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Shorgi Dog Breed: Pictures, Guide, Info, Care & More!

Written by: Nicole Cosgrove

Last Updated on June 18, 2024 by Dogster Team

Shorgi Dog Breed: Pictures, Guide, Info, Care & More!

The backgrounds of the Shorgi’s parents couldn’t be more different. The Shih Tzu is an old breed with a history that goes back centuries to Asia. The Pembroke Welsh Corgi traces their roots to medieval times in Belgium, once known as Flanders. Both pups have distinct personalities, and the Shorgi is a unique dog on many fronts.

Breed Overview


10–13 inches


10–30 pounds


10 – 15 years


White, fawn, red, gray, black

Suitable for:

Active families looking for an affectionate dog that is easy to train


Loyal, loving, friendly, intelligent

The Shih Tzu and Pembroke Welsh Corgi are adorable dogs, ranking 20 and 11, respectively, on the American Kennel Club’s (AKC) list of the most popular breeds. When you get to know them, you’ll understand why. They both make excellent companions, but they differ in several significant areas. The dominant parent’s DNA will determine which traits stand out.

Shorgi Characteristics

High-energy dogs will need a lot of mental and physical stimulation to stay happy and healthy, while low-energy dogs require minimal physical activity. It’s important when choosing a dog to make sure their energy levels match your lifestyle or vice versa.
Easy-to-train dogs are more skilled at learning prompts and actions quickly with minimal training. Dogs that are harder to train will require a bit more patience and practice.
Some breeds, due to their size or their breeds potential genetic health issues, have shorter lifespans than others. Proper exercise, nutrition, and hygiene also play an important role in the lifespan of your pet.
Some dog breeds are prone to certain genetic health problems, and some more than others. This doesn’t mean that every dog will have these issues, but they have an increased risk, so it’s important to understand and prepare for any additional needs they may require.
Some dog breeds are more social than others, both towards humans and other dogs. More social dogs have a tendency to run up to strangers for pets and scratches, while less social dogs shy away and are more cautious, even potentially aggressive. No matter the breed, it’s important to socialize your dog and expose them to lots of different situations.

dogster face divider Shorgi Puppies

You can get a better idea of a Shorgi puppy’s personality by examining the parents. The Shih Tzu is a laid-back dog that can adapt to city life, but they don’t like to be left alone. On the other hand, the Pembroke Welsh Corgi has an independent streak, which isn’t unusual for working dogs. However, they make up for their short stature by barking or howling to get attention. It’s a habit you’ll have to curb if your Shorgi inherits it.

Image Credit: Pixabay

Temperament & Intelligence of the Shorgi

Both parents are sweethearts; they love people and adore making new friends. Early socialization is vital to encourage this quality in your pet. The more people, places, and animals you expose your Shorgi to as a pup, the less fearful they’ll be later in life. Bear in mind that puppies also go through a fear impact period between 8 and 12 weeks. Your job is to ensure that your pet has positive experiences as a puppy to help them become a well-behaved adult.

Are These Dogs Good for Families? 👪

The Shorgi will make a delightful addition to your family because both parents bring so many desirable traits to the table. They get along with kids but may try to herd them, but you can reduce the habit with training. However, teaching your children how to handle and play with your Shorgi without hurting them is also essential. As a herding dog, the Shorgi may be protective of your family.

Does This Breed Get Along with Other Pets? 🐶 😽

Your Shorgi can get along with other dogs if you introduce your puppy to new canine friends early. Small animals and cats may prove challenging. Surprisingly, the prey drive is stronger in the Shih Tzu than in the Pembroke Welsh Corgi. You may notice some wild chases before your cat sets the record straight about who the boss in the household is.

divider-pawThings to Know When Owning a Shorgi

With the preliminaries covered, it’s time to get down to the day-to-day matters of owning a Shorgi. Since they can be loud and prone to nipping, training the Shorgi is vital. The other thing to consider is separation anxiety. Both parent breeds are less tolerant of being left alone for hours. That makes the Shorgi a better choice for families, especially if there’s always someone at home.

