The corgi dog (literally, in Welsh, “cor-gi” means dwarf dog) is a small dog with short legs and the face of a fox. Seeing its short and rather chubby appearance, we would think that it is a not very active dog but … not at all! This dog is incredibly energetic and intelligent.
They have a very special temperament because they are, as we say, so active, so they require a lot of patience and dedication but they are excellent life companions.
Corgis are charming pets for those looking for an active companion and guardian.
Don’t let their cute little size fool you as they have a great personality – they are smart, shy, curious, and lovable.
They love to play with children, and they are still high with them. They never get too stubborn, and that is the reason they are easy to handle. They are present in four different coat colors, and they have different markings.
They are lovable creatures, which turns out to be best for their owners. They never let other people feel bored with them. They also like to play with other dogs.
Characteristics Of Pembroke Welsh Corgi Dog
Welsh Corgi is a cheerful, friendly, sociable, alert, and inexhaustible breed! And he is also very intelligent, as well as showing a truly human sensitivity which makes him, as we said earlier, very suitable for being with children. They quickly get adapt to cold weather; they do not cause many problems for their owner.
As a puppy he is literally irresistible, but even as adults they can be simply very sweet. They socialize naturally with other animals as well. Despite its nature as a working dog, however, you will have to pay attention to its tendency to bulge.
In fact, the Corgi loves to take long walks, but the sofa is a real magnet for him! And if you try to get him down, you won’t be able to resist his sweet eyes. But, for his sake, it is best to always stimulate him to move! The Corgi loves digging holes in the garden and especially tends to bark a little too much sometimes to warn their owners if a stranger is nearby.
The appearance of Welsh Corgi
The Welsh Corgi is a small dog about 30 centimeters tall and weighing up to 14 kilograms. There are two main types of Welsh Corgi – Pembroke and Cardigan, which are quite different from each other.
So, for example, the Pembroke is slightly smaller, and these species also have a different shape of the head and the structure of the thoracic limbs. The corgi’s head is shaped like a fox, the skull is wide enough and flat between the ears and has erect ears that are in proportion to the equilateral triangle of the head.
The color of the Welsh Corgi is red, light red, black, and tan with possible light markings on the chest, neck, and legs (tricolor), sable. The breed standard allows white markings on the head and muzzle.
Welsh Pembroke Corgis are generally a healthy breed, but they, like other dogs, are prone to certain health problems. Not all of them will get all or some of these diseases, but it is good to be familiar with them if you have a dog of this breed. If you are buying a dog, find a trusted breeder who will show you that the dog’s parents have been tested for certain diseases. In this breed, you are looking for confirmation that the dog does not have dysplasia of the hips, elbows, hypothyroidism, Von Wilbrand’s disease, as well as confirmation from an ophthalmologist that the eyes are in a normal condition.
Hip dysplasia is an inherited disease that represents the improper development of the hips when the bony, fast-growing part of the hip is “loose”, ie. when it is not sufficiently strengthened by muscles, tendons, ligaments… Hip dysplasia is hereditary but can be exacerbated by certain factors such as rapid growth due to improper diet, obesity, injuries caused by jumping or falling, and walking on slippery surfaces (avoid your dog walks on the parquet because it can damage his joints and contribute to dysplasia).
Some dogs have symptoms such as limping or pain in one or both hind legs, while others will have no symptoms. As a dog gets older, arthritis can develop. The diagnosis is made by X-ray of the hips, and in consultation with a veterinarian, you will know what is the best type of treatment for your pet – it can be medication or even surgery. Dogs with dysplasia should be excluded from further breeding.
Cataract – this disease causes opacity of the eye lens, which further results in poor vision. The dog’s eye will be blurred. Cataracts usually occur in old age and can sometimes be removed surgically to improve vision.
Cutaneous asthenia, also known as “Ehlers-Danlos” syndrome, dermatosparaxis, or dominant collagen dysplasia is a condition that causes a connective tissue defect, so that tissue becomes brittle, loose, and stretched. Blood vessels are also affected, which leads to the formation of excessive bruises and blood blisters.
Cystinuria is a condition in which high amounts of protein (called cysteine) are excreted in the urine and stones can form. The problem mainly occurs in male dogs.
Degenerative myelopathy is a progressive degeneration of the nerve and supporting tissue of the spinal cord in the lower back. This causes limping of the hind legs, weakness, and possible paralysis, and is often misdiagnosed as a disease of the spinal disc.
Epilepsy is a neurological condition that is often, but not always, hereditary. There is idiopathic and symptomatic epilepsy. You will recognize the attacks by the unusual behavior of the dog, fast running as if someone is chasing them, stumbling, hiding. The characteristics of a partial attack are braking, tilting of the head, vomiting, convulsions of the whole body, inability to swallow the dog, which results in the appearance of white foam on the mouth. With a major attack, the dog loses consciousness.
The attack can last from a few minutes to 48 hours. When it comes to an attack that lasts shorter, the dog will behave normally after that, while in the second case he will be disoriented and upset. Seizures are really scary and stressful to watch, but the long-term prognosis for idiopathic epilepsy is good, so if you notice any of these symptoms, take your dog to the vet immediately, so that he can start with adequate therapy as soon as possible.
Intervertebral disc disease – Due to their long backs, Pembrokeshire corgis are prone to spinal disc ruptures. This may be due to genetics, improper movement, or falling/jumping to and from the furniture. Back problems include the inability to lift on the hind legs, instability, weakness, paralysis, and sometimes loss of control.
It is important when holding your corgi, that you always support its hind and front legs. If this problem occurs, treatment may include keeping the dog in a cage (due to movement) and anti-inflammatory drugs, as well as surgery to remove the spinal discs that are causing the problem, and even putting the animal in a wheelchair. Some owners have found that it can help when they take their pets to a chiropractor who has experience working with dogs.
In any case, if you notice any of these symptoms, take the dog to a veterinarian immediately, so that a diagnosis can be made in time.
Progressive retinal atrophy is a degenerative disorder of the eye that, in the end, causes blindness due to the loss of photoreceptors in the back of the eye. This disease was discovered long before dogs began to show any signs of blindness. In the early phase, sick dogs lose their sight at night, and later, as the disease progresses, during the day.
However, with the use of their other receptors, such dogs can live an absolutely happy life, just help them and try not to change the arrangement of furniture often, in order to get used to the existing environment. Every responsible breeder will have a certificate from an ophthalmologist, and if the individual develops this disease, such dogs will not be further bred.
Von Willebrand’s disease is an inherited disorder that can cause mild to moderate bleeding, as well as prolonged bleeding time. So, the main symptom is excessive bleeding after an injury or surgery. Other symptoms include nosebleeds, gum bleeding, prolonged bleeding during tropical heat, prolonged bleeding after the female is injured, or bleeding in the abdomen and intestines.
It is usually found in dogs between the ages of three and five and there is no cure, and currently, the only treatment is a blood transfusion from healthy dogs. Research is underway for new treatments, including some medications. It can be kept under control with medications that include cauterization, wound healing, transfusion before surgery, and avoidance of certain medications. Most dogs with Von Wilbrand’s disease can live a normal life. Affected dogs should not be further bred, and the veterinarian will make a diagnosis based on the test.
Retinal dysplasia is an abnormal enlargement of the retina. Sometimes the retina separates and then blindness occurs.
Patent ductus Arteriousus (PDA) with pulmonary hypertension is a congenital defect of the vascular system. When, after the birth of puppies, the ductus arteriosus (the blood vessel that connects the pulmonary artery) remains open, then a large amount of blood reaches the lungs. It is usually detected in puppies during a veterinary examination and is a rare part of PDA disease. PDA disease can be surgically cured.
The Corgi has a medium dense double coat and needs to be groomed every 4 – 8 weeks. They shed constantly, they shed their coats in some form on a daily basis and more frequently in the Summer and in the Winter. They can be found in red, sable, tricolor, yellow-brown, usually with white markings. Body hair length varies. Some of them have soft fur – with excess hair on the ears, chest, legs, and paws.
You can easily brush them, but shedding can become a problem if you do not continue to maintain the fur, especially during the season. At the time when their undercoat drops the most, they should be combed daily.
Bathe them only when needed, and many people have noticed that regular bathing helps reduce shedding.
Brush their teeth at least two or three times a week to remove tartar and bacteria lurking inside your corgi’s mouth. Daily brushing is even better for preventing gum disease and bad breath.
Cut your dog’s nails as needed, preferably once or twice a month. Short nails keep the paws in good condition and prevent pain and injuries in your pet. But be careful – dogs have blood vessels on their nails, so when you shorten them too much they can get hurt. If you are not sure how to do that, it is best to take your pet to the vet, so that you do not accidentally injure him when cutting your pet’s nails.
Check your dog’s ears every week for dirt, redness, or bad smell, which indicates an infection, and then wipe them once every seven days with a cotton ball soaked in a gentle, PH-balanced ear cleaner to prevent potential problems. Do not put anything in the ear, just clean the outside.
