Pembroke Welsh Corgi

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Pembroke Welsh Corgi
Welchcorgipembroke.JPG
A Pembroke Welsh Corgi
Nicknames Pembroke, PWC, Pem, Corgi
Country of origin Wales
Dog (Canis lupus familiaris)

The Pembroke Welsh Corgi (/ˈkɔrɡi/; Welsh for "dwarf dog"), is a herding dog breed, which originated in Pembrokeshire, Wales.[1] It is one of two breeds known as Welsh Corgi: the other is the Cardigan Welsh Corgi. They descend from the line that is the northern spitz-type dog (examples include that of the Siberian Husky).[2] The Pembroke Welsh Corgi is the younger of the two Corgi breeds and is a separate and distinct breed[3] from the Cardigan.[1] The corgi is one of the smallest dogs in the Herding Group. Pembroke Welsh Corgis are famed for being the preferred breed of Queen Elizabeth II, who has owned more than 30 during her reign.[4] These dogs have been favored by British royalty for more than seventy years.

The Pembroke Welsh Corgi has been ranked at #11 in Stanley Coren's The Intelligence of Dogs, and is thus considered an excellent working dog. The Pembroke Welsh Corgi was ranked as the 25th most popular dog in 2011.[5]

Description[edit]

Appearance[edit]

Pembroke Welsh Corgi, Tri-Colored Male Puppy

The Pembroke Welsh Corgi has erect ears, and proportional to the equilateral triangle of the head. They should also be firm, medium in size, and tapered slightly to a rounded point. The head should be foxy in shape and appearance. Pembroke Welsh Corgis differ from the closely related Cardigan Welsh Corgi by being shorter in length, having smaller ears, and being slightly straighter of leg.[6] The Pembroke Welsh Corgi has a "fairy saddle", a white marking on each side of the withers caused by changes in the thickness, length and direction of hair growth.[7] The Pembroke Welsh Corgi sheds mostly in the spring and fall and may shed annually, with intact females shedding during heat.[8]

Many breed faults exist, some which may acknowledge genetic health conditions: "Fluffies" are Corgis which have very long coats,[9] and "bluies," are a dilute color. In a "bluie," red coats seem to have a bluish cast.[10]

Some Pembroke Welsh Corgis are born with a natural docked tail. Others may have their tails surgically docked between 2–5 days old due to historical tradition or as a measure of confirmation to the Breed Standard .[11] Artificial docking was born of necessity given the Pembroke's function as a herding dog in the United Kingdom. According to Tax Law any companion canine was considered a luxury. Thus, pet/companion owners were levied a tax. However, dog owners who kept dogs for working purposes such as herding were exempt from the tax. In order to claim the exemption, owners had to ensure that the dogs sported docked or bobbed tails. The Kennel Club,[12] the United Kennel Club,[13] and the FCI allow intact tails in Conformation shows. The AKC Standard states tails should be docked no longer than 2 inches (5 cm). In many countries, docking has been deemed illegal.[14]

Temperament[edit]

Red-headed Tricolor with receding sable mask marking from puppyhood.

Pembroke Welsh Corgis are very affectionate, love to be involved in the family, and tend to follow wherever their owners go. They have a great desire to please their owners, thus making them eager to learn and train. The dogs are easy to train and are ranked as the eleventh smartest dog in Stanley Coren's The Intelligence of Dogs. Besides herding, they also function as watchdogs due to their alertness and tendency to bark only as needed. Most Pembrokes will seek the attention of everyone they meet and behave well around children and other pets. It is important to socialise this breed with other animals, adults and children when they are very young to avoid any anti-social behavior or aggression later in life. Due to their herding instinct, they love to chase anything that moves, so it is best to keep them inside fenced areas. The herding instinct will also cause some younger Pembrokes to nip at their owners' ankles.[15]

Health[edit]

Pembroke leaving teeter-totter during a dog agility competition.

Pembrokes have an average life expectancy of 12–15 years.[16][17] Pembroke Welsh Corgis are achondroplastic, meaning they are a "true dwarf" breed. As such, their stature and build can lead to certain non-inherited health conditions, but genetic issues should also be considered. Commonly, Pembrokes can suffer from monorchidism, Von Willebrand's disease, hip dysplasia (canine) and inherited eye problems such as progressive retinal atrophy. Genetic testing is available for Pembroke Welsh Corgis to avoid these issues and enhance the genetic health pool. [18] Pembrokes are also prone to obesity given a characteristic, robust appetite of herding group breeds.[19]

History[edit]

The Pembroke Welsh Corgi lineage has been traced back as far as 1107 AD.[1][20] It is said that the Vikings and Flemish weavers brought the dogs with them as they traveled to reside in Wales.[20] As far back as the 10th century, Corgis were herding sheep, geese, ducks, horses and cattle as one of the oldest herding breed of dogs.

