Corgis 101: Raising Your Corgi Puppy, the Basics

Welsh Corgis of both the Pembroke and Cardigan breeds are stumpy little working dogs. You wouldn’t know it by looking at them, but they are powerful squat sheepherders. This fact alone makes them eager to please, hard working and usually high energy dogs. They require a lot of exercise, along with training in order to thrive. When we first got our corgi puppy, I was terrified that I wasn’t going to be a good owner, trainer and all around dog mom. I did my research and found an excellent breeder which I discussed in my article, “Finding a responsible breeder”. I bought some wrong things and some right things, which I highlighted in my last article, “Shopping for your corgi puppy”. When it came to raising a puppy, I had no experience other than what I could remember from my childhood. You see, we’ve always adopted, so we never really raised puppies. Thankfully we live in a world where YouTube exists and the Internet it abundant with information so that made my experience a lot easier.

Our first night with Mugen, our puppy, was tough. We didn’t have a crate for him, so the first couple of weeks he was “crated” in an oversized box with the top cut off. It had a blanket and puppy pads lining the bottom. The first night he was away from his dog mama he cried himself to sleep in his new home. As the week went on it got easier and he stopped crying. He soon realized that this was his place and we were giving him all of the attention he could ever ask for. Eventually we moved him into a borrowed crate for sleeping, but ultimately we decided that crating wasn’t a direction we wanted to go. As soon as he was potty trained and old enough, we stopped using the crate. We raised Mugen with training from the very start, but the most important part of our journey was trust. We had a couple of mishaps where he chewed the corner of the TV stand or found something he wasn’t supposed to have. Eventually he learned not to chew anything, but his toys and we could leave him alone in the house without any property damage. I’ve always lived in a household where crating wasn’t a thing with our dogs, but I understand why people choose to do it.

From the very start we began training him to sit, stay, heel and walk on his leash properly. Corgis tend to be very food motivated so they can learn pretty easily through the use of training treats. We also used a clicker for the first year of training, he doesn’t usually need it unless he’s not getting some aspect of the training. A clicker is a useful tool to help your dog understand the things a little better.  To this day we are always teaching him new things, training is very important and practicing a few times a week to keep it fresh is key to success. There are so many training resources online that are available for free so I simply trained Mugen on my own. Keep in mind that all dogs are different and will require various amounts of time, consistency and practice to learn their training. Don’t hesitate to take a training class or put your dog through 3rd party training if that’s easier for you.

Socialization with large/small dogs based on the personality of your dog. Since corgis are “big dogs in a small body” they usually fall in the in-between point of size restrictions for dog park sections. The small dog run usually is 25-30lbs and under dogs, where the large dog section at park is above that. Depending on the size and temperament of your corgi, you’ll have to make that decision. Most days our corgi tends to play with dogs between 45lbs to 100lbs and is very aware of not getting trampled. Use your best judgement when taking your dog to a park, some dogs can be unruly, both large and small.

However, before you go taking your puppy to your local corgi meetup or dog parks, there are a few basics you need to know. From the training side of things, you should be able to recall or tell your dog to leave something alone that you don’t want them eating. The most important part is vaccinations, make sure your puppy is fully vaccinated before you take them out into the world. Your puppy can catch all manner of things from other dogs and nature. It’s imperative that they don’t go out until at least a week after their first and final shot of their vaccinations. Your local vet will be able to assist you in finding out what initial vaccinations you need for your puppy.

Since corgis have a tendency to be extremely food motivated, they can be easily overfed. Finding the right food for our extremely active “energizer-corg” took us a really long time. When we first started out, he was on a different food and I wasn’t in love with it. Eventually we found a proper diet combination with the help of a vet recommendation. What we found is that when he went through the awkward puppy to adult phase, we needed to massively increase his food in a short period of time. We thought he had finished growing, but then he went from 25 lbs to 35lbs in a few months. Keeping in mind that Mugen is an unusually large corgi, we found that we had to supplement his high activity with some higher calorie food. This part of raising a puppy will be different for everyone, but a rule of thumb is to start following the serving sizes on your dog food bag and then adjust according to your dog’s activity/size.

I learned a lot about Mugen and myself through our adventures in raising a corgi puppy. Sure we had frustrating moments, but we think we raised a fun loving puppy into a healthy active dog. My experience will differ from others I’m sure, but I felt that by sharing our story, it might help those who are confused about raising a corgi puppy. Of all of the dogs that I’ve had in my life, there weren’t any with a personality quite like my corgi and I am so very thankful to have him in my life.


What we’re your experiences with raising your corgi puppy? Are you planning on getting a corgi puppy? Let us know in the comments below!


More Corgi Things:

shop-icon  facebook-icon  instagram-icon

2 thoughts on “Corgis 101: Raising Your Corgi Puppy, the Basics

  1. Sandra says:

    My big 5 0 is next month and my husband surprised me with an early birthday gift for my daughter and I. Toby has now been with us for two days. He’s a doll. I slept great the first night and we improvised a laundry basket into a sleeping crate and placed him right next to my bed.

  2. Sharon says:

    I owned a beautiful Corgi (Humphrey Bogart) for 15 years. He passed away one and a half years ago and now I am ready to own another sweet Corgi! I have already met him and have gone to see him twice. I have chosen the name Tucker for him and will be able to bring him home in three weeks, after he has had all of his puppy shots. I can’t wait! I already have his bed and MANY toys and chew things and of course food. Do you think he will be a pampered little doggie?? LOL

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *