Author Archives: Peggi

Perfect for Nighttime Walks

Corgis love to be walked. After all, they were once used to herd cattle and were watchdogs. It is in their nature. No matter that they are household pets; they still crave their exercise. As a breed, they have good physical stamina, and they need to stay healthy, avoid boredom, and burn off calories so they can maintain a good body weight. Think of your dog as having pent up energy, and if it isn’t released, the faithful companion resorts to chewing and digging, like other breeds. They may even howl or bark. It seems so much easier to take the pet on regular day or night walks. If you go at night, I suggest taking a good flashlight, preferably a rechargeable one like these. This will help save on the expense of new batteries all the time. If there is a way to economize, then why not.

Corgis need constructive activity that feeds their agile minds. They like structured play on a daily basis like retrieving and chasing. You can do a number of simple exercises with them and they will always comply. A short walk under an hour is often not enough. Thus, people often have to go during the day and then again later at night. When you have a corgi, you know you have a special animal with energy to burn. You can use a leash for some side by side jogging, do race walking, or long strolls in the countryside. It is not too mundane to play fetch with a Frisbee or tennis ball.

Depending upon your schedule, your first outing with your Corgi could be quite early in the morning for an hour on average. The second outing, such as at night, can be shorter. You get to know the needs of your own dog. You know if he or she likes laying with other dogs, running along a bicycle, swimming, or running on a treadmill. (There are models made just for dogs!). Whatever you do, don’t let the Corgi become a couch potato. And if you are in doubt about the safety of any of the suggested exercises, just check with your vet so you can slowly build stamina, strengthen muscles, and toughen the soft pads of the dog’s feet.

Some people have dog runs where their pet can meet with other doggy friends. A fenced in area is perfect for off-leash exercise. In addition, since Corgis like to herd, you can keep around a giant ball. By the way, these dogs love a good game of tug-o-war. Some also like to combine exercise with obedience training and the teaching of tricks. It is all good stimulation. If you let the dog work for food, it will be supremely rewarding. There are so many activities that you and your Corgi can do together beyond a walk in the dark. As other owners, the vet, and professional trainers for new ideas. You are sure to have a happy dog.

Dog Fit

Walking my corgi is a great outing for both of us. The dog gets fit, and blows off some pent up steam, while I trod myself into better tone. Plus I get to meet the neighbors who are doing the same thing. As fellow dog lovers, we are out and about in the environs getting our daily constitution, as they used to say. The dog has been a boon to my happiness at home, but on the road or out in the field, the two of us have a lot more to share. We are fitness buddies. I know the old fellow likes his walk and counts on me daily to come through. I, on the other hand, count on him to drag me from the easy chair and newspaper. And that’s hard to do!

Most dogs have energy to spare, especially when they are young. If they are not in that limp stage of old age, they like to romp and roam unless they have acquired hip dysplasia. (Remember that corgis have a long life span.) It never gets old for the pup. I like to vary the territory we cover and hope for a few surprises to perk up my pet. Some days we like the woods and sometimes the park, the playground of beloved and pampered pets. As long as it is a ritual, he will comply wholeheartedly and reward you with love. Remember he is low to the ground and adjust your terrain accordingly.

With some corgis, you can take them for a bit of a run. That will get both your metabolisms going full throttle. The dog can eat more and so can you as shedding pounds is part of the pastime. For a bit of extra exercise for yourself, consider wearing a weighted vest to increase the load on your legs and get the most out of your workout. Knowing your own dog is essential when you establish their routine as to the time of day and the locale. It bears some preparation on your part. The dogs are smart beings and it is wise to plan a few games for amusement and variety. The dogs are natural herders so anything that resembles this activity is welcome.

So look around you as you partake in your program. Are the dog owners you see running about on the thin side? Or do they have bellies busting out of their tee shirts? I would guess the former so let’s take a poll. Once you have experienced the joys of walking with your sturdy, stocky dog, by the way, you can never go back to being solo on the sidewalk. And as I said, it’s a great way to meet people and socialize. We all like that. What a great antidote to faceless Facebook.

In closing, I have a couple of tips for your impending dog exercise program or to improve your existing one. Corgis like medium to long walks, and they enjoy hikes. Parks are fine if the dog gets along with others and likes to socialize. Runs can be short for these hard working dogs so don’t overdo it. And finally, they are agile and playful and love being around kids.

