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Do I want a Corgi?

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  • Do I want a Corgi?

    Our little JRT mix had to be put to sleep a few weeks ago. Daughter misses her nighttime cuddle buddy..our GSD is about 80lbs too big to squish in beside her lol. She loves the looks of the Corgis but we've never been around one for very long. We live out in the country, couple acres, horses, cats, chickens (in a pen) and the GSD. I spent tons and tons of time working with the GSD, she wants to train the new pup- she's seen me work him and I would be there to help but it would be *her* dog. Anybody that has one want to speak up and let me know what we might be setting ourselves up for? lol

  • #2
    I there was a thread on here recently about corgis. It seems like a number of people have corgis and really enjoy them. Corgis are also nice performance dogs so if she really enjoys training she could look into herding, agility, etc. I am sure some of the enthusiasts will chime in. For me the biggest deterrent is the amount that they shed but shedding bothers people to different degrees.


    • #3
      Well they have "attitude" beyond belief! There are a lot of good and bad that you may not hear of until AFTER you own one. I sure didn't!!

      Mine loves kids, especially little kids. She has since she was big enough to fit in your hand. She just wriggles her way over to any small child and licks their hands until they pet her. She was easy to train, obedient as long as SHE felt like being obedient! A tune-up with the electric dog collar FIXED the "come when called NOW" button just fine!! Did well in dog showing, 4-H level obedience, Showmanship, agility. Got along well with other dogs in public.

      My main issue is Corgi HATES our other large dog. Has hated ALL our other large dogs, of which there have been three during her lifetime. Two met with unfortunate ends while young, which gave the Corgi "delusions of being Top Dog" as she was the ONLY dog. Took some time to locate a new puppy, so there was a gap of her being our only dog. Then when we replaced lost dog with a puppy, she got very irate, determined to be head dog. Puppies were each good natured about it until almost 2yrs, just laughed at Corgi trying to put them in their place. Large dogs were ALWAYS nice to her, tolerated her meaness and bites until it reached "enough is enough". Corgi bit hard and started EACH and EVERY incident that happened.

      Corgi DOES NOT GET IT, that she is small and not up to matching our large dog. She actually blames the big dog for EVERYTHING, turns on big dog by surprise, then jumps and bites her for any reason. Like someone came to the driveway! Corgi has been badly bitten by each of the larger dogs we owned, for this nastyness, but doesn't learn. So far, we have put about $2500 in her in various incidents getting her stitched back up. I never wanted to own a dog that expensive!!

      Corgi takes offense easily if she gets tripped over or thinks she will be hurt. Will snarl and then is crated. She can sulk in her cage alone. No chance of her biting anyone or anything while angry. She does hold a grudge for a while!! She is really only brave attacking our big dogs!! The cats have all done the face batting, Corgie backs off. Cats do have claws! Corgi is very loving, travels well, and a SUPER announcer of "things going on" around us. Sees every bike rider pass with a yip, barks at mail person, cars turning in the driveway. Oddly enough, she also will bark steadily if the horses are doing things "they aren't supposed to". She has told us several times when they got loose in the fenced barnyard. Also helped me go rescue one of the old horses from a gelding who was REALLY chasing it around. Gelding had never done that, had to put the old horse in another paddock. Glad the dog was announcing that day! Dogs are not allowed out to the barn, but Corgi keeps her ears tuned to everyone else's business so she can tattle on them!!

      Corgis shed like German Shepherds, 365 days a year. I have taught our dog to tolerate the vacuum, so she gets brushed and vacuumed weekly and it prevents the hair balls rolling around the house. They blow the undercoat really bad in spring and early fall, but if you brush and comb, then vacuum the dog for about 5 days, it is over! Faster than GSD sheds out, because I used to have those as well. Now I have a non-shed dog and the Corgi. I just clip the big dog and brush her off weekly.

      Pick your Corgi color by what color clothes you like to wear, because otherwise every hair will show on you! Khake, tan, look good with the orange Corgi. Black pants go well with the Tri-Color or Black Corgi, no hairs show at all. Both don't show on jeans.

      I like our Corgi, but she is really everything the breed is. All other Corgi owners have the same issues, but again, you never hear a bad thing until you OWN a Corgi.

