What’s cuter than a Corgi? This dog breed is one of the most popular pets in the US. They are adorable, affectionate, energetic, and intelligent.
However, when you add kids to the mix, safety should always be your main priority.
So, are Corgis good with kids?
Corgis can be great with children if you’ve given them proper training and socialization. However, as these are herding dogs with strong instincts, they might behave towards kids as if they are cattle, nipping their heels and acting stubbornly.
Because of this, many experts wouldn’t recommend Corgis for families with little kids or toddlers.
If you have kids and plan to get a Corgi – or, the opposite, if you have a Corgi but plan on expanding your family – this article is for you.
Here’s what you need to know if you want to make playmates of your children and your Corgi!
Two Corgi Breeds
Many aspiring dog owners don’t realize that there are two Corgi breeds – the Cardigan Welsh Corgi and Pembroke Welsh Corgi. Both breeds have similar bodies, with short legs and elongated backs.
In fact, a Corgi is almost twice as long as it is tall!
However, this dog is a great example of how deceptive appearances can be. They are fast, agile, and energetic – which is no surprise if we consider they were bred to be herding dogs.
These dogs are so popular that even Queen Elizabeth II has had over 30 of these small dogs inside Buckingham Palace throughout her reign!
When it comes to personality, both dog breeds have similar behavior. They have high energy levels, are intelligent, and act like big dogs in small bodies.
Appearance-wise, these two dogs look very similar. The biggest difference is in their tail. Yes, Cardigans have long, fluffy tails, while Pembrokes have a bobtail – some might even lack a tail altogether.
Cardigans can also come in many coat colors, such as red, apricot, or even merle, and they are a bit larger than their Pembroke counterparts. Both have a double coat that is weather-resistant, giving them that fluffy appearance they are known for.
Are Corgis Kid Friendly?
If you’ve wondered, ‘are Corgis good with kids?’ there are a few things you need to consider beforehand.
However, if you have babies, you should know that Corgis aren’t good for them. Corgis are loud barkers, and they’ll bark at anything. This might upset otherwise calm babies or wake them up during the night.
When it comes to toddlers and somewhat older kids, there are a few things you should know. We’ll go over a few positive answers to the question ‘are Corgis good with kids?’ – and a few more why they might not be the best choice.
Are Corgis Child Friendly? (Pros and Cons)
They Are Full Of Energy
This is the main thing Corgis and kids have in common. They are full of energy, and they’ll run all the time! Mental stimulation is important for Corgis, as well as for kids, so this is one thing they can do together.
According to the American Kennel Club ( AKC ), Corgis are among the 15 most active dog breeds. This is only increased by their strong herding instincts.
These little furballs are energetic all the time. They’ll spend every waking moment barking, running, or jumping.
At the same time, these dogs are extremely fast, which might prove a good challenge for a small child. They run so fast because they have to be faster than the cattle or sheep they heard.
They are naturally playful as well. If you give them the right obedience training, they can play with kids all day long. This is a great way to tire out all your family members, both two and four-legged ones!
Overall, Corgis and kids make excellent playmates that can spend an entire day together.
They Are Loveable
Corgis have very affectionate personalities that make them excellent with children. This is improved if you’ve socialized them from puppyhood and exposed your Corgis to people of various ages.
Also, you want to provide your Corgi puppy with everything he needs, including exercise, high-quality meals, and everything else they need to grow and become the best adult dogs they can be.
All of this can help your pooch become friendly and overall amazing with children. They are loyal and loving, and they’ll protect your kids at all costs.
Corgis are known to share a special bond with small children. They’ll roll on their backs, requesting belly rubs, and they’ll want to play fetch all the time.
Keeping dogs can also benefit your kids. Children that grow up with pets are usually less sick than children without any animals around them. This is most likely because they are exposed to allergens from dogs from an early age.
They Are The Center Of Attention
Corgis are the party animals of the canine world! They love being the center of attention all the time. They’ll ask for your attention until you get tired of them. Whether that be a pat on the head, a belly rub, or an ear scratch – they’ll take it.
For these pups, there is no such thing as too much attention!
They are small dogs, but their personalities are big. They’ll loudly let you know what they want – or if they dislike something. You’ll quickly realize that every Corgi has its own personality and that it can depend on your dog’s mood.
In fact, there are many famous dogs on social media that are – you’ve guessed it – Corgis. This includes Geordi La Corgi, a dog-influencer with over half a million followers on Instagram!
