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Breed Profile: Pembroke Welsh Corgi

When you’re the favored breed of the Queen of England, it’s no wonder that you regularly make the most popular breeds list! While Corgis may be short, that’s the only thing about them that anyone will ever call little!

In fact, many people are surprised to learn that this little dog was bred to heard cows! After all, when most people think of herding dogs, they think of bigger, stronger, altogether more imposing breeds. But this little dog is the exception that proves the rule, and a brilliant family dog too!

History of the Pembroke Welsh Corgi

As the name suggests, the Pembroke Welsh Corgi originated in Wales. South Wales to be precise.

They were bred to herd cattle, which they did by nipping their ankles. So, it makes sense that their legs are short, to allow them to avoid those hooves, and be on the right level to strike when the opportunity presents itself.

Some people claim that the Pembroke Welsh Corgi dates back to the 11th century, but there’s no documented evidence to back that up. What we do know is that this little dog had been herding cows in South Wales for a long time before the first club was formed in 1926.

Once the breed was adopted by the current queen and her father, their popularity in the UK and elsewhere was firmly cemented, and by the 1960s, they were regularly winning the top spot in the breed popularity race in many parts of the world.

Pembroke Welsh Corgi General Physical Characteristics

Corgis are solid little dogs, and while they’re only about 10 to 12 inches tall thanks to those stocky little legs, they can weigh as much as 25 to 27 lbs.!

They’re very recognizable with their pointed ears and slightly sharp faces, and they can be tan, sable, red, black and tan with or without white accents.

Pembroke Welsh Corgis have thick, coarse hair with fairly thick undercoats, and their tails are usually docked as short as possible. This is a throwback to their origins as cattle herders, when long tails would almost certainly have been trampled and crushed. They don’t need much in the way of grooming, although brushing out their undercoat will go a long way to keeping your furniture fur free.

Temperament and Character of Corgis

Corgis are tough little dogs, that are smart and quick witted. They’re good with kids, and with other pets, and they make great family pets.

They are, as small as they are, herding dogs, and the instinct is very strong. They need regular, daily exercise and plenty of mental stimulation in order to thrive.

They’re loyal and easy going, and while they can be barkers, they’re generally more reserved than aggressive when meeting new people.

Lifespan of the Pembroke Welsh Corgi

Corgis typically live between 11 and 13 years.

Common Health and Personality Issues in Corgis

Pembroke Welsh Corgis are generally hardy, tough little dogs, but there are a few conditions you should be on the look out for:

  1. Like other breeds with short legs and relatively long bodies, Corgis are prone to back problems, and one of the most common is intravertebral disk disease, which is a condition that affects the cartilage disks that cushion the spaces between vertebrae in the spine.
  2. They are also one of the few small dogs that are prone to hip dysplasia.
  3. Epilepsy is another relatively common condition in the breed.
  4. Some dogs may be at risk of Von Willebrand’s disease.
  5. There’s a slightly higher risk of urinary stones.
  6. Finally, eye problems, including lens luxation.

All in all, however, with enough exercise and regular veterinarian visits, a Pembroke Welsh Corgi should be a healthy, happy family member.

If they’re good enough for the queen, after all, they’re definitely good enough for you!

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