      Our Corgi is small, 18#, from a working stock line. I saw her mother, father, grandmother at age 9yr, and all were healthy, moved well, had good eyes. They are LITTLE dogs, so you have to be hard, resist feeding them fat things, which accumulate and cause problems. Our dog now has to be kept from ALL fat type of foods, snacks or risk serious problems that will kill her. She is kept very trim around her 18#, so she does run and exercise more than if she is heavier. She gets hard, dry dog food to crunch up, no wet food. Sometimes snacks of bread plain, eggs cooked or raw, which she thinks are WONDERFUL. She has excellent teeth, eyes are in fine shape. My dogs get plain cow hooves for chewing, which actually LAST for a week or so. Big dog and Corgi have very strong jaw muscling, so bones don't last a day, even raw ones. Also avoiding the marrow inside for Corgi special diet. I don't think the larger, heavier boned Corgis move well, certainly seem to have a great many body problems as they age. I wouldn't want such a big one as you commonly see these days. Eye problems tend to be inheritable, but may not be evident until age 6-7 in the parents. I NEVER let our Corgi jump up on things, discourage standing on hind legs. She waits to be lifted into or out of the car. She has a small stool to help her get on the couch to sit with husband in the evening. Few stairs to be running up and down all day. She goes out in the AM, comes inside in the PM, so 10 steps a day. Stairs are HARD on long-backed breeds, can help cause spinal problems. She is out in all weather, hair is very protective, has a warm doghouse if she wants cover. I let her inside more if temps get down below 20F. Small dogs have a harder time keeping warm in piercing cold. She would be too hot wearing those CUTE dog coats. She just fluffs her hair instead. Truly a "wash and wear" kind of dog! She is still in pretty good health at age 11yrs, none of the bone or spinal issues or problems I see in other Corgis.

      I also got my Corgi for my small daughter, and she was good for that reason. Has a lot of nice qualities, but that CONSTANT attempt to be top dog wears on everyone after a while. You had to crate her away so she didn't jump the big dog for some imagined slight. The most recent big dog has a good sense of humor in teasing the small dog, and is OBEDIENT in trying not to kill the Corgi if jumped.

      But this is our first and last Corgi, unless we retire to a place too small for a big dog. As an ONLY dog, they would probably be fine with no competition.
      Good luck with a puppy of any kind for your daughter.


      • #4
        Corgis are The Best Dogs Ever.

        Get one from a reputable breeder, who should ask you more questions about you than you do about them.

        You will never find a smarter, funnier, more loyal dog.

        They only shed twice a year.

        For six months at a time.

        I'd give anything to still be picking up Corgi fluff.


        • #5
          I've had Pems since 1997. I've fostered a lot of Pems. They are my breed of choice, so take this for what it's worth.

          They are short, not small dogs. The ones winning in the show ring right now are about 35-45#. The show dogs have an enormous amount of coat. I know that because I had a champion, he was about 40# when lean and his son was a similar weight. At 35# either dog would have been performance weight, anything under that would have been quite thin. These two had quite a bit of bone to them as well, which is probably what made them heavier, even at a good weight.

          The g'son/nephew of the two dogs above is at a good weight at 35# and performance weight at about 30#, he's got moderate bone (which is what the standard calls for) and his body length to leg length is just a tad different which gives him a bit more ground clearance. I like his type better than the heavier dogs. He moves easier and he is better proportioned.

          As for temperament, they are sassy little dogs, which is a trait I am most comfortable with. I am not a Golden or Lab type personality myself so I like dogs who are independent. The ones I've had as puppies or young dogs are learning machines. Many of the fosters I've had come through my home have been given up because they didn't tolerate physical corrections well and because their owners didn't understand behavior modification. That can be a wicked bad combination in an intelligent, independent dog. If you are a trainer, they might be a good fit. If you want a dog who self trains, think a bit harder as Corgis will self train, but often pick up the wrong stuff instead of the things you might want them to.

          The shedding is serious. Really. People don't understand how much coat these dogs have, but as the poster above said, if you bathe/hv dry and or vacuum, it can be managed.