Dog Washing 201

The dog came in dripping wet. Mud was caked half way up his legs and his coat was a big furry mess. It was raining that day, coming down like, yes, cats and dogs. He came through the dog door and it was one time I wished I didn’t have one. I also wished I had a mud room: it would have been so apropos.

He is such a sweetheart as a rule and I am sure there were no malicious intentions. He trotted up to me dutifully, sitting comfortably in my favorite chair, and nudged my arm. I know the signs; he wanted a bath and sure needed one. We both agreed on that point. I went to the service area of the house to turn on the hot water. It takes a while in the giant sink I had installed for the little guy. So we both waited patiently.

The hot water did not come ten minutes later. I checked the hot water tank to no avail. I’m no plumber so all I could do was note that it was plugged in and the pilot light was on because I have a gas water heater system. That’s the best I could do. The faithful dog by my side looked a bit downtrodden seeing my dismay.

What to do. Normally, we go through the basics: dog washing 101. It’s simple. I have a special soap that I use for his particular corgi coat. The water is tepid to warm, just the way he loves it. I cover him in soapy suds and gently massage as he stands ready to accept the ablutions. The shampoo is great and doesn’t affect the fur’s natural oils. I am careful about his eyes of course as anyone washing any animal would. It has to be a pleasant, if not, enjoyable experience.

Some dogs like a scented soap, not mine whether it is lavender, mint, or coconut. I get the plain variety. As long as it has been created for dogs, and corgis in particular, you can’t go wrong. Some have no soap in them by the way, and some have conditioner.

Part of corgi washing 101 is knowing that you don’t do it that often unless the dog is smelly, or in my case, dirty enough to put in the washing machine. Also, puppies need to wait to about 12 weeks. Select shampoo that is bio-degradable and earth friendly if you are eco-minded like I am. Everything helps!

One important point to note in this lesson is that corgi hair is water-resistant, hence the need for special products. If the process of washing is too much of a battle, you can brush your dog frequently. Now back to my story. Rather than rile the good fellow I called the plumber who dutifully appeared three hours later. The dog lay quietly on the kitchen floor awaiting his bath. In the long run he loved it as usual, which is not characteristic of many dogs. I should point this out so you are cautious and careful at your first attempt.

Dog Washing 101

Training and grooming practices that are suitable for a particular breed make for a happy, healthy pet. You can’t go willy-nilly into it as a new owner. If you are not a pro, and we are dealing here with a family member, particular care must be taken to do it just right. The kids will want to get into the act, but be sure you teach them the basics first—how to be super gentle and caring.

Training is a blog in itself and I will undertake to give you a few pointers on washing the beloved animal for right now. The activity should be stress-free and fun for all parties. You may have to bribe your little wonder with dog treats at first before he or she realizes how nice an experience it can be. Don’t even think about hurrying it all up by using a pressure washer, even on the lowest setting. Even the small electric pressure washers pack a punch. I don’t care how much mud is caked on after a walk in the rain. Furthermore, the dog is not even big enough to consider such a horrendous thing. They need hands-on attention and experienced hands who know the breed’s anatomy and pet peeves. They need people who are corgi savvy and can avoid painful incursions in unwanted areas.

That being said, you need a basin of tepid water and the right soap-like solution. This is a low-maintenance dog and it is usually a simple and easy task to keep him or her neat and clean. Corgis do not have super long hair that needs detangling and trimming. The breed does shed (both Cardigans and Pembrokes), however, and to avoid allergy issues in your home, frequent bathing is required. It is certainly well worth it given the returned love you will acquire. Don’t forget nails, eyes, and teeth along with the obvious coat. It all goes with your overall routine including proper diet and feeding. If you prefer to use a professional service, that is fine, but you will miss the enjoyment of home care—and so will your corgi!

Corgis are not quite as self-cleaning as a cat, but close. The outer hair that sheds protects the inner side. It is baby soft and divine! Keeping it all brushed will limit what ends up on the floor. This helps beautify both layers of fur, so the more the better. You will see some hair in the tub when you bathe your pet—not to worry. It is completely normal. If you use a recommended shedding shampoo, this will be an obvious consequence of the process. Normal harsh soap, by the way, will not due. Consult your pet shop or online for suggestions as there are a variety of options. You may have to try a few to get it right.

