Online club entry service now available! See News section for details.

I Accept

United Kennel Club (UKC) is an international dog registry celebrating bonds, rewarding ability, and preserving the value of a pedigree. We use cookies to capture information such as IP addresses and tailor the website to our clients' needs. We also use this information to target and measure promotional material. Please see our Privacy Policy for more information.

Skip to main content
Facebook Instagram Subscribe to E-news YouTube

Pembroke Welsh Corgi

Herding Dog Group

The goals and purposes of this breed standard include: to furnish guidelines for breeders who wish to maintain the quality of their breed and to improve it; to advance this breed to a state of similarity throughout the world; and to act as a guide for judges.

Breeders and judges have the responsibility to avoid any conditions or exaggerations that are detrimental to the health, welfare, essence and soundness of this breed, and must take the responsibility to see that these are not perpetuated.

Any departure from the following should be considered a fault, and the seriousness with which the fault should be regarded should be in exact proportion to its degree and its effect upon the health and welfare of the dog and on the dog’s ability to perform its traditional work.


The Pembroke is one of two Welsh Corgi breeds, the other being the Cardigan. Several theories exist regarding the origin of these very old breeds, one being that they were brought to Wales by the Celts. Another theory is that they are descended from the Swedish Vallhunds, which were crossed with the local Welsh herding dogs. The Pembroke is a herding dog, originally used to drive cattle to pasture.

The United Kennel Club recognized the Pembroke Welsh Corgi in 1959.

General Appearance

The Pembroke Welsh Corgi gives the impression of substance and stamina in a small space by virtue of its low-set, strong, sturdy build. It is an alert, active breed, bold in outlook.


Outgoing and friendly. Workman-like. Never nervous or aggressive.


The head is foxy in shape and appearance.


The fairly wide skull is flat between the ears. The stop is moderate. The cheeks are very slightly rounded, not filled in below the eyes.


The foreface is nicely chiseled, forming a somewhat tapered muzzle. The distance from the occiput to the center of the stop is greater than the distance measured from the stop to the nose tip. The proportions for these measurements are five parts of the total distance being delegated to the skull and three parts to the foreface. The lips are black and are tight, with little or no fullness.


A full complement of strong, white teeth meet in a scissors bite, with the inner side of the upper incisors touching the outer side of the lower incisors.

Serious Faults: Undershot or overshot bites.


The medium size eyes are oval in shape. Eye color is brown, blending with the color of the coat.

Faults: Black-, yellow- or bluish-colored eyes.


The black nose is fully pigmented.


The firm, medium size ears are erect, tapering slightly to a rounded point. They are mobile, reacting sensitively to sounds. Ideally, an equilateral triangle is formed when a line is drawn from the nose tip, through the eyes, to the ear tips and across.

Serious Faults: Button, rose or drop ears.
Faults: Bat ears. Small, catlike ears. Overly large, weak ears. Hooded ears. Ears carried too high or too low.


The fairly long neck is of sufficient length to provide overall balance. It is slightly arched and clean, blending well into the shoulders.

Faults: Short neck. Long, thin neck. Ewe neck.


The long shoulder blades are well laid back and form an angle with the upper arm of nearly 90 degrees. The shoulder blades and upper arms are approximately equal in length.


The forelegs are short and as straight as is possible with ample bone that is carried right down to the feet. The elbows fit close to the body. They are well set back, allowing a perpendicular line to be drawn from the tip of the shoulder blade, through the elbow, to the ground.

Serious Faults: Weak pasterns. Knuckling over.


The body is medium length, not short coupled, with well-sprung ribs that taper slightly when viewed from above. The distance measured from the withers to the base of the tail should be approximately 40% greater than the distance measured from the withers to the ground. The chest is broad and deep, well let down between the forelegs. Topline is level and does not fall away at the croup.

Faults: Any exaggerated lowness of the chest that interferes with freedom of movement. Lack of brisket. Extreme body length. Cobbiness.