Two important factors in dogs are checking the paws (because they are sensitive) and the mouth. Don’t forget that you can do a lot to prevent certain conditions.
While brushing them, pay attention to whether they have any wounds, rashes, or signs of some infections such as redness, sensitivity, or inflammation of the skin, ears, nose, oral cavity, eyes, and paws.
The eyes should be clean these checks will definitely help you spot some health problems in a timely manner and thus help your pet.
Get used to all these actions from an early age, with praise and awards, so that when they grow up, they will see it all as a positive experience.
Corgi dog diet
It is important to know and be well informed about the food, this is a breed that belongs to the shepherd family (although you cannot tell by their appearance) and has good health and immunity. If you stick to the right diet, then Welsh Corgi can live quite a long period of time. Despite all the advantages of this breed, they have a minor feature – a tendency to obesity. This is why you should carefully choose what to feed your dog.
How much an adult dog eats depends on its age, metabolism, size, and activity levels. Like humans, dogs are individuals for themselves. It is logical that a dog that is more active will receive a different type of food than a dog that stays up all day.
Basically, when you buy granules, do not take a bag on which, per kilogram is not mentioned, the recommended daily dose is written, ask the seller in the Pet Shop to tell you how much you should feed, depending on the weight of the dog, but also the age.
Keep and maintain their good weight by measuring the food and never leave a full container throughout the day. If you can see the dog’s ribs, he is malnourished, and if the ribs are not visible, but you can feel them by touch without pressure, the dog has a normal weight. If there are layers of fat around the ribs, your dog needs to go on a diet.
For more information on nutrition, it is best to ask your veterinarian to be sure which food is best. It is better to divide a meal into two smaller ones than to give a large amount at once. It is important to remember that the food for the puppy must be balanced and fortified. Watch your pet so as not to miss the moment when he gains weight above normal. If this happens, you need to transfer the pet to a lightweight diet.
Natural raw meat (deep-frozen, finely chopped) should make up about two-thirds of the diet. It is better to give it in the evening. Of course, high-quality dry food of the premium or super-premium category is also suitable, without any special additives.
Sometimes you can give:
- Low-fat broth;
- Vegetables (beets, carrots, tomatoes, zucchini, salad);
- Boiled fish (after 4 months);
- Cereals (buckwheat, rice);
- Dairy products (milk, cottage cheese, kefir).
Chicken is contraindicated, with the exception of raw chicken eggs.
Stick to the following rules:
- Food – strictly according to age;
- Infrequent change of feed;
- Do not mix dry food and regular food;
- Do not give food during breaks. When teaching teams, cheese, low-fat dog biscuits are suitable.
Number of meals
|Age||Number of feedings per day|
|Older than 8 months||2|
Puppies need to be fed more often than adults (they reach this status after eight months). As dogs grow up, they need to get as many nutrients as possible to influence their growth and development. Your dog’s appearance and health are highly dependent on nutrition, especially in the early stages.
The puppy refuses to eat
The reasons for refusing food can be completely different:
- Spoiled food;
- Poor quality food;
- Stale water;
- Unsuitable dishes;
- Change of feeding place;
- Mature age;
- Moving to a new location;
- Constant feeding the dog only liquid food.
Try not to get angry or yell at your pet for refusing food. They can remember the negative emotions of their owner and subsequently, this will negatively affect feeding.
If your dog refuses food for a long time, has ceased to be active and cheerful, then this is a reason to take him to the veterinarian: perhaps the dog is sick.
Pembrokeshire Corgis love to eat, so if you give in and give them a chance, they can become obese very quickly.
Welsh Corgis have a long and rich history. There are a number of theories as to how the Corgi arrived in Wales. One hypothesis is that they were brought to Wales by the Vikings in the 19th-century or by the Celts around 1200 BC.
Another theory is that the Pembroke Welsh Corgi lineage has been traced back as far as 1107 AD. they were brought in the 1100s by Flemish weavers.
As we can see, the hypotheses are quite distant from each other, we will research a little bit more on the topic in the articles in which we will talk about the specific history of the two breeds: Welsh Corgi Pembroke and Welsh Corgi Cardigan
The Corgi was originally bred for work on farms. Initially, it was used to precede the herds of cattle, lead the way and chase potential predators, thus allowing the cows to reach the pastures. It was only later that the Corgi began to act as a real shepherd; working around the herds and directing cattle from Welsh farms to markets. He did this by barking and prodding cattle.