Remember that your pet will love the attention from admirers of his or her beautiful coat. Walk the dog frequently for accolades for your efforts, besides exercising it for health. Once a month may be enough for the average corgi bath, so go for it and enjoy the wonderful results.

What is a Healthy Weight for your Dog?

The wonderful, spirited Welsh Corgi breed consists of two basic types: the Pembroke and the Cardigan, both highly coveted as pets. Those of you who know this herding dog well can be a little patient while the newcomers catch up. They may have stopped in to this blog curious about the Queen’s devoted companions and sidekicks. They will soon become devotees if you give them a chance.

We all want to share our love and adoration for these venerable creatures. We want to own them, feed them properly, and care for their appearance. We want to maintain an optimum weight to ensure longevity and happiness. The first thing I am counseling you to do is get out the scale—yes, just a plain old bathroom device, or try to find an accurate digital scale. Start by weighting yourself, noting the poundage, and then picking up the dog gently to join you in this bonding ritual. Simply subtract your weight from the total and voila! You have what you need to know. If the dog has to go on a diet, you will do this procedure daily and jot down the incremental differences.

Overfeeding will do the trick if you want the dog to gain a few pounds. This is usually not necessary unless the dog has been ill. A healthy weight differs between a Pembroke and a Cardigan, which stands a bit taller (and also is characterized by a longer body). This type of Corgi should weigh between 25 and 38 pounds according to the experts since the standard size is 10.5 to 12.5 inches (ground to shoulder) and about 20 to 24 (measuring shoulder to base of tail). Think of the average female Cardigan as coming in between 25 and 34 pounds, and the average male Cardigan as weighing in between 30 and 38.

It is therefore easy to see if your dog is out of the normal range and should be made to diet and exercise accordingly. Don’t let the precious creature become a couch potato along with you. Get him or her out there running and playing and burning off excess fat. These dogs were meant to run with the herds, so do what they know best and get their little hearts pumping. Play catch or take your pet jogging at the dog park. You can take control his or her health with a few basic tactics. A new focus on food can be very revealing. Dogs, and Corgis in particular, chow down when good vittles are placed in front of them. They go at it. So monitor the portions and how many feedings per day. If you feel guilty, you can always leave a bowl of kibble out, but it isn’t advised.

Animals need regular routines so they know what to expect each day. Most will regulate their intake to achieve a stable weight unless tempted to indulge. Letting your Corgi nosh constantly may be a way to make a loyal friend, but it will not keep him or her alive longer. So, get out the scales and find out where your pet stands.

The Queen’s Corgis

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The Corgi has always been associated with the Queen of England. I love the scenes in the movie with stellar actress Helen Mirren in the fields with her illustrious pets. It was a masterful portrayal of the sovereign and the dogs stole the show. I can see her in her Scottish plaid with cashmere twin set, her modest hairdo, stolid expression, and ungainly walk. The Corgis were by her side in step with every stride. They have wiggled their way into British hearts more than the royal family itself.

Examples from the Internet show them adorned with crowns (what do you expect?) or posing for an official photo en masse. They have been seen festooned in British flag color or red, blue, and white. The Queen is always smiling with them in tow. Year after year they appear in print (now online) as symbols of her devotion to the breed. Even as a young princess, Elizabeth favored these short-legged wonders first given to her by her father King George VI in 1933. They are often at opening ceremonies and major events such as the 2012 Olympics (taking a back seat to Daniel Craig no doubt). Of course they also graced the Diamond Jubilee. Can it be that the dogs are on the borderline of extinction? Having raised dozens, she has done her part to foster the future of the line for some time to come. Buckingham Palace and other royal abodes in Scotland and Wales are home to the canine critters. God Save the Queen’s Corgis!

It is said that she feeds them herself with chef-prepared delights that include filet of beef and chicken. (Veterinary experts had to approve the royal diet). They keep plenty on hand at Balmoral and Windsor. A fastidious regimen is maintained wherever they go.

Why Corgis? Actually, to be more accurate they are Welsh Corgis. It has become a virtual obsession in any case. Never has there been such an association with a dog breed and a world-renowned owner. There is no shortage of images if you haven’t yet been so blessed. It is a familial tradition and long-time personal preference.

