This is my beagle-boxer in the above photo, and he still has a stellar scent when tracking small animals. All I have to do is issue verbal commands, and he'll immediately snap into alert status when looking for small animals to chase.
He still has the beagle instinct to hone in on a scent and pursue any small creature relentlessly until capturing it. There is debate over whether or not mixed-bred beagles can make effective hunters, but I'll go out on a limb and say yes. However, it depends on the other traits from its mixed heritage. The other traits of the dog can aid your mixed pup on the hunt. And the great thing is that you can find a mixed beagle puppy or dog at any local animal shelter. I found my beagle mixed breed in the shelter and saved him the day before he was scheduled for euthanasia.
The intelligence and athletic prowess of the boxer breed will make him a fine addition to any hunt. The beagle is a natural hunter, but there is also a way to fine tune the boxer side of your dog, since this side of the animal also has strong hunting instincts as well. In fact, there are times when hunters prefer the boxer breed over other hunting canines. There are pluses and minuses when using the boxer as a hunting dog, but it can be trained with a little patience and dedication.
Today, the boxer makes an excellent police and seeing-eye dog, but many do not know that their roots began with hunting because of the Belgian Bullenbeisser. This was a breed of dog you could take on just about any hunt, including bear, wild boar, etc. The build, strength and speed of the Bullenbeisser matches that of the boxer. Eventually the boxer dog became the preferential hunting companion.
Like any other hunting dog, boxers require vigorous exercise to avoid boredom and behavioral problems. By nature, they are a very loyal and protective breed, and are distrustful of strangers. But they also make fine addition as family pets because of their loyalty, and they are very protective around children. Because of their loyalty, they will stick by you during the hunt, and hunting boxers are also excellent team players with other dogs. They can be suspicious of other dogs at first, but this will change as they become accustomed to the pack. And if a hunting boxer is trained at an early age with other dogs, they will make an excellent addition to your hunting canine party.
Boxers are known for their patients with smaller dogs, but things can be problematic with those from the same sex, or with larger dogs. Boxers are most receptive to positive reinforcement training, problem solving techniques and other forms of training that allow them to think independently. This will be an excellent way of training your boxer to adapt to new surroundings when hunting, coming to expect the unexpected and outsmarting a rabbit when trying to flee.
For full-blooded boxer breeds, it is possible to train them for rabbit hunts.
One of the drawbacks with the boxer is their tendency to be a bit stubborn, which can prove to be a problem when training them. However, it requires some extra dedication and vigilance in crafting the perfect hunting qualities of the boxer breed. They are dogs with short hair, and they are also clean dogs if you're looking for a canine with minimal maintenance.
Another con with the boxer as a hunting dog is that it is not a retrieval breed. And their sense of smell is not as powerful as the beagle. Also, their larger size may make them less agile when chasing rabbits when compared to the beagle, and they may be more suitable for hunting larger animals.
But if you have a beagle-boxer mixed, you can have the best of both worlds.