Temperament in the Cardigan Welsh Corgi
by Jean Georgiou, Rhossili Cardigan Welsh Corgis, N.S.W., Australia
The temperament of the Cardigan Welsh Corgi is described as alert, intelligent, steady, not shy or aggressive.
The temperament of the Pembroke Welsh Corgi is described as outgoing and friendly, never nervous or aggressive
The common denominator of the Standard of both breeds is that shyness or aggressiveness is not permitted.
Aggressiveness is not naturally found in the temperament of the Cardigan and it rarely becomes evident in the breed. However, shyness is sometimes found in the breed in Australia as well as other countries of the world. No matter what other attributes shy dogs possess, it is the responsibility of breeders to ensure that such dogs are not used in breeding programs and it is also the responsibility of judges to be familiar with the breed standard and to penalize any dogs found in the ring lacking the correct temperament.
It should be remembered that the temperament of the Cardigan Welsh Corgi is required to be "steady" as well as a alert and intelligent. A dog with a steady temperament makes a satisfying dog to show and a delight to have as a companion. Nothing is more off-putting to the owner/exhibitor or to spectators at the ring side than to see any dog, be it Cardigan Welsh Corgi or any other breed, cringing around the ring, fear reflected in the eyes, tail tucked between the legs, afraid of everything and everybody. The Cardigan is a bright, outgoing, highly intelligent dog and should reflect these qualities in his alertness and desire to please both as a show dog and a companion dog.
Having this in mind though, it must also be said that the Cardigan can also be a very frustrating animal as far as the show ring is concerned and many a breeder has found to their great regret that an alert, bold and confident dog at home, can become an exasperating dullard in the show ring with little or no interest in the proceedings and driving the handler to distraction.
This should not be taken as a poor temperament. Breeders have found throughout the years that some Cardigans quickly become bored with the show ring and it is better to retire such dogs than to persevere.
Thankfully, Australian breeders are not required to subject their dogs to a temperament test before being eligible to exhibit them. In fact mostly the Cardigan Welsh Corgi in Australia has an excellent reputation for it's wonderful temperament and puppies are constantly in demand as companion dogs.
It is in the interests of breeders everywhere that the temperament aspect of the breed standard be kept in mind when choosing breeding stock, thereby ensuring that our breed will always be held in high regard both on the pet market and in the show ring.