Whats a queens favorite dog?
A Brief History Of Queen Elizabeth II And Her 89 Year Long Royal Clan Of Corgis
It comes as no surprise that most dog lovers envy their precious pals and the somewhat relaxing life they lead. And while we all secretly envy how much downtime our favourite pups enjoy, there’s a certain canine that has the best life of them all—Queen Elizabeth’s corgis.
They say dogs are a man’s best friend, but they’re also a Queen’s. And as any fan of The Crown would know, Queen Elizabeth has quite the penchant for Corgis, having owned one since the tender age of 10.
Having owned at least 30 corgis and dorgis—a mix between a corgi and a dachshund— since she became Queen, Her Majesty looked to house her favourite canine companion for years to come.
With the tragic passing of Queen Elizabeth II, it is only fitting that we pay tribute to the royal pups that have come and gone through the Palace doors for the last 89 years—and what will happen to her remaining dogs now that she is no longer with us.
Below, we’ve rounded up everything you need to know about Queen Elizabeth II’s corgi clan.
King George VI brought first Corgi, named Dookie, into the House of Windsor in 1933
The House of Windsor welcomed their first corgi in 1933, when King George VI brought home a puppy called Dookie for his family. The arrival of Dookie launched Queen Elizabeth’s obsession with the breed from the age of seven to current day. Thought to be named after her father, the Duke of York at the time, Dookie would be the first of over 30 corgis the queen has owned during her lifetime.
Dookie was followed shortly by another corgi called Jane who stayed with the family until 1944
Dookie was soon joined by Jane, yet another corgi, who was with the royal family until 1944, when she was fatally struck by a car.
Queen Elizabeth was gifted another corgi, called Susan, who she took with her on her honeymoon with Prince Philip
On her 18th birthday, Queen Elizabeth was gifted something rather special. You guessed it, another corgi, but this one’s name was Susan. For the next decade, the two were inseparable, with Susan even joining Her Majesty and Prince Philip on their honeymoon in 1947, according to Vanity Fair.
The Manchester Guardian captured this scene as the newlyweds boarded the train to the Broadlands, Philip’s uncle’s estate: “The ginger-coloured corgi jumped out before the royal couple and was taken by Palace attendants into the train.”
Thanks to Susan, the Royal Family used her lineage to breed corgis for the next 80 years.
The Royal Collection trust says that every corgi she went on to breed were descendants of this OG dog from the ’40s. Meaning that over the nearly 80 years since the Queen and Susan met, she and her family have bred dogs from Susan’s lineage. Thanks to her, Queen Elizabeth has owned at least 30 Pembroke Welsh corgis , all of whom have descended from the pooch.
Queen Elizabeth chose to stop breeding corgis after her mother passed away in 2002
The last of her short-legged pups was Willow, who was believed to be part of the 14th generation in the line. However, Willow’s death would signal the end of an era for the Queen, who reportedly stopped breeding corgis sometime after the death of her mother, The Queen Mother, in 2002.
In 2015, Monty Roberts, a horse trainer who advised Queen Elizabeth, told Vanity Fair that the Queen told him in 2012 that she chose to stop breeding her pups as “she didn’t want to leave any young dog behind” after she dies.
Her dogs have their own quarters and a personal chef at the Palace
If living under the Palace roof wasn’t enviable enough, the Queen’s dogs also have their own special room , where they get to dine on meals prepared by their own personal chef and have their own stockings at Christmas.
Given an upbringing to rival our own, their gourmet chef serves up feasts of beef and rabbit. The dogs also kip in a ‘corgi room’ where their baskets are elevated from the floor to avoid any drafts.
Her dogs have apparently bit Palace staff with one member spiking their food and water in retaliation
Despite the never-ending presence of animals, the corgis’ time with in the Palace has not been without incident.
In 1954, one of the queen’s corgis bit a member of the Queen’s Guard. The International Herald Tribune reported that one of them, believed to be Susan, had also bitten the royal clockwinder.
Fourteen years later, a member of Parliament called upon the royal family to post “Beware of the Dog” signs outside the queen’s residences after one of the corgis bit a postal worker while delivering mail to Balmoral Castle in Scotland.
And in 1991, the Queen herself was bitten by one of her dogs after she tried to break up a fight between some of them, Reuters reported.
