How to groom a Corgi (A complete step by step guide)

Corgi grooming is very essential as it helps to keep the pooch looking great and healthy by taking care of his double coat and other parts of the dog’s body such as the ear, nails, etc. Grooming a Corgi should be done in the right way to avoid causing the Corgi any discomfort. 

Any potential owner of either the Welsh or the Cardigan Corgi should know how to groom him.

Grooming the dog by yourself is beneficial as it not only helps you save money but also strengthens the bond between you and your Corgi.

But as a novice dog owner, grooming can be a daunting task that will need one to learn more about the essential grooming processes and to sharpen the grooming skills.

In this guide, we are going to help you do exactly that, learn how you are supposed to groom a Corgi without having to visit a professional groomer.

So, why don’t we get right into it? 

Give your Corgi a trim

Corgi coat basics

Taking care of Corgi’s coat is one of the most important aspects of Corgi grooming.

But before you learn how to take care of the coat, you must learn what type of coat this dog has.

Corgis are double-coated dogs that have long outer coats and thick but soft undercoats. This coat helps to protect and regulate the dog’s temperature by keeping him warm during winter and cooling him during summer.

For temperature regulation, this dog has to shed seasonally.

A Corgi will shed moderately throughout the year and blow out his coat twice a year, during fall and spring.

Learn more about shedding in dogs and shedding reduction tips.

During the blowout or heavy shedding periods, you should brush this dog more frequently to help get rid of dead hair that would have otherwise ended up in your furniture, beds, or even car.

You may also be required to invest in a good vacuum cleaner for your house.

Benefits of Grooming a Corgi

  1. Improves your dog’s mood and esteem.
  2. Controls the level of shedding.
  3. Helps your dog relax and builds a better bond between you and your Corgi.
  4. Brushing helps improve blood circulation and leaves the coat shinier and healthier.
  5. Grooming helps you detect any signs of illness or infections such as bumps, soars, and so on.

You may also be interested in how to groom a Poodle.

How often should you groom a Corgi?

Brushing: Should be done at least 4 times a week but daily brushing will be required for the heavy shedding seasons.

Bathing: A Corgi should be bathed after every 6 weeks or when is it necessary.

The nails should be trimmed every 2 weeks.

Dental care is also important should be done at least 4 times a week or preferably daily.

The ears should be cleaned weekly.

Never clip a Corgi’s coat as this can destroy the undercoat.

Corgi Grooming

How to Groom a Corgi (Steps)

Grooming tools

  • Greyhound comb
  • Bristle brush
  • Slicker brush
  • Pin brush
  • Hand mint glove
  • Shampoo
  • Towels and dryer
  • Detangling spray
  • Thinning shears
  • Blunt edge scissors
  • Nail clippers
  • Doggie toothbrush and toothpaste
  • Ear cleaning solution and cotton balls

Step 1: Bathing a Corgi

You should bath your Corgi every six weeks unless he has a skin infection and your veterinarian advises you otherwise. 6 weeks is enough to allow for the regeneration of essential coat oils that protect the dog’s skin.

This will be enough to remove dead and loose hair from the undercoat and also get rid of dog odor.

For this, you will need a high-quality shampoo, conditioner, and a place to bathe your Corgi.

You can use a kiddie pool, the bathtub, or an outdoor bathing mat. If the dog has any skin condition, you may be required to use a medicated shampoo that should be recommended by your vet.

Some shampoos may need to be mixed with water according to the instructions. So, don’t forget to read the instructions on how to use the shampoo you buy.

How to bath a Corgi

  1. Brush the coat to remove any knot and tangles before you begin bathing. Bathing your Corgi without getting rid of the tangles can worsen them and make them harder to remove.
  2. Use cotton balls to cover the ears and keep out water or shampoo.
  3. Wet the dog thoroughly making sure no water gets into the ears or eyes.
  4. Pour some shampoo on the dog’s coat (follow the usage guidelines).
  5. Lather the coat using circular finger motions from the top and work your way downwards to the underbelly, legs, and tail.
  6. Rinse the coat thoroughly using clean water and remove all the shampoo.
  7. After thoroughly rinsing the dog, apply some conditioner on the dog’s coat, and gently massage it in. And just like with the shampoo follow the manufacturer’s guidelines on how to use it.
  8. Rinse the dog thoroughly, again using clean water.
  9. Drain or take the dog out of the water and dry him using dry towels. You may be required to use 2 or more towels to get rid of most of the water.
  10. Set your high-velocity blow dryer to low heat and completely dry the Corgi’s coat.

Note: Use a damp cloth or sponge with some shampoo on it to gently but thoroughly clean the Corgi’s face. 

How to groom a Corgi

Step 2: Brushing

Before you begin brushing your Corgi’s coat, you will need to condition it by misting using a detangling spray.

A detangling spray will help to reduce static, make it easier to remove knots and tangles, minimize damage to the coat, rehydrate the coat and to restore the dog’s sheen.

Line brushing is the best brushing technique to use on a double-coated dog such as a Corgi.

This brushing technique helps to brush the coat thoroughly and remove dead fur from the undercoat.

Line brushing is a time-consuming technique but should be done at least once a week with lighter brushing in between.

You will need a slicker brush or pin brush with a greyhound steel comb for this. Low-quality brushes can cause burns to the dog’s skin.

How to line brush a Corgi

Line brushing involves working on small portions/tufts of hair making sure that you reach the skin.

Allow your dog to lie in a relaxed manner on his/her sides before you begin. This only makes your Corgi comfortable but allows you to reach and brush areas such as the chest and the underbelly which are easily neglected during brushing.

Start brushing from the lowest parts of the dog’s body, in this case, the legs, and works your way upwards to the dog’s back. This will help set out a path for brushing.

Part small chunks of hair at a time.

Work on one chunk by brushing using a slicker brush and then go over that section using a steel comb making sure that you are not leaving tangles or knots. Make sure you are reaching the Corgi’s skin.

After you are done with one section, your comb should be able to go through it freely and easily.

Remember to brush under the dog’s legs and tail section after section. Pay more attention to the dog’s underbelly and the back of the rear legs where the coat is thickest.

Turn the Corgi and work on the second side repeating what you did.

After you are done with the whole coat go over it using a slicker brush and brush the in the direction of hair growth.

Dematting tips

Mats can be uncomfortable for your canine friend and can also be used as hiding spots for parasites such as fleas. They can also give your Corgi an unkempt appearance.

The best way to deal with mats is to prevent them from being formed in the first place through regular brushing.

Dematting should be a painless process for your Corgi and should be done before bathing.

You will need to have a de-matting comb or any other de-matting tool you can get your hands on.

Condition the mats first then loosen them using your finger before brushing them out with a de-matting tool.

Some hard mats may be impossible to remove and trying to remove them can be very painful for the Corgi. In this case, you can cut these solid mats using scissors.

Corgi Grooming tips
Adult dog welsh corgi cardigan

Step 3: Trimming the coat

Some Corgi owners make the mistake of shaving this dog’s coat to stop shedding, however, this should not be done as it can be very damaging to the coat.

The coat may take too long to grow back and even fail to grow back correctly.

Another reason this should not be done is that the coat protects the Corgi from the elements and getting rid of it leaves the dog exposed. These dogs have been known to sunburn.

You can, however, give your Corgi a nice trim that will also involve trimming the hairs between using thinning shears.

Also, use the thinning shears to trim the around the butt area, under the tail and the underbelly.

When trimming the fur around the sanitary area you should be gentle, slow and methodical.

Here are some of the top Corgi haircuts.

Modest Corgi Trim

This haircut involves giving you Corgi a very light trim during summer leaving the fur around the dog’s face and ears full while keeping the rest of the coat a bit shorter.

The dog’s fur should not close to the ground as during this period your Corgi will want to have a lot of fun.

Fluff it out

To achieve this look you will need to evenly trim the dog’s coat then line brush the dog’s coat as we explained above.

Leave it natural

Leaving the coat natural is also a great option as a Corgi’s coat will look great without needing a trim.

Step 4: Nail clipping

It may take getting used to this before your Corgi can allow you to trim his.

Condition and sensitize him by constantly touching his paws, praising, and rewarding him every time he allows you to cut his nails.

Long nails can cause harm to the dog’s paws and can be bad for the dog’s overall paw health.

You should also take care not to trim the nails too deep as it can be extremely painful for the dog.

Trim the Corgi’s nails above the quick. You will need to have a quick stop in case you cut the quick.

Corgi nail quick visualization
Corgi nail quick visualization

Step 5: Dental Care

The best way to take care of your Corgi’s teeth is through regular brushing to remove any tartar build-up.

A doggie toothpaste and soft toothbrush/finger toothbrush should get the job done.

Using dental chews and dental treats are also great for dental health and keeping the teeth clean.

Step 6: Ear care

Cleaning the ears is very important as it can help prevent some ear infections that can also lead to hearing loss in severe cases.

You should use cotton balls instead of Q-tips with an ear cleaning solution such as;

  • Hydrogen peroxide
  • Saline
  • Commercial preparations

The aim of cleaning the ears is to remove any dirt and wax that may be on the outer part of the ear canal.

However, if you have no experience cleaning a dog’s ears, you should let a professional groomer or vet do it.

Going too deep into the ear canal can do a lot of damage.

If the ears give off an odor or noises you should visit the vet immediately.

My final take

For first-time dog owners, grooming a Corgi may not be easy but as you continue doing it by yourself you get to learn more and it gets easier by the day.

However, some of the grooming processes such as cleaning the ears should only be done by experienced individuals as any mistake can be disastrous.

Also, if in the process of grooming your Corgi you notice any signs of infections such as foul odor, bumps, soars, and so on, you should not hesitate to get him checked up.

There you go, WOOF!

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