There is nothing like seeing a Beagle running freely and happily. Often this is not possible in small back yards or when they are taken for a walk. Apart from dog parks which may be set up by the local council, or having someone with a large area of vacant and fenced land, there aren't too many other opportunities for Beagles to run free.
In southern Queensland (and other places around the world), lurecoursing is an activity that allows Beagles to run freely. Basically it is where the Beagles (and other breeds) chase an artificial lure (eg. a plastic shopping bag) around a course. The course may be anywhere from 300 metres to over 500 metres. The course will have turns and corners in it that the dogs must negotiate.
It is surprising just how fast Beagles can run (as I'm sure people have often found out when trying to catch them for a bath). They are also very agile on the run and can change direction and speed very quickly. This makes them a good dog for lurecoursing. They demonstrate a great deal of enthusiasm when chasing the lure - they can make a hell of a noise before the run and can often be heard sounding around the course.
Once or twice a year the Beagle Club of Queensland holds a club lurecoursing day for its members and any other Beagle enthusiasts. The day is held at the QLCA grounds at Kuraby in Brisbane. Club members gather together and run their dogs. We also have some novelty events after the runs such as the best behaved Beagle, the fastest eater (you have to be quick) and the best trick. The Beagles usually run in pairs as this often increases their enthusiasm.
The highlight of the club's events is the pack run. We will often have up to 20 Beagles chasing the lure around the course while barking, sounding and singing. When you see them running in a pack, you can certainly appreciate their ability to hunt, chase and track.
The Queensland Lurecoursing Association runs lurecoursing events every month. Look up the Associations web site for more details.