Do you know the Welsh Corgi Cardigan? It is part of the group of shepherd and cattle dogs, a direct descendant of other dog breeds of Welsh origin selected to guard the flocks. Let’s discover its distinctive features.
Welsh Corgi Cardigan : Origin
The Welsh Corgi Cardigan is a dog breed of uncertain origins. Many claim that the breed comes from England imported by Flemish weavers. Others, however, believe that it is an indigenous dog breed that initially spread in Wales .
Certainly, this dog was used to watch over herding and courtyard animals, which is why it became widespread on farms scattered throughout the Welsh lands between the fourteenth and fifteenth centuries .
At the turn of that historical period, in fact, Wales became one of the main producers of meat in the United Kingdom and supplied the main English cities. Immediately after its diffusion, the Welsh Corgi distinguished itself in two related varieties : the oldest was the Welsh Corgi Pembroke , while the Cardigan is a more recent selection.
In the twentieth century this dog stopped performing the mere function of guardian of the herds and began to be used as a companion dog in English courts.
It was even Queen Elizabeth II herself who welcomed them to court for the first time as a parlor animal. A little later, in 1934, the prestigious Kennel Club officially established that the Cardigan and the Pembroke were to be considered two distinct breeds.
Character of the breed Welsh Corgi Cardigan
The Cardigan welsh corgi is intelligent and is always alert and active. Confident and not very shy, it is not aggressive at all. Above any other consideration, its temperament makes them want to please its family, a goal it sees as a way to make themselves happy.
Thanks to its magnificent behaviour, it likes to be liked and, when it succeeds, it hopes to be rewarded with the affection of its masters and with the dedication that they lend them.
It loves feeling integrated into family life, being one of them and knowing themselves necessary, believing that its functions are essential for the proper functioning of the “herd.”
- Energy: High level. You need regular, vigorous exercise and, from time to time, free spaces to run.
- Temperament: Alert, active and intelligent; It is a confident dog, neither shy nor aggressive,
- Adaptability: Very high. It can live in an urban environment and adapts perfectly to family life.
- Sociability: Very high. It adores its master and the people who live together in the house; is trusting with strangers.
- Health: Good. The breed shows little tendency to suffer from hereditary diseases, its worst enemy is obesity.
- Longevity: Very high. It can live up to 15 years, and some specimens can reach 17.
- Utility: Very versatile. Although it is used primarily in herding and guarding, it is an excellent therapy dog and excels in sports such as agility , flyball , tracking, obedience, and dancing with dogs.
- Utilization: Grazing and guarding.
One of the virtues that quickly made the Cardigan Welsh Corgi an object of veneration for the Welsh is its diversity of uses and its many abilities.
It excels above all in herding and caring for poultry and other small animals, but it does not cease to demonstrate its ability to work with larger herds, such as sheep, a task that it completes by accompanying its master on hunting days.
As a guard dog, it is also up to the task, because, despite its size, it is an excellent alerter and is always aware of everything that happens around it.
If necessary, it becomes a courageous and indefatigable fighter, who has no objection to fighting with whoever wants to intrude on its territory or with any of those who inhabit it.
Can you live in an apartment?
Affectionate, sensitive and very intelligent, it is a dog that adapts very well to all circumstances, which can live in almost any environment.
Therefore, it can be an ideal choice for families living in the city, with the only precaution that, as it is an animal that needs to exercise daily, in an urban environment that implies having to put it on a leash and go out every day. for long walks.
A popular Welsh saying states that the Cardigan Welsh Corgi is “a lot of dog in little room” and it shows this at all times, because it is an animal devoted to its owners and with more heart than brain, despite being extremely intelligent.
How do you behave with children?
This breed is ideal for families with children, because, accustomed by selective breeding to take care of small farm animals, the Cardigan becomes from the beginning the protector of the little ones, as well as a fun companion for games, cheerful, dedicated and very patient.
However, care must always be taken when allowing children to be alone with a dog, whatever breed it may be, since it is still an animal and its instinct for protection is much more exacerbated than man, so in extreme situations, almost always in self-defence, their reactions could be unpredictable.
Children and dogs are an extraordinary pairing, but provided they are under the supervision of a responsible adult.
