances every single day for generations after generations.
Because of this, these dogs tend to be super-energetic and active. They need to deplete their energy reserves daily; otherwise, they can become hyperactive and can adopt a destructive behavior.
Long walks and jogs are excellent physical activities for these dogs. You can also take them to hiking or to the park to play fetch. However, you should remember that these dogs can often wander off if they catch a scent. So, develop a strong recall before you engage in any off-leash activity.
Training Your Treeing Walker Coonhound Beagle Mix
Like any other breed, training this crossbreed from puppyhood is essential in making them more social and friendly. Some great ways to do so include taking them to parks or your friend’s house so they can interact and engage with other humans and animals.
Because these dogs are quite intelligent and a bit stubborn, training them can become difficult as they get bored quickly. To curb boredom, praise them constantly as these dogs respond well to positive reinforcement and change their training patterns from time to time.
Grooming and Care
If you’re someone who doesn’t want to groom their pup frequently, the Treeing Walker Coonhound Beagle mix might be the pet for you. Being a descendant of breeds that both had a medium-short coat, they don’t shed a ton of hair like other breeds.
Some of these dogs might inherit stronger genes from Beagles, which might cause them to shed a little more, but it’s nothing most people can’t handle. Brushing them once a week is good enough to take care of the majority of the hair.
Apart from that, remember to bathe them once or twice a month with a dog shampoo. Trim their nails regularly, and clean their ears with a wet towel or cloth once a week. It’s also a good practice to get these dogs textured chewing toys to maintain dental hygiene.
Treeing Walker Coonhound Beagle mixes are relatively healthy dogs with an average life expectancy of 12 to 15 years. Being a crossbreed, these dogs have a reduced chance of inheriting diseases from which their purebred parents suffer.
However, they can develop some hereditary diseases should be aware of before buying your Coonhound Beagle. These are as follows:
Hip Dysplasia is a condition in which the thigh bone does not correctly fit into the hip socket—causing the thigh bone to grind against the hip socket resulting in pain, lameness, or even arthritis.
Although hip dysplasia is more common in larger breeds, it’s present in Beagles and Treeing Walker Coonhounds. Therefore, the chances of the cross of these two breeds developing hip dysplasia are high.
While the condition is not curable, purchasing your dog from reputable breeders can help reduce the chances. Responsible breeders will have a medical history of both parents and proof that they’ve been tested for hip dysplasia.
Dwarfism is a particularly common disorder in Beagles that causes malformed bone growth. It affects all the bones in the body and leads to a crooked back, curved legs, and a malformed skull.
Some fraudulent breeders might try to sell such puppies by labeling them as ‘pocket’ breeds. Because this disorder is challenging to diagnose in puppyhood, it’s wise to purchase from a reputable breeder who has tested the Beagle parent for dwarfism.
Intervertebral Disk Disease
Although Coonhounds are healthy in this matter, Beagles suffer from a bone disorder known as intervertebral disk disease that causes compression in the spinal cord, which can lead to neck and back pain or produce more serious effects like paralysis and loss of sensation.
Epilepsy is another common disease in Beagles that may carry over to their progeny. It can trigger seizures that can range in severity from mild to serious but are usually harmless in the long term and are controllable with medication.
Can Treeing Walker Coonhounds Beagles become obese?
Being naturally muscular and active, these dogs are less likely to become obese. However, infrequent activity and regular high food intake will make them put on extra weight.
Do Treeing Walker Coonhounds Beagles make good guard dogs?
These dogs are friendly and welcoming towards everyone, including strangers, they don’t make very good guard dogs.
Do Treeing Walker Coonhounds Beagles smell?
Both Coonhounds and Beagles excrete an oily coating from their skin that protects their coat. So their crossbreed is likely to inherit the same natural mechanism.
Do Treeing Walker Coonhounds Beagles like to cuddle?
Being a cross between breeds that both love cuddling with their owners and have a very affectionate nature, these dogs are also very likely to be cuddlers.
Are Treeing Walker Coonhounds Beagles good with other animals?
This breed is usually friendly towards other dogs and pets if correctly socialized. But without proper training, their prey drive can render them slightly dangerous for cats and smaller pets like hamsters.