They say this is a wonderful dog in so many ways. It is loyal, easy-going, good-natured, and loving. While other breeds meet this description, the Welsh Corgi is the perfect size, color, and texture for the Queen’s taste. Some are yappy, but Elizabeth clearly doesn’t care. They romp about the palace at will and dash about her ankles with glee. There is an estate kennel no doubt, but they are rarely confined. Spaniels and Labradors are relegated to the pen with other hunting dogs.

When a royal Corgi passes on, it is a news event. When a new litter appeared before she decided to cease the practice of breeding, it was a newsflash. Royal followers never fail to include the goings on of the dogs. When one was put down in 2004, it was a national day of mourning. Meanwhile, Corgis are England’s most privilege pets and the recipients of hours of royal indulgence.

Dogs and Human Medicine Don’t Mix

The one who does not love animals does not love people. What do you think about this? The love between an animal and its owner is unconditional. Pets usually become members of the family. We nurture them, feed them, give them baths and sometimes even haircuts and hairdos. Time spent with our pets is special indeed. It does not matter what kind of a pet we have. It could be a bird, a turtle, a cat or a dog. It does not matter; a pet is a friend for life.

Dogs are incredible creatures. They are loyal; they give unconditional love, friendship and fun. But, having a dog means having a huge responsibility. Therefore, before you make a decision about getting a dog, you should think about if you have the proper conditions a dog requires. You should also think about other members of the family and their thoughts on this subject. Dogs are always ready to play, but even if they are not(for any reason), they are happy just sitting next to you. Their love and attachment justifies the saying ‘a dog is a man’s best friend.’

You should always take care of your dog because dogs depend on you completely. They need fresh air, a place to sleep, food, everyday activities, walks and veterinary check ups. Because of all these requests, dogs are not suitable just for anyone.

Dogs just like people have different characters. When you imagine your favorite dog, you should start from your own life habits and the amount of free time. Not every dog needs the same amount of attention. Puppies are adorable, but they request a lot of time and care. All animals are lovely. Corgis breed especially. Where do you keep a dog? In your apartment/house or in your backyard. Those are the questions you need to answer.

What happens when your pet gets sick? Before that happens, you should have a trusted veterinary. Do not try to give your dog a human medicine of some kind. Human medication is not good for dogs. Take your dog to a vet, and he will do everything in his power to help your dog. One more thing, when giving your dog a bath, do not use your shampoo. It could severely hearth the dog’s skin and cause a whole bunch of problems for your dog. You can not use the same products for you and your dog. For example, if you have or you had a problem with toenail fungus, and you have some drugs left, you can not use it to treat dog fungus. Animals and people do not use the same medications. State of Utah has many wonderful veterinarians and they are quite capable of treating your pets.

Dogs are great for kids as well. They will play with them for hours, and you will see the wonderful effect this will have on your kids. Remember, treat your dog like family and you will always have a friend in need.

Obeying the Law

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Every dog owner knows that they must be a good citizen and abide by the local and state laws and ordinances. Wherever you live, it is a good idea to have a short list of requirements as soon as you decide to have a pet. You can then meet each obligation in stride.

In Utah, there are a range of duties requiring attention. They are probably similar in every state, so have a look and go on to your own state website. Often the legal terms are extensive, so I would opt for an interpreted roster for easy reading. In addition, you will want to know about local shelters for potential adoptions, dog parks, training schools, and general animal services.

Cities and counties require licenses dogs in public places for owners 18 years and older. They are to be renewed annually and are obtained within 30 days of possession of the animal. Application forms include name, address, and telephone number of owner, breed, color, rabies and sterilization information, and any identifying marks.

Spayed and neutered pets will have certification of the surgery by a licensed veterinarian.

There is no limit on the number of pets that can be owned provided they are all licensed. Laws prohibit abandonment in unsafe places without food, shelter, and water. They also prevent physical abuse and neglect.

Exotic animals that are prohibited are enumerated in laws and ordinances and include endangered species. Animals that present a danger to life, health, or property, include wild animals such as bears, alligators and crocodiles, raccoons, skunks, venous fish, weasels and snakes. (Your Corgi definitely will not want to share quarters with any of these!)

The Office of Animal Services controls the above laws, sets impounding laws, and is responsible for the maintenance of shelters. They issue tags to be attached to dog collars and commercial permits as well as take reports of animal attacks, bites, and motor vehicle accidents. If you are a responsible Corgi owner, you will want to hear no more about impounding rules! (There are, of course, fees, and daily boarding charges.)

