Corgi Colors: The Standard & Rare Corgi Coat Colors

Last Updated on April 21, 2023

Corgis are long, low-set dogs with short legs, a deep chest, and a fluffy tail. They are athletic, intelligent dogs with a lot of stamina.

These dogs were often used to help farmers herd and move their cattle. Corgis are faithful, alert, vigilant, and trainable guardians that love kids and being outdoors.

Different colors of Pembroke Welsh Corgi dog

They stand between 10.5 and 12.5 inches (26.6 cm and 31.7 cm) at the withers, and the males weigh between 30 and 38 pounds (13.6 and 17.2 kg), while females weigh between 25 and 34 pounds (11.3 and 15.4 kg).

And while you might think that the Corgi only comes in one color, this gorgeous breed comes in a wide variety of shades.

And with two different types of Corgis, the Pembroke and the Cardigan, each breed has specific colors. You’ll be spoilt for choice!

In this article, we’ll unpack the various Corgi colors to help you determine which is the right one for you?

How Do Corgi Color Genetics Work?

The color in Corgi dogs is created by two pigments like in any other dog breed. These are eumelanin and pheomelanin.

Pheomelanin is responsible for the red shades in the coat, while eumelanin puts the black on the coat, eyes, and nose.

Eight dominant and recessive genes affect the coat color, indicating to the cells to produce eumelanin, pheomelanin, or no pigment at all.

Darker or lighter shades are affected by the amount of pigment produced, and dogs with no pigment have white coats or blue eyes.

What is a tri-colored Corgi?

Pembroke Welsh Corgi puppy in blanket
A Pembroke Welsh Corgi puppy in a blanket

A tri-colored Corgi indicates that the pup’s coat contains three different shades. Usually, the primary color is black, with the others considered minor colors.

There are a few varieties of tri-color colors. This makes the dogs look very impressive, individual, and outstanding.

Do their coats change colors as they age?

Yes, Corgi puppies are usually born with a darker coat which becomes lighter as they grow older. They might also have markings at birth, which can blend or disappear as your dog grows.

What are the Different Colors of a Pembroke Welsh Corgi?

The four standard colors for the Pembroke Welsh Corgi are black and tan, fawn, red, and sable. You also get black and red-headed tri-color dogs and different markings within this.

1. Black and Tan

A black and tan Pembroke Welsh Corgi
Source: @elliethecorgo / IG

The black and tan Pembroke Welsh Corgi has a tan or light brown coat with black coloring on top of his head, across his ears, and around his eyes. This makes him look somewhat like a raccoon.

2. Fawn

There are no black areas on the Fawn Pembroke Welsh Corgi except for the black nose.

A fawn Pembroke Welsh Corgi dog
Portrait of a fawn Pembroke Welsh Corgi dog

This guy is mainly beige, with lighter and darker areas on the coat. The paws and underbelly are white.

3. Red

A red Pembroke Welsh Corgi dog
Source: @corgi_kitty_clique / IG

The red Corgi is quite a beautiful color. A red Pembroke Welsh Corgi has a red coat without black hair or spots. The nose of this Corgi will be black, while the underbelly and paws are usually white.

4. Sable

A sable Pembroke Welsh Corgi
Source: @quintalthecorgi / IG

The sable Pembroke Welsh Corgi has the most unique coat color of them all. Its coat is a mixture of red, brown, and black.

Sable Corgis are often marked with black arches over their eyes and down towards their muzzle, which is referred to as a widow’s peak. The patches in their coats are brown and chestnut in color.

What are the other colors of a Pembroke Welsh Corgi?

Black and Tan Pembroke Corgis are found in both red-headed and black-headed versions. A way of telling which one of the two the puppy will turn out to be is to look at the ears.

Red inside tips point to a red-headed tri, and black inside tips will become a black-headed tri.

Red-Headed Tri-Color: It’s often referred to as a red saddleback because the black color on his back looks like a saddle.

For these dogs to be recognized as a true red-headed-tri-color, the color across the ears, around the eyes, and on top of their heads should be red.

A red-headed tri-color Pembroke Welsh Corgi
Source: @marsbarscorgi / IG

Black-Headed Tri-Color: The black-headed tri-color Pembroke Welsh Corgi has tan markings across his body and face. His undercoat may be tan, but most of his topcoat is black.

A black-headed tri-color Pembroke Welsh Corgi
Source: @elliethecorgo / IG

What are the Different Colors of a Cardigan Welsh Corgi?

Cardigan Welsh Corgis come in various shades. This typically includes a color mixed with white. So you can get black and white, red and white, brindle and white, sable and white, or merle and white.

1. Black and White

A black and white Cardigan Welsh Corgi
Source: @nori_thecardi / IG

The Black and White Cardigan Welsh Corgi looks like a Border Collie with short legs.

That said, it is almost impossible to find a wholly Black and White Corgi because when looking carefully, you will likely find tiny markings of other colors too.

2. Blue Merle and White

A blue merle and white Cardigan Welsh Corgi
Source: @gimlathecorgi / IG

The Blue Merle and White Cardigan Corgi’s color appears marbled with gray and black or even grey with piebald pattern black patches. Because of their uniqueness and rarity in color, they are sought after.

These guys may also have blue-colored or different-colored eyes. Instead of the black nose, they can also have pink patches on their nose, which is not allowed in any other color of Corgis.

3. Brindle and White

A brindle and white Cardigan Welsh Corgi
Close-up portrait of a brindle and white Cardigan Welsh Corgi dog

The Brindle and White Cardigan Welsh Corgi is another popular but rarer coat color. The base color may be black, red, or yellow, overlaid with a brindle stripe pattern or marking on their fur.

