Pembroke Welsh Corgi Guide

Herding Dog Breeds

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The Pembroke Welsh corgi is moderately long and low, and less heavily boned than the Cardigan Welsh corgi. Its movement is free and smooth, with good reach and drive. This is a breed that needs to be quick and agile, even after herding all day, in order to avoid the cattle's kicking hooves. It combines a weather-resistant undercoat of medium length with a coarser outer coat of slightly longer length. Its expression is intelligent and interested, foxy, but not sly.

Quick and quick-witted, the Pembroke Welsh corgi has an active mind and body. It needs daily physical and mental exercise to be at its best in the house. It is devoted and willing to please, fun-loving, amiable and companionable. It is very good with children, although it can nip at heels in play. It is usually reserved with strangers. Many bark a lot.


FAMILY livestock, herding



ORIGINAL FUNCTION cattle driving

TODAY'S FUNCTION cattle driving, herding trials

AVERAGE SIZE OF MALE Height: 10-12 Weight: 27

AVERAGE SIZE OF FEMALE Height: 10-12 Weight: 25


Energy level Medium energy

Exercise needs Medium

Playfullness Moderately playful

Affection level Very affectionate

Friendliness toward other dogs Friendly

Friendliness toward other pets Very friendly

Friendliness toward strangers Very friendly

Ease of training Hard to train

Watchdog ability High

Protection ability Very protective

Grooming needs Low maintenance

Cold tolerance Medium tolerance

Heat tolerance Medium tolerance

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The Pembroke loves to herd, and a daily herding session would be ideal to meet its exercise requirements. It can do fine without herding, however, as long as it gets a moderate walk on leash or a good play and training session off leash. It is physically able to live outdoors in temperate climates, but it is mentally far better suited to share its family's home and have access to a yard. Coat care consists only of brushing once a week to remove dead hairs.
• Major concerns: intervertebral disc disease, CHD
• Minor concerns: epilepsy
• Occasionally seen: vWD, skin fragility, PRA, lens luxation, urolithiasis
• Suggested tests: hip, eye, (blood)
• Life span: 11 – 13 years
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The corgi was an essential helper to the farmers of South Wales. Although these little dogs specialized in herding cattle, nipping at their heels and then ducking under their kicking hooves, they were almost certainly also used in herding sheep and even Welsh ponies. Despite claims for the antiquity of the breed, it is difficult to trace its origins or even authenticate its existence in early times. A Welsh cattle dog is mentioned in a book of the 11th century, however. Although it certainly shares its past with the Cardigan Welsh corgi, the Pembroke was developed separately, in Pembrokeshire, Wales. As a hard-working dog, the corgi was out in the fields when many of the early dog shows were being held. Only in 1926 did a club form and the breed enter the show ring. The first exhibits were straight from the farm and aroused only modest attention. Breeders subsequently strove to improve upon the breed's inherent good looks and were rewarded with increased popularity. The obvious differences between the Pembroke and Cardigan were troublesome to judges — the Pembroke is smaller, with sharper features, a more foxlike expression and characteristically no tail. In 1934, the Cardigan and Pembroke corgis were divided into two separate breeds, after which the Pembroke soared in popularity. Its appeal was heightened when it became the favorite of King George VI and, subsequently, Queen Elizabeth II. By the 1960s, the Pembroke had become one of the most popular pet breeds all over the world, but especially in Britain. This popularity has since waned slightly, but far more Pembrokes can be found herding in back yards than in farmyards today.
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