Pembroke Welsh Corgis: What's Good About 'Em, What's Bad About 'Em (2024)

Pembroke Welsh Corgi temperament, personality, training, behavior, pros and cons, advice, and information, by Michele Welton, Dog Trainer, Behavioral Consultant, Author of 15 Dog Books

Pembroke Welsh Corgis: What's Good About 'Em, What's Bad About 'Em (1)

Spirited and athletic, steady and dependable, the Pembroke Welsh Corgi is a true "big dog on short legs."

Herding, obedience, agility, or chasing balls (with surprising speed) are enjoyable outlets for his enthusiasm and desire to work. Corgis are smart dogs who need something to do.

If his days include such moderate exercise, along with the loving companionship of his family, the Pembroke Welsh Corgi is adaptable and easy to live with.

He is polite with guests, reserved with strangers, and makes an alert watchdog. Often too alert – Corgis can be serious barkers.

Most Pembroke Welsh Corgis are fine with other family pets. But they're often territorial with strange dogs and cats – as a working farm dog, one of his responsibilities was to chase strays away from his own farm. Corgis are wonderful with livestock, including horses.

This attentive breed learns quickly and responds well to obedience training – better than his close cousin, the Cardigan Welsh Corgi. Yet he has the independent judgment and problem-solving abilities of a true herding breed, so you must have the confidence to establish and consistently enforce rules, or he may make up his own.


If you want a dog who...

  • Is a "big dog" with short legs, i.e. built long and low to the ground, but with a robust body, heavy bone, and a working dog temperament
  • Is spirited and athletic, but needs only moderate exercise to maintain his muscle tone
  • Has a short easy-care coat in a variety of colors
  • Is polite with guests and makes a sensible watchdog
  • Is usually fine with other family pets, and especially good with livestock

A Pembroke Welsh Corgi may be right for you.


If you don't want to deal with...

  • Providing enough mental stimulation that gives him something productive to do
  • Destructiveness when bored or left alone too much
  • Territorial aggression toward dogs and cats he doesn't know
  • Strong-willed mind of his own, requiring a confident owner who can take charge
  • Chasing and nipping at things that move
  • Lots of barking
  • Heavy shedding

A Pembroke Welsh Corgi may not be right for you.

Pembroke Welsh Corgis: What's Good About 'Em, What's Bad About 'Em (2)

Dog Breed Traits – Which Traits Are Right For You?

In this brand new series, I'll help you decide which dog breed traits would best suit you and your family, your home and yard, and your lifestyle, so you can choose the best dog breed for your family.


Keep in mind that the inheritance of temperament is less predictable than the inheritance of physical traits such as size or shedding. Temperament and behavior are also shaped by raising and training.

FREE eBooks by Michele Welton

Pembroke Welsh Corgis: What's Good About 'Em, What's Bad About 'Em (3)"Respect Training for Puppies" and "Teach Your Dog 100 English Words" are free step by step guides to teaching your pup to be calm and well-behaved.

Pembroke Welsh Corgis: What's Good About 'Em, What's Bad About 'Em (4)"11 Things You Must Do Right To Keep Your Dog Healthy and Happy" is a free guide to keeping your dog mentally, physically, and emotionally happy and healthy so you can enjoy a longer lifetime of companionship.

Pembroke Welsh Corgis: What's Good About 'Em, What's Bad About 'Em (5)

  • You can avoid some negative traits by choosing an ADULT dog from an animal shelter or rescue group. With an adult dog, you can easily see what you're getting, and plenty of adult Corgis have already proven themselves not to have negative characteristics.
  • If you want a puppy, you can avoid some negative traits by choosing the right breeder and the right puppy.

More traits and characteristics of the Pembroke Welsh Corgi

If I was considering a Pembroke Welsh Corgi, I would be most concerned about...

  1. Providing enough physical – and mental – exercise. With their short legs and long body, Pembroke Welsh Corgis don't need or want miles of running exercise. But they must have several daily walks and a fenced yard in which to stretch their legs and romp. Just as important as physical exercise is mental exercise, which means interesting activities to do. Corgis are intelligent herding dogs who like to keep busy.

    I recommend that you get your Corgi involved in regular obedience classes (beyond the beginners level – join a dog club and go every week). Also consider agility classes (an obstacle course for dogs) or even herding, if there is a herding club in your area. Also consider my free online training book, Teach Your Dog 100 English Words. Teaching your dog words and games stimulates his brain and keeps him happy!

  2. Chasing other animals. As a farm dog, one of a Corgi's responsibilities was to drive away strange dogs from his own farm and flock. Accordingly, many Pembroke Welsh Corgis can be a bit pushy toward dogs and cats they don't know.
  3. Mind of their own. Pembroke Welsh Corgis are smart, but they do have an independent mind of their own (as do most herding breeds) and are not pushovers to raise and train. They can be manipulative or willful. You must show them, through absolute consistency, that you mean what you say. To teach your Corgi to listen to you, "Respect Training" is mandatory. Follow my free online training programs.
  4. Barking. Corgis drove large cattle by barking, darting in beneath their kicks, and nipping them on the heels. So it's no surprise that barking is an inherited trait. If you have close neighbors, you mustn't leave a Corgi outside, unsupervised. He will drive your neighbors crazy. To make matters worse, some Corgis have an intense, high-pitched bark that can set your teeth on edge.
  5. Heavy shedding. Pembroke Welsh Corgis shed a lot. You'll find hair all over your clothing and furnishings. Be sure you don't mind vacuuming!

About the author: Michele Welton has over 40 years of experience as a Dog Trainer, Dog Breed Consultant, and founder of three Dog Training Centers. An expert researcher and author of 15 books about dogs, she loves helping people choose, train, and care for their dogs.

Pembroke Welsh Corgis: What's Good About 'Em, What's Bad About 'Em (2024)
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