Pembroke Welsh Corgis are closely related to Schipperkes, Keeshonds, Pomeranians, Samoyeds, Chow Chows, Norwegian Elkhounds and Finnish Spitz.[15] Pembrokes and Cardigans first appeared together in 1925 when they were shown under the rules of The Kennel Club in Britain.[2] The Corgi Club was founded in December, 1925 in Carmarthen, Carmarthenshire.[2] It is reported that the local members favored the Pembroke breed, so a club for Cardigan enthusiasts was founded a year or so later.[2] Both groups have worked hard to ensure the appearance and type of breed are standardized through careful selective breeding.[2] Pembrokes and Cardigans were officially recognized by the Kennel Club in 1928 and were initially categorized together under the single heading of Welsh Corgis, before the two breeds were recognized as separate and distinct in 1934.[2]

Pembroke Welsh Corgis are becoming more popular in the United States and rank 24th in American Kennel Club registrations,[21] as of 2012.

Activities[edit]

Pembroke Welsh Corgis can compete in dog agility trials, obedience, showmanship, flyball, tracking, and herding events. Herding instincts and trainability can be measured at noncompetitive herding tests.[22]

In popular culture[edit]

The anime series Cowboy Bebop features an extraordinarily intelligent Pembroke Welsh Corgi named Ein.[23]

Lil' Lightning from 101 Dalmatians II: Patch's London Adventure is a Pembroke Welsh Corgi.

In the online series RWBY, Ruby and Yang have a Pembroke Welsh Corgi named Zwei, who is sent to them by their Father Taiyang.

See also[edit]

References[edit]

  1. ^ a b c Wheeler, Jill C. (2010). Welsh Corgis. ABDO. p. 6. ISBN 1-61613-641-3. 
  2. ^ a b c d e f Debra M. Eldredge (27 January 2009). Pembroke Welsh Corgi: Your Happy Healthy Pet, with DVD. John Wiley and Sons. pp. 21–. ISBN 978-0-470-39061-0. Retrieved 10 December 2011. 
  3. ^ "Pembroke Welsh Corgi - DID YOU KNOW?". Retrieved 28 January 2013. 
  4. ^ "Queen's Diamond Jubilee: Just how many dogs does she own?". Retrieved 28 January 2013. 
  5. ^ "AKC DOG REGISTRATION STATISTICS". Retrieved 28 January 2013. 
  6. ^ Richard G. Beauchamp (1999). Welsh Corgis: Pembroke and Cardigan : Everything about Purchase, Care, Nutrition, Grooming, Behavior, and Training. Barron's Educational Series. p. 15. ISBN 978-0-7641-0557-9. 
  7. ^ Debra M. Eldredge, DVM (25 February 2009). Pembroke Welsh Corgi: Your Happy Healthy Pet, with DVD. John Wiley & Sons. p. 17. ISBN 978-0-470-44364-4. 
  8. ^ Debra M. Eldredge, DVM (25 February 2009). Pembroke Welsh Corgi: Your Happy Healthy Pet, with DVD. John Wiley & Sons. p. 70. ISBN 978-0-470-44364-4. 
  9. ^ Eldredge, Debra M (2009). Pembroke Welsh Corgi: Your Happy Healthy Pet, with DVD. John Wiley & Sons. p. 17. ISBN 0-470-44364-2. 
  10. ^ Richard G. Beauchamp (2010). Welsh Corgis--Pembroke and Cardigan: Everything about Purchase, Care, Nutrition, Grooming, Behavior, and Training. Barron's Educational Series. p. 19. ISBN 978-0-7641-4242-0. 
  11. ^ PWCCA Standard of Perfection
  12. ^ Kennel Clun. "Pembroke Welsh Corg". Retrieved 28 January 2013. 
  13. ^ United Kennel Club. "Pembroke Welsh Corgi". Retrieved 28 January 2013. 
  14. ^ Cathy Lambert. Getting to Know Poodles: A Guide to Choosing and Owning a Poodle. Animalinfo Publications. p. 15. ISBN 978-1-921537-06-6. 
  15. ^ a b "Get to know the Pembroke Welsh Corgi". Retrieved 28 January 2013. 
  16. ^ "2004 Purebred Dog Health Survey". The Kennel Club. Retrieved 16 August 2010. 
  17. ^ The Dog Encyclopedia. Penguin. 2013. p. 59. ISBN 1-4654-2116-5. 
  18. ^ "From the Genetics Committee of the Pembroke Welsh Corgi Club of America, Inc.". Retrieved 28 January 2013. 
  19. ^ E. Hywel Burton (18 October 2011). Pembroke Welsh Corgi. Kennel Club Books. p. 116. ISBN 978-1-59378-890-2. 
  20. ^ a b "Pembroke Welsh Corgi - HISTORY". Retrieved 28 January 2013. 
  21. ^ "AKC Dog Registration Statistics". American Kennel Club. Retrieved 29 June 2013. 
  22. ^ Hartnagle-Taylor, Jeanne Joy; Taylor, Ty (2010). Stockdog Savvy. Alpine Publications. ISBN 978-1-57779-106-5. 
  23. ^ "Cowboy Bepop Review". THEM Anime Review. 

External links[edit]

  • MyCorgi.com (non-profit charity & social networking for corgi owners)