For children, in addition, the Cardigan is a very funny animal, because it is very expressive, and depending on its mood, or what its owners demand, an infinite number of different gestures can be guessed on its face.
Is it a family dog?
Your ideal family is the one that decides to have a dog to integrate it completely into their daily life, making it part of it, because they love to feel loved and valued, and to be included in all daily routines, no matter how inconsequential they may seem, since for them they are a source of pride and fulfilment.
Can older people have it?
Precisely because it is a small dog, with extreme adaptability and that needs to be walked daily, it can also be the perfect dog for the elderly or for anyone who needs to walk every day since the care of the canine companion will revert to its own health, having the obligation to go out two or three times a day to walk at a good pace.
Is it a noisy dog?
This breed retains its playful character throughout life. This feature, however, can sometimes lead to a drawback, as it has a certain tendency to be louder than necessary.
If you want to avoid problems with neighbors, you have to educate them from a young age to avoid unnecessary barking, those that are simply to attract attention or to make their presence known and become what they like to be the most: the center of attention.
Characteristics of the Welsh Corgi Cardigan
The general appearance of the Cardigan Welsh corgi is that of a sturdy, strong, versatile and enduring dog.
The body is long in proportion to the height of the dog, which in males is about 31 cm at the withers and in females about 29 cm. With short legs and deep chest, it is a strong, robust animal with great resistance.
Due to its shape and appearance, the head resembles that of the fox, with the skull flattened between the ears and narrower towards the eyes. The stop is moderate, the muzzle, fine, and the nose, black.
Their eyes have a watchful but kind expression, the eyes are medium and light in color, although some specimens of blue blackbird have one eye, or both, in a bluish tone.
It has proportionate ears, large for the height of the dog and with a somewhat rounded tip, they are quite wide at the base. The dog wears them tall and straight.
Their feet are round, closed and somewhat large in proportion to the legs. Slightly turned outwards, they are equipped with good flat pads.
It has a tail similar to that of a fox, set in line with the body and quite long, the dog carries it low when standing, but raises it when in motion.
The hair is short or moderately long and double-layered, straight and hard in texture. It has a good undercoat layer, making it resistant to inclement weather. It can present any color, sometimes with white spots, which do not predominate in the coat.
The movement of the Cardigan welsh corgi is lively, with the elbows tucked to the sides. The propulsion is provided by the hind limbs, while the forelimbs direct the step. It moves harmoniously, without raising the legs too much.
Welsh Corgi Cardigan breed standard
- General appearance: It is a dog of robust constitution, strong, versatile and with the capacity to endure.
- Origin: United Kingdom (Wales).
- Size: Small.
- Height at the withers: 30-32 cm (Males) and 28-30 cm (Females).
- Weight: 14-15 kg (Males) and 12-13 kg (Females)
- Head: By its shape and appearance, the head of the Cardigan Welsh corgi resembles that of a fox.
- Skull: It is broad and flattened between the ears, but tapers towards the eyes, over which it takes a slight dome shape.
- Nose-frontal depression (stop): Moderate.
- Muzzle: It is long (more than half the length of the skull) and tapers as it approaches the nose.
- Nose: It is black and barely protrudes from the tip of the snout.
- Jaws: They are healthy, strong, do not protrude and are endowed with powerful teeth and well placed in the jaws. The bite is scissor, that is, the inner face of the upper incisors is in contact with the outer face of the lower incisors.
- Eyes: Medium in size, light in color and have a kind but watchful expression. They are quite far apart and at a well-defined angle. The eyelids are usually dark, in harmony with the coat. Blackbird blue specimens sometimes have one or both eyes in light blue or streaked blue.
- Ears: They are quite large for the height of the dog and are raised, but since they are set well back, you can place them folded along the neck. The base is quite wide and the tip is slightly rounded. At their base, the ears are about 9 centimeters apart.
- Neck: Muscular and well developed, in proportion to the body structure of the dog, it merges into oblique shoulder blades.
- Body: Fairly long and strong, with a deep chest, slightly arched ribs and a clearly defined waist. Despite having short legs, the body does not touch the ground.
- Back: It is quite oblique.
- Chest: Moderately broad, has a prominent sternum.
- Tail: Set in line with the body, it is long (it can touch the ground) and similar to that of a fox. When the dog is standing it is carried low, but in movement it usually carries it a little above the body. It is not usually curled on the back.
