Getting to know the Pembroke Welsh Corgi

Getting to know the Pembroke Welsh Corgi is one of the most important things that you can do when considering this breed. 

Yes, everyone loves a Corgis fluffy butt, big ears and short legs but they are not the right breed for everyone.  Getting to know the Pembroke Welsh Corgi is an important to make sure that this dog fits your lifestyle. 

Even though they vary personality wise, here are some common characteristics of the breed that you should be aware of when considering this breed.

1. They are very smart - almost too smart

Corgis need a job!!!  Because they were once used to herd livestock, they are independent thinkers that require a lot of mental stimulation.  When bored they may become destructive.  

Plan of spending time every day enriching their lives with playtime, games and training both mental and physical.  A variety of toys, chews and interactive toys can help. A monthly subscription box like Bark Box can add a variety of new toys, chews and treats. Our suggested products for Corgis page lists some interactive toys as well. 

red and white Corgi head
Red and white Corgi crouched down

2. They are a herding breed

Corgis were originally bred to herd livestock and some of these herding instincts are still present in the breed today. They may try to herd small children, other animals or even their adult owners and may nip at your heels or grab ahold of your pants leg.

As a breed, these are very active, high-energy dogs that need exercise daily.  They love to go so if you are an active person this may fit your lifestyle. Some bloodlines have less energy and that is one reason that we temperament test our puppies.    

People often ask if they make a good family pet.  The answer depends upon how much training you do with your Corgi.  They like many other breeds need training to know what behavior is acceptable and how to deal with children.  These dogs are not natural baby sitters that will allow children to tug at their hair, crawl all over them or roughly pet them.  

Like with herding livestock, the faster a child or other animal runs when playing with them the rougher they will play however when properly trained they can make great family pets.

3. Some love to bark

Corgis love their owners and will let them know when there is something new or out of place by barking.  They will also bark if they become bored, want to play or are looking for attention. 

It is important for them to always have appropriate toys and chews to curb boredom.  A good training program can help stop barking behaviors too.

Corgi sploot
Corgi Female sitting

4. They shed a lot

Corgis shed like any double-coated breed.  Daily brushing, feeding a high-quality dog food, and adding fish oil to their diet will help with shedding but be aware that it will still happen.

Most owners learn to deal with “Corgi Glitter” over time. Expect a major coat molting in the fall and spring.  

5. They are very loyal & protective of their owners

You and your family will become your Corgis pack.  They will want to be with you everywhere you go just in case you need their help.  They are very loyal to their owners and will defend the ones they love.

Corgi sleeping on her back

6. They are hot natured

Corgis are very hot natured due to their double coat.  Don’t be surprised if they prefer to sleep on a cool tile or wood floor over an expensive dog bed. 

Because they are hot natured, most Corgis are not cuddly lap dogs.  Most prefer to lay beside you or by your feet not in your lap for long periods of time.  Dressing them up in doggy clothing only makes the situation worse and they may overheat.

7. They are a big dog in a little body

Corgis have the “Big Dog Attitude”.  They are sassy and bossy little dogs that will stand up to big dogs.  If not trained, they can become growlers and be snappy.  

It is very important to continue desensitizing, socialization and training with puppies once you take them home from a breeder.  Once again training is the key.  

Corgi puppy ourside

8. They are prone to back & hip issues like all dwarf breeds

New research shows that hip and back issues have both genetic and environmental components.  Genetic and OFA testing is still important but environmental factors such as feeding a high quality dog food, not allowing these dogs to jump from tall heights, weight control and appropriate exercise all play an important role in preventing hip and back issues.   

So what can owners do to prevent these problems?

  • Daily exercise helps strengthen and tone their muscles.
  • Monitoring weight can prevent dogs from becoming overweight. Corgis are very food motivated so care should be taken to monitor their weight.
  • Not allowing them to jump off of beds, couches and other furniture which will apply pressure to their backs. 
  • Choosing puppies from parents who do not have a history of back and hip issues and have undergone genetic testing.
  • Choose a breeder that makes sure that babies are raised on a surface that provides traction thus preventing slipping, feeds a high quality puppy food and provides age appropriate exercise for puppies.

9. They love to chew

Corgis love to chew and will  need lots of quality chews.  Corgis need something to chew on while teething and even as adults.  These dogs will often find objects such as shoes or furniture to chew on when their owners fail to provide appropriate chew items.    Subscription boxes like Bark Box can help by providing new toys and chews.

4 Corgis who chewed up a box
Corgi dam and pups

10. They are very food oriented

Corgis love food and will guard it therefore resource guarding is something that you will need to work on. 

Some can be picky eaters but most are always looking for a snack.  You will need to work with your veterinarian to ensure that your dog is fit and not overweight.  Feeding a high quality food is important to prevent digestive issues and lessen the chance of hip and back issues. 

11. They will require training

You must train your puppy to create a great dog.  They are very smart and easy to train. We recommend training either through traditional puppy and obedience classes or through an online puppy school.  We have partnered with a great online puppy school, Baxter & Bella, to provide a discount on their high-quality online puppy.  

Big and little Corgi playing

12. They have big personalities

Yes, they can be stubborn, have an attitude and completely ignore you at times but these little dogs have big personalities and can be extremely funny.  They will make you laugh and their smiling faces will lift your spirits.  

Corgis can be incredible dogs who will become an important part of your family.  Warning – they are addictive!

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