I am from a family that has raised working dogs of all types. What Aarooogh said is right on. It is when we forget our dogs are not humans that we have conflicts. Each dog has its own personality. Each dog has it's place. For a while my pups decided they wanted to fight whenever they got together/ Some of these fights were real knock-down-drag-outs! It took me about 30 seconds to put an end to it all INSTANTLY. I put the girls that where fighting into the kennel with their dad. As soon as the door shut, the girls went to fighting. My male ran up to them, knocked them both down, and growled. They never fought again. I can even feed them one at a time and they wont fight. They NEEDED to learn their place. If they didn't, they would be miserable... fighting all the time.
I have seen a lot of negative feedback when it comes to electric collars. I fail to see how a PROPERLY employed e-collar is a bad thing. The dogs immediately associate the discipline with the bad behavior... not the handler. Before anyone uses my collars on my dogs, they have to try it. I have them put the collar on a wrist and I operate the control starting with just a vibration and amp it up to nick (shock). They learn quickly that, just because the collar has 10 strength settings, they don't need to go higher than a 3. This isn't a shock. If you have not put one on yourself, you would not understand the sensation. It is a mild tingling sensation. It is just enough for the dog to turn his head to see what touched him. Eventually, they can be trained to respond to the "beeper" on the collar. I still have a safe way to stop something bad from happening. I have seen my dogs sniffing around marked traps. Pushed the button, dog jumped back, he was safe. I snake-trained them by allowing them to approach a snake and I pushed the button. I have seen people abuse the collars. When you hit the dog with enough juice to fold it up and drop it to the ground, you might as well kick him.
My dogs are well adjusted members of OUR pack. They know their role and it is enforced. I believe they are happier for it. My dogs don't cower from us. The collar gives me the latitude to let the use his problem solving capabilities but still empowers me to protect the dog... even if it is from himself!
I don't have a problem with e-collars when they are used properly.
What most people fail to realise is that in wolf packs, the alpha roll is actually a myth. An alpha dog does not need to forcefully roll lower pack member over, the alpha stands on top of the dog and it willingly submits. There is no force.
Enforcing rules and boundaries is really important, as is being a good leader. But these things can be done without force and without using confrontational methods that result in your dog urinating out of absolute terror.
When I think of a submissive dog, I think of a dog who averts his gaze and refuses to make eye contact, who slinks around with his head down, his tail tucked between his legs, loses control of his bladder and urinates. That's not ever body language I want my dogs to display around me. I want my dogs to be confident and excited when I give them a command, they cannot comply fast enough, I want a dog who maintains a good attitude the whole time it interacts with me - head up, eyes bright, ears and tail alert. I never want to see "submissive". My beagles competes with my in obedience and we have just started agility and my number one requirement when I go into the ring is that my dog clearly loves to work and is happy to be there.
The very idea - as an obedience instructor - that a trainer would take a dog from a student in his class, pin it down, shake it and growl in its face until it urinated out fear disgusts me beyond belief. We all have difficult dogs in class, and handling one in such a way is NOT the answer.
I know thye can be frustrating at times but physical punishment in any way never works and can lead to a frightened dog or one that bites. Try to remember that your puppy doesn't know what is "right and wrong". You have to be the one to teach him. What I do if I find my dogs with an item that is not theirs, I take the item away and say "No" and give them an item that they can have. You can use a can full of coins to startle also. Be sure to use the same method each time so your pup won't be confused.
I am currently raising a three month old pup along with two six month old and one seven month old. We have had a great deal of success with the biting (teething) issues by just saying "No" and replacing the inappropriate chewing item with one that is appropriate and acceptable. Also, when you are away from home, don't leave your beagle to roam freely around the house chewing. He should have a crate (which he considers his den and safe place) and put him in that when away. It will save you a lot of aggravation if he is crate trained. I have raised over 30 beagles who have all been crate trained and have been in the house at one time or another. They have all been well behaved and very good house pets as well as hunting dogs. I would also highly recommend Cesar Milan's books. They are very insightful and we have learned a lot about training a dog just from reading them. I must admit that these last four pups are the best, well-mannered, well-behaved loving dogs we have ever raised. I attribute it to the lessons we learned from reading and watching Cesar. And don't forget, pups have a very short attention span and look for things to occupy them. If they are bored, they will chew. Keep his mind occupied, exercise, walks, etc. all help.
From the limited experience that I have , having a dog is a two way street . You adapt to them and they adapt to you . Perseverance and patience is essential when dealing with a beagle , in time they become great companions . Dino is 8 months old now and has settled down really well .