Not long after, in 1999, a royal footman was demoted after he allegedly spiked the dogs’ food and water with gin and whiskey. He was reportedly caught when an exam on one of the dogs found traces of alcohol in its blood.
They also bark so often that Prince William and Prince Harry have publicly spoken about it
Not every member of the royal family has shared the queen’s enthusiasm for her fleet of pooches. In a television interview in 2012, Prince William expressed some of his personal issues with her dogs.
“They’re barking all the time,” he said. “I don’t know how she copes with it.”
Prince Harry, his brother, has also spoke up, saying. “I’ve spent the last 33 years being barked at,” he told the BBC in 2017.
However, one person did receive the dogs’ tick of approval—Prince Harry’s wife, Meghan Markle.
In the same BBC interview, Harry commented that the dogs “took to [Markle] straight away.”
“That’s true,” Ms. Markle replied.
Queen Elizabeth built a personal cemetery for her pups that have passed
Apparently, Queen Elizabeth has a «corgi graveyard» at her Sandringham Estate, where every royal pet has been buried since Queen Victoria’s dog, Noble, passed away in 1887.
Queen Elizabeth chose to use the graveyard for the graves of her corgis after the passing of Susan, in 1959. Since then, she has used the space to bury the corgis that have passed including Sugar, who died in 1965, described as «the faithful companion of The Queen» in the inscription of her gravestone.
According to Grazia, the rest of her canine clan included , Candy, Honey, Spick, Span, Whisky, Sherry, Cider, Monty, Heather, Willow, and Tiny.
One of her purebred Corgis passed away in 2018
Back in 2018, Queen Elizabeth’s purebred corgi, Willow, passed away . Along with Willow, the Queen’s second-last dog, a dorgi named Vulcan, also passed away in 2020.
It is believed that Her Majesty had approximately five dogs, two corgis named Muick and Sandy, a Dordi named Candy and two Cocker Spaniels. While there is currently no known plan for what will happen to her dogs, it is likely that they will go to her children: Charles, Anne, Edward and Andrew.
«I imagine the dogs would be looked after by the family,» royal biographer, Ingrid Seward told Newsweek. «Probably Andrew [as] he’s the one that gave them to her, they’re quite young, the corgi and the dorgi.»
The Queen’s Corgis: All about Her Majesty’s most loyal subjects
Queen Elizabeth II of England at Balmoral Castle with one of her Corgis, 28th September 1952. Credit: Bettmann Archive / Getty
- Queen Elizabeth II
- Royal family
As we mourn the passing of Queen Elizabeth II, we take a look at her corgis, the dogs that were such a part of her life.
Of all the dog breeds registered by the Kennel Club, none has had a greater celebrity endorsement than the Pembroke Welsh corgi. These bustling, friendly little dogs were the favourite breed of The Queen for more than eight decades.
It was in 1933 that her father bought a chestnut-coated dog called Dookie as a pet for the family. Princess Elizabeth would later be given a corgi of her own; and more than 70 years later, The Queen’s corgis are part of a bloodline spanning more than a dozen generations.
1. The Queen owned more than 30 corgis during her reign.
All were descended from her first one, Susan, which she was given as an 18th birthday present in 1944.
Princess Elizabeth with her pet Corgi Sue or Susan at Windsor Castle, UK, 30th May 1944. (Photo by Lisa Sheridan/Hulton Archive/Getty Images)
2. All the dogs are Pembroke corgis
Pembroke corgis are typically are livelier than the more restful Cardigans, and the preference has been for well-coloured chestnut dogs, without too much white.
Queen Elizabeth ll and Lady Sarah Armstrong-Jones walk with pet corgis at the Badminton Horse Trials in April 1976. (Photo by Anwar Hussein/Getty Images)
3. Whenever possible, The Queen liked to feed her corgis herself
While she fed them, she didn’t make their food, which varies daily: it’s prepared by the royal kitchens. Rabbit from the royal estates has been a long-term staple of their menu, as have liver, chicken and rice. The dogs’ regime also includes homeopathic treatments.
Queen Elizabeth II and Prince Philip with one of their corgis at Windsor Castle in Berkshire, 1959. (Photo by Hulton Archive/Getty Images)
Princess Elizabeth (now Queen Elizabeth II) with two corgi dogs at her home at 145 Piccadilly, London, July 1936. (Photo by Lisa Sheridan/Studio Lisa/Hulton Archive/Getty Images)
4. The largest number of corgis The Queen owned at the same time was 13
This was back in the early 1980s; the Princess of Wales called them ‘the moving carpet’.
Queen Elizabeth II plus canine companions meet players and officials from the New Zealand Rugby League Team at Buckingham Palace on October 16, 2007. (Photo by POOL/ Tim Graham Picture Library/Getty Images)
5. The Queen wasn’t always able to train her own corgis
Given the demands of being monarch, she wasn’t able to train them personally all the time. Many were housetrained by gamekeepers at Windsor Castle.
Queen Elizabeth II walking her dogs at Windsor Castle, on April 2, 1994 in Windsor, United Kingdom . (Photo by Julian Parker/UK Press via Getty Images)
6. The Queen thought of everything to protect her dogs
Her Majesty reportedly used to carry a magnet whenever she was being fitted for a dress, which could be used to pick up pins to prevent the corgis from pricking their paws.
Queen Elizabeth II and Prince Philip, Duke of Edinburgh, relax with their corgis and a newspaper at Balmoral Castle in 1974 in Balmoral, Scotland. (Photo by Anwar Hussein/Getty Images)
7. The corgis are buried at royal residences
Many of Her Majesty’s corgis, beginning with Susan, are buried in the pet cemetery at Sandringham, although Monty, who appeared in the James Bond-themed opening to the 2012 Olympics, was buried at Balmoral.
Queen Elizabeth ll arrives at Aberdeen Airport with her corgis to start her holidays in Balmoral, Scotland in 1974. (Photo by Anwar Hussein/Getty Images)
Recommended videos for you
Sandringham, Norfolk. Queen Elizabeth II smiles radiantly during a picture-taking session in the salon at Sandringham House. Her pet dog looks up at her. Credit: Bettmann Archive / Getty
The Royal Princess Elizabeth (Queen Elizabeth II) with her mother, Elizabeth Bowes-Lyon (Queen Elizabeth The Queen Mother, 1900 – 2002), and their Pembroke Welsh Corgi dogs, Dookie and Jane, at her home at 145 Piccadilly, London, UK, July 1936. (Photo by Lisa Sheridan/Studio Lisa/Hulton Archive/Getty Images)
Friendly Pembroke corgis Jessie and Callie at Carole Turner’s garden in Castle Cary
Corgis: Her Majesty’s loyal subjects
Matthew Dennison celebrates this lively, faithful breed that devotees insist won’t, in fact, be snapping at your heels.
Country Life’s Platinum Jubilee celebration issue — see what you’ll find inside
Country Life 25 May 2022 Is our very special issue commemorating Her Majesty The Queen’s Platinum Jubilee. Here’s what you’ll
Credit: Alamy Stock Photo
The Country Life guide to running the ultimate Platinum Jubilee street party
It’s time to dust off your tartan and put on a tiara, says Debora Robertson, in her handy guide to
The Gold State Coach passing by Admiralty Arch taking the Queen and Prince Philip The Golden Jubilee Service in 2002, escorted by the Household Cavalry. Credit: Tim Graham Picture Library/Getty Images
Curious Questions: What is a jubilee?
The celebration of HM’s Queen Elizabeth II Platinum Jubilee is imminent — but what is a jubilee, and where does this
Credit: Alamy Stock Photo
Perfect Coronation street party recipes, from Mary Berry’s ultimate scones to Tom Parker Bowles’ irresistible coronation chicken
Emma Hughes collects the best Platinum Jubilee street party recipes from some of Britain’s best-loved chefs and food writers.
Over 1,000 artists have been invited to paint HM The Queen. Credit: Bridgeman / Alamy / Camera Press/Annigoni / Royal Collection Trust / Nicjy Philipps / Shutterstock
The Queen’s official portraits: Seven of the most extraordinary paintings from 70 years and over 1,000 sittings
Her Majesty Queen Elizabeth II has been painted literally thousands of times since she came to the throne. Charlotte Mullins
Howard Carter discovered Tutankhamun’s tomb in the Valley of the Kings, near Luxor in Egypt in November 1922. Credit: Press Portrait Service Credit: Alamy Stock Photo