The Pembroke Welsh Corgi, like his Cardigan cousin, is a long, low dog with large ears that stand erect atop a broad, flat skull. Corgis heads are are fox-like in their appearance. The eyes are round and dark with black rims and the nose is also black. Pembrokes have straighter legs than Cardigans, are not as long, and their heads are more obviously wedge-shaped. Additionally, the Pembroke's tail should be docked to be almost nonexistent. Some puppies are born with very short tails, but these may still need to be docked to meet breed standards. The thick, soft coat comes in red, sable, fawn or black and tan, usually with white markings.
Size and Weight
Pembroke Welsh Corgis should ideally stand from 10 to 12 inches at the withers, and the weight should be in good proportion to the size. Males should not exceed 30 pounds and females should not exceed 28 pounds. The dog should be approximately 40% longer than he is tall.
Coat and Color
Pembrokes sport a medium length, thick, weather-resist double coat made up of a downy undercoat and a longer, coarser topcoat. Individual coat length and style may vary. Some are slightly fluffy, with feathering present on the ears, chest, legs and feet while others are less fluffy. They all have a slightly thicker and longer ruff around the neck, chest and shoulders. Very fluffy dogs are faulted in the show ring, though this has no bearing on the dog's quality as a companion. Some Pembrokes have wavy hair, other have straight hair. Many have a “fairy saddle over the back,” which is a distinct marking caused by a change in direction and thickness of hair. The name comes from the old legend that fairies rode on Pembroke Corgis. The coat comes in colors of red, sable, black, tri-colored, or fawn, typically with white markings.
Pembroke Welsh Corgis are easy to groom. Their medium-length coat only requires a weekly brushing to remove loose and dead hair. Twice a year the Pembroke will shed heavily, and brushing may need to occur several times per week. Frequently bathing a Pembroke will cause the natural weatherproof oils in the hair to break down, so it is important to only bath a Corgi as-needed. They are naturally clean dogs, so most owners typically only need to bathe their dogs once every three or four months.
The Corgi's ears should be checked on a regular basis for signs of wax buildup, irritation or infection. Clean them with a cotton ball and a veterinarian-approved cleanser; never use a cotton swab in a dog's ear canal. Teeth should be brushed on a weekly basis to prevent tartar buildup, promote gum health and keep bad breath at bay. Trim nails monthly if the dog does not wear the toenails down naturally outdoors.