- Forelimbs: The limbs are muscular, short and with strong bones all the way to the feet.
- Shoulders: They form an approximate 90 ° angle with respect to the arm.
- Forearms and arms: They are slightly arched to mold to the thorax.
- Hind limbs: They are muscular, short limbs with strong bones all the way to the feet.
- Legs: Strong and well angulated, they are muscular.
- Hocks: When the dog is standing, seen from behind they are parallel.
- Feet: Slightly turned outwards, round, closed, somewhat large and with good flat pads.
- Coat: The coat is short to medium length, smooth and hard in texture. It is very resistant to inclement weather, as it has a good undercoat layer
- Color: It can present any color, with or without white spots, but if these appear they do not predominate in the blanket.
- FCI Classification : FCI No. 38. Group – Sheepdogs and Cattle Dogs (except Swiss Cattle Dogs). Section 1 – Sheepdogs.
Education and training of the Welsh Corgi Cardigan
It responds very well to positive reinforcement training, since one of its great passions is to please its family, which it is always aware of.
It can be dedicated to almost anything, since its learning capacity is enormous, but if it is left simply as a companion dog, as one of the family, it will be the happiest dog in the world.
Also, although its physique is not ideal for dog sports, it can be seen competing with great passion in agility, flyball or sprint, in the category of small dogs, and is extraordinarily skilled in the field of sports obedience , and even in dancing with dogs.
However, one of the fields in which it stands out the most, due to its striking presence, its fox expression and its attractive colors, is in the rings of dog shows, where it emerges as one of the most successful breeds within the group of shepherds.
In fact, although it is much less known and widespread than its cousin, the Pembroke Welsh corgi, it has gained a significant market share among fans of purebred dogs and the Cardigan is arguably a corgi for exquisite palates, who like of the virtues that adorn both races but prefer the most exclusive version of the two.
Therefore, as has been seen, by spending a little time every day, showing it a lot of affection and being constant in its care, the owner of the Cardigan welsh corgi will be able to enjoy all its charm and its many virtues.
Health and Diseases Welsh Corgi Cardigan
With proper care, the Cardigan welsh corgi is a very long-lived animal that can live very well for an average of 12 to 15 years , although cases of many specimens that have exceeded 17 years of age are known.
The pillars for building proper health are a safe, clean, and dry place to live. As well as a good diet, with plenty of water always at your disposal, exercise in the right doses, routine care at the vet, and basic hygiene.
From time to time it is convenient to let it run free, in open and safe spaces where it can unleash accumulated tension and energy.
It’s a great way to release your mental state and recharge. But it is only recommended to let the dog loose when it is sufficiently educated to remain under control at all times.
In short, a physically satisfied Cardigan Welsh corgi will always be a much more balanced dog capable of living in harmony with the family and with the rest of society and, of course, a greater source of satisfaction for their owners, who will be delighted with he.
Feeding the Welsh Corgi Cardigan breed
Uncontrolled weight gain does not suit this breed at all. Obesity is the most common source of health problems for the Cardigan welsh corgi. In addition, in a dog with a body structure like yours, these can be aggravated by severe vertebral conditions.
Therefore, a balanced and quality diet, and observing the dog’s periodic evolution is the best way to regulate its weight and, consequently, to maintain its good health.
When it is in perfect condition, its ribs are noticeable when touched. It is not that they are visible to the naked eye, but they should not be covered with layers of fat.
If the animal has put on weight, the best way to bring it back to its ideal weight is to increase the doses of exercise and gradually reduce the amount of food that is made available.
As said, the perfect complement to a Cardigan’s diet is a regular and adequate schedule of exercise.
This breed does not have special needs or great requirements, so taking long daily walks, even when carried on a leash, will be enough to keep the animal in good physical condition.
Hygiene and maintenance of the Welsh Corgi Cardigan
As the Cardigan’s hair is straight, of good texture and with abundant undercoat, its hygiene is very simple. It consists of a bath when it is very dirty, a brushing, working the inner layer with a rake and the outer layer with a metal card, and a little grooming.
Depending on the climate of the area where it lives, this breed molts two or three times a year and such molts can be spectacular, so during these periods it is recommended to increase the frequency of brushing.