          Snuggling? My first Corgi (a bitch) was a nice dog, in fact, she was my heart. But she would get too warm to cuddle long term. Her daughter is the same way, they both want to be near me and touch me but just get too warm for full body length snuggles for hours. My best male, would have lived outside in the winter if he could have convinced his humans to join him. Summer was hard on him as he was a heavier Corgi with that show coat and as a result, he would come up, say "hi" and head for the tile floor. The nephew is very different. His coat is not as dense and he is a determined Snugglebug. He .requires. snuggles and cuddles. One of his favorite places in the world is my lap if he has a kong or a nylabone. He wants to be a lap dog.

          A well bred Corgi will be bold, friendly, & exhuberent (Connor flings himself into life with gusto). Of all the Pems I've had in my home, only one does not get along with other dogs and after I got her, I found out her sire was fear aggressive. The rest, all get along with other dogs and have been incredibly useful as demo dogs in class and as "teacher" dogs for fosters who needed civilizing.


          • #6
            Pems and Cardis are apples and oranges

            What kind of wine goes with corgi hair?

            SHEDDING. Forget about wearing fleece or pretty much anything black. They shed shed and shed. IMO, the only real drawback. Some are more fluffy than others. If you don't vacuum daily your house becomes a wild west set with tumbleweeds made from corgi hair.

            Goodhors, surely you must have a Pem.

            Cardigans have a totally different personality than Pems. I'd call their default mode "laid-back doofus." They are clowns. At the same time, they are *highly* intelligent, *highly* trainable, and superb watch dogs. Cardigans are more one-person dogs than Pems. They are also less hyper IMO, and very adaptable; if you need time on a couch, they will join you. If you are active, they will join you. They have longer backs and bigger ears than Pems. They also have a tail; the white tip at the end is VERY useful in tall grass.

            My extended family (and me, for 40 years) pretty much exclusively have corgis, both Pems and Cardigans. Why have another breed when the corgi is so perfect.

            They do herd children. Actually mine pretty much would like to herd anything that moves though you can train them not to do so. One of my current boys is a big-time snuggler, though like someone else mentions, they get hot and leave after half an hour or so.

            You MUST manage a low-rider breed carefully b/c of their long backs or be prepared for the consequences. Avoid steps (my husband built a ramp for ours), carry up/down and lift them up/down, and try to teach them not to jump on/off furniture.

            Definitely find a reputable breeder. Responsible breeders test for things like PRA and DM, and stop breeding a line if that stuff shows up.

            Someone once said that corgis are like potato chips; you can't have just one. This is truth.


            • #7
              Long before the corgi craze, when they were not that common, a friend bought a pembroke one, loved him so much, he got two more and started breeding them.
              Those are the cutest dogs and irresistible as puppies, he had every puppy sold and a list waiting for more.

              Living with them, well, after my friend got his, I could not go in his house again, as I am very allergic to dogs and corgis are some of the worst offenders.
              They are also major shedders.

              My friend and those he sold puppies to absolutely loved them, the dogs ruled their house.
              The good thing, they had such a good disposition, practically anyone could get along with them and, once grown, were well adapted to their households, even without hardly any training.
              They all were extremely smart and worked their owners around their little paws brilliantly, but were nice anyway to live with.
              I don't know not one that sooner or later didn't have back problems if they lived long enough, goes along with the dwarf trait of short legs and long backs, sorry.

              Several of our dog club members have corgis, some of those have achieved the higher levels in obedience and many of them in agility, as corgis love to do anything with their owners, they are very good workers.

              If your girl likes them, why not get one?
              It will be her dog after all.


              • #8
                And clippers are your friend...

                If the dog isn't going to be shown, then just clip during the hot months, that means at least 4-5 months, you won't have the excessive "fluff".

                Beware though, I've had many different breeds of dog, before we got our Pembroke, Miles. He quite simply stole my heart. I believe he had a much higher intelligence than usual. He would look straight into your eyes as you spoke, like he was hearing a foreign language and was looking for just one word he understood, so he could do what we asked.

                Happy and quite independent. Did Not Like Cuddles, even as a puppy, I think it was about control. Would happily sit next to or on a lap, until, as others have said, he got too warm. Loved to play in the snow, he'd leap and roll and root and make his own little Corgi snow angels.

                Learned his herding commands and a forever down stay nearly instantly.

                A stout, sable and white male, he weighed in at 40 lbs. You also can't pick up a Corgi like you do other dogs, it's like lifting a wet tube of cement.

                He's been gone almost 7 months and I still can't put his bed away.


                • #9
                  I find them yippy and too independant, but I have many friends who love and cherish them.
                  "You can't really debate with someone who has a prescient invisible friend"


                  • #10
                    The good ones are independent

                    I've never known a "yappy" one. Miles barked only at buzzards, the door bell and on command.

                    He did have a happy kind of Corgi "chortle" that is indescribable. Most of them do. His was so unique, I could tell what cat was coming up from the barn.


                    • #11
                      Both of ours were well breed by a VERY respected reputable breeder...both shed like nothing else on this earth, both did not tlike to cuddle and even though we did not have them at the same time, they were eerie similar dogs.

                      BOTH were euthanised in early teens by same thing loose of control back ends..

                      They also both had ear hematomas and sensitive stomaches, hot spots unless I was extra vigulant w/ frontline.

                      I would never ever shave my Corgi's main coat but would do belly and hind area in summer..

                      I just could not bear to think of the hair in my daughters bed if she slept w/ a Corgi......


                      • #12
                        Yes, the corgi chortle! Both cardis and pems have versions of that, it is charming.

                        Funny about Miles and buzzards; my latest two are like that with crows.

                        IME, cardigans don't bark as much and their barks are much more "big dog" than Pem barks. Mine alert to people passing by (I want them to!) and it was fairly easy to train them to stop after a couple of barks, with a "thank you."

                        I don't find cardigans particularly independent; they are definitely very loyal and mostly stick like glue...


                        • #13
                          Originally posted by 2ndyrgal View Post
                          A stout, sable and white male, he weighed in at 40 lbs. You also can't pick up a Corgi like you do other dogs, it's like lifting a wet tube of cement.

                          He's been gone almost 7 months and I still can't put his bed away.
                          Awww 2ndyrgal, I am so sorry you lost your big/little dog. He sounds like he was just wonderful. If you want some Corgi fluff, I have plenty and can send you some!


                          • #14
                            I really, really hope my Pem is from the modern show lines because getting her from 43 to 39 pounds has been a Sisyphian task. If I have to get her down to the old standard for a bitch she's going to think she's on the Bataan Dog March. (She's from the pound, so I know nothing about her breeding.)

                            Definitely not yippy. BARKY at times, very talkative, and not a huge fan of other dogs, though she gets along fine with Puff as long as I feed them separately and monitor her (she's try to boss him off his food.) No problems at all with my parents' elderly female beagle. A people person--absolutely loves all people everywhere and wants to HELP. Helpful dog is helpful with the furnace installers, the roofers, anyone who comes in the door.
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                            • #15
                              Looking back, I've guess I've had Corgis for over 50 years. I will be the first to say that they are not a breed for everyone. My experience is that Corgis are one of the few breeds where the males are more mellow than females.

                              Get one or three...two together are trouble.

                              Corgis are a tad bit schizophrenic energy-wise. Full of it one minute...totally sacked out the next. However, when awake, they are always on alert, on guard and like to"patrol." Corgis are VERY territorial. Mine have never been big barkers, but are pretty good at sounding the alarm when they think there's a threat (bugs on the patio, pig at the sliding glass door, the UPS guy, you get the picture). When they DO bark, it's ear-splitting.

                              They don't necessarily need a ton of exercise (unless they are a porker), but like a Border Collie, they do better if they have a job. If you don't give them one, they'll think something up all on their own and you may not be happy with the results. Corgis can be a bit obsessive about certain things...playing fetch and eating are two that come to mind. Mine have all been good ratters.

                              Mine shed but both are outside a lot in all kinds of weather. I think excessve shedding can be a result of keeping the dog inside in warm, dry conditions. They are made to be outside dogs. Mine only really blow their coats in June or July and don't really shed all that much the rest of the year...no more than any other double-coated herding breed.

                              Corgis like to roll in stinky, dead stuff.

                              Corgis are wicked-smart, assertive, opinionated and quick. They don't suffer fools gladly and will take advantage of you in a New York minute if you aren't on your toes. Mine probably get away with more than they should, but I lost my "peace-maker" Corgi last year and he kept everyone in line. Corgis are not a breed I would recommend for young children. They nip, chase and herd. It's what they've been bred for centuries to do. Kids run and scream and dart around...perfect target for a Corgi and very hard to resist.