The Corgi ’s love for attention makes them a perfect match for kids who love spending time with and talking to someone all day long! When you combine Corgis and kids, you’ll get a win-win situation for both sides.
This can also help them increase their bond, as they’ll spend plenty of time together.
They Are Just The Right Size
These dogs from Wales even got their name thanks to their size, as their name means ‘dwarf dog’ in Welsh. And when you look at Corgis, you’ll see why that is.
These dogs are usually no taller than 12 inches and weigh up to 30 lbs. When it comes to kids, small dogs are usually a better option. This includes Corgis, Cocker Spaniels, Miniature Schnauzers, and others.
True, most dogs would never hurt kids for no reason, but if they happen to attack, their small size can help you defend your child.
Not just that, but they are small enough not to be able to knock down a small kid during playtime. However, since they are not toy dogs, kids won’t accidentally harm them as well.
They Are Great Bodyguards
Since these pups seem to be so goofy and silly, you may also wonder, ‘are Corgis good with kids when you leave them alone together?’
However, despite their small size, these dogs make amazing watchdogs. This is because Corgis have several great traits, as they are highly independent, alert, fearless, protective, aware, and loud barkers.
Also, Corgis are tenacious. This characteristic is of great help when they have to move a cow or sheep. Even though they no longer herd cattle, they have kept this attitude.
At the same time, Corgis are very protective of creatures they bond with. As they can have an amazing bond with children, they will protect them all the time.
Not just that, but these dogs know who belongs to their pack and who is an intruder. They won’t hesitate to protect their family members. Since they were herding dogs, they’ll keep an eye on the pack members in front of them while protecting their territory.
Of course, this does depend on a dog’s personality. Females tend to be more protective than males, and they’ll be the first to give everything they can to keep their pack well cared for.
Next to these many benefits of having Corgi dogs and kids, there are some reasons why it isn’t a good idea to leave your Corgis alone with your small family members.
Keep in mind that most of these reasons can be eliminated through proper training and early socialization. This doesn’t mean you shouldn’t be wary of them.
They May Nip At Kids
Herding breeds don’t always make the best family dogs. This is because their strong herding instincts tell them to nip at kids’ feet and ankles.
In the field, Corgis would nip at cows’ heels to point them in the right direction. This is what they were bred for.
While these pups no longer work on farms, their instincts have remained.
Inside a house, Corgis won’t have cattle to nip at. Instead, they’ll look at certain family members as a herd they need to control. This is also a reason why Corgis might prefer having the whole family together in one room.
Kids especially remind Corgis of cattle. Young children love to run, flail their arms, shriek – everything that brings their instincts to life. Most notably – kids move.
These erratic movements can cause a Corgi to think it needs to herd them. To do so, they will nip at the kids’ ankles so they can instruct them where to go.
Nipping usually won’t hurt your kid. However, it will most certainly scare them. This can lead to a child falling or sustaining some kind of injury.
The biggest issue is that kids tend to run away faster when they are afraid. They might also scream louder. Instead of telling your Corgi to leave them alone, this might excite it, even more, causing it to continue with the chase.
Because of this, most experts don’t recommend having Corgis until kids are at least eight years old. They are certainly not great with infants and toddlers.
While you can teach your farm dog when to stop nipping, you can never entirely teach him to stop this behavior, as their instincts are too strong.
Nipping doesn’t mean a dog is aggressive. Your Corgi doesn’t want to harm your child in any way. This is just his instinct telling him to treat the child like cattle.
They Are Loud Barkers
Corgis are very loud barkers. Many people don’t expect to hear such a loud bark from such small dogs.
These dogs bark loud and deep. If a burglar enters your house, they’ll notify not just you but your entire neighborhood!
Again, the reasons behind their barking stem from their job on the farm. If they weren’t barking so loud, a cow wouldn’t notice them standing at its heels.
Also, they had to bark loudly to notify wild animals that they couldn’t come near the farm without trouble.
Today, this loud barking can help you scare away burglars and trespassers. An intruder won’t stay long enough to realize that the barking dog isn’t a large one like a Retriever or a German Shepherd.
At the same time, Corgis bark to communicate with you. They’ll bark to let you know anything they want, whether they want to tell you they’re happy, hungry, in pain, or that they don’t like your new hairstyle!
Finally, they’ll bark so you can give them the attention they crave – and to get what they want.
Even if you’ve learned to ignore the barking, loud vocalizations don’t go well with babies and young toddlers.
