Pembroke Welsh Corgi
Personality: Lively, energetic, affectionate, often very silly with a good sense of humor. They are a very loyal companion and love to be with you as often as they can without being needy. They are very inteligent and athletic so without the right stimulation a Corgi can get themselves into trouble. They like to be challenged with games you play or get involved with a dog sport. These activities are very enriching for a Pembroke. They absolutely love their people and make a fantastic family pet.
Activity Level: The Pembroke Welsh Corgi is very athletic and loves to be active. They are not a couch potato dog, they love to be running, playing and finding the next adventure. Pembroke's were originally bred to work closely with their people for general farm work with the ability to drive/move and protect livestock. You will find these traits are still alive in the Pembroke today. They are happy to be relaxing when you are relaxing as long as they have had enough exercise and brain stimulation. This breed is very aware of their suroundings and may let you know of a change with an alarm bark.
Health: In general Pembroke's are a healthy breed. They can be expected to live 12 to 14 years. They have good amount of bone and should be well muscled to withstand a fair amount of activity. We are careful how much intense activity they do for the first 18 to 24 months of their lives. PWC are a dwarf breed, therefore are lacking some fo cartilage between the bones. We like our Pembroke's to fully developed before engaging in strenuous sport. All breeds have known genetic disorders for their breed and Pembroke's are no different. We test for genetic disorders that are available to us as well as OFA hips, elbows and patellas.
- Eyes: In the Pembroke we look for Cataracts, Persistent Pupillary Membranes (PPM), Progressive Retinal Atrophy (PRA), and Retinal Dysplasia. Breeders should be testing their breeding stock yearly for eyes with a board certified Ophthalmologist and be able to pride proof of such. You should be able to find this information with OFA (Orthopaedic Foundation for Animals).
- Hip Dysplasia: is an abnormality of the hip joint that can affect one or both sides. Severity can only visible on an x-ray and the range can be from mild arthritis to severely displastic. The Inheritance is complicated, likely involving several genes and environmental factors such as diet, rapid growth, and the footing they are on as they are developing as tiny puppies. Breeders typically have their dogs x-rayed at 24 months of age for evaluations with OFA or PennHip prior to breeding. Even when breeding two parents with passing hip score there is a possibility of having puppy that is dysplastic due to the complexity.
- vonWillebrands Disease: is a clotting factor disorder in some breeds, like hemophilia. Pembroke's present with vWD type 1, this means there are few clinical signs of the disorder and can typically undergo routine surgeries with little problem. The inheritance is a simple recessive gene, and a DNA test is available to determine if an animal is clear, a carrier or affected. All breeding animals should be tested to avoid breeding two recessive parents together.
- Degenerative Myelopathy (DM): Is a degeneration of the nervous and supportive tissue of the the spinal cord in the low back. This causes rear leg weakness and eventual paralysis. DM is usually starts late in age (9 years and older). DM has both genetic and environmental triggers. There is a DNA test that was recently developed, but is relatively unproven at this time. We do utilize this test for all our breeding stock.
- Obesity: Is the biggest problem in our Pembrokes. Due to their small frame, excess weight can be extremely hard on these dogs and can lead to joint issues and many other health problems. While they are very convincing, don't over feed and carefully monitor their weight.
Activity Level and Training:
Pembroke's make a wonderful family member, but they do need training. They are intelligent, loving, and loyal best friends that need to be active and their minds challenged. If left to their own devices they can get themselves into trouble. They do best with a postive reinforcement training style as they are sensitive and do not do well with harsh corrections. Harsh corrections will create a distrust and we need our Pembroke to trust us in order to build a relationship with them. A basic obedience puppy class is the perfect place to start building that bond with your new puppy.
Corgis have a double coat which means they have a soft undercoat with courser outer coat which which provides protection from the elements. This breed sheds, but with regular brushing and a great groomer every 6 to 8 weeks the shedding can be reduced. We have a robot vacuum to help us keep up with a multiple dog home and the hair loss. If fur on your floor drives you crazy this is probably not the breed for you. Shaving a double-coated breed is not a good way to reduce the shedding. Thie double coat of the Corgi is the only way of protecting them from the sun in the summer and the cold in the winter. Shaving them will damage the top coat permanently leaving them vulnerable to the elements. Shaving will damage the coat permanantly, leaving the dog with more undercoat and less top coat.
Coat Color Variations: Pembroke's come in four color variations only! Red-headed tri color, black-headed tri color, red (fawn - light red) and white and sable and white. They do not come in any other variation. If you see breeders with other colors in their puppies, such as merle or black and white this means they are mixed breeds and are not a purebred Pembroke. Please refer to the link for examples of coat color variants. http://curigcorgis.com/resources/coat-colour-inheritance. The Cowboy Corgi is not a purebred dog, this is a mix breed created by breeding a Cattle dog with a Pembroke Corgi. This is illogical to breed two herding type dogs together just to create a new color. This will only create an unpredictable drive, personality, health and physical type. Cattle dogs are very tenacious and mixed with another herding breed such as the Pembroke can easily lead to a very obsessive type dog with little to no ability to control its drive.