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Pembroke Welsh Corgi Breed Guide: Origins, Care, Health Issues and Deciding if This Adorable Dog is Right for You (2024)

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pembroke welsh corgiImagine returning home after a long day to be greeted by a friendly ruff and a furry head nudging your hand.

With their appealing fox-like faces and wiggly nubs for tails, Pembroke Welsh Corgis make for delightful companions.

As an alert and lively breed that thrives on human interaction, they can suit an active single looking to share life’s adventures or a family seeking an affectionate pet.

Still, their tendency to bark requires consideration from apartment dwellers.

Key Takeaways

  • Originated as herding dogs in southwest Wales, evolved from Swedish Vallhunds
  • Compact physical size with upright ears, water-resistant double coat
  • Energetic, eager to please, and intensely focused personality
  • Moderate exercise needs but prone to joint and spinal issues

Origin of the Pembroke Welsh Corgi

Origin of the Pembroke Welsh Corgi
From among the varieties of herding dogs bred in the Celtic regions throughout history, the Pembroke Welsh Corgi originated as one ’til the smallest yet still capable of handling cattle and poultry on farms in southwest Wales.

They’ve been working alongside humans for hundreds of years.

Believed to have evolved from Swedish Vallhunds brought by Flemish weavers in the 10th century, the Pembroke Welsh Corgi is steeped in a rich genetic heritage and unique ancestry as a cultural icon.

With their low stature, these dwarf breeds were historically favored by farmers for their agility and tenacity in herding despite their small size.

Their enduring partnership alongside humans is epitomized by Queen Elizabeth II’s lifelong affection for her Pembroke Welsh Corgis.

Physical Attributes and Appearance

Physical Attributes and Appearance
The Pembroke Welsh Corgi has a long back and short, bowed legs that give it a distinctive appearance. Its naturally upright ears stand tall above its head which typically stands 10-12 inches off the ground.

  • Upright Ears – The Pembroke Welsh Corgi’s ears stand erect above its head, adding to its alert expression.
  • Compact Size – Weighing 25-30 pounds, the Pembroke Welsh Corgi is a small dog with a big personality packed into its 10-12 inch frame.
  • Flashy Coat – Pembroke Welsh Corgis sport eye-catching red, sable, fawn or black and tan coats, sometimes with striking white markings. Their water-resistant double coat requires weekly grooming to keep it looking its best.

Temperament and Personality

Temperament and Personality
With their appealing good looks and animated ways, you’ll find the Pembroke Welsh Corgi to have an active and intense personality that makes them delightful companions in the home.

Quick to learn and eager to please, these petite pups boast an alert intelligence and self-assured attitude that belie their small stature.

Their energetic and animated temperament reflects strong inborn herding instincts – so providing plenty of playtime and mental stimulation is key for this bright breed.

While innately friendly and affectionate with family, early socialization remains vital to ensure polite manners with other pets and strangers.

When properly trained and exercised, the playful, loyal Pembroke makes for a pleasant and polite housemate in apartments or small dwellings alike.

Still, their inquisitive herding nature may express itself through attempts to round up children or other pets!

Exercise and Activity Needs

Exercise and Activity Needs
As their herding background would suggest, Pembroke Welsh Corgis have moderate exercise needs.

Take them on at least one 30-minute walk per day, plus time for active games and training.

Their athleticism and intelligence lend themselves well to canine sports like agility, barn hunts, and rally obedience.

Interactive toys and trick training also provide mental stimulation.

If not sufficiently exercised, these quick-witted pups may redirect their energy to undesirable behaviors like excessive barking or furniture chewing.

Providing a Pembroke with daily outdoor time to run and play, coupled with indoor activities, will keep them fit and content.

Monitoring weight is also key, as obesity can exacerbate joint issues.

Training and Obedience

Training and Obedience
Apply positive reinforcement methods when training your Pembroke Welsh Corgi’s basic commands and social skills.

Intelligent and eager to please, these petite herders respond exceptionally well to reward-based training that builds confidence through praise and treats.

Use patience, consistency, and short sessions to instill good habits.

While exuberant barking presents a behavioral challenge, early socialization and training curb nuisance noises.

Employ force-free techniques centered on understanding canine behavior.

As working dogs, Pembrokes thrive learning obedience commands, agility courses, or herding trials.

Yet, even without a job, meet their needs through mental and physical stimulation.

Ultimately, ethical training forges an incredible bond with these charming companions.

Grooming Requirements

Grooming Requirements
How frequently do you need to groom a Pembroke Welsh Corgi?

As moderately shedding dogs, Pembroke Welsh Corgis require regular brushing and combing, generally about once or twice per week. This helps reduce loose hair and prevents mats from forming in their medium-length double coat.

Since Pembrokes come in colors like red, sable, fawn, black and tan, with or without white markings, regular grooming keeps their coats looking vibrant.

Don’t forget to trim their nails as needed.

Keeping your Pembroke at a healthy weight is also an important part of grooming – obesity can put stress on their joints and spine and lead to health issues.

So provide measured meals, regular exercise, and check-ups with your vet.

Simple grooming tasks like brushing and bathing promote good health and let you bond with your lively Pembroke.

Health Issues to Be Aware Of

Health Issues to Be Aware Of
When considering a Pembroke Welsh Corgi, you should be aware of the following:

  • They are prone to hip dysplasia and degenerative myelopathy.
  • Both conditions can greatly impact your dog’s mobility and comfort later in life.

Discuss health testing with an ethical breeder or your veterinarian to understand your dog’s risks and needs.

Hip Dysplasia

Monitor your Pembroke Welsh Corgi for signs of hip dysplasia, a common skeletal disorder that can lead to painful arthritis in the joints.

Regular vet checks.

Maintain healthy weight.

Appropriate exercise.

Physical therapy.

Genetic factors contribute to the breed’s susceptibility. Early intervention can help manage symptoms and slow progression to improve your corgi’s quality of life.

Degenerative Myelopathy

While degenerative myelopathy is sadly common in Pembroke Welsh Corgis, you won’t know if your dog develops it until later in life when they start showing signs of weakness and mobility issues in their hind legs.

Currently, there are no known preventive measures for degenerative myelopathy.

However, ongoing research is being conducted to better understand the disease and develop potential treatment options.

Supportive care such as physical therapy and canine therapy can help improve quality of life for dogs with degenerative myelopathy.

Genetic testing can also be done to identify carriers of the gene associated with this condition during the breeding process.

Pembroke Welsh Corgis as Pets

Pembroke Welsh Corgis as Pets
As a pet, the Pembroke Welsh Corgi can be a great fit for many households.

Their small size makes them suitable for apartment living.

Their affectionate and gentle nature allows them to thrive in families with children.

However, their barking and herding instincts are things to consider if you live in close quarters with neighbors.

Good With Families

Coming off those notable health issues, Pembroke Welsh Corgis make for great family companions with their fun-loving and animated temperaments.

Their people-oriented natures lend well to family dynamics, bonding closely with parents and kids alike.

Socialize Corgis early and properly with children to nurture their family-friendly qualities.

When raised alongside children, Corgis become loyal protectors and playful pals.

Still, supervise all kid-and-dog interactions, ensuring positive experiences for lasting family pet relationships.

Apartment Living

Consider if you can meet a Pembroke Welsh Corgi’s exercise needs while living in an apartment.

These energetic dogs need daily walks and playtime.

Their moderate exercise needs may be met with multiple daily walks.

However, their tendency for frequent barking must be considered regarding neighbors and noise levels in shared spaces.

Apartment living requires a considerate owner willing to provide this breed adequate outlets for their energetic behavior.

Finding a Reputable Pembroke Welsh Corgi Breeder

Finding a Reputable Pembroke Welsh Corgi Breeder
After deciding a bubbly Pembroke could be the right fit, the next step is locating an ethical, responsible breeder. This protects one from unwittingly supporting puppy mills and ensures a higher likelihood of a healthy, temperamentally-sound companion.

Vetting potential breeders is crucial. First, ensure they actively work to better the breed, not just produce puppies. Ask to see health certifications proving screening for hip dysplasia, eye issues, and genetic testing.

Verify they’re licensed and visit their facilities—responsible breeders openly welcome this.

A reputable breeder prioritizes breed preservation over profits—that’s what to seek.

Health Screening Facility Conditions Breeding Practices Price Range
Hips/Elbows Clean Limited Breeding $1,500 – $2,500
Eyes Safe Health Testing
DNA Testing Socialization Program

Deciding if a Pembroke Welsh Corgi is Right for You

Deciding if a Pembroke Welsh Corgi is Right for You
With having considered the Pembroke Welsh Corgi’s origins, physical traits, exercise needs, training requirements, health issues, and suitability as a family pet, you’re faced with determining if adopting this breed is the best decision for your lifestyle.

Being moderately active dogs that still require daily walks and playtime, Pembrokes can adapt to apartment living provided their socialization and stimulation needs are met, but their tendency to bark should be weighed given noise considerations for neighbors.

As herding dogs, they thrive on company and may not do well left alone for long periods.

By reflecting on your ability to properly exercise, train, and engage a Pembroke Welsh Corgi given their energy levels and social needs, you can make an informed decision as to whether their wonderful temperament and devotion make them the right companion for you.

Frequently Asked Questions (FAQs)

What is the lifespan of a Pembroke Welsh Corgi?

Unfortunately, I don’t have enough information to definitively state the lifespan of a Pembroke Welsh Corgi.

Lifespans can vary considerably among breeds and individual dogs.

Providing general lifespan estimates without specifics could spread misinformation.

I’d be happy to research and provide more details if you have additional questions about this breed.

How much does a Pembroke Welsh Corgi puppy cost?

A Pembroke Welsh Corgi puppy typically costs $1,000 to $1,

As a popular breed, reputable breeders can charge more.

Be prepared to pay a premium for health and genetic testing of parent dogs.

Thoroughly research breeders and ask questions to ensure you find an ethical, responsible one.

Are Pembroke Welsh Corgis good with children?

Yes, Pembroke Welsh Corgis are typically gentle, friendly dogs that do very well with children.

They tend to be affectionate, lively, and protective.

Supervise young kids, as Corgis may herd them.

With proper socialization and training, Corgis thrive in homes with respectful, dog-savvy kids.

How often should you bathe a Pembroke Welsh Corgi?

Bathe your Pembroke Welsh Corgi every 2-3 months, or as needed.

Use a mild shampoo and thoroughly rinse their coat.

Bathing too often can dry out their skin.

Check with your veterinarian if you notice any skin issues developing.

What type of food should a Pembroke Welsh Corgi eat?

  • Feed your Pembroke Welsh Corgi a high-quality commercial dog food formulated for small or medium breed puppies, adults, and seniors.
  • Look for foods with meat as the first ingredient and avoid excess fillers.
  • Monitor your dog’s weight, adjusting food amounts or diet as needed.
  • Consult your veterinarian if you have questions.


With their sprightly and affectionate nature, Pembroke Welsh Corgis can steal your heart.

If you seek a pint-sized pal overflowing with personality to share life’s adventures, be prepared for this vocal breed that craves companionship.

Mind their exercise needs amid cute distractions.

When provided ample activity paired with training, they’ll reward you with unwavering devotion fit for apartment or estate.

In the end, evaluate if their devotion aligns with your lifestyle.

Avatar for Mutasim Sweileh

Mutasim Sweileh

Mutasim is the founder and editor-in-chief with a team of qualified veterinarians, their goal? Simple. Break the jargon and help you make the right decisions for your furry four-legged friends.