Nuisance laws also come under the local jurisdiction. Simply do not allow your pet to do his or her business on others’ property; cause unsanitary conditions; bark, whine, or howl interminably; molest passerbys; attack other animals; roam freely more than 3 times per year; or generally pose any kind of threat to public health, safety, and welfare. Female dogs in heat create a scent that may incite domestic male dogs and must be confined during this time. A side note: designated dog parks do allow animals to run freely such as Jordan Park, Lindsay Gardens, and parts of Parley’s historic nature park. If you chain or tether a dog, it must not be able to go beyond your property line.

Statutes are extensive and only the basics are listed in this blog. There are also regions where dogs are prohibited such as watershed areas. Included on the list are Big Cottonwood Canyon, Parley’s Canyon, and Little Cottonwood Canyon. Check your county on line for any supplementary ordinances in your specific area.

The Breed

Dog Breeds

If you are thinking of adopting a pet in the near future (it is always best to rescue), go no further than the wonderful Corgi. There are all kinds of options with this muscular breed such as the Cardigan Welsh and Pembroke. You can’t go wrong in my book. No wonder the Queen adores them. They are indeed a special part of the Royal Family.

This is my breed of choice as you can guess. It is a small working class dog. Originally bred to herd cattle, there is a residue of the fields in their genes. With the Pembroke, we now have a low-slung, short-legged beauty with an adorable foxlike countenance—no tail. The Cardigan is a larger, heavier dog with a tail, if that is your preference. The average female is 20-20 pounds, and a male can reach 35. We will not acknowledge the Internet description of a “hair-covered Twinkie.”

If you like spirited and athletic, you will be pleased. If you favor steady and dependable, then right on. Appearance aside, it is all about personality, loyalty, companionship, and adaptability. Plus, easy care is an added advantage. You can maintain their coats (they come in several colors) without too much effort. This sensible watchdog likes exercise, but not necessarily in excess, and adores good food. Learn your pet’s preferences and you will be richly rewarded with love and respect. They have the appetite of a big dog, and this must be fed to maintain a healthy blood sugar level. With their attentive ears, Corgis can hear the sound of a can of food being opened a mile away.

I go for strength of character every time and seldom sway from the Corgi breed. I own them and recommend them to friends and family. In pairs, they keep each other company along with other household people and pets. Give them time for naps and outings, and your dog will be in canine bliss in your humble home. OK, they do shed, but that is part of the territory for many dog lovers. Remember, when sweeping up those stray hairs, they are ever so cute stretched out on the floor looking like flying squirrels (or frogs as some say). It’s fun to watch them mimic herding and tracking: their agility is remarkable. They may be seen corralling other animals in the house from time to time! They are playful and safe with children.

Last but not least, the dogs are super runners who can burn calories with abandon. This keeps their weight in balance and their health on track. You don’t need to do much for them beyond the basics. They have their own routines and schedules. They know want they want and go for it with glee. Since they love treats, training is a breeze. They love to cuddle, so enjoy their furry warmth on a cold winter night. And they don’t mind car trips either. They are fearless and make good household guards if you are so inclined.

Corgis Can Take the Heat

Come winter in Utah, I can’t think of anything more delightful than sitting by the fire with my corgis curled up alongside me, their heads either resting on my leg or the nearest soft pillow. They are fellow travelers when it comes to comfort and ease. They don’t fight it out for position: they seem to know where to go and who wants to be where at the moment.

The hearth glows with warmth, especially during ski season. A few snow flurries don’t bother the dogs, but when their walks are over and the required exercise is done, they relish lounging time. They come to expect it until the days grow warmer and the sunlight starts to last a little longer each day. Another ritual will replace this one – perhaps out of doors in the fresh air. They love exercise and can handle any weather conditions Mother Nature has to offer.

The high, flickering flames from the fireplace insert cast shadows when the lights are low. With a glass of wine and some sleepy time music, I am thoroughly engrossed in my daydreams. Occasionally I scan the paper or the Internet, checking the emails, Facebook posts, and latest info on CNN. The dogs have their own thoughts to recall, or fantasies in some cases. They may be in the fields herding or munching on a delicious bone. Mine are so domesticated that I can only imagine chasing a ball. They are loving pups, eager to please when it comes to providing good company. They never disappoint.