His short stature helped him in his role, allowing him to stay out of the reach of the cows’ kicks. The crossing of the original Corgi with other local sheepdogs probably dates back to this period.
The Welsh Corgi was also used as a guard dog
The corgi was watched over farms and was also used to herd poultry. The Corgi, in fact, was able to protect the poultry from predators, as well as to group the flock for night shelter.
He was also made to work in groups to lead flocks of large geese to be brought to the market. Having a strong character and very strong willpower he was very successful in the task of controlling the geese that remained behind or went away.
They were quiet and peaceful workers, an important and necessary skill not to frighten and scatter the flock or herd.
The Corgi excelled at the task of leading herds to the market. They are in fact able to handle all different types of livestock, from chickens to cattle, to pigs.
Perhaps due to crossbreeding with local sheepdogs, the Corgi is however a very versatile dog; it has multiple qualities that make it suitable for the most varied tasks: shepherd of livestock, market dog, protection of the family, and pet. It is also an excellent exterminator of parasitic animals.
They were used for many different works
However, they were not suitable as sheepherders, compared to collies, in fact, they are too brusque and excitable for sheep.
Corgi has also been used as hunting dogs and they are also very efficient ratters (hunting rats on farms).
Today, they are more commonly kept as companion dogs. The days of herding and driving for Corgi are practically over, although some owners continue to train their Corgi in herding livestock.
Pembrokes and Cardigans were officially recognized.
In the UK in 1920 it was around the time the term “Corgi” was beginning to be used regularly and by the time, a significant history of the breed was documented.
While the two different types of Welsh Corgi had been known for some time, this distinction actually only became official 70 years ago or so. The two breeds, Pembroke and Cardigan, were officially recognized as distinct, only in 1934 by the English Kennel Club and in 1935 by the American Kennel Club (AKC).
Prior to 1934, the Pembrokes and Cardigans were regarded as one breed and were often freely crossed. It was only in the 1930s that breeders began to separate the two breeds, accentuating their differences.
In 1934, 250 Pembroke Welsh Corgi were registered in the English Kennel Club compared to just 59 Cardigans.
Today the welsh corgi is considered “vulnerable” by the English Kennel Club
The population of both Welsh Corgis breeds is declining in the UK. Largely due to the growing popularity of foreign breeds such as the TSUS Shih, and other small breeds such as the Chihuahua, and crossbreeds such as the Labradoodles.
A breed is placed on the vulnerable list when fewer than 100 puppies in a year are registered with the Kennel Club. In fact, at least 300 puppies per year are considered necessary to ensure a large genetic heritage and a healthy population.
They need proper exercise to increase the intensity level. A dog has excellent potential for playing, and the energy level is also high. Pembroke Welsh Corgi used to be working dogs, but now they get to see as a family pet. They likely help their owners and always try to please them. They are excellent watchdogs and very smart while watching their house. If they find something inappropriate, they bark or bite to help their family. They need to get socialized when they are at a young age.
The coat color and names of Pembroke Welsh Corgi
They consist of a double-coat with one of a thick undercoat and another longer topcoat. They shed very rapidly, and they have significantly dropped two times a year. You can easily find them in different shades like red, black, fawn, tri-color, and sable. They usually consist of some white markings on them. Dog contains signature ears, which means they listen very suddenly, and they pay attention to their names very often. There are many names given to them, but some familiar names are Butler, Rugby, Clive, Swansea, Delilah, Cardiff, Zeta, Fletch, Cricket, and Merlin. You can keep any of these names because these names suit their nature.
Pembroke Welsh Corgi is a straightforward dog, but they need proper socialization and training. They have a keen interest in learning things, and they want to get better. They have some great habits over other dogs like they do not bark much. Instead, they try to get friendly with other people. It is the best choice for any owner to choose them as a pet.
At what age to start training
Puppy training should be started from the first days of the dog’s stay in your home. Because already from infancy, a puppy should learn the rules of behavior in your house, what is allowed and what is forbidden, how to behave with all family members, even the smallest and oldest, with what you can play and what not, where to go to the toilet and much more.
And we are talking, first of all, about the correct upbringing of a Welsh Corgi Pembroke puppy, and it will be possible to start training and learning commands when the puppy is completely comfortable in your house. As a rule, one week is sufficient. By this time, the puppy is already overflowing with curiosity and diligently learns the world around him. If, after this time, the puppy remains fearful, does not make contact well, then it is better to seek help from a cynologist-zoopsychologist because this behavior is not typical for puppies of this breed.
When can you start training with a dog handler?
