Corgi, Pembroke & Cardigan
I get to meet a lot of people in my travels and adore talking to Corgi exhibitors as they are, for the most, as friendly and engaging as their dogs. I have been inundated with Corgi exhibitors on this last trip to Crufts and the Maybe they have all been on chat lines or something as the word seemed to spread like wildfire and there appeared to be 10 times more Corgi (Pembroke and Cardigan) coat enquiries than anything else!
The major dilemma with most exhibitors was that they wanted to rid their dogs of the wavy areas on the toplines near the tail. The standard does accept some waviness but it is preferable to have a straighter coat. I recommend using the Plush Puppy Swishy Coat if the wave needs to be relaxed or Plush Puppy Volumising Cream if the coat is a touch softer than called for. Both work well to smooth the coat but both do slightly different things in this instance. The Volumising Cream will give more texture but the Swishy will straighten better.
Nontheless, the major factor is the blow drying process itself. Whilst I did see some coats that needed help with a product, the major factor is the direction in which the coat is blow dried. To straighten a wavy topline, simply use a Plush Puppy Pin Brush or the flat of your hand and push the coat in the opposite direction of the growth pattern. The coat is now to be blow dried forwards - towards the head. Switch to a half bristle/half plastic, oval cushion, Plush Puppy Porcupine Brush and finish off for a smoother straighter finish. Once the dog shakes and the coat falls back into line, the coat will now be straighter or perfectly straight if you have done it well.
The other issue arising with the Corgi’s coat is the texture. The standards call for coarser or harsher outer coat and penalises a fluffy coat. Thus, one needs to avoid anything that will cause softening or fluffiness. (Not to be confused with some fullness where required.) Now the trick is to not use a conditioner as such. Conditioners are acid balanced and tend to flatten and soften.
Let’s start at the bathing stage where you need to decide whether you want just shine or more coat. Double coated breeds often don’t have enough undercoat due to shedding. If it is more coat, then use the Plush Puppy Body Building Shampoo at a ratio of 3:1 ( 3 parts water to one part shampoo). Should you require shine as your primary objective, then use the Plush Puppy All Purpose Shampoo used at the same dilution rate. Plush Puppy Herbal Whitening Shampoo can be used for legs etc. For stained whites use the Plush Puppy Deep Cleansing Shampoo.
Now the alternative procedure for hydrating and keeping the coat supple without softness is to oil. Use the wonderful Plush Puppy Seabreeze Oil at a dilution rate of 1 tbspn to one gallon or 4 litres of water. This oil is amazing and is all natural and made from Evening Primrose Oil, Calendula Oil and other natural fine oils. It is water soluble and will not make the coat greasy or gluggy. Apply this mix straight after the coat has been shampooed and towel dried and leave the oil in the coat. This gives a wonderful, healthy shine and vigour to the coat.
Then the drying process - decide whether you want more volume and texture and if so, use the Volumising Cream at 1 tbspn to 1 cup water and apply and dry. If more straightening is required, then use the Swishy Coat at 1 tbspn to 2 or 3 cups of water depending on how much straightening is needed. The more water, the less intensive it will be. You can apply this direct from the jar to the coat but please ensure you apply evenly and don’t waste it! I find diluting with water makes it easier to get through this quite thick coat and doesn’t leave it lying on the top layers only.
Dry all forwards towards the head as outlined previously. For those who want a little more harshness to the coat for that all weather feel nothing beats our Plush Puppy Ruffy Tuffy for instantly adding texture and hardness. Just spray on and blow dry or brush dry.
For finishing use the Plush Puppy Coverup Cream dabbed on to any stained feet or the face etc and then finish with a chalk block and brush out or blow out. Follow with a light sprinkle of Plush Puppy Pixie Dust onto the brush or sifted carefully through the hands onto the pants and topline. A light hand with this product is the key to making this work to it’s best potential to catch the light and make the coat shimmer. Just before going in the ring spray Plush Puppy Shine & Comb - hold at least 12 inches away and then wipe lightly with your hand for an even shine.
I do like this breed - both varieties. They are a great little spitz dog and have such fabulous personalities. It is no small thing that royalty has served to make the Corgis a well known dog amongst the public and given everyone the opportunity to see them. They may be small but they can make a huge ring impact and the show scene owes much to the presence of the Corgis.
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