The fire burns for hours, giving us time to savor the evening and prepare mentally for the next day. The Corgis may like to lay close to the fire, but I prefer to watch it from a distance and let the wood stove fan that I bought gently circulate the air in the room and warm me up on the couch. The dogs like to be alone with me so are on alert when it comes to odd noises and surprise visits from my friends. As well trained as they are, I never fear aggression or disdain. Easy to live with, they go with the flow of my life.

I got my first Corgi many years ago and have never been happier with my choice. They learned quickly to tone down the barking and nipping. They are like big fur balls now, loving my every touch. Like plump stuffed animals, they lie about to be admired, caressed, and embraced. The fireplace is home to napping and relaxing, the best way I can think of to end the day.

I have researched and read about these fine animals and they never stop beguiling me. They make excellent pets and are the perfect mid-size for any home. They are loyal to a fault and fully dedicated to my happiness.

So the fire burns low and the embers are barely alive by bedtime. The light grows dimmer and our eyelids mutually close with impending drowsiness. No one can move, even to find the pleasure of a down pillow or cozy quilt. The wine is gone, the music has stopped, and sleep beckons. Night has fallen along with the fire and soon a new day will begin.

Faucet Fun

I have a great Corgi. He loves to whip around the yard in a frenzy, running around in concentric circles on a moment’s notice. It’s fine with me, except after I have just watered the lawn and he comes into the house a muddy mess. Not to worry. I have a place to bathe him downstairs in the utility room. There is a large laundry sink and pull-down faucet that I bought from FinestFaucets.com that accommodates him quite well.

I was sure he would hate the flood of water and erratic spray, but he seems okay with the rainy day ritual. The ergonomics of the thing are just right. He fits into the sink with a few inches to spare, settling down for a nice warm soak. The high-arch gooseneck spout on this faucet from Kohler will not puncture his soft hide and the rotating spray head adjusts to his needs. The amount of caked on mud dictates the setting. You can get a sprinkle or a forceful blade of water. I think it uses some kind of magnetic force. No matter, it works. Getting the right water temperature is a breeze with touch control. As you can tell, I got this gadget for this one purpose. I spent a tidy sum to indulge in an angled nozzle and ceramic disc valves. Mineral build-up is not an issue in my basement.

The cat, on the other hand, stares in awe. There is no way she will join the Corgi in this hideous exercise. She cleans herself and is dismissive of any manual assistance. Dogs need extra human loving care. They even look forward to it. However, I have seen her watch warily out of the corner of an eye lest she be forced to make it a communal effort. She could avoid the sight altogether, but there is some kind of morbid curiosity at work. She is often there.

The Corgi has also been known to shake off excess water after his rinse. If the cat is nearby, so much the better. He will inch closer if need be, slowly enough to be undetected. She has been caught one too many times, however, and I expect retaliation shortly. So far so good.

I also have a female Corgi who doesn’t particularly like to luxuriate in a sink environment. This one is hosed off outside with the help of a bucket and sponge. Her hatred is great enough that she will avoid the muddy lawn spots on purpose. To each his own: every dog has his or her preferences and they seldom match.

If you don’t have a specialty faucet, you can make do; but be sure the metal surface is covered so it will not harm your pet. A dog will squirm and wiggle and can easily become hurt with one wrong move. Mine has been a godsend during the rainy season and does double duty for rinsing boots and other gear. There are quite a few options so a little research online will help you make a good choice.

Corgi History in a Nutshell

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Corgis are a wonderful breed and my clear favorite. I share this preference with the Queen of England no less. I don’t have royalty in by blood but my tastes run to the sovereign’s best-loved species. I am in good company as the dogs are well-liked and common pets in both the UK and the US.

The Pembroke and Cardigan Welsh Corgis go way back in time giving them an aura of antiquity. Some say 1107 marks the date of the Pembroke’s entry into Wales from Flanders by emigrating weavers to this region according to lore. It was an agrarian existence at the time in which the dogs thrived as herding and guarding animals. The Cardigan may have been around for centuries left by Celtic tribes originally from Central Europe. There may be some connection originally with the dachshund. In any case, crossbreeding has produced the modern breeds of today.