The beginning of the puppy’s training coincides with the time of the first outing. When the first two vaccinations have already been made, the quarantine (lasts 7-14 days, depending on the vaccination) after them is over. It is not at all necessary to deal with the puppy only on the street, the first lessons are best done at home, where there are fewer distractions.
Often, new puppy owners worry that training from the first days will be overwhelming for the dog. This is possible only in the case of using outdated rigid methods, and with the right approach, training from the first days will, on the contrary, be very useful, since it allows you to immediately establish contact with the puppy and build trusting relationships.
You can start raising a puppy from the first days of his appearance in your home, and training and classes with a dog handler can be started simultaneously with the beginning of walks when quarantine ends after the second vaccination.
Why you don’t need to wait up to 6 months
We often hear that the Pembroke Welsh Corgi, like other dogs, cannot be trained until 6 months, because training is stressful. This opinion has remained from the days of outdated methods based on brutal coercion and intimidation of the dog. Unfortunately, there are still plenty of dog handlers using such techniques today. But fortunately, science does not stand still and modern methods allow you to train a puppy from the first days in a new home. Therefore, you should not wait until your Welsh Corgi Pembroke puppy has undesirable behavior, you can start practicing much earlier.
Training in 2 months upbringing
At 2 months old, your Welsh Corgi Pembroke puppy is still at home, in quarantine after the first vaccinations, and he is still not allowed to walk. Therefore, it’s time to start raising a puppy in his familiar home conditions.
The first point is to teach the puppy to go to the toilet on a diaper. You should not rush to teach to go to the toilet immediately outside, bypassing this stage, because the puppies are physiologically not ready for two walks a day. Such an ability in Welsh Corgi Pembroke puppies is developed not earlier than 6 months, and in some up to 1 year.
It should be remembered that any learning is a rather complicated thing and, seeing the first positive results, you should not think that your puppy has already understood everything, but you should continue training, according to the method, so that after a while you do not have to start all over again.
Collar and leash training
The second important point will be training the puppy to the collar and leash. Yes, yes, this should be done at home, so that by the time the puppy goes out for the first time, wearing a collar would not be additional stress for him, but was already a habit, and he could study the world around him, and not try to get rid of an incomprehensible subject.
What and what not to allow a puppy
The third point, which causes the greatest difficulties for newly-made puppy owners, will be the definition of the boundaries of what is permissible in the puppy. Often, many novice dog owners think that the undesirable behavior of a Welsh Corgi Pembroke puppy “will pass by itself, will outgrow”. But, unfortunately, the behavior that is allowed for a puppy will be taken for granted by an adult dog.
Any undesirable behavior in a puppy WILL NOT PASS by itself, but will only gain a foothold over time.
Therefore, it is necessary to start defining the boundaries of what is permissible in a puppy right now. You will need:
- Teach him to play only with his toys, not with your things;
- Tell him not to bite your hands, even in the game;
- Establish the correct daily routine, fixing the rule that you need to sleep in the morning, and not wake you up;
- Disaccustom to bite furniture, clothes, walls, and baseboards;
- Teach him to stay at home alone, knowing that your absence is not a reason to bark or howl.
Familiarization with the initial commands
Already now, you should begin to familiarize yourself with the initial commands of obedience in an easy playful way, while focusing on rewarding for performance, because the puppy’s psyche is still quite plastic, and excessive severity and exactingness can lead to the puppy being intimidated and cowardly. Therefore, it is necessary, first of all, to try to interest the puppy by offering him a toy or a treat, and sometimes just praise.
Training in 3 months SOCIALIZATION
Three months is an important stage in the acquaintance of a Welsh Corgi Pembroke puppy with the outside world. Your first walks should be short and not too tiring for the puppy. You should start with 15 minutes, gradually increasing the walking time to 1 hour.
Correct formation of the nervous system
At this age, the puppy’s nervous system is being formed. It has been proven that raising puppies in isolation during this important period contributed to the development of pronounced cowardice in them in the future. It is necessary to show the puppy as much as possible: noisy streets, large gatherings of people, etc. All that he will have to face in later life.
This should be done very carefully, gradually, over and over again, increasing the time spent in noisy places, so as not to overload the puppy and not to scare him.
The territory of a country house, dacha, or village is placed with a minimum amount of external irritants for a city dog. Therefore, if you plan to keep a dog in an urban environment, “growing up” of a Welsh Corgi Pembroke puppy in such irritant-depleted conditions is unacceptable.
Sonal is a Visual Artist and Social Media enthusiast. She is also a community manager of Picovico and enjoys writing and painting in her free time.