Corgis are a popular companion-sized dog breed.
The Pembroke Welsh Corgi are the 10th most popular dog in the USA, according to the American Kennel Club.
Alternatively, the other variety of this breed, the Cardigan Welsh Corgi is ranked at number 66.
Just like any other dog or mix, Corgis have pros and cons that prospective owners will need to consider.
There’s no such thing as a perfect dog irrespective of breed or mix.
In this article, we’ll hear from some Corgi owners to get a unique perspective on the breed, including Ollie and Butter (@ollieandbutler), Madmax (@madmax_fluffyroad), Pavlov (@pavlovthecorgi), Willo (@willothecorgi) and Ava (@littlepnwpups).
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They’re very smart
Corgis are very smart dogs, which isn’t a surprise given their traditional role on the farm with regards to herding animals. These dogs can be trained as long as the lessons are consistent and frequent. Their intelligence is a positive unless your Corgi is lacking stimulation. If these diminutive dogs become bored, they can become destructive and loud.
Ollie and Butler are both extremely smart, according to their owner.
They’re very smart to the point that they will try to outsmart you. We taught Ollie to go pee on command. One time, I took him out and told him to go “potty,” he walked up to a tree, lifted his leg for less than a second, turned around, and started walking back thinking that I didn’t notice. He does this often but never gets away with it.
True companion dogs
Given the Corgi is accustomed to taking instruction from humans, understandably the breed make good companion dogs. They’re really eager to please their owners, which is a very endearing trait. The fact that the dogs are very food driven makes them all the easier to train.
Willo is an example of a Corgi that loves to be around her owner.
They are such good pets. They are sweet and will follow you everywhere. They’re also very smart (and stubborn) so they do need to be trained and worked with all the time, but if you put in the effort they can be the best dog ever. They are also really athletic, believe it or not, so don’t undermine a Corgi’s abilities just because they have short legs.
Most Corgis do like to cuddle, but not all. Willo is the biggest cuddle bug I’ve ever had. She will literally come and lay on top of my head or chest in the morning to wake me up.
Corgis tend to do very well with other dogs given they are loving and caring pets. They love to chase other dogs around in the dog park and have tonnes of energy to make them a real live wire. Be prepared for your Corgi to follow you around the house, effectively becoming your shadow. Given their small size, they are perfect for a household with more than one dog.
The Corgi Butt
One part of a Corgi’s anatomy has proven a hit on social media: their butts. They have become a phenomenon on Instagram with their own trending hashtag, #corgibutts. Welsh Corgis tend to have fluffy bottoms that recreate the shape of a heart. If nothing else, their posteriors will provide plenty of amusing moments. Maxine is an example of a famous Corgi with an even more notorious fluffy butt.
Mini German Shephards
These dogs are very small, which make them very charming and cuddly. However, Corgis are often called mini German Shepards. Why? Their personality, ears, muzzle and coat are all very similar to the larger breed. So if you can’t have a German Shepherd due to limited room in your apartment or house, perhaps a Corgi is the perfect compromise for you!
Queen Elizabeth II has helped to make these cute little dogs very popular. The British monarch was given her first Corgi on her 18th birthday. Remarkably, the Queen has had 30 of these fluffy little doggies throughout her life and has even bred Corgis. This includes breeding Corgis and Dachshunds together. However, her final Corgi called Willow died at the age of 14 in 2018.
They Require A Lot Of Exercise
One misconception about Corgis as small dogs is that they don’t need a lot of exercise. This is simply untrue. Given Corgis were used on the farm as herding dogs, the breed have a lot of energy to expend. They are not lap dogs and aren’t designed to sit around all day long napping. This could be a negative for prospective owners who think they are getting a low maintenance dog. However, on a positive note, if you are willing to put the effort in, your Corgi can help you to get the best out of life and stay much more active. Wag Walking recommend around 45 minutes of exercise for Corgis.
Ollie and Butler get regular exercise to keep them mentally and physically stimulated.
Corgis are known to become overweight very easily so we have to ensure our Corgis are getting daily exercise. Also, exercising is good to ensure your Corgi doesn’t get bored easily and start to destroy things.