                              I love the breed, but I can't begin to say how many times I've seen a Corgi in a family situation where it didn't belong. The Corgi was running the show and it wasn't a happy situation for anyone.

                              Do buy from a good breeder and I would recommend a puppy in this instance, preferably male. Older Corgis can come with baggage that is difficult to overcome.


                              • #16
                                Yes, if you want: clouds of fur everywhere, all year long; early deafness brought on by earsplitting barking (it is not "yipping" like a pomeranian or a maltese. It is a high-register bark evolved to be heard over the sheep fields.); and to laugh your head off when the dog starts running full-speed in circles and jumping in the air.

                                Also, you definitely want a corgi if you want your cats to be chased (not harmed, just chased.) And, yes, they LOVE eating and rolling in the most disgusting things they can find. They are airferns. I feed tiny amounts of low-fat kibble supplemented with pumpkin and green beans. Tribble has anal gland issues but I don't know if that's common in the breed. She is very healthy at 8 and doesn't have any chronic digestive issues or allergies. Prone to hotspots in the summer because she swims every day and her undercoat gets wet. This summer I finally had her "trace clipped" and that eliminated the hotspots.

                                She is a busybody - must ALWAYS know what is going on, everywhere, and comment on it, LOUDLY. Very smart, and totally independent. If she wants to be scritched, she'll come over and demand it, instantly. If you want her inside and that's not on her agenda, too bad for you.
                                Last edited by Guin; Aug. 30, 2012, 10:33 PM. Reason: lots of other stuff
                                I realize that I'm generalizing here, but as is often the case when I generalize, I don't care. ~ Dave Barry


                                • #17
                                  I should really hope the show Pembrokes are not 35-40 lbs. The standard:

                                  Size, Proportion, Substance-Height (from ground to highest point on withers) should be 10 to 12 inches. Weight is in proportion to size, not exceeding 30 pounds for dogs and 28 pounds for bitches. In show condition, the preferred medium-sized dog of correct bone and substance will weigh approximately 27 pounds, with bitches approximately 25 pounds. Obvious oversized specimens and diminutive toylike individuals must be very severely penalized.

                                  I do know a show pembroke who has done very well and he is right at 30 lbs. He looks like a much bigger dog because he has a very heavy coat.

                                  That said I originally wanted a Pem and was glad the people on this board turned me toward the Cardigans. Mine is such a good dog.


                                  • #18
                                    What a silly question. Of course you want a corgi. Once you go corgi, you won't go back. As a general rule, I've met many people who have had GSD's and then gone corgi when they wanted smaller.

                                    I would recommend looking for a breeder where at least one of the parents holds a performance title as this will give you some indication of trainability. I'm on my fourth one raised from puppyhood and I find them easy to train. I started clicker work with Tempi at five weeks (she's a homebred) and her work ethic/drive/cooperation are all that I could ask for.
                                    My girls are 23/24 pounds in performance weight and 10.75" at the shoulder to about 11.5"


                                    • #19
                                      My husband's GSP's contribute more to the hair clouds. None of mine shed badly. There's the twice a year coat blow, I rake, bathe, and blow dry with comb and we're good. Mine spend their lives keeping up with each other and the GSP's, I actually deliberately buy some of the highest calorie per cup kibble I can find so that I can keep enough weight on them.


                                      • #20
                                        Originally posted by lewin View Post
                                        I should really hope the show Pembrokes are not 35-40 lbs. The standard:

                                        Size, Proportion, Substance-Height (from ground to highest point on withers) should be 10 to 12 inches. Weight is in proportion to size, not exceeding 30 pounds for dogs and 28 pounds for bitches. In show condition, the preferred medium-sized dog of correct bone and substance will weigh approximately 27 pounds, with bitches approximately 25 pounds. Obvious oversized specimens and diminutive toylike individuals must be very severely penalized.

                                        I do know a show pembroke who has done very well and he is right at 30 lbs. He looks like a much bigger dog because he has a very heavy coat.

                                        That said I originally wanted a Pem and was glad the people on this board turned me toward the Cardigans. Mine is such a good dog.
                                        If either of the males I talked about was 30# he was quite thin and anything below that would have been emaciated.