Corgis are a small, exceptionally smart breed that has garnered a lot of popularity throughout the years, arguably due to influential figures like Queen Elizabeth II herself having been partial to these animals. However, before you adopt one of these adorable-looking puppies, considering the Corgi’s pros and cons is still a good idea.
Corgis’ pros are that they are beloved for their affectionate nature, exceptional intelligence, social tendencies, unique look, and small, practical size. However, the breed also has downsides, such as susceptibility to certain health issues, loud barking, a high-shedding coat, and stubbornness.
Following realistic expectations in the adoption or purchasing process is important if you’re considering getting a Corgi. So, read on as I explore some of this breed’s most notable pros and cons.
What are the Pros and Cons of Corgis?
Corgis are cute. There’s no second thought about it. But this beautiful and tiny bundle also has some drawbacks. If you’re a first-time dog owner, finding out if a Corgi is really for you or if there are better alternatives is essential.
Here’s a quick glance at the pros and cons of a Corgi as a pet:
|Corgi Pros||Corgi Cons|
|Corgis are affectionate||Corgis can be loud|
|Corgis have a down-to-earth personality||Corgis are high-shedding dogs|
|Corgis are extremely loyal||Corgis have strong herding instincts|
|Corgis have moderate exercise and maintenance needs||Corgis are stubborn|
|Corgis are intelligent||Corgis are prone to breed-specific health issues|
|Corgis are sociable||Corgis are needy|
It’s evident that there are as many pros as cons. However, if you still need an in-depth guide to evaluate the appropriateness of Corgi for your home, head on! Read this further!
The AKC ranks Corgis as the 11th most popular dog breed in the US. Surely, there’s something more to these dogs other than their link to the British royal family that has pushed so many Americans to welcome one into their home.
Luckily, it’s not difficult to see why Corgis, especially the Pembroke Welsh Corgi and the Cardigan variety, are so beloved by pet owners everywhere. They’re affectionate, smart, sociable, and downright adorable.
Let’s explore some of their biggest advantages.
Corgis are Affectionate
If you’d ask a dog owner about the quality they appreciate most in their pet, they’d probably single out their affectionate nature. Corgis are an especially loving breed that’s always eager to please, whether by being playful or offering long cuddle sessions.
Adopting a Corgi is a great choice to bring a positive presence into your home, rewarding you with lots of company and affection. If, however, you’re not an affectionate person, you might consider adopting a different breed, as this might cause you or your Corgi stress.
They Have a Down-to-Earth Personality
Most smaller breeds are known for their capricious tendencies and diva-like personalities. Corgis, however, don’t fit the mold. Regarding their behaviors, these pups are often compared to German Shepherds, known for being loyal, courageous, affectionate, and down-to-earth.
Corgis Have an Undying Loyalty
One of the great pros of Corgis is that they are known for their undying loyalty, especially toward a few select people they feel most comfortable with. That’s why Corgis often make excellent watchdogs despite their small size.
Don’t let their friendly demeanor fool you because once they sense a threat approaching the people they love, Corgis won’t hesitate to take action.
They Have Moderate Exercise and Maintenance Needs
Though Corgis are by no means the lowest-maintenance dogs out there, they’re still pretty easy to care for. Because of their royal connections and small size, there’s a common misconception that Corgis require a lot of work to be kept healthy and happy, and that’s not the case.
While regular brushing and an hour of physical activity a day are needed, that’s pretty standard across all dog species, so you won’t have to worry about making extra time and effort if you plan to get a Corgi.
This also means that they’re suited to a wide array of lifestyles. So, if you live in a household where one member likes to cuddle up on the couch while another likes hiking, a Corgi will be more than happy to partake in both activities.
Corgis Can Be Very Intelligent
Reader’s Digest ranks the Pembroke Welsh Corgi as one of the most intelligent dog breeds in the world – and for a good reason. These dogs are curious, easy to train, and able to understand a wide array of commands.
You’ll have a well-behaved pet if you train your pup early and stay consistent with your lessons. But if you don’t have time for this, you might want to get a different animal, such as a cat.
Another upside to these dogs’ impressive intelligence levels is that they can still pick up new tricks even later in life, which makes adopting them much easier if you don’t want to spend hundreds or thousands of dollars getting one from a breeder.
To be fair, though, their smarts aren’t the only factor that makes these dogs so trainable. They also boast a robust appetite, even by dog standards, which helps teach them desirable behaviors through positive reinforcement.
They’re Sociable and Love Company
One of Corgis’ biggest pros is that they love company. If you live in a big household or have/are planning on having additional pets, these dogs will be able to adapt just fine.
Their quality also allows for calmer, safer walks, as it’s rare for this breed to get aggressive toward people or other animals, assuming they’ve been trained properly. These pups might prefer having another dog around the house, so consider how this preference of theirs might affect your household.
Corgis love to play around with their friends, often partaking in fun races, so I’d recommend the breed to those who plan on keeping more than one pet, cats included.
Though there’s no arguing that Corgis can make excellent pets, it’s time to take off those rose-colored glasses and set realistic expectations on what caring for one of these dogs will be like.
Before getting a Corgi, there are several drawbacks to consider, so let’s explore them more in-depth.
Corgis Can Be Loud
If there’s one small-dog stereotype that Corgis live up to, it is that they’re loud. They have big personalities and like to express themselves, and unfortunately, barking is one of the only ways for them to do that. This phenomenon can be especially prominent if the dog’s physical needs aren’t being met.
Their intelligence and loyalty also work to your disadvantage here. While these qualities might make them excellent guard dogs, they also lead to unnecessary suspicions and barking at anything that might seem strange or unfamiliar.
