Alongside the Bloodhound and Basset Hound, the beagle has one of the best developed senses of smell of any dog. In the 1950s, John Paul Scott and John Fuller began a 13-year study of canine behavior.
As part of this research, they tested the scenting abilities of various breeds by putting a mouse in a one-acre field and timing how long it took the dogs to find it. The beagles found it in less than a minute, while Fox Terriers took 15 minutes and Scottish Terriers failed to find it at all. Beagles are better at ground-scenting (following a trail on the ground) than they are at air-scenting, and for this reason they have been excluded from most mountain rescue teams in favor of collies, which use sight in addition to air-scenting and are more biddable. The long ears and large lips of the beagle probably assist in trapping the scents close to the nose.
The Bolognese is a small, white, compact dog with a distinctive white single coat. It is of small size, stocky and compact. It is of square build and well-muscled. The head is of medium length. The skull is slightly ovoid. The muzzle is large, black and almost square. It has a developed jaw and the upper lips don’t cover the bottom lips. Its lips are black.
It has white, strong and evenly aligned teeth. Its eyes are well developed, open and round. The rims of the eyelids are black and the iris is a dark ochre color. The ears are set high and are long and hanging but rigid at the base. The tail is carried curved over the back. The Bolognese’s height varies 10.5 to 12 inches for a male and 10-11 inches for a female. The weight varies between 6 and 14 lbs
According to the Oxford English Dictionary, the first mention of the beagle by name in English literature dates from c. 1475 in The Squire of Low Degree. The origin of the word “beagle” is uncertain, although it has been suggested that the word derives from the French begueule.
It is not known why the black and tan Kerry Beagle, present in Ireland since Celtic times, has the beagle description, since at 22 to 24 inches (56 to 61 cm) it is significantly taller than the modern day beagle, and in earlier times was even larger. Some writers suggest that the beagle’s scenting ability may have come from cross-breeding earlier strains with the Kerry Beagle. Originally used for hunting stags, it is today used for hare and drag hunting.