Strong and flexible, well angulated at the stifle.


Short, with ample bone carried right down to the feet. Rear pasterns are parallel when viewed from behind.

Faults: Exaggerated angulation. Too little angulation. Barrel hocks. Cow hocks.


The two center toes of the oval-shaped feet are slightly longer than the two outer toes. The arched feet have short nails and strong pads and turn neither in nor out.

Faults: Too round, too long and narrow, splayed feet.


Short, either a natural bob or docked. A full length natural tail is set on line with the topline, and may be carried out behind the dog, straight up perpendicular to the back or curved over the back in a graceful sickle.

Faults: A tail that is curled tightly and carried on the back; a straight tail that snaps flat against the back.


Medium length and straight, double, with good texture to the outer coat. The overall length varies, with a slightly longer and thicker ruff found around the neck, chest and on the shoulders. The hair on the body lies flat. The hair on the back of the forelegs and underparts is slightly longer, and is somewhat longer and fuller on the rear of the hindquarters. A seasonal lack of undercoat is not to be severely penalized, providing the hair is glossy and healthy. The Pembroke Welsh Corgi is shown in natural condition. No trimming is permitted except to tidy the feet and, if desired, to remove the whiskers.

Very Serious Faults: Fluffies - an extremely long coat that has exaggerated feathering on the ears, chest, legs and feet, underparts and hindquarters. The trimming of this type of coat does not make it any more acceptable.
Serious Faults: A wiry, tightly marcelled coat. An overly short, smooth, thin coat.


Acceptable outer coat colors include the self colors of red, sable, fawn, black and tan; with or without white markings. White on the legs, chest, neck (either in part or as a collar), muzzle, underparts and as a narrow blaze is acceptable.

Very Serious Faults: Whitelies: white body color, with red or dark markings. Mismarks: self-colored dogs with any area of white on the back between the withers and tail, on the sides between the elbows and the back of the hindquarters, or on the ears. Black dogs with white markings, but no tan trim. Bluies: any colored portion of the coat that has a distinct bluish or smoky cast. This coloring is associated with extremely light or blue eyes and liver or gray eye rims, nose and lip pigment.
Disqualification: Albinism.

Height & Weight

Height, measured from the highest point of the withers to the ground, should be 10 to 12 inches.

Weight is in proportion to size, but is not to exceed 30 pounds for dogs and 28 pounds for bitches. In ideal working condition, the preferred medium size dog, with correct bone and substance, weighs approximately 24 to 27 pounds, with bitches weighing approximately 22 to 25 pounds.

Serious Faults: Oversized or undersized (toy-like) dogs or bitches.


Free, smooth movement is of utmost importance. The forelegs reach well forward without too much lift. The long, free stride is allowed by a correct shoulder assembly and well-fitted elbows. The hind legs drive well under the body, moving in line with the forelegs. The hocks turn neither in or out.

When viewed from the front, the legs do not move in exact parallel planes; they incline slightly inward to compensate for the characteristic shortness of the legs and chest width. The feet travel parallel to the line of motion with no tendency to swing out, cross over or interfere.

Serious Faults: Short, choppy movement. Rolling or high stepping gait. Close or overly wide coming or going.


(A dog with a Disqualification must not be considered for placement in a conformation event, and must be reported to UKC.)
Unilateral or bilateral cryptorchid.
Viciousness or extreme shyness.

The docking of tails and cropping of ears in America is legal and remains a personal choice. However, as an international registry, the United Kennel Club is aware that the practices of cropping and docking have been forbidden in some countries. In light of these developments, the United Kennel Club feels that no dog in any UKC event, including conformation, shall be penalized for a full tail or natural ears.

UKC Breed Standards: Pembroke Welsh Corgi

Looking for a Dog?

Find a dog that will fit your family.

Note: The breeders on this list are not endorsed by UKC.

Official UKC Breed Standard

Revised January 1, 2008

©Copyright 1992, United Kennel Club