Corgis certainly have come a long way from the fields to their status as pampered pets and small house dogs. Nevertheless, it is in their genes. With efforts to maintain their breeding, we have ended up with the two basic types. The Pembroke is shorter than the Cardigan with lighter bones and straighter legs. Some people prefer the fine texture of the fur. By contrast, you will find rounder ears on the latter (on the Pembroke they stand erect). A major difference is the longer tail and a variation in temperament. Owners find the Pembroke excitable and often restless, as if remembering the freedom of life in the wild. They were of course domesticated early on, but remnants of their former life as a cattle and sheep dog may persist. (They also collected domestic fowl from going astray.)

The low stocky dogs are easily identifiable. Dog shows in the late 19th century apparently helped popularize the Corgi and kept it in the public eye. The Kennel Club in England is a noted example. For a time, the two breeds were mixed up but later were identified and shown separately.

As late as 1931, the Cardigan reached the US as far as Boston. The Pembroke came shortly after. Strong and sturdy, the dog has a foxlike countenance a pleasant disposition. The status of the Corgi as the old herding breed gives it a distinctive cachet as does the royal family’s possessorship.

There are stories and fantasy tales about the dog that are amusing and worth reciting. A popular legend says the Corgi was the companion of woodland fairies (and that you can see their saddle on the back of the animal). Thus, the dog was said to be enchanted. It was mounted in battle and pulled mythic elf carriages.

The key canine organizations such as American Kennel, United Kennel Club, the Kennel Club, the FCI, and the Canadian Kennel Club, among many others worldwide recognize the corgi, both breeds. The word perhaps derives from the Celtic name for “dog” or perhaps an amalgamation of Welsh phrases. Whatever the exact meaning, these great companion animals have a large following. In that they may be vulnerable as a breed, attention has been given to their preservation and breeding.

Corgi Care

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Taking care of any pet is a huge responsibility. Tending for your Corgi is a pleasurable duty as well. Each and every creature in your home requires consideration according to the needs of the breed. Learning what to do for your Corgi will bring many hours contentment to you and a long joyful life to the dog.

That being said, let’s get down to business. There are several major categories to cover:

  • Care and feeding
  • Grooming
  • Veterinarian visits
  • Training and obedience
  • Companionship

Care and Feeding

Your dog will have preferences, but general guidelines say that puppies eat a couple of times a day (mostly dry food of a high quality) while a grown animal also consumes kibble (mixed with water) but only once a day. Treats are ok as well such as canned wet food, yogurt, or cottage cheese. (Bones can cause intestinal track impaction.) Beware of allergy and stomach sensitivity problems and adjust the nature of the food as needed. Consulting your vet and breeder will certainly lead you down the best path early on. Monitor your practice and watch for appropriate weight gain. If your dog seems insatiable, it is usually normal; but don’t give in to begging. Consult a weight chart for your pet’s height and length as well as gender. With such a compact dog, you can’t make assumptions.

Grooming

Proper grooming with a professional will help make your dog’s coat glow with health (and keep toenails clipped). Finding a good groomer in your area may take a bit of trial and error so ask friends and family for help. Be sure to brush your pet during shedding season with the dog lying on his or her side. Otherwise maintenance is minimal unless you wish to do the bathing (with a mild shampoo) and modest trimming yourself. Don’t forget the paws (but be careful not to nick between the toes). Put cotton balls in the dog’s ears when immersing in water. Never shave the fur!

Veterinarian Visits

Your vet will give you a schedule of shots and vaccinations according to the dog’s age. After the first visit and a full checkup, you will have an account with a record for future treatment. You have now established a relationship and can take the pet as needed for any other issues that may arise such as ear infections, fleas, difficulty urinating, etc. Be particularly concerned if your Corgi stops eating. Make a decision about spaying a female dog or neutering a male. These vet visits are a large part of your expense for raising a pet along with the food, of course. The most shots occur the first year with boosters thereafter.

Training and Obedience

Training right out of the box is the first thing you think about with a puppy. There are many manuals on line and local classes; and for a Corgi, there are particulars unique to the breed. They can be naughty or nice. It’s up to you. You want an obedient dog who does not get aggressive with strangers and who can take a walk in public without a display of behavior such as excessive barking, nipping at the heels, or running away.

Companionship

After you have conquering urination in strange places, digging, and chewing, the hard part is over. The breed is smart and learns fast. Everything you do for your Corgi will add up to an animal who is a wonderful and devoted companion. You in effect help cultivate his or her personality and temperament. With a commitment on your part, your pet will be at sea in the world and have difficulty adapting to change.