If you don’t do proper obedience training, Corgis will bark at anything and anyone. These loud noises might startle a baby or wake them up when they are sleeping. This is not good for you or your child.
This also means Corgis are not great for people with sensitive kids or kids that hate loud noises. If a child is easily stressed out by the sound of barking, they won’t appreciate their new furry friend.
They Can Be Destructive
Since Corgis are herding dogs, they are used to spending time surrounded by other people and animals. Every minute spent away from their owners is a wasted one!
In the field, Corgis used to work with a shepherd all the time, looking for guidance. They form a strong bond with their family members and their owners. While this is cute, it also has several downsides.
Most notably, a Corgi will want you to be around them all the time. If you’re not, they’ll become stressed out or even destructive! This may end with them turning your home into a chaotic mess.
This also means Corgis are prone to separation anxiety, which can end up being a huge problem for pet owners. Dogs suffering from this disorder will be terribly afraid of being separated from their owners, leading to seriously destructive behavior.
Dogs that suffer from separation anxiety will bark and chew things they shouldn’t. This can be bad for people with children, as dogs with this condition won’t behave the way they should. This includes nipping and jumping on things, both of which could harm a small child.
They Are Defensive
Defensive dogs are more likely to bite since they feel like someone or something is threatening their territory. Over 95% of dog bites include children younger than five years of age – and, unfortunately, most of these bites are to children’s faces.
With good dog training, you can avoid these bites. However, at the same time, it’s imperative that you teach your kids how to behave around dogs.
It’s not the dog’s fault if a bite happens.
Kids can excite dogs as they are so active. They also don’t always pay close attention to how they approach herding dogs, such as Corgis. They’ll thrust their faces into a dog’s nose, pull its tail or ears, and scream.
We know kids don’t have ill intentions – but dogs aren’t aware of this. They’ll feel as if children are threatening them, so they have to protect themselves. Sadly, the main way a dog defends itself is by biting.
They Are Workaholics
Dogs can get bored just like humans do. Corgis are especially prone to feeling this way since they are very intelligent dogs that need plenty of mental stimulation.
Boredom isn’t the same as depression.
Depressed dogs are lethargic, without the will to do anything. On the other hand, bored dogs will do whatever they can to get out of this situation. This includes doing plenty of things you likely wouldn’t be happy about, such as:
• Excessive barking
• Chewing furniture
• Fighting other dogs – and kids – inside the house
• Ripping off curtains or wallpaper
• Running frantically around the house
Corgis need to be busy all the time. You mustn’t leave them alone for hours without toys or tiring them out beforehand. Otherwise, they might try to get rid of their boredom by messing with your kids.
They Are Stubborn
Stubbornness can be a good trait. For example, it is necessary for working dogs especially dogs that deal with cattle and other farm animals.
However, this trait can also be quite tricky when you have little kids.
Stubborn dogs can sometimes disagree with your training methods and ignore your commands. They’ll test your patience as often as possible.
Not just that, but these dogs can be very bossy. They love to do things their way, and they’ll try forcing you to do things their way too.
All of this can lead to trouble when you add kids to the mix – especially if your kids are stubborn, too, or simply easily scared of a nipping Corgi that tries to make them do its bidding.
They Hate Being Chased
Genetically, Corgis are the ones who chase. This means that very few Corgis will enjoy being chased by playful kids.
No one likes it when the tables are turned. Corgis are used to chasing sheep and cows and even little kids! However, they’ll hate it when kids run around chasing them – an activity that kids commonly do.
This will stress out some Corgis at best. At worst, they might feel cornered, causing them to defend themselves by biting.
They Are Avid Shedders
Corgis shed – a lot. They have a double coat, which includes an undercoat and a top coat. They’ll shed throughout the year, but this will intensify in late spring and early summer.
If you have a Corgi for the first time, you might be surprised by how much loose hair they have even during grooming. They’ll shed hair all over your house and clothes even if you brush them regularly.
Also, they are not hypoallergenic, meaning they produce plenty of allergens that can cause issues for people with dog allergies.
Unfortunately, this means a Corgi is not a good pet for kids with asthma or severe allergies. Their dander can cause breathing issues, and allergies don’t get better after exposure.
They Won’t Tolerate Much
As we’ve mentioned before, Corgis tend to be very bossy. If you’ve been wondering, ‘are Corgis good with kids?’, a dog’s temperament is something you have to think about.
