I don't know anything about overseas animal adoptions, but I have a corgi (Pembroke) who I absolutely adore. Initially, I loved them based on looks and what I'd read about them. Now that I've owned one, I can honestly say that I will have a Pembroke for the rest of my life. My fiance agrees. In about 7-10 years, once all of our current dogs have passed on, I'd like to have a Cardigan as well as a Pembroke. I don't have any personal experience with Cardis, and I'd like to change that.
Pros and cons of corgi-hood:
Well, pros and cons are really in the eye on the beholder. For example, corgis are very independent. Some people prefer a dog to be independent, because they get annoyed by dogs who want constant attention and petting (like my Tucker does). Other people want a dog that is extremely affectionate and would see independance as a con. So all of these are going to be soley my opinion on whether it's a pro or a con. You may or may not agree.
*Independent enough that we have no seperation anxiety issues when we leave him alone to go to work or go out.
*Very much a "family member". I've heard lots of people say that corgis are a breed that want (and expect) to be a member of the family, and it's totally true in my experience. When we put on our shoes to leave the house, Ein will jump in someone's lap: his way of asking to come along for the ride. This is a pro for me, because I enjoy traveling with Ein. He's an excellent travel companion. He has wonderful car manners and behaves very well in the car and on vacation. My future father in law's corgi is the same way.
*Extremely intelligent. I love Ein's smarts. Not only does it make it easy to teach him commands, but it's quite entertaining, too. Nothing funnier than telling your corgi to "get in" because it's bath time and watching him jump into the bathtub all by himself. Or telling your corgi that you need to potty before you take him for a walk and watch him run off and wait for you by the toilet.
*Good with kids (well, Ein is). I've heard that there are some corgis who instinctively nip at kids heals in an attempt to herd them. Ein's herding instinct is strong. His favorite game is to herd children. But his idea of herding is to wait for them to run away and then chase them (he does this with other dogs, too). He definitely herds, but I've never once since him nip at anyone or anything's heels. Ein was instinctively good with children. The first time we went to visit a new baby in the family, he seemed to know that he had to be gentle with her. Normally, he is Mr. Jealous and wants to climb in my lap if I pay attention to someone else. But when I was holding the baby, he sat at my feet and watched. Then jumped on the couch and sat next to me, but never once tried to climb on my lap or touch the baby. Now that Megan is 18 months old, he still knows to be gentle. His favorite game in the world is to chase her 7 year old brother around the yard, but he has never once chased Megan. If she tries to pet him, he doesn't stand up so that he can smother her with kisses like he does with older children. He is also very protective of her. Her oldest brother (arond 13) was play wrestling with her and Ein was barking at him because he was afraid that Dillon was hurting her.
*This gentleness carries on to smaller animals. Ein loves any and all animals. We had a foster kitten that he played with and was gentle with. We've had numerous rats, a bunny, a chinchilla, degus. He's been gentle with all of them. There is only one animal that he wasn't "gentle" with, and it wasn't really his fault. We were "fostering" a ferret that had been abandoned by the previous owner of our trailer. The ferret was very playful and kept pouncing on Ein. Ein had just had his first birthday, and he simply didn't understand why the ferret could pounce on him, but he couldn't pounce back. He wasn't intending to hurt the ferret. The ferret was playing and he wanted to play back. He didn't realize that he was so much bigger than the ferret that he could hurt him. I would trust Ein with any of our small animals, no questions asked.
*They're just cute, which is a pro. It's especially cute to watch their whole butts wag. I also love the "tuning fork" position they lay in.
*Stubborn. Very stubborn.
*Too smart for their own good. I've heard it said that a corgi will do his best to try and outsmart you, but I didn't believe it until I saw it for myself. Between this intelligence, their stubborness, and their independence, you need to make sure they know that you are the boss and not them. Potty training was difficult for us. Ein decided that it was our job to get him outside in time and not his job to go when we said. A few days confined to a doggy playpen when we weren't home instead of having free roam of the house fixed this.
*Loud. Corgis are herding dogs. They're bred to bark when they hear noises; it's how they alert farmers that there may be a wild animal after the livestock. Not only do they bark alot, but they have a big dog bark. You'll definitely need to teach them "hush". However "hush" does not always work for us. So Ein learned the word "bark collar". Wearing a bark collar just a couple times was enough for him to learn what the word meant. Now if he won't stop barking, we say, "Ein, do you need a bark collar?" and he quiets down for a few minutes. He barks at every noise he hears outside. He barks when Lucas says key words that he knows will get me laughing and making alot of noise ("belly", "tickles", and "footsies") or when you say "Tucker feet" (Tucker has this weird thing about his feet. When you grab them, he jumps and runs away... but then comes back so you can do it again).
That's really all the cons I can think of. The barking gets to me sometimes, and his stubborness can be annoying from time to time, but overall, I think the good far outweighs the bad.
Momma to three pups:
Ein, Pembroke Welsh Corgi (black headed tri) born 7/12/2004
Tucker, golden colored lab mix, rescue - est dob fall 2004
Colleen rough collie (sable and white), rescue - est dob: 2003-2004