Eleven Corgi Facts That You Should Know!

Fun fact: The name corgi literally means “dwarf dog” in Welsh. It’s a fitting title for these compact pups, who are famous for their miniature legs and tiny tails. But there’s so much more to corgis than their short stature. Corgis, which were originally bred to herd cattle, sheep, and horses, are great with kids, are extremely loyal, and are known to be eager to please. Ideally, you’ll always want to try to adopt your corgi, and you can find plenty of fluffy balls of happiness by searching for the breed in adoptapet.com. So read these 55 facts about corgis from a corgi owner and go get yourself a corgi (or, even cuter, a corgi puppy!). We guarantee you’ll be glad you did.

1. Corgi Means “Dwarf Dog”

corgi mom teaches puppy to sit

The word “corgi” translates to “dwarf dog” in Welsh, which is basically what they are. Most corgis stand between 10 and 12 inches tall and weight between 23 and 28 pounds. And if you’ve ever spent any time around a corgi, you’ll know their short statures are part of what makes them so incredibly endearing.

2. There Are Two Separate Types of Corgi Dogs

pembroke corgi running in snowYes, corgis evolved into two distinct breeds, the Pembroke Welsh Corgi and the Cardigan Welsh Corgi, which weren’t recognized as separate breeds until the 1930s. The Pembroke tends to be the more popular corgi breed. Queen Elizabeth II’s corgis are of the Pembroke variety.


3. Corgi Dogs Have a Fascinating History

royal corgis

Pembroke Welsh corgis go back as far as the 10th century, and it’s believed that the Vikings and Flemish weavers brought them home from Wales to use as herding dogs. According to Welsh legend, fairies used them to pull their coaches or ride them into battle, and if you look closely, you can still find fairy markings on their backs. So they are actually magical.

4. Both Corgi Breeds Have Tails

cardigan welsh corgi

Some Pembroke Welsh Corgis are born with super-short tails, and the ones that don’t generally have them docked between two and five days old due to historical tradition (though, in many countries, docking has become illegal). The Cardigan Welsh Corgis, on the other hand, have lush, long tails that make them look even more like foxes. They also tend to be more reserved. A common joke among corgi handlers is that if there were a party, Cardigans would be the ones opening the door and Pembrokes would be the ones having a pool party out in the back.

5. Corgis Have a Lifespan of 12 to 15 years

corgi sitting in the grassOn average, the Pembroke Welsh Corgi has a life expectancy of 12 to 15 years. They are relatively healthy dogs, and many of the issues the breed has a history of developing are non-life threatening.

6Corgis Are Smart

royal corgis

Corgis have great logistical and trouble-shooting skills, since it takes a fair amount of analytical work to herd sheep. The challenge this presents is that they always need something to work on or some sort of task to accomplish, otherwise they’re liable to get bored and act out. Luckily, there are plenty of dog puzzles out there to occupy brilliant canines. And it’s a lot of fun having a smart dog!

7. Corgis Are Not Hypoallergenic

red and brown corgi
Corgis are not hypoallergenic. They are double-coated and they shed a lot. With shedding comes more dander, a common allergen found in dogs and cats. So if you’ve got allergies, it’s best to get a different type of animals (or head to your allergist, so you can still have a corgi).

8. Do Corgis Shed?


Loki the corgi wears wig of his shedded fur.

Yes, one of the only two flaws of the corgi is that they shed so much you can make another corgi out of one. These dogs have a double coat that consists of an inner layer of short fur and an outer layer of longer fur. A corgi will shed their undercoat once a year, usually in the spring. Every time I sweep up my apartment it looks like Father Time blazed through the living room. But the upside is that they are oh-so-fluffy!

9. Do Corgis Have Health Problems?

corgi puppy looking over a fenceCorgis are generally healthy dogs, although they are somewhat predisposed to degenerative myelopathy (gradual progressive paralysis of limbs), cataracts (an eye condition), hip dysplasia (due to their poorly developed hip joints), senility, cancer, and general obesity. Take your corgi to the vet on a regular basis to keep him or her healthy.


10. How Big Do Corgis Get?

corgi with its tongue outAdult Pembroke Welsh corgis are about 10 to 12 inches tall and weigh anywhere from 23 to 28 pounds. They reach their full size at about a year of age, although some keep filling out until age two or three.

11. Sleeping Positions of Corgis Are Too Much

corgi sleep

A lot of corgis like to sleep on their backs so that they end up looking like stuffed toys. Mine adopts a variety of adorable sleeping positions on his back, ranging from The Ballerina (in which one leg is artfully extended as in a dramatic scene), to The Lazy Bicycle (in which he keeps his legs up in the air but turns his upper body to the side, like someone who fell asleep in the middle of doing side crunches)