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 am always inundated with Corgi exhibitors everywhere I go. Maybe they talk on chat lines or something as the word seems to spread like wildfire and there always appear to be 10 times more Corgi (Pembroke and Cardigan) coat enquiries than anything else!
The major dilemma with most exhibitors is that they want 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 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 – dilute 1 tbspn to 1 cup warm water and saturate this through the topline and leave in. Both work well to smooth the coat but both do slightly different things in this instance. Volumising Cream will give more texture but the Swishy will straighten.
Nonetheless, a major factor is the blow drying process itself. 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 Regular and with the flat of your hand or the brush, push the coat in the opposite direction of the growth pattern. The coat is now to be blow dried forwards and slightly diagonally – almost like a herringbone pattern – towards the head. Switch to a half bristle/half plastic, oval cushion, Plush Puppy Anti Stat 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 a coarser or harsher outer coat and penalises a fluffy coat. Thus, one should 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 will flatten and soften.
Let’s start at the beginning – the bathing stage, where you need to decide whether you want just shine or more coat etc. Double coated breeds often don’t have enough undercoat due to shedding or you may want a fuller silhouette. If it is more coat, then use 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, use Plush Puppy All Purpose Shampoo used at the same dilution rate. Plush Puppy Herbal Whitening Shampoo can be used for white areas at 5:1 dilution. For stained whites use Plush Puppy Deep Cleansing Shampoo. These products are very outcome oriented so you can tweak the coat in individual areas.
Now the alternative procedure for hydrating and keeping the coat supple without softness is to oil. Use instead, Plush Puppy Seabreeze Oil at a dilution rate of 1 tbspn to 1 gal/4lt 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 but gives great shine & healthy vigour to the coat with softening. Apply this mix straight after the coat has been shampooed and towel dried and leave the oil in the coat. Use Plush Puppy Revivacoat between shows for moisturising the coat and protection.
Then the drying process – decide whether you want more volume and texture and if so, use Plush Puppy Volumising Cream diluted 1 tbspn to 1 cup water and apply & dry. If straightening is required, then use the Swishy Coat at 1 tbspn to 1 cup – 2 cups of water as instructed above depending on how much straightening is needed. The more water, the less intensive it will be. Please ensure you apply evenly and don’t waste it! Diluting with water makes it easier to get through this quite thick coat and doesn’t leave it lying on the top layers only where it would not be as effective. Dry all forwards towards the head as outlined previously.
For those who want a little more harshness to the coat for an all weather texture, use when drying, a few light sprays of Plush Puppy Ruffy Tuffy Coat Spray or when dry, Plush Puppy Powder Puff Terrier. Ruffy Tuffy will give a light amount of texture and the Powder Puff a lot of texture. Apply when coat is dry by dipping Plush Puppy Anti Stat Brush into tub and tap two or three times to remove excess and flick with edge of brush through an area of the coat and repeat where needed. This REALLY hardens up a coat so go easy and you can apply more if you need to.
For finishing, use Plush Puppy Coverup Cream applied with a barely damp sponge and lightly patted on to any stained feet or the face etc and then finish with chalk/powder to dry fast and brush out or blow out before ringtime if needed. 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 best potential to catch the light and make the coat shimmer. Just before going in the ring spray with Plush Puppy Shine & Comb – hold at least 12 inches away and wipe lightly with your hand for 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.