Both the Cardigan and Pembroke Welsh Corgis are some of the most popular dog breeds for families in America. They’re lively, energetic, intelligent and affectionate. But are Corgis good with kids?
Yes, Corgis are good with children if provided the proper obedience and socialization training. Because of their strong herding instincts, Corgis can be strong-willed and nip at the heels of kids. With that said, they’re not recommended for families with small children or toddlers.
If you’re looking to bring home a Corgi, then this is for you. Here’s the ultimate guide to raising Corgis with children.
RECOMMENDED: The Pembroke Welsh Corgi Guide
Table of Contents
The Corgi’s Temperament
Though both Cardigan and Pembroke Welsh Corgis are simply family pets today, they still retain the fierce work ethic and herding instincts of their ancestors.
Corgis are relatively small dogs, but have big personalities, or so it seems. They’re full of energy and enthusiasm. For this reason, they require a ton of training to mesh with a modern household.
Because they’re some of the smartest dogs in the world, they take obedience training very well. You’ll have no problem with housebreaking and tricks/commands.
But because of their high dog IQ, they require a lot of mental stimulation. Without it, you can experience a rowdy and destructive Corgi. That’s something that all parents do not want around their children.
When properly trained, Corgis are some of the most affectionate and lovable dog breeds. They’re not just adorable, but also love being involved in family activities. These sociable dogs love being the center of attention.
All of these qualities make them excellent family dogs and fantastic playmates for older kids. Keep them in check and they’ll be endearing pets for years to come!
Why Corgis Are Great With Kids
Corgis are not your typical fur balls. They may be short and stubby, but they’re amazing dogs that can easily get along with kids within the family.
These dogs are great with children because of their naturally affectionate personalities. Whether with an adult, senior or kid, a Corgi will develop a strong bond with the family members.
So if you’re concerned how your Corgi may react to children, you shouldn’t be worried. Here are the top reasons why Corgis and kids will get along.
High Energy Levels
Corgis are, without a doubt, dogs that have high energy levels. Coming from the herding dog group, Corgis need the energy to keep up with cattle on the farms.
Why is this a good thing? If you’re a parent, you already know how active and energetic kids can be. Having a dog to match the liveliness of children makes them fantastic playmates for them.
Corgis are naturally playful dogs that love nothing more than to run and play with humans. If you’re anything like me, keeping up with an energetic dog can be tiring.
So, with the friendly help of children, you’ll easily meet your Corgis necessary daily physical activity requirement!
Small Dogs for Children
Make no mistake, not all energetic dog breeds are a good fit for children. If you have an active large dog breed, the combination can certainly lead to mishaps.
Most dogs aren’t inherently aggressive and won’t attack people for no reason. However, an energetic dog that weighs 100 pounds can easily unintentionally knock over a child.
This is where Corgis make the ideal playmate. Weighing between 22 and 30 pounds, the Corgi is without doubt a small dog breed.
The chances of this small dog knocking over, or accidentally hurting, a 7 year old child is much more unlikely than with a 70 pound Dalmatian.
When bringing back a dog breed into a household with kids, it’s always a better idea to choose a small dog. Take your pick, there are tons of them!
Affectionate Corgis for Kids
According to the AKC (and personal experience), both the Pembroke and Cardigan Welsh Corgis are affectionate dogs.
Giving children the opportunity to grow up with dogs is one of the best things you can do for them. So, why not pick an affectionate dog, such as the Corgi?
One owner tells us about her Corgi’s affection towards infants, saying:
Edmond (the Corgi) is just a natural around babies. My girlfriend’s nephew is less than a year old and he loves him. He doesn’t nibble, only gives him kisses and loves running around him (he can’t really crawl yet). I think dogs sometimes recognize an infant, no matter what species.
Corgis are fantastic companions for children and adult alike. There’s a reason why Pembrokes are consistently in the top 20 dog breeds list for families in America.
However, if you do decide to bring home a Corgi to your household, there are things to consider. Making the child-dog relationship successful requires a bit of work on your (the parent) part.
Pitfalls of Raising Kids With Corgis
Not all Corgis are the same. Some are naturally gentle around children, while others are a bit more aggressive.