Sure, some Corgis will tolerate a lot. They won’t complain if kids pull their ears or touch their fluffy butts.
However, most will hate being rubbed the wrong way. They’ll snap at kids’ hands or bite at the air. If these warnings go unheard, they might nip your child.
Again, nipping doesn’t hurt, but it might scare your kid. Not to mention that things could get worse if the Corgi loses the little patience it actually has.
They Can Knock A Child Over
Sure, Corgis are small dogs. However, they are stronger than they appear, and with the proper force, they might knock your child over.
On most occasions, a Corgi won’t do it out of malicious intent. However, they aren’t aware of their strength, and young kids aren’t too. It’ll jump on a child during rough play, and this might result in accidents.
They Are Prone To A Few Health Issues
While Corgis have a fairly long lifespan – they live approximately ten to 12 years – they are prone to several health problems that might sadden your kid.
Some of those issues include hip dysplasia, progressive retinal atrophy (PRA), retinal dysplasia, persistent pupillary membranes, and hypothyroidism. Most of these can be prevented with regular vet visits and a healthy lifestyle.
However, Pembrokes are also prone to degenerative myelopathy, an incurable type of progressive paralysis that tends to develop rapidly. This disorder is debilitating to watch, and it might traumatize your kid.
Fortunately, there are DNA tests that can warn you whether or not your Corgi is at risk of this disorder. Overall, if you get your pup from a reputable breeder, you should be fine.
So, Are Corgis Good For Families?
All of this might lead you to wonder, ‘are Corgis good with kids, or should I consider getting some other breed?’
While Corgis might not be the best choice for people with small kids, with a few tips and tricks, they can make amazing family pets – as long as you are ready to pay a fine sum for your new Corgi puppy!.
First off, you need to socialize your Corgi from puppyhood and teach them to be comfortable around young kids. The best time to introduce your Corgi puppy to a child is when they are between three and 12 weeks old.
This doesn’t include just your kid – teach him to be friendly with neighborhood children as well. Take him to the dog park for playdates (just don’t forget to get him vaccinated beforehand).
It’s important to assess your Corgi before you attempt to socialize them. If he isn’t in the right mood, don’t force him. This can only lead to trauma or stubbornness, and it will do more harm than good.
Photo from @fluffychelsea
Also, you need to train your Corgi and teach him good recall. Fortunately, Corgis are some of the most intelligent breeds, so as long as you use plenty of positive reinforcement, they will be eager to please and to do whatever you want of them.
Teach them that nipping is bad by stopping playtime the moment they nip at your ankles. They’ll learn that when they nip, the fun is over.
Give them plenty of exercise – at least an hour a day, so they can be busy. This doesn’t require just walking, but games of fetch and jogging to tire them out. Make sure they get plenty of mental stimulation, as well, especially before you go to work.
You mustn’t allow your Corgi to ever become bored. A bored Corgi is an ill-behaved Corgi, and this isn’t something you want. If you’re uncertain, there are plenty of Corgi mixes with dog breeds that are a much safer option. This can give you the best of both worlds. Consider Corgi mixes with Golden Retrievers, Labrador Retrievers, and Shih Tzus.
Train Your Kids To Be Corgi-Friendly
It isn’t just a question of ‘are Corgis good with kids?’, it’s also ‘are my kids good with my Corgi?’ Your kids need to learn how to behave around your Corgi, and not just the other way round.
Teach them not to pull a dog’s ears or tail (although most Corgis don’t have tails, to begin with) or to touch an animal’s feet, legs, eyes, nose, or anus. Also, kids should learn not to scream and yell around the dog – especially not at it.
Children shouldn’t disturb Corgis while they’re eating because they, too, can have food aggression, especially if you’ve adopted them from a shelter.
Also, Corgis don’t like to be woken up suddenly.
Teach your kids to respect a dog’s personal space and that pets are not toys. They need to be gentle with their furry companions; otherwise, someone might get hurt.
So, if you’ve wondered, ‘are Corgis good with kids?’ – the answer isn’t straightforward.
With proper socialization and training, they might be as good with kids as most other breeds. They are playful, loyal, and affectionate, everything that kids love.
At the same time, though, they are stubborn, intolerant of ‘childish’ behavior, and they’ll love herding kids by nipping at their feet!
In the end, just as with many other things, it all comes down to the owner and the dog itself, how well you can train your pet and what his personality is – but teaching your children to behave around dogs helps too!