Food & Diet Requirements 🦴

Feeding a formula designed for your pet’s size and life stage is imperative. The nutritional needs of puppies differ from adults, where the focus is on growth and development. The former will have higher requirements for protein and fat as a result. We recommend starting with three to four small meals daily to ensure your Shorgi’s blood sugar stays stable.

After 6 months, you can dial back to two times a day, but ensure your pup has plenty of fresh water available at all times. We suggest keeping treats for training only. They should only comprise 10% or less of your Shorgi’s daily caloric intake.

Exercise 🐕

Daily exercise is essential, given both parent breeds’ propensity for obesity. Walks in the neighborhood or runs at the doggie park are excellent ways to reinforce your pup’s canine social manners. It’ll introduce your pet to new situations, which is beneficial for your dog’s mental health. Both the Shih Tzu and Pembroke Welsh Corgi are playful pups. They’ll enjoy this active time.

Just remember that the Shih Tzu in your Shorgi doesn’t tolerate heat very well. It’s safer to walk them or play with them outside in the early morning or late evening during the summer. However, it’s best to keep them inside for exercise on a scorching day.

Training 🎾

The Shorgi’s intelligence will make training easy peasy. The essential factors to remember are that this pup is eager to please but sensitive to harsh words. Be patient with your pet because your dog wants to get it right and make you happy. You can make it easier for your Shorgi with daily lessons and treats for motivation. Positive reinforcement is the key to success.

Grooming ✂️

How much effort you must put into grooming depends on which coat your dog inherits. If your pup is more like a Shih Tzu, they won’t shed much, if at all. However, your dog will also have long, thin hair that will require daily attention. A pin brush is ideal for keeping their coat shiny and matt-free. Some find it easier to maintain their Shorgis in a puppy cut.

On the other hand, the Pembroke Welsh Corgi sheds frequently. They have a thick double coat, which is necessary for a herding dog. If your Shorgi has a Corgi coat, they will lose their undercoat in the spring and fall, leading to even more shedding. Brushing your Shorgi frequently can keep the hair in check. In either case, it’s also essential to check your pup’s ears often and clean them as needed. They’ll also need their nails trimmed.

Health and Conditions 🏥

While both parents are relatively healthy, the concerns rest with the Shih Tzu if the brachycephalic traits are dominant. Their short faces can increase their risk of heatstroke, eye disease, and upper respiratory disorders. Pre-breeding testing of the parents and puppy health screenings are imperative.

Minor Conditions
  • Allergies
  • Ear infections
  • Progressive retinal atrophy
  • Cataracts
Serious Conditions
  • Patellar luxation
  • Intervertebral Disc Disease
  • Hip dysplasia
  • Degenerative myelopathy


Male vs. Female

Male and female Shorgis are relatively close in size, making it a non-issue to choose either sex. The personality and enjoyment you’ll get from your pet depend on the care and training you provide. Either one will make a delightful addition for the first-time dog owner.

We suggest discussing spaying or neutering your Shorgi with your vet. Some research has shown an elevated risk of some cancers in Shih Tzus. There’s also the matter of pet obesity. Either surgery will require a diet adjustment to prevent weight gain.

3 Little-Known Facts About the Shorgi

1. The Pembroke Welsh Corgi Is a True Working Dog

The Pembroke Welsh Corgi is a working dog. This pup was a jack-of-all-trades, taking on the role of guardian, herder, and companion.

2. The Shih Tzu Has Friends in High Places

The Shih Tzu’s native land is China, where they were a favorite of the royal families. They were unknown to outsiders for many decades, but when the secret of this sweet and affectionate pup got out, the rest, they say, is history.

3. Many Famous People Have Fallen for the Charm of the Shih Tzu

It’s hard not to fall in love with a Shih Tzu. Just ask Vidal Sassoon, Jane Seymour, or Queen Elizabeth.


Final Thoughts

The Shorgi is an ideal pet for anyone who wants a smaller pup that is affectionate and playful. They’re loyal, eager to please, and have the intelligence to make training a snap if you’re consistent with their lessons. Although they require plenty of training and socialization, they make excellent pets for families and individuals who spend most of the day at home.

See Also:

Featured Image Credit: Corgi Shih Tzu Hybrid 10weeks (Image Credit: Ltshears, Wikimedia Commons, CC 3.0)

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