Cardigan Welsh Corgis

Cardigan Welsh Corgis

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Breed Notes

The Welsh Corgi may have gotten its name from the Welsh word, corrci, which means dwarf dog or from the Celtic word, corgi which means dog. There are two closely related varieties, the Pembroke (see Pembroke Welsh Corgis) and the Cardigan. The Cardigan is not as well known as the Pembroke but may have come to Cardiganshire, Wales, with the Celts as early as the thirteenth century B.C. It is distinguished from the Pembroke primarily by its longer tail, heavier build and longer body. The Cardigan was recognized by the American Kennel Club in 1935.
The Welsh Corgi is affectionate, loyal, friendly, and good with children. They are natural herders and were used by Welsh people to herd cattle. They are loyal, loving and good obedience dogs.
The Cardigan Welsh Corgi is distinguished from the Pembroke in that its body is longer and it has a long, brush-like tail. The coat color on a Cardigan is a blue merle, red, sable, tricolor, brindle or black. They have a white bib, four white feet and often a white blaze on the face. The eyes are dark, medium sized and set wide apart. They are generally brown but may be blue in the blue merle, also. The ears of the Cardigan are large and prominent in relation to the size of the dog. They stand straight and are slightly rounded at the top. The Cardigan is between ten and twelve inches in height and are called the "yard-long dog" in that their length from tip of nose to end of outstretched tail is the length of a Welsh yard. They weigh between 25 and 35 pounds. The back is long and strong with a level topline. of New Jersey writes:

Steady, protective, and always ready to play.
My wife and I got our female Cardigan from a breeder who had gotten her from another breeder when she was twelve weeks old and at five months our breeder put her up for adoption as she wasn't show quality. Our girl never was walked. We had a lot of problems getting her to walk and not pull on the leash and when she saw people/dogs outside on our walks she went into a vicious frenzy if she didn't know them. But when she made friends and saw them again she would roll on her back to be petted. We are working with her to get her to sit and stay as the people pass and she is sitting now as they pass. She really wants to please and is still a very young dog at at only one year nine months old. Inside the house all she wants to do is play and has earned the full run of the house as she only chews on her Nylabones. She has never growled or barked at us and is always up for petting. She likes her space and will spend time alone in the living room while we are in the den watching TV. But if we call her she comes up and sits with us. We have an African Grey parrot who she is very jealous of yet she is still trying to make friends with the bird and every time the bird kisses her she trys to smell the bird's rear and in doing so hits the tail and scares the bird. I trust her completely in the house. The Cardigan is a steady, loyal dog. very loving who wants to please. I think in time she will get over her outside frenzy and become the perfect pet. At the dog park she is solid enough to run with the big Labs and Shepherds and not get hurt. This is our first dog and while we made some novice mistakes we are able to correct them with this dog. I can't say enough good things about the Cardigan. I like the fact that most people have no idea what it is and think it is a mix of many breeds. She is a great dog and the breed is one of the biggest secrets in dogdom.

Name withheld by request of Dallas, TX writes:

Gentle-natured, sweet-tempered, and eager to please.
I have a beautiful male blue merle Cardi. I wanted a dog that wasn't too small or too big. We walk almost every day for 30 minutes and he keeps up with no problems. Even though they have short legs, they are fast, sturdy and strong. I've taken him to herding training a few times. It's fun to watch them in action and see their centuries old instincts kick in. He's also fine if we just sit on the couch and watch TV. He's pretty laid-back; I like that he's not hyperactive and constantly needing attention or to be in motion. He's very alert and is always watching me. His face always scans mine and I sometimes feel like he knows what I'm thinking. He tries to herd me by nudging the back of my legs with his nose but it's not really a nuisance. He's sweet-tempered, gentle-natured, and a sensitive soul. I rarely have any discipline problems because he's so eager to please me. The main drawback is that he sheds a lot! During shedding season, I'm out with the broom/vacuum cleaner almost every day. Still, it's a small price to pay for a wonderful dog that will give you lots of love and loyalty. I noticed some people mentioned barking problems. Maybe my dog is unique but he rarely barks except when he's greeting me home after a long day at work.

Name withheld by request of Texas writes:

Best money I've spent.
I've had many dogs and I have to say my Cardi is the "doggy love of my life." My male Cardi is four years old now. My daughter and I originally researched breeds to get an idea of what to look for in a mixed breed dog. But when we came across the Corgis, we fell in love.
A long search for a breeder and about $600 later (cost of the dog plus shipping), we had our Cardi. My husband and other family members ribbed me for spending so much on a dog. But I feel I've definitely gotten my money's worth. He's healthy, has a great temperament and is a perfect fit for our family. The breeder I found asked several questions about our family, picked out the best fit from her litter and arranged shipping (via air) to our city.
He was a little difficult to housebreak and we still have a problem with barking (likes to announce his presence to the neighborhood). But I think these are training issues with the owner rather than the dog. As a puppy, he was never destructive and adapted well to crate training. Typically, Corgis are laid-back, happy-go-lucky dogs. It's like owning a large dog in a small package with none of the yippy, high-strung small dog temperament.
Ours is a fluff &shyp; a long-haired Corgi. These are not show quality dogs but are quite beautiful. I have him shaved in summer (which takes care of winter coat shedding) and he's quite attractive shaved as well. In winter when his coat is grown out, he requires regular brushing and bathing. Because the Corgi's ears are upright, they stay healthier and require less maintenance than floppy-eared breeds. These are naturally active dogs built for speed and agility. They love walks, love to play and have a strong ball drive. If you aren't up for play, they can amuse themselves. You haven't lived until you've witnessed the "Corgi Scampers" (they suddenly take off and race around and around, pivoting on a dime).
These are friendly dogs, great with children, wonderful watchdogs who take their role in your family quite seriously. They need to be part of the family - not relegated to the backyard. They are intuitive, adaptive, intelligent animals. My family includes a handicapped stepchild and the dog seemed to know instinctively to be gentler with this child. My Corgi can be a real clown and a real comfort and seems almost to read my moods. He is constantly by my side, mindful of my every move even when he seems fast asleep. One charming aspect of the breed is that they seem to always be smiling - and they "talk" - mine comments on a wide variety of things.
These dogs are a great choice for people in apartments, condos or houses with small yards. Not a good choice for frequent travelers or families with lots of activities that keep them away from home. While Corgis don't require constant interaction with you, they do need to be around you. As a herding dog, the family is his flock and he's happiest when he's with them.

Name withheld by request of Texas writes:

A lovable, funny, bright companion for home and travel.
For 50 years together my husband and I always had, and loved, shepherding dogs; Border Collies, Shepherd mixes and Aussies. Each was unique and wonderful and shared with us many rewarding years of loving companionship. Now we are older and our beloved nine-year-old Aussie is slowing down too. Realizing that he would not always be with us and knowing that our home would never be complete with out a dear dog, we set out to find a last companion. We had two requirements; we wanted a smaller dog as we travel in a motor home and our dogs always accompany us and we wanted a herding breed. What great good fortune it was to discover the Cardigan Corgi. We have had our little brindle Cardigan for two years now and she has fulfilled all our expectations. Our old Aussie has perked up and adapted so well to having a mischievious puppy deviling him for attention. They play together with great enthusiasm with the old man often initiating the games. As the Aussie's greatest plesasure has always been Frisbee retrieving, comical little Cardi must do it too. She has trouble dragging the Frisbee back but loves to leap high for her ball and will catch and fetch it back for as long as her person will throw it. Although she is perky and full of bouncing energy, she loves to lie on a lap or snuggle for a nap when her people tire. She is eager to travel in a car, truck or motor home. She does not like to swim and paces along our lakeshore barking out, "Take care!" when her Aussie enjoys a refresh romp in the water. Very quickly she learned all the household
rules and habits and has appointed herself "majordomo," barking to let us know, for instance, that it is ten o'clock and time for a final walk with a biscuit to follow, then up, up, up the stairs. As others
have found, these wee dogs are good watchdogs but she loves all children and is a favorite with all the grandkids. Shedding has never been a problem for us since our house is used to fur. However she must always have access to something hard to chew, especially cow hooves. Soft toys and Boda Bones are destroyed in an hour. When she was a puppy, she did chew on some inappropriate household items but knows the difference now between her stuff and ours. We love her so much that we will be looking for another Cardigan, a mature dog, so our girl will not be so bereft when her sweet Aussie crosses the bar. These lively little dogs with the gentle, loving nature of a large dog, and with their intelligence are perfect companions.