These are the potential dangers and difficulties of raising kids with Corgis. Not all may apply to you and your situation, but they are certainly things to consider when raising these dogs.
As you may already know, both Corgi breeds are herding dogs. This means they were bred to instinctively move cattle around on a farm.
This is their instinctively intelligence, or rather, their innate ability or special skill set. The problem is that most Corgis don’t need to herd livestock anymore. They’re just family dogs.
But just because they don’t herd anymore doesn’t mean they don’t still possess the instincts to do so. With that said, they’re likely to herd small children.
One Pembroke Welsh Corgi owner tells us this exactly:
They herd. Our Corgi occasionally nipped our kids and their friends ankles. They knocked down little ones. I personally wouldn’t Corgis with young kids again, it was better when the children were older.
This type of behavior is hard to avoid. However, it is possible to suppress this instinct with the proper obedience training and socialization.
Keep in mind that it’s nearly impossible to completely train this behavior out of them. You just need to be able to differentiate aggressive behavior from normal herding behavior.
If you’re a brand new parent, you have fresh knowledge of how sensitive infants and toddlers can be to loud sounds. Corgis are not a good fit with babies.
A Corgi will bark at anything and everything. This can mean the slightest sound from outside, the door bell, sounds from the TV or if they’re just bored.
Herding dogs naturally have a loud and deep bark. They need this trait to draw the attention of the sheep, cattle and whatever livestock.
Because Corgis are small herding dogs, the loud, deep bark is even more crucial!
Bottom line is, if you have a baby in the family, I would not recommend any herding dog breed, including Corgis.
Preparing the Home for a Corgi
If you are still planning to bring home a Corgi to your house with kids, then have no worries! It’s still very possible to establish a great relationship between the dog and children.
However, there are steps and precautions to take before bringing the dog home or letting them interact with one another.
Training the Kids
Yes, you read right. The first thing to do, even before you bring back a Corgi, is to train your kids on how to interact with the dog.
Corgis, like most dogs, can experience stress or anxiety. Combined with the fact that they’re relatively small dogs, they can easily become stressed over rowdy and rough kids.
The children need to have rules too. The first rule they should follow is to be gentle with the dog at all times.
This includes screaming and yelling around the dog. Corgis can be sensitive dogs and may possibly respond with more barking.
I’ve personally seen kids trying to ride my Corgi and tugging on their long, erect ears. This is a big no, and can potentially cause the dog to respond aggressively.
Another rule I would suggest is to leave the Corgi alone while they are eating their treats and meals.
Corgis love food, and they’re prone to being food aggressive especially if you’re not the perceived dominant leader of the house. And, they certainly won’t view the children that way.
These are the two rules I would establish initially. Each Corgi is different and new rules will be implemented as you get to know your dog.
As soon as you bring back your Corgi, you should start obedience training almost immediately.
Both Corgis are very bright dogs with a good work ethic. They will likely take obedience training very well. Plus, they’re learn fairly quickly too!
When it comes to obedience training, let your kids get involved! As long as they’re old enough, this is a great opportunity for the kids to establish some dominance with the dog.
Certain basic commands and words, such as come, sit, get–off, stop and no are fantastic things to teach your Corgi.
And because they’re a very food-driven dog breed, training with treats is extremely easy with them.
Remember that obedience training is absolutely necessary, especially with a herding dog breed. Make time to do this daily to keep these dogs in check.
If you want your Corgi to be comfortable and friendly around children, the best way is through socialization. These dogs need to meet as many friendly kids as possible.
The best time to do this is early on in puppyhood. The earlier you start, the more likely they’ll develop an affinity towards children.
Socialization can be provided in many ways. For example, you can invite your children’s friends over to play with the dog.
On weekends, why not take your Corgi to the dog park where other dogs and kids play? Parks are an excellent place for your dog to socialize!
Just make sure to assess your dog’s mood. If they’re not feeling very social in that moment, never force them to play.
Take socialization as slow as necessary. When introducing your children to the Corgi, make sure there are no sudden big moves or noises.
With these tips, you’ll have your children and Corgi ready for each other in no time. It’s definitely going to be a working process, but it’s well worth the patience and commitment.
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