Why do Beagles Smell Like Corn Chips: The Disturbing Truth

No one likes the ‘wet dog’ smell, but some pups have a much more delightful odor. I’m not talking about the perfumed and pampered pooches of the rich, or dog-show participants. Beagles have a tendency to smell like corn chips. It’s an odd phenomenon that some beagle owners can’t escape while others never encounter it at all. Why would some dogs smell like food while others never do? I decided to check into the facts behind this strange and enticing dog aroma. Unfortunately, the answers I found were less than appetizing.

Why do beagles smell like corn chips? The corn chip smell can be natural and healthy, but it might also be a result of bacterial overgrowth. A small amount of the scent is alright because it’s natural for your dog to have some bacteria on their feet. However, when this becomes overwhelming, there’s too much bacteria and you need to wash their paws more.  

Beagle Smells: Musk, Chips, & “Other” Scents

There’s no getting around it. Beagles have a distinct smell, but if you’re smelling corn chips, you should check your pup for problems. Before we get into that, let’s talk about the usual ‘Beagle smell.’ Your dog is supposed to have a natural odor, and corn chips can be part of it, but mostly beagles have a musky scent from the oils in their fur.

Because they’re hunting dogs, Beagles need their musk. This is a big part of their genetic heritage. That funky scent allows Beagles and other hunting dogs to more easily distinguish members of their hunting pack.

You may not have a ‘pack’ of Beagles, but their bodies don’t care. Dogs are pack animals, and they naturally live in groups. The same instincts that make them protective of their human families work in nature to help keep dog packs together in spite of their desire to fight for dominance of the pack.

This scent isn’t exclusive to male Beagles. The females have it as well, although they don’t generally fight to become the leader of the pack, they still have to function as members of the group.

Minimizing Beagle Musk Won’t Stop The Corn Chip Smell

If you find the smell unpleasant, you can bathe your pooch, but don’t overdo it even when they have the corn chip smell. More on that later. The natural scented oils in your Beagle’s fur give them the odor, and it helps keep their coat and skin healthy. There are some other simple things you can do to help minimize the musky part of Beagle odor.

The age, health, and diet of your Beagle effects his or her natural smell. Always make sure you take your dog to their regular vet visits and address any underlying health issues right away. If they smell very strongly, you can talk to your vet about their diet.

Foods that are exceptionally high in ingredients like corn or wheat aren’t part of a natural diet for your dog. Always read your dog food bags to make sure meat, not grains, are the primary ingredients. Sometimes you can reduce the stink just by switching your pup to a healthier diet.

I suggest Blue Buffalo Wilderness High Protein Grain Free, Natural Adult Dry Dog Food. All the ingredients are natural and healthy for your pup. Plus, Blue Buffalo is a well known and trusted brand. To check prices and availability, click here

Other Scent Glands Aren’t Causing Your Beagles’ Corn Chip Smell

All dogs have additional scent glands near their anus, but they aren’t causing the corn chip smell either. When you notice dogs smelling each other’s backsides, it’s because of these glands. The anal glands are a big part of doggy communication.

The unique smell produced by each dog is their way of identifying themselves and saying hello. Usually, the glands release slowly; however, sometimes your dog may release more quickly when they’re excited. Regardless, you typically won’t notice this with your human nose. However, when your dog smells like fish, they may need their glands squeezed.

If the glands are infected or broken open, you might notice the smell. Hopefully, it will never happen, but if it does, you need to take your Beagle to the vet.

Though it’s a common misconception that either the oils or these glands are to blame for your Beagle smelling like corn chips, that’s not the case. In fact, the corn chip smell is a result of bacteria instead of a natural bodily process.

What Causes The Corn Chip Smell in Beagles

If you go sniffing around, you usually can isolate the corn chip smell on your Beagle. Also known as ‘Frito feet,’ the scent comes from your pet’s paws. Specifically, this smell most often comes from between the toes. Some Beagles don’t have a strong foot odor, in which case you shouldn’t worry about it since they don’t need the corn chip scent.

Dogs sweat through the pads on their paws. That corn chip smell might be nothing more than their normal bodily functions. Natural Proteus or Pseudomonas bacteria on the feet also have a scent that can mimic corn chips. However, if the smell is particularly strong, your pooch may have a yeast infection between their toes.

There’s plenty of healthy natural bacteria on dogs’ feet, like the stuff that causes that corn chip smell (which some people describe as more like popcorn.) When dogs lick their paws, they get extra bacteria and moisture on their toes. This can create a perfect environment for bacterial overgrowth.

If the corn chip smell gets too strong, you may need to talk to your vet about your beagle. A yeast infection between the toes might smell strangely pleasant, but it’s not fun for your dog. Your vet can determine whether your pet has a problem and help you find the right solution.

How To Treat Beagles Funky Corn Chip Feet

There are simple steps you can take to minimize the corn chip smell.

  1. Trim the nails regularly to cut down on the chance of infection aiding bacterial growth.
  2. Trim the fur between the pads to reduce the surface area for the bacteria to live on.
  3. Treat dry and split paw pads for overall health.
  4. Wash them regularly to kill bacteria.

Most of the time, a mild corn chip smell on Beagle feet is something you can ignore. However, you do need to take care of their feet. Your dog will walk more comfortably and stay healthier thanks to your efforts. The longer list below provides more detail to help you keep your beagle feet odor-free.

  • Make sure you keep the nails trimmed down, so they don’t overgrow. Too long nails can cause your favorite pooch to have pain when they walk. Overlong nails will push into the ground or floor, and the nail beds can become sore or infected.
  • Keep an eye on the fur between the pads. You should give the longer hair on the bottom of the feet a cut every couple of weeks. Reducing the amount of hair will help cut down the available surface for bacteria to live and grow on.
  • Watch out for split pads. Typically dog paw pads get a layer of protective callus on them if your Beagle is playing outside. However, the paw pads can get too dry and split in rare cases. If your dog is walking funny, always check for cracks in the pads. Your vet can help you figure out ways to keep those pads properly moisturized if this becomes an issue for your pooch.

Kill Corn Chip Foot Smell for Your Beagle

The simplest way to keep the corn chip smell down is to use a doggy foot soak. Mix equal parts warm water, hydrogen peroxide, and vinegar in a bucket. Be careful not to use too-hot water, or you may scald your beagle. That will make it a lot harder to convince them to step in the bucket next time.

Soak each foot for thirty seconds. Once you finish soaking each foot, dry it off without rinsing. The combination of vinegar and hydrogen peroxide will kill some of the bacteria and help keep your dog’s feet healthy. Be sure to keep your dog from licking the solution off their feet. It might make them sick.

Beagle Grooming for More Than Chip Feet

Some pet-parents only wash their beagles every month or two, regardless of the musky or corn chip smell, unless they roll in something funky. Dogs do love a good roll. However, you should probably bathe them every week or two. Caring for your Beagle can be a bit of work, but it’s well worth it.

While over-washing can lead to problematic dry skin and trouble with their coats, beagles do need baths. If your pup is adverse to a scrub in the tub, you can use an extendable showerhead or hose to help out. Distract them with a toy, or try changing the location so they think it’ a special occasion. Plus, you can save your back a lot of problems by using an elevated dog bath like the Booster Bath from AmazonYou can get one for your beagle by clicking here

Make sure to use a shampoo that’s formulated for their fur. Doing this regularly will help keep down the musk and the corn chip foot smell. If you’re not sure what to use on your Beagle for a healthy coat, ask your vet or a groomer for suggestions.

The other important part of the process is making sure they get completely dry. Moisture promotes bacterial growth. I love my FXQIN Microfiber Pros Dog Bath Towel Bathrobe because it also helps me keep the wet mess off my floors when I’ve been bathing my pup in the tub. Find out more details by clicking here

Final Thoughts

Most of the time, you don’t need to worry about Beagles that smell like corn chips. However, if any of their natural scents become overwhelming, then it’s time to check with a professional. Getting ahold of your groomer or a vet is always a good idea when you’re in uncertain.

Take extra care of your beagles’ paws. Remember to trim the excess fur between their pads and give them regular baths. If an extra foot wash is called for, don’t put it off. Delaying won’t help your dog stay healthy.

Always pay attention to the cues your dog gives you. If they’re picking at their feet more than usual, it’s a sign of discomfort, and you should check them out.

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