9 Corgi Colors & Markings (With Pictures)
By Emma Braby
Ah, the Corgi. A favorite dog breed amongst the royals and us “ordinary people.” Seriously though, there’s a lot to love about the Corgi, from his little stumpy legs to his thick butt. His big ears and his wide cheeky grin. And if that wasn’t enough to swoon over, his soft fluffy coat is a delight to stroke and enough to keep us warm at night.
AND there are many different Corgi colors to choose from, so you are spoilt for choice.
There are two Corgi breeds, and each has its own set of colors. But it doesn’t matter if he is a Pembroke Corgi or a Cardigan Corgi. Because here in this complete overview, we will run you through everything that you need to know about all the Corgi colors and the differences between them.
And rather than just telling you, we are going to show you—with pictures—because that’s the main reason you’re here, right?
So, let’s dive headfirst into the world of Corgi colors.
Recognized Colors of Corgis
Each Corgi has its own set of colors. Here is a list of the recognized standard colors in each breed.
- Red-headed tri-color
- Black-headed tri-color
The Pembroke Corgi is also sometimes said to have a fifth color, causing some to refer to them as a fawn Corgi, but this is simply a lighter red shade.
All of these colors will have white mixed into his coat.
- Blue Merle
Just like the Pembroke Corgi, the Cardigan’s coat colors all have white thrown into the mix. However, the white should not surround their eyes, nor should it cover more than 50% of their body.
The 5 Different Corgi Colors
Corgi’s come in 5 colors, although these can be mixed and matched into different combinations.
Those 5 Corgi colors are:
Corgi Colors in Pictures
As the saying goes, a picture paints a thousand words. So what better way to explain than to show you all the Corgi colors in pictures.
1. Pembroke Red Corgi
This coat color comes in a variety of red shades, from intense red to a pale red, which is also known as fawn.
Some red Corgi puppies are born with sable markings, but as they grow older, it fades to red. It is tough to tell during puppyhood whether they are a true sable or they will fade, but either way, they are gorgeous.
2. Pembroke Red-Headed Tri-Color Corgi
This Corgi is often referred to as a “red saddleback” because the color across his back is black. And it looks like a saddle.
Here’s a fun fact – Welsh folklore states that Corgi’s carried fairy warriors to battle, and their coat provided a comfy saddle for them to ride.
To be a true red-headed tri-color, the color on the top of his head, across his ears, and around his eyes, must be red. He is allowed a little black frosting on his head, but it shouldn’t overcast the red.
3. Pembroke Black-Headed Tri-Color Corgi
To be a black-headed tri-color, he must have black coloring on top of his head, across his ears, and around his eyes. Making him look like a raccoon.
Also known as a ‘BHT’ in the Corgi world, he has tan markings across his body, including his face. His undercoat may be tan, but the majority of his topcoat is black.
4. Sable Corgi
Sable is a mixture of colors, including red, brown, and black, and it is the most unique coat color of them all. Their back and shoulders are predominantly black, which is known as a black cast.
Sable Corgis often have something that is known as a widow’s peak, which is a black marking that arches over his eyes and down towards his muzzle.
Sometimes their ‘red’ patches are actually brown and chestnut in color.
5. Cardigan Black Corgi
A black Cardigan Corgi is predominantly black with white marks across his body. Corgis with this coat look like miniature Border Collies. Black Corgis can also have flashes of tan across his body.
6. Cardigan Blue Merle Corgi
This is a popular color because of its uniqueness and rarity. This color appears marbled with gray and black, or gray with piebald pattern black patches.
Corgis with this color coat are allowed to have blue colored eyes or different colored eyes. They can also have a butterfly nose rather than the standard black, which is where the nose has pink patches. This is not allowed in any other color Corgi.
7. Cardigan Brindle Corgi
This is another popular coat color. It has a brown base color, which is then overlain with dark brown or black stripes. Often referred to as the tiger coat. Brindle Corgis can have flashes of tan across his body too.
8. Cardigan Red Corgi
Just like the Pembroke red, this Corgi is a mixture of red and white. Their red will range from deep red to light fawn, and again they can sometimes have sable markings as a puppy.
9. Cardigan Sable Corgi
Like the Pembroke sable, the Cardigan sable Corgi is a mixture of red, brown, and black. They can also have the widow’s peak, and their shoulders and back are usually darker in color.
Things to Be Aware Of in Corgi Colors
If you are looking for a “show” Corgi you can enter into American Kennel Club conformation shows, only specific colors can take part. All recognized colors are allowed in companion and performance events.
If having a show Corgi is important to you, be sure to check out the Pembroke Corgi breed standards and the Cardigan Corgi breed standards. Where everything is explained in more detail.
If a breeder offers a Pembroke Corgi with the merle coat, this is not a purebred Pembroke. It is either a hybrid pup mixed with a Cardigan Corgi or another mixed breed altogether. This is a telltale sign that the breeder isn’t reputable or concerned about their puppy’s wellbeing, so avoid them.
A surefire way to distinguish between the Pembroke and the Cardigan is that the Pembroke has a stumpy little tail, whereas the Cardigan has a long one.
Corgi Coat Grooming
Whichever color or breed you decide to pick, they all need the same grooming schedule. Because their coats are thick and double-coated, they require a fair bit of brushing to keep them looking healthy and matt-free.
A de-shedding tool is going to be your best weapon of choice to tackle the Corgi’s fluffy coat. Brush your Corgi every other day, but thankfully this posh pooch loves regular pampering sessions.
To keep your Corgi’s coat healthy, choose a specially designed doggy shampoo (not your own human shampoo!) As they are designed to be gentle enough for his skin and pH levels.
There is the Pembroke Corgi, which is the more popular of the two breeds, and the Cardigan Corgi.
Although their personalities are similar (not identical), they have different colors between them. But, you shouldn’t just base your decision purely on colors, so it is crucial to understand their slightly different characters.
All Corgis are known to be affectionate, smart, and loyal. They are energetic herding dogs, whose party trick is to nip at the heel of cattle. They are loving and devoted but fun and feisty. Full of character, there is never a dull moment with a Corgi around. The difference between the two Corgis is that the Pembroke Corgi is the more outgoing of the two, whereas the Cardigan Corgi is more sensible.
Think of the Cardigan Corgi as the serious dad, and the Pembroke Corgi as the cheeky and mischievous uncle.
And that is everything you need to know about the two different types of Corgis and their own coat colors. We hope you enjoyed reading this guide and seeing all of the beautiful shades of Corgi.
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Featured Image Credit: Vera Reva, Shutterstock