If there is anything Queen Elizabeth II loved more than her legacy as Britain’s longest reigning monarch, was her love of animals, and her passion for Corgis. The monarch’s relationship with her devoted pets began long before she even met and tied knots with Prince Philip or became Queen. In fact, the four-legged furry friend became synonymous with HM who passed away on September 8, 2022, at the age of 96. She was given her first Corgi, Susan, on her 18th birthday in 1944.
The tight-knit relationship between dogs and the royal family dates back to the reign of Queen Victoria. The queen’s fondness for corgis was completely singular and goes back to when the then 7-year-old princess specifically requested a Pembroke Welsh corgi after meeting her friend’s pet. Over the years, her obsession for the canine increased to a point where she and her sister Princess Margaret developed their own hybrid breed in the 1970s dubbed the “dorgi” (a cross between a dachshund and a corgi).
In an ode to the queen passing away and her eternal love for the pups, here are 10 interesting facts about the Queen’s Corgis that you didn’t know.
Since ascending the throne in 1952, Queen Elizabeth II, has owned more than 30 Corgis in her lifetime. At any one point, she has had up to 10 — and tolerates no less than the royal treatment for them.
It’s common knowledge that the Queen’s Corgis traveled with her and she couldn’t resist bringing her first pup on her honeymoon in 1947. She was said to have hidden Susan in the open carriage she and Philip took from London to Hampshire after their wedding.
The Queen’s Corgis are fed promptly at 5 p.m. each night and dine on a filet of steak and chicken breast that has been expertly prepared by a chef and their meals are hand-delivered to them by a footman.
Nobody is allowed to raise a finger or a voice to any of the dogs. The canine breed is allowed to do whatever they please — on antique furniture, priceless carpets, anywhere in the palace. It’s for this reason that royal staffers have blotting paper on hand in case of accidents.
The Queen is said to make stockings for each of her beloved dogs each year during Christmas. She fills them with toys and treats fit for each royal pup.
The Queen reportedly used to carry magnets when she was being fitted for a dress to pick up pins to prevent the Corgis from pricking their paws.
HM had special rubber-soled booties made for them to protect their feet from the gravel as they walked about the palace grounds.
A footman would add whiskey and gin to the corgi’s water when the Queen was away from the residence, in an attempt to entertain other staff members. He was demoted when a post-mortem autopsy found traces of alcohol in the bloodstream of a 14-year-old dog, BBC reported.
Susan was also special as she became the first in the line of dogs known as the royal corgis’. It’s believed that this line lasted somewhere between an impressive 10–14 generations of dogs.
The monarch’s corgis were even celebrated in a 2019 animated film titled, The Queen’s Corgi, which was directed by Vincent Kesteloot and Ben Stassen.
The queen leaves behind four dogs, including two Corgis, one dorgi named Candy, and a cocker spaniel called Lissy. There is no doubt the pups are grieving her loss too. As Her Royal Highness once said: “My Corgis are family.”