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Do Beagles Have Webbed Feet? Facts, Advantages & Disadvantages

Written by: Misty Layne

Last Updated on April 11, 2024 by Dogster Team

Cute beagle puppy is lying on a gray cloth with his bed

Do Beagles Have Webbed Feet? Facts, Advantages & Disadvantages


Dr. Maxbetter Vizelberg  Photo


Dr. Maxbetter Vizelberg

DVM (Veterinarian)

The information is current and up-to-date in accordance with the latest veterinarian research.

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Have you ever looked closely at a Beagle’s feet before? If you have, you might have noticed that their toes are connected by a thin membrane. But does this membrane count as a Beagle having webbed feet?

Technically, it does. The AKC refers to the membrane connecting toes as “webbing”, and all dogs have it to some degree.1 This webbing is essentially the same as what humans have between their fingers—take a quick look at your hands and the tiny bit of skin between your fingers. This is pretty much what a Beagle has between its toes.

But the webbing on a Beagle’s feet isn’t exactly the same type of webbing as a duck has, so it isn’t true webbing. It’s more prominent on dogs that are water-retrieving, though, as it aids in swimming, as well as dogs bred for hunting. Beagles have a bit of this webbing, but not as much as a water-retrieving dog would have; in fact, the AKC’s breed standard doesn’t mention webbing at all.2

So, what are the advantages of having webbed feet other than helping dogs swim better? And are there disadvantages to your Beagle having webbed feet?

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The Advantages of Webbed Feet

The webbing on a dog’s feet can be used to help them swim because it turns a dog’s feet into mini-paddles that aid them in moving through water. So, the more webbing a dog has on its foot, the better a swimmer it will be. But webbed feet can also be useful to dogs that are diggers, as the webbing can help with digging. And webbing on feet helps provide stability for breeds that are active and move around a lot by increasing the surface area and sturdiness of the foot.

For the Beagle, this means that due to their webbed feet, they can easily make their way over hunting trails, stay stable as they run and play, and dig when they go into digging mode (and Beagles are known for their love of digging; fun for them but a tragedy for your yard).

PK_Webbed feet in dogs
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The Disadvantages of Webbed Feet

There are several advantages to a dog having webbed feet, but unfortunately, there are also a few drawbacks.

The first is the tendency for parasites to hang out in the webbing on a dog’s feet. Whether it’s fleas or ticks, these unwanted visitors often make a home in toe webbing, as it makes a terrific place for them to hide. So, if you have a Beagle, you’ll want to check often to ensure the webbing is clean and free of these parasites.

Another unfortunate side effect of webbed feet is that abscesses can easily occur. These blisters show up when the little bristly hairs on the webbing get pushed back into the hair follicle, resulting in infection. Abscesses can be quite painful for your pup, so if you see your dog constantly licking one of its paws, check to see if an abscess might have occurred.

Finally, foreign objects can get lodged in the toe webbing on your pet’s feet. These foreign objects could be pretty much anything—snow and ice, tiny shards of glass, small stones—and can cause pain and inflammation in the paws. So be sure you always check your Beagle’s feet after long walks, and if you find something stuck in your dog’s webbing, tweezers (or a visit to the vet) may be needed to remove it.

Pocket Beagle_bunthaweekan anpunya_Shutterstock
Image Credit: bunthaweekan anpunya, Shutterstock

Final Thoughts

Beagles technically do have webbed feet, as all dogs do. But it isn’t precisely the same kind of webbing you’d see on a duck. Instead, this webbing is more like the skin you’ll find between your fingers. A Beagle will have a bit more prominent webbing than other breeds, though, as it is a hunting dog, and this webbing offers several advantages. However, there are also some negatives to webbed feet, such as parasites or foreign objects getting lodged between the toes. So, check your Beagle’s feet often to protect its paws!

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Featured Image Credit: Thicha6327, Shutterstock

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