Queen Elizabeth II was an animal lover since she received her first Pembroke Welsh Corgi, Susan, as a gift for her 18th birthday in 1944. The Queen had more than 30 Pems in her lifetime, but she stopped breeding in 2015 to not leave any young dogs behind after her death.
“This devoted breeder and owner has been the patron of The Kennel Club for the past 70 years,” says Dennis Sprung, CEO of the American Kennel Club. “Undoubtedly, her passion for the breed resulted in the popularity of responsible owners on both sides of the pond.”
The monarch, 96, died on September 8, 2022, and senior members of the Royal Family rushed to be by her side. She is survived by her four children, eight grandchildren, and 12 great-grandchildren as well as her two Pembroke Welsh Corgis named Muick and Sandy, a mixed-breed named Candy, and a Cocker Spaniel named Lissy. Now, the lingering question is who will care for the dogs in her absence.
In regards of the two Pembrokes, Prince Andrew, The Duke of York, and his former wife, Sarah, Duchess of York, will inherit for the dogs, a spokesperson for the duke told the New York Times on Sunday. The duke and the duchess were the ones who gave them to the queen as gifts. Muick and Sandy will live the rest of their days at the Royal Lodge in Windsor, where Prince Andrew still lives with his ex-wife.
“I saw them the other day,” Prince Williams said to a mourner on a walkabout at London’s Lambeth Bridge in a video captured and shared via Sky News. “They’re going to be looked after fine. They’re two very friendly corgis and they’ve got a good home.”
The two Pems were also spotted during the Queen’s funeral procession on September 19, 2022, in the quadrangle at Windsor Castle. They were handled by two members of staff as the funeral cortege arrived.
However, there has been no announcement on who will care for the queen’s mixed-breed and Cocker Spaniel yet.
Elizabeth II was very involved in the feeding and care of her dogs and took them for regular walks with the help of caretakers. The dogs were even known to be fed from silver and porcelain bowls! The dogs have also be cared for by the Queen’s staff, who will likely continue to do so for the rest of their lives.
“Care of the dogs has fallen sometimes to footmen but mostly to the Queen’s trusted dressmaker, assistant, and right-hand woman, Angela Kelly; and to her equally trusted page of many years standing, Paul Whybrew, who was seen walking with the Queen and the dogs in the James Bond spoof,” wrote author Penny Junor in her 2018 book, All The Queen’s Corgis.
Regardless of who will care for her remaining dogs, it is in high hope that her legacy as an animal lover and one of the dedicated Pembroke Welsh Corgi breeders and ambassadors is carried on.
“I am confident that Her Majesty has arranged for the care and well-being of her beloved Pembrokes with family,” Sprung says.