Meet the “Enchanted” Herding Dog: the Pembroke Welsh Corgi

pembroke welsh corgi


The Internet loves him, and Queen Elizabeth II does, too . . . he's known as smart, alert, and affectionate. Who are we talking about? The Pembroke Welsh Corgi, of course!

While you would recognize this herding dog if you saw him, do you know his history? The difference between a Pembroke and a Cardigan Welsh Corgi? Well, you're about to find out. Check out these seven fun facts about the Pembroke Welsh Corgi.


1. His Ancestry Dates Back to the 10th Century

According to the Pembroke Welsh Corgi Club of America, it is believed that the Pembroke's ancestry dates back to at least the 10th century. It is unknown, however, whether they are descended from the Swedish Vallhunds that were possibly brought to Pembrokeshire by the Vikings, or from the ancestors of the present-day Schipperkes and Pomeranians brought to Wales by Flemish weavers.


2. Legend Has It He's an "Enchanted" Dog

Welsh legend says the fairies and elves of Wales used the Pembroke Welsh Corgi to pull fairy coaches, work fairy cattle, and serve as the steed for fairy warriors. If you look closely, even today you can see the marks of the "fairy saddle" over the shoulders in the Pembroke's coat.
 


3. He's a World-Class Herding Dog

Don't let their size fool you, these dogs have been herding for decades! From the beginning, the Welsh used Pembroke Welsh Corgis as herding dogs, family companions, and guardians of the farm. Even today, these dogs are still expert herders. Many Pembrokes even compete in AKC Herding competitions.


4. They Are Very Different From the Cardigan Welsh Corgi

In 1934, the AKC recognized the Pembroke and the Cardigan Welsh Corgi as two distinct breeds. What is different about these two dogs? First, the Cardigan traces his origins to Cardiganshire, and the Pembroke to Pembrokeshire. The dogs also have easily identifiable physical differences. The Cardigan has a tail, while the Pembroke's is docked close to his body. The Pembroke has a shorter body, and his ears are pointed, while the Cardigan's are more rounded at the tips.
 

corgi scarf


5. He's Your Best Friend and a Great Competitor

The Pembroke Welsh Corgi is known as one of the most agreeable of small house dogs and is a loyal, loving pet for families. They also are known for their intelligence and enthusiasm for working. Many Pembrokes compete in dog sports, such as agility, herding, conformation, obedience, and more. One Pembroke Welsh Corgi, named Belli, is even a triple champion.
 



6. Corgi Means Dwarf Dog

Or at least it might. The origin of the name "Corgi" is difficult to determine. Some say it combines the Welsh word "cor," which means to watch over or gather, with "gi," a form of the Welsh word for dog. Others have the interpretation that the word "cor" means dwarf, and combine that with "gi," you have dwarf dog. Either way, these certainly describe the Pembroke Welsh Corgi. And of course, the "Pembroke Welsh" part of the Pembroke Welsh Corgi name comes from the dog's origins.


7. A Pembroke Welsh Corgi Named Rufus Was the Mascot for Amazon

In the early days of Amazon.com, a Pembroke named Rufus belonged to the editor-in-chief and principal engineer and came with them to work every day. Known for walking the halls, attending meetings, and snoozing, Rufus became the unofficial Amazon mascot. Rufus is also the dog Amazon employees have to thank for their dog-friendly culture.
 

corgi puppy


Think the smart, alert, and affectionate Pembroke Welsh Corgi is the breed for you? Check out Pembroke puppies on the AKC Marketplace.

And if you're looking for a place to see tons of adorable Corgi pictures and videos, follow the AKC on Instagram, @americankennelclub!

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