bubbartlett@hotmail.comm of California writes:

Excellent family dog.
Two years ago I went to the pet adoption place in my area to get my son a puppy. I chose the Cardigan thinking it was a different breed. That is until I took it home and really observed how short her legs were. Since it is not really a popular breed, I had to go to a few places before a veterinarian told me she was a Cardigan. This pup lived for the first three months or so in an apartment with me, my wife and son. She only played with toys I would give her and never chewed on anything else. We now live in a house in a neighborhood with MANY children. All of the kids absolutely love her, and she them. She loves to play fetch and run with the kids on their bikes and scooters. She is very protective of my son around other dogs. She will be aggressive toward other dogs when he is around. Having never heard of this breed before, I am extremely pleased with this affectionate, active, fun-loving dog.

Name withheld by request of Tennessee writes:

Funny, content dog for the family.
A Cardigan Welsh Corgi (CWC) is a very good dog for an active family. We got ours about six years ago. She is a very beautiful dog. I would recommend obedience classes for this breed. Our family did not take her to classes. Because of this, it was hard to correct her for jumping on guests. Now she has matured and outgrown that. We have had little problems with this dog. I would recommend brushing their coat when you can. They tend to shed a lot. She is good with other dogs (those of the same size). She is okay with cats. CWCs are affectionate but can entertain themselves easily. Few health problems. They can be aggressive so I would recommend checking out a CWC's temperament very closely if you have young children. She tried to "herd" my little sister, who was about four at the time, as a puppy. She is an excellent guard dog because of her excellent hearing. These dogs are VERY smart and can be sneaky. Watch out when house-training. These dogs are nice for the whole family. I would recommend a CWC for a loving, active family with children eight and up.

Name withheld by request of Wisconsin writes:

We love this breed!
My husband and I got our Cardi seventeen months ago. Neither of us had had a dog since we were kids. We had always just had cats, since we have been pretty busy. But as we got older and our schedules quieted down a bit we thought we would give it a try. I had always been fascinated
by Cardis and thought the breed characteristics suited us. Since we already have three cats, a bit of shedding wasn't an issue. And the size is perfect &shyp; not too big, not too small. With our Cardi we got one of the sweetest, funniest dogs I have ever met. While stubborn (too smart for her own good), she still has great kindness and sweetness. She never had to be taught how to take food from people (incredibly polite), is great with kids (doesn't jump and scare them). While she does bark more than I expected, I think it's something that we can work on. She loves the dog park and doggie day care. I have to admit the cats aren't crazy about being herded, but sometimes I think they encourage her so they can get a good game of chase going. All in all I would recommend this breed to anyone. But I would say to be sure to go to a reputable breeder. I could see there being problems if someone
were breeding indiscriminately. But that's one of the nice things about a breed that's not really popular. The for-profit breeders and puppymills haven't gotten out of hand. of California writes:

Absolutely wonderful breed.
I got a four-year-old female Cardigan thirteen months ago and then I got a male Cardigan puppy who is almost one year old. They are an amazing breed. My puppy was so easy to raise, in almost every instance he only needed to be corrected once or twice to be trained not to do something, like chew electrical cords or shoes. Of course I have watched him and puppy-proofed the house. They are intelligent with no willfulness. They want to do whatever you ask and are easy to train. My female is a bit aloof, particularly with other dogs. The male is outgoing with no aggressiveness. The female took over the mothering of my puppy and has been very protective and tolerant of him. They are playful but if you don't want to play with them they are content to just be in the same room with you, even the puppy. The most outstanding thing about Cardigan Welsh Corgis that excels other dogs I have known or had is their willingness and ability to learn. They are sweet-natured and mellow but also a lot of fun and ready to play. The only drawback with them is that they shed a lot. The good news is they are very clean and they do not have a doggie odor. My female loves water, she loves to play in the sprinkler and both of them love to go kayaking and swimming with me. They are outside while I am at work and it was important to me to have dogs that do not bark excessively, disturbing the neighbors. They rarely bark and only for good cause and they will stop barking on command.

Name withheld by request of Illinois writes:

Smart and loving with loads of personality.
I had a great dog I found as a pup; she was a fantastic companion for fifteen years. Great temperament. Socialized easily with other dogs and people and was very adaptable. Even in her last years she was learning (or doing) new things I'd never seen her do before then. People always remarked at her great disposition, and I can't take any credit for training her. This breed is an ideal companion. They can be very active and hold their own with other dogs of absolutely any size. They can be "fierce" when defending themselves or others. The herding instinct and athleticism is clear. Don't let the short legs fool you, she could keep up with any dog she ever encountered and steer them in circles until they'd just get fed up.
A modest to full active lifestyle would be ideal to give your CWC the best it deserves, though they are patient and relaxed enough to be house companions. Make a new friend with a Cardigan.

Name withheld by request of Texas writes:

Very sweet-natured and loving.
We have had a Cardigan Corgi for seven years, and I would have to say that he is absolutely adorable. He is good with everyone, including children. Anyone who meets him loves him. He is also very good with our cat. I have heard that this breed can be somewhat reserved with
strangers, and if you are selecting this breed, I would pick one that is outgoing and friendly. Ours is a very good watchdog and lets us know of unusual sounds or people. I would really recommend this breed because our experience has shown it to be a dog with a very sound, sweet temperament. of Pilot Point, TX writes

Most precious creature ever.
By nature my husband and I are not dog people. We have had dogs in the past and when they died I swore I would not have another dog. A year later, I was missing having a dog with me. I missed having that bond that spans species. The one creature that is always happy to see me and never judges me. After months of exploring my options and visiting lots of shelters, I decided I would get what I always wanted &shyp; a Corgi. I had seen the Pembrokes frequently, but never a Cardi. I purchased my Cardi from a breeder who also shows the breed. He is the BEST dog I have ever been around. He was housebroken in less than two weeks and follows me wherever I go. He is incredibly smart and loves our cats. I cannot express in words the love I have for this little guy. All big dog personality in a small body. My hubby, who is even less of a dog person than me, also adores him. I cannot say that the breed is for everyone. My experience with the Cardis makes me think that a Cardi would fit in most families, but for those who don't want a barker, seek elsewhere. They also instinctively herd you like sheep and I have tripped over my Cardi time and time again. If you want a devoted, friendly, smart dog the Cardi may be for you. It was for me!

Name withheld by request of California writes:

Smart, funny and full of character.
I love my Cardigan Welsh Corgi. I will always own a Cardigan. My Cardi is very smart and very funny. We have been doing agility for seven months now and her instructor says she is the best in her class. They are a very easy dog to own. I can take her to the beach, park, wherever and she is well behaved. She mixes well with other dogs. She protects her favorite dogs from other dogs. She is full of life at the dog park, but when she is at home she is quiet (as long as the doorbell does not ring) and is never bothersome. I love my dog very much and she loves me too. of Florida writes on 2/1/01:

The best traits of a big dog in a compact version.
Our Cardi is beautiful, funny, super intelligent, EASY to train (if you know what you're doing; if you've never trained a dog before, get a good trainer to help you learn). He takes his work (watch dog) very seriously. But if I say the visitor is OK, he's as friendly as can be. He gets along great with the grandchildren. He is ALWAYS by my side. If I go to another room, he's right there, too. A bit of a busy body and quite nosey. Did I say smart and easy to train? Within two weeks he had totally learned to fit into the household routines. Lest you get the idea that he's a totally serious dog, he does LOVE to play, play, play. Needs room to run and play soccer (be prepared to go through lots of soccer balls). Delightful companion. Keeps me smiling all day long just watching his stumpy little legs and bright eyes. He does shed A LOT; but, hey, that's what the vacuum cleaner is for, right?

Name withheld by request of Texas writes on 8/27/00:

Very obedient, and loyal ,easy to train and love.
I found my little Cardigan Welsh Corgi puppy at a roadside park in central Texas about ten years ago. Ive had lots of dogs as pets over the last 50 years but never have I had such a wonderful sweet and loving dog. She is a great watch dog . She was a great mom to her 5 pups . I've never seen such fun that she had with her pups. She loves kids and has never ever been agressive towards an invited guest or anyone she knows but, she will let you know if someones around. She doesn't miss a thing she can hear a spider crawling in the grass from 30ft. away. She's slowing down alittle because of arthritis but they are great dogs. of Pittsburgh, PA writes on 6/29/00:

Novices be very careful when selecting this breed.
We selected the Cardigan Welsh Corgi as our first dog, after a great deal of research into the breed and the type of dog that would best fit our lifestyle. Although we seemed to do everything right in terms of finding a reputable breeder and training our dog, we were not so lucking in terms of selecting the right puppy from the litter.
Unfortunately, our adorable puppy suffered from severe food and fear agression almost from the day we got him. Despite over a year of research, doctors, and behavior modification attempts, including visits to the Univ. of Penn Behavioral Clinic, we were told that our dog was not even close to "normal", showing every type of aggression possible and as extreme a food aggression as anyone had seen. For our own safety, we ultimately had to put our dog to sleep after jsut 2 years. The whole experience was extremely traumatic because despite all of the bad, we adored our little Corgi.
Although we believe our dog's issues may have been one in a thousand, our advice to anyone considering a Corgi who is not a professional breeder or experienced with Corgi's is do your homework and carefully screen your puppy. These are very intellegent and strong-willed dogs and you can not afford to make a mistake with them. of California writes on 6/1/00:

Best dog I have ever owned.
I found our Corgi at the local shelter. This little dog adds so much fun to our lives. She will chase her toys until she is exausted. She trys to talk. You will have to hear her to believe me. she is a great watchdog and herds our three cats into the bedroom. She doesn't believe cats have the same rights as she does. She plays with the kids and, loves my husband but, she lets everyone know she is my dog. She is always where I am. She is at my feet now while I type this and, sleeps with us at night. I have had a few dogs in my life but, never one that is this loyal,protective and, fun. I would recommend a Cardigan Welsh Corgi to anyone who has a place for them to excersise and likes a dog that isn't a couch potato. of Anchorage, AK writes on 2/16/00:

Excellent all-around breed.
The Cardigan Welsh Corgi is a multifacited breed. They are comfortable with a variety of activities, from playing ball to jogging to sitting on your lap watching television. Temperments are sound and loyal. This is an easily trained, intelligent dog who asks only to be loved. They do require space to exercise and I would not recommend apartment dwelling unless you have access to a fenced area where the dog can be allowed to run freely. Coat care is minimal. Bi-annual shedding can be minimized with thorough brushings. They are truly a delight to own. of Brampton, ON writes on 10/10/99:

An excellent versatile long lived breed
Cardis are good family pets in that they are playful, intelligent, and learn quickly. The negatives to the breed are that they shed twice a year, they can be barkers if not trained properly, and they will nip at peoples heels in play if not broken of this habit. For the most part longevity is good 10-15 years and there are relatively few health problems in the breed.

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