4. Red and White

A red and white Cardigan Welsh Corgi
Source: @_putilova_anna_ / IG

Red and White Cardigan Corgis are primarily red with white patches. They have black noses, and their underbellies are covered with white fur. Little to no black markings are to be found on their fur.

5. Sable and White

A sable and white Cardigan Welsh Corgi
Source: @super.nova.assistancedog / IG

The Sable and White Cardigan Corgi is a mixture of red, brown, and black, depending on their genetics. They may also have the widow’s peak and are usually darker in color on the back and shoulders.

What are the other colors of a Cardigan Welsh Corgi?

Some rarer variations of the Cardigan Welsh Corgi are also accepted by the American Kennel Club, although they are not standard colors for the breed. These include the following.

  • Gray and White
  • Liver and White
  • Sable Merle and White
  • White Merle
  • Brindle Merle and White
  • Red Merle and White

Corgi Coat Marking and Patterns

According to the American Kennel Club, the Pembroke Welsh Corgi can only have white markings on their coat. The white patches, specks, or ticks on the dog’s coat differ from the base color.

Two Corgis with white markings
Source: @ljs2918 / IG

Most Corgis have white markings on their body. These are typically found on the muzzle, the underbelly, and the tail. They can also be present on the inside of the legs.

Pure white Corgis are extremely rare and are not albino but rather fawn-colored dogs with really light pigmentation.

On the other hand, a Cardigan Welsh Corgi may display several different markings on his fur. These can be all over the body or specific to certain areas, such as his points (feet and tail) or face.

A brindle Cardigan Welsh Corgi dog
Source: @lunabearmoon / IG
  • With Ticked Coat: A ticked coat on the Cardigan Welsh Corgi is a pattern of tiny spots that look like holes in the dog’s fur. This type of marking usually occurs with darker colors found on the white parts of the dog’s coat.
  • With Tan Points: Tan points refer to markings on several areas of a Corgi. This may include the muzzle, legs, chest, tail, and eyes. As the name suggests, these points of your dog would then be a light brown or tan color.
  • With Black Mask: When someone says a Corgi has a black mask, they are referring to the black marking on the Corgi’s face, which makes it look like the dog is wearing a mask. The fur on the whole face or just on the muzzle can be black.
  • With Brindle Points: Brindle Points are the name given to a coat color pattern on a brown base color overlaid with dark brown or black stripes. This makes your Corgi look vaguely tiger-like but can also look blotchy in other cases.
  • Black Mask and Ticked: Having a Black Mask and being Ticked means that your Corgi dog has dark face markings as if they are wearing a mask, and on the white parts, they have small spots of colored hair or coat flecks.
  • Brindle Points and Ticked: Brindle Points and Ticked means your Corgi has fancy brindle stripes over his coat with a striking color effect. This is then combined with a pattern of small spots or specks on the white parts of their coats.
  • Tan Points and Ticked: When a Corgi dog has Tan Points and is Ticked, there are markings of tan over different areas of the body, like the ears, paws, and tail, along with small spots that look like holes on the white parts of their fur.

Frequently Asked Questions (FAQs)

A red Corgi sitting in an outdoor lounge
Source: @kubacorgijunior / IG

What is the most common Corgi color?

The Red and White Color Corgi is the most common. The red shade can even differ in strength, and they might even have some black markings as puppies which reduces once they mature.

What is the rarest Corgi color?

A red merle Corgi looking up
Source: @wilco_a_corgi_adventure / IG

The sable color is the rarest of all Corgi dog colors. Many Sable Corgis are sometimes misidentified as Red Corgis because sable is a pattern rather than a color.

Merle-colored Corgis are also rare, especially the red merle, a liver-colored dog with the merle gene.

Do colors affect their behavior?

A happy Pembroke Welsh Corgi dog showing tongue
A happy Pembroke Welsh Corgi dog with a tongue sticking out

Different studies show that dog coat color impacts people’s opinions about their personalities.

For instance, some people see black dogs as more aggressive and scary, but there is no evidence that your Corgi’s temperament is affected by his coat color at all.

Do colors affect their health?

Puppies born from rare colored dogs, for instance, two merle parents, may come with severe medical issues such as deafness, eye defects, or compromised immune systems.

Some skin disorders may also result from inheriting a recessive gene for coat color.

Taking Care of Your Pup’s Coat

A Corgi dog being groomed
A Corgi dog having a haircut at the grooming salon

Because the Corgi’s fur is thick and double coated, they need to be brushed a few times a week to keep them matt-free and looking healthy.

It’s also essential to wash them at least once every six weeks with the special doggy shampoo.

A fish oil supplement added to your dog’s diet can ensure a fluffy and shiny coat. Just be warned that these dogs are heavy shedders, so they are not an excellent choice for pet owners with allergies.

Conclusion: Which Corgi Color Will You Choose?

Corgis, a favorite breed of the Queen, are beloved for their adorable, friendly personalities and equally adorable good looks. They have long bodies, short legs, upright ears, a cheeky grin, and a beautiful fluffy coat.

Tan, fawn, and red are some of the most commonly seen Corgis, but you can also get these dogs in rare merle or brindle-colored coats.

The exact one you choose will depend on which type of puppy you get and what is available in your area.

But no matter which one you pick, you’re guaranteed a spunky, lively little companion who will bring you endless hours of happiness.

Do you have a Corgi at home? What color is your little prince or princess? We would love to hear more about you and your dog in the comments below.

Further reading: Other Dog Breed Color Guide


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