There’s a reason why Queen Elizabeth has raised an estimated 30 or more corgis over her 70-year reign. Our guess? Corgis are loyal, energetic, affectionate, and intelligent dogs. Plus, they’re absolutely adorable.
Both types of corgis — the Pembroke Welsh corgi and the longer-tailed Cardigan Welsh corgi — are popular dog breeds. The Pembroke, in particular, consistently ranks near the top of the American Kennel Club’s (AKC) list of most popular breeds.
But your question is, are corgis good family dogs? Are corgis good with kids?
Let’s take a closer look at the positives and negatives of corgis and kids living together and discuss how training and socialization can keep everyone in harmony.
Kids and Corgis: The Positives
There are plenty of things to love about the corgi, and they can make wonderful pets for many families with children. Here are a few reasons why are corgis good with kids:
Corgis Are High-Energy
Much like many children, a corgi is high-energy. If you’re looking for an active dog that will frequently be running, playing, and horsing around, the corgi is a good choice. As long as kids understand that the dog is not a toy, the corgi can make a great playmate.
Corgis Are a Good Size for Kids
Another thing that makes the corgi kid-friendly is their size. Corgis are small dogs, as adult corgis usually weigh between 20-30 pounds and are no taller than a foot or so. Like other diminutive breeds such as spaniels and small terriers, smaller dogs are usually better for children.
Corgis aren’t so large that they’re likely to knock over small children, but they’re not so small that kids see them as stuffed toys.
Corgis Are Loyal and Affectionate
Corgis are known for their affectionate, loving personalities. For young kids, a corgi can be a wonderful companion throughout childhood — many corgis develop special bonds with their young human counterparts. And because the breed is so loyal, they’ll typically protect your child no matter what.
Kids and Corgis: The Negatives
However, there are some reasons why the corgi dog breed might not be the best choice for kids, especially toddlers and young children.
Corgis Can Nip
It’s important to realize that the corgi is a herding dog. They were bred to nip at the feet of cattle to herd them in a certain direction, and those nipping instincts remain in plenty of corgis today.
Your corgi’s herding instincts might lead them to nip at the heels of children, especially when they’re playing or running together. A typical corgi probably doesn’t usually intentionally hurt kids, but nipping could easily frighten or harm a child. And if a child yells or runs faster, it might only excite the corgi further and cause the behavior to continue.
Corgis Can Be Defensive
The flipside of the corgi’s loyal personality is their sometimes defensive nature. They’ll defend themselves and their territory if they feel threatened — and sometimes, kids can unintentionally trigger this response. A corgi may nip or even bite a child if they pull their ears or handles them roughly.
Proper obedience training and good socialization, along with teaching your kids how to act around dogs, is the best way to avoid defensive behavior and keep everyone happy. We’ll learn more about that in a moment.
Corgis Can Be Loud
If you’re looking for a quiet pet, a corgi may not be the best dog for you. These tenacious little dogs can be quite loud — it’s one of the reasons they make good watchdogs. If someone enters your home unexpectedly, you can rest assured your corgi will raise the alarm.
However, a loud bark can wake a baby or toddler, disrupting your child’s schedule (and, by extension, yours).
Have you ever wished there was a way to make your dog calmer? You’re in luck. Native Pet’s Calming Chews may be able to help. These chews are meant to relax your dog’s muscles and improve sleep, and they may help reduce general anxiety.
How to Train and Socialize Corgis
While corgis may not be the most natural fit for families with babies, toddlers, and young children, corgis can integrate well into any family if you train and socialize them well. Here are some key tips for helping everyone in the house get along:
- Provide basic obedience training and socialization: Make sure your corgi responds to basic commands like sit, stay, and heel. Have them interact with a variety of people: men and women, young and old, as well as other pets, under close supervision. Ask your veterinarian or an animal trainer for more advice, or consider enrolling your corgi in a dog training course.
- Train your corgi not to nip: Ideally, you should teach your corgi this during puppyhood. But you can also train adult corgis not to nip. This will probably involve redirecting your corgi’s attention when you see them nipping and perhaps giving them something like Native Pet’s all-natural Yak Chews to munch on instead. Consult your vet or an animal trainer for additional help.
- Provide plenty of exercise and mental stimulation: A bored corgi is a misbehaving corgi. Remember: You have a herding breed with a high energy level on your hands, and they need exercise and stimulation every day. Allow your dog to play in the house or the backyard daily, or visit the local dog park to let little Fido get some energy out.
- Train your kids how to handle your corgi: Just as important as training your dog is teaching your kids how to act around your corgi, especially if this is the first time they’ll be around a dog. Make sure your children know not to pull on your pet’s ears or tail and not to disturb your pet while they’re sleeping or eating. (Corgis can exhibit food aggression, just like other breeds, especially if they’ve come from a shelter environment.)
Another option to consider: A corgi mix may get along better with kids than a purebred corgi, simply because the breed’s more rambunctious qualities are tempered slightly by other breeds’ characteristics. You might visit a shelter or reputable breeder to find a corgi/retriever mix or a corgi/beagle cross, for example, with a calm temperament suitable for young kids.
So, Are Corgis Good With Kids?
Still asking yourself, “Are corgis good with kids?” As you can see, it’s not a simple answer. The truth is that corgis make great pets for many families, including those with young children, but it depends on a variety of factors. These factors include the age of your children, their experience with dogs, your particular corgi’s personality and temperament, and how you’ve trained and socialized your dog.
Corgis are loving, loyal, energetic dogs who can develop deep and lasting bonds with children. They’re also herding dogs who may have a tendency to nip at kids’ ankles, and they can get defensive. Plus, corgis have a loud bark that will probably wake up sleeping babies or toddlers.
The bottom line: Make sure your dog is well-trained and gets plenty of playtime, and make sure your children know how to interact with your corgi to avoid any defensive or aggressive behavior. Following these steps is the best way to make sure everyone lives together happily for years to come.For more insight into your dog’s behavior, health, and wellness, visit the Native Pet blog.