They Shed A Lot
Be prepared for lots of hair: these dogs shed a lot. This is one potential headache for owners of the breed. This includes both the Pembroke Welsh Corgi and Cardigan Welsh Corgi. They tend to shed their summer and winter coats, so there are two times during the year when these dogs require a lot of grooming. However, they do shed moderately throughout the year so their coat requires a lot of maintaining. If you own a Corgi, prepare to do a lot of brushing and frequent vacuuming.
They Can Bark A Lot
The Corgi can be quite a vocal dog. As mentioned above, a Corgi can become quite loud if they are not getting enough exercise or stimulation. They are alert dogs and will pick up on strange unfamiliar noises. Therefore, Corgis can make good watch dogs but if you want a guard dog, then perhaps a German Shepherd would be a better option.
Willo’s owner gave her perspective on this con.
They don’t bark any more than any other breed. I know some Corgis that bark a lot, and some that don’t bark at all. Willo ONLY barks when she wants attention/wants to be played with. She also has a deep bark that she uses when she thinks there’s an intruder. But normally she doesn’t bark.
They Can Easily Become Overweight
It is easy for a Corgi to become overweight if they are not getting enough exercise. Their long frame makes them candidates for hip dysplasia or back problems such as intervertebral disc disease. As a result, ensuring your Corgi gets a lot of exercise and remains in good shape can help to avoid potential health conditions such as IDD. You have to be prepared to dedicate a lot of time in these dogs to take them on regular walks, trips to the park and of course, lots of play time at home.
A Corgi could be problematic in a household with other small pets. It’s important to remember these dogs are herding dogs. As a result, the breed can chase and even attack small animals given their historic instincts. While it obviously depends on each individual dog, it is something to consider before you bring a Corgi to their forever home.
Pavlov the Corgi provided us some insight into this herding trait.
They sometimes nip kids because they’re herding dogs. If there is a kid or a bike, their instinct is to chase after it. We took Pavlov to get herding instinct tested. It’s something they do on some farms. There were 20 Corgis and they put them in the ring with some type of cattle. The dogs go in with a rope and handler. They see if instinctually they go out and herd them. You’d be surprised about half of the Corgis didn’t have that instinct because it was bred out of them. Pavlov stays pretty true to the herding dog presentation.
As we mentioned above, Corgis are very smart dogs. This is a positive but can also be a negative. They require consistent and firm training to avoid a Corgi running the household. The breed do have a reputation for being stubborn dogs. However, if you start training at an early age and make sure the message is consistent, your Corgi will learn quickly.
Other facts about the Corgi
• The Corgi gets its name from the Welsh language, with their name translating directly as “dwarf dog”. The breed started in Wales, although their conflicting reports about how Corgis came to find their way to the country.
• There are two different variations of Corgi: The Pembroke Welsh Corgi and the Cardigan Welsh Corgi. The main difference between the two is the Pembrokes don’t have tails, while Cardigans have long, bushy tails like a fox.
• The average lifespan of both the Cardigan and Pembroke Welsh Corgi is between 12 and 14 years. However, a healthy Corgi can live in excess of 15 years.
• Queen Elizabeth II is the most famous Corgi owner but there a number of other celebrities who share a love for these cuddly little dogs. American author Stephen King became a Corgi owner in 2015 and he hasn’t looked back after falling in love with his pup Willow.
Advice from Corgi owners
@benjithebluecorgi: Some advice for potential Corgi owners that I would give is to just love your dog like you would a child because that’s basically what they are. Corgis are very smart and are able to learn things very fast but can be very stubborn as well. Don’t let this discourage you. As with any dog, training requires time, dedication, and consistency. I would also advise potential corgi owners to definitely do their research on the breed, especially if it is their first dog. Benji is my first dog ever and I did a lot of research before actually getting him. The more you know, the more prepared you are for anything.
@lynnyskynny_thecorgi: My advice would be to have patience. Corgis are naturally intelligent breeds, so they will catch on to training in their own time. They’re such a loving and cuddly breed, so I’d highly recommend getting a corgi as a companion.
Anything Else To Consider?
If you’re thinking about getting a Corgi, you may find it beneficial to speak to someone who already own a member of the breed.
They can provide a unique insight into what life is like with the breed.
In my experience, dog owners on Instagram are usually more than forthcoming with information about the breed.
Corgis are popular dogs that have pros and cons just like any other breed or mix.
They’re companion-sized dogs that require a lot of mental and physical exercise to prevent boredom.
Corgis can making loving and loyal pets but you may need to keep an eye on herding as a potential problem.