Merle Corgi: Facts, Appearance, Genetics & Pictures

Merle Corgi tongue out

You probably already know what a Corgi is, but have you ever heard of a merle Corgi? Actually, this dog also belongs to the Corgi breed, with the exception of its coat. It is exactly like a standard Corgi in every way.

A merle Corgi often has a white coat that is speckled with swirls and dots in light and dark colors. It is an undeniably beautiful coat, but you should also be aware of the merle gene’s potential health risks.

This article covers everything there is to know about merle Corgis, even the genetics behind its exquisite looks. This will also cover options where you can search for one! If you’re ready, let’s begin.

What Is a Merle Corgi?

Merle Corgi side profile

A merle Corgi is a type of Corgi that has uneven or marbling patterns of dark colors on top of its light-colored coat. It can either be a purebred Cardigan Welsh Corgi or a Pembroke Welsh Corgi hybrid that was crossed with a merle-coated dog.

This dog is quite uncommon, even among Cardigan Corgis. In fact, reputable breeders are careful with breeding merles to avoid the production of double merles, which are prone to health issues.

Further, the rarity and the challenge of breeding merles also make it quite expensive.

Check out this video to meet one of the fluffiest merle Corgis:

Clark the Merle Corgi

Can a Purebred Corgi Be Merle?

There are two types of purebred Corgis: the Pembroke and the Cardigan. Both have the potential to be merles; however, the merle gene is not innate in Pembroke Corgis.

For a Pembroke Welsh Corgi to be merle, it has to be mixed with either a merle Cardigan, Australian Shepherd, or Border Collie. So, if you come across a merle Pembroke Corgi, be aware that it is not purebred!

As for the Cardigan Welsh Corgi, the merle gene has always been present in the breed ever since it was acknowledged.

In fact, the American Kennel Club has approved merle as part of the breed standard. To be specific, blue merle, red merle, brindle merle, white merle, and sable merle Cardigan Corgis are all part of its recognized colors.

Merle Corgi Appearance

Merle Corgi walking on the grass tongue out

Merle Corgis are characterized by the distinctive pattern of light and dark patches on top of their white coats. The colors of these patches can be any of the following: blue, red, brindle, white, or sable.

Usually, the white points on these dogs are scattered across the gray and black marble patterns on the legs, chest, neck, and face. In addition to these, their cheeks, ears, legs, and tail may have some tan patterns.

Besides the coat differences, merle Corgis retain the breed’s general appearance. They still have a foxy face, short and long stature, prickly ears, and a long or neatly docked tail that makes them easily identifiable.

The size of these dogs will depend on whether they are purebred Cardigan Corgis or Pembroke Corgi mixes. If they are purebred, they can stand around 10.5 to 12.5 inches tall and weigh between 25 and 38 pounds.

Meanwhile, if they are Corgi mixes, their size will vary depending on which parent has a dominant gene.

There is a possibility, however, to get a smaller merle dog if a teacup Corgi is used in crossbreeding instead of the standard ones.

Merle Corgi Coat Color Genetics

The merle color in Corgi may be explained through the genetics of this coat pattern. For starters, the merle gene is responsible for these lovely splotches.

It is a semi-dominant gene, which means that only one copy of the merle or M allele is necessary to generate the pattern.

Therefore, every merle Corgi has a genotype of Mm, which is defined as having one copy of the merle allele (M) and one copy of the non-merle allele (m).

Meanwhile, Corgis with mm genotypes are non-merle, meaning they do not exhibit the effects of the merle gene.

On the other hand, mating two merle dogs may result in a dog with the MM genotype, which typically has a pure white color but is prone to numerous health issues. Therefore, this practice is highly discouraged.

Merle Corgi Temperament and Personality

Merle Corgi running side view

When it comes to temperament, merle Corgis are no different from other Corgis. They are similarly loyal, affectionate, and fiercely protective.

Moreover, merle Corgis have a high level of intelligence and desire to please their owners, so training these dogs will be easy.

Despite this, it is still important to keep training short and reward them. Usually