Even though Corgis are some of the best apartment dogs you can get, you’ll still have to ensure your place is properly soundproofed. Otherwise, expect to get annoyed calls from your neighbors.
That said, remember that all breeds will bark to some degree and that not all Corgis are the same, so I wouldn’t say this issue is a deal breaker for most. However, a quieter breed might be best if you’re especially sensitive to loud noises or live in a small apartment with thin walls.
They Have a High-Shedding Coat
Just because a Corgi’s coat doesn’t need much looking-after to be kept healthy, this doesn’t mean that it won’t still shed a lot. So, if you’re set on getting a Corgi, prepare to base your clothing and furniture choices on which color shows your pup’s fur the least. Also, ensure that you customize the diet for your shedding dog accordingly.
Here’s a great video where a Corgi owner shares his experiences and the average shedding quantity:
This also means that people with allergies to dog fur will likely be unable to cohabitate with a Corgi.
Though no dog is 100% hypoallergenic, some low-shedding breeds are still able to cohabitate with those with sensitivities without triggering any type of reaction. Unfortunately, Corgis aren’t one of them.
Their Herding Instinct Is Strong
Though Corgis are social creatures that love company, you should always beware of their herding instinct. Corgis were initially bred as herding dogs, so they have a natural instinct to prey on smaller animals.
The herding instinct is so strong that it may cause some dogs to nip at their owners’ ankles, as this is what they were bred to do with cattle and the reason they are often referred to as “heelers.”
This is an especially important factor to consider if you’re considering keeping another, smaller species as a pet in the same space (e.g., cats, hamsters, and so on). Corgis can sometimes nip on babies, so never leave small children unsupervised with one of these dogs.
Moreover, try to train some of these behaviors out of your pup. Although chances are you’ll never be able to eliminate their instinct, you might be able to subside it significantly.
Corgis Can Be Stubborn
Corgis tend to be stuck in their own ways, especially if untrained. This is why spending a lot of time and effort instilling desirable behaviors in them is so important. Though each Corgi has its own distinct personality traits, stubbornness level included, training them from a young age will undoubtedly positively affect their agreeability.
Corgis Are Prone to Breed-Specific Health Issues
Like all other dogs, Corgis are prone to some breed-specific health issues that you’ll want to watch constantly, should you ever decide to get one. Here are some of the conditions Corgis are most susceptible to.
Canine obesity is a serious health implication that can lead to many physical issues, the most severe being death. Unfortunately, Corgis are some of the most food-driven dogs you’ll ever meet, which while great for training purposes, can have a lasting negative impact on their health.
Their seemingly ever-lasting hunger makes these dogs prone to obesity, so watching their food intake like a hawk is important. Taking your Corgi in for regular medical screenings ensures its weight progresses normally.
It can be hard to resist those loving puppy eyes begging for some more peanut butter, but it’s important to always prioritize your dog’s health over everything else. That’s why Corgis aren’t for the faint-hearted or those who love to spoil their pup, as they’ll happily indulge well beyond their satiety point.
This is one of the most common health conditions in Corgis, which unfortunately affects their hip joint development and leads to loss of joint function as time goes on.
Remember that this condition takes years to progress, so it’s important to look out for potential signs if you want to catch them as soon as possible. Some of the first symptoms can appear when the dog is as young as five months, so you can never be too observant.
Some of the most common signs of hip dysplasia include:
- Difficulty moving
- Decreased range of motion
Unfortunately, obesity can exacerbate the condition, leaving Corgis in a very difficult cycle that keeps weakening their joints and bones. Regular medical screenings and day-to-day observations are a must to avoid this.
Von Willebrand’s Disease
Von Willebrand’s Disease is a heterogeneous group of bleeding disorders commonly found in Corgis. It often translates to excessive bleeding after an injury, which can quickly lead to a dangerous level of blood loss.
Sometimes, a dog suffering from Von Willebrand’s disease doesn’t even have to get injured to free bleed, so keep an eye out for spontaneous bleeding in the genitals, gums, or feces.
Other symptoms of this condition include prolonged bleeding after a surgical procedure and unexplained bruising. Corgis suffering from this disease might also become anemic, yet another condition you’ll want to screen for regularly.
I know that this might all seem scary, and to a point, it is, but the good news is that the prognosis for Corgis suffering from it is promising. However, your pup should be treated with blood transfusions if the disease progresses.
Remember that not all Corgis will suffer from these conditions, as many go on to live long, healthy lives. However, it’s important to screen for each of these issues regularly so that if your pup suffers from one, its chances of survival are greater.
Corgis Can Be Needy
The social nature of Corgis also comes with an important drawback, as these dogs can quickly turn anxious and destructive if left alone. So, if you plan to be away from home for long stretches of time, getting a Corgi might not be the best choice.
The same goes for smaller households unable to share dog-sitting duties.
Many lead busy, commitment-filled lives that keep us out of our homes longer than we’d like to admit. However, if enough people in a household take on dog-sitting duties, they can devise a plan to always keep the pup engaged and occupied.
There are plenty of Corgi pros and cons to consider. They are some of the most affectionate, intelligent dogs you’ll ever encounter. Their loyal personality, practical size, and adorable looks make these pups some of the most sought-after in the world, and even the royal family can’t be immune to their charm.
That said, if you’re considering getting one yourself, it’s important to go into the purchasing or adoption process with realistic expectations. After all, you’re making a decade-long commitment.
Generally speaking, Corgis are best suited to bigger households with active adult members. They also require a moderate amount of time and effort.