Alopecia - This is a health issue that is still being studied, as the cause is unknown. Currently, it is theorized that it may be an autoimmune disorder. It comes quickly and then leaves quickly. In the meantime, it causes patches (sometimes large) of very thin fur and sometimes the fur falls out right down to the dog's skin. There is no itching and no discomfort.
Dermatomyositis - This is a rare disorder in which the fur loss on the Beagle actually occurs due to a negative reaction to sunlight or UV rays. This condition can be confirmed with a small skin biopsy. Not only will the coat thin, the dog's skin will be affected also.
There may be scabs, sores, redness and irritation. If this is diagnosed, the dog must be kept out of the sun as much as possible. The medication Prednisone may be given in small doses initially, and then treatment is followed by vitamin E.
Food and Flea Allergies - A thinning coat due to food
or flea allergies is reversible and can be quickly diagnosed. An owner should always bring their dog to the veterinarian when any unexplained fur loss occurs; however in these cases it will be treatment at home that resolves the issue. Only in very severe cases, will a veterinarian prescribe steroids for severe swelling, or antihistamines if the dog cannot breath well... as the dog's owner works on making changes in the home environment.
Flea allergies are fixed by ridding both the dog and home of all fleas with topical solutions and foggers. Food allergies are usually treated by strict diet restrictions to determine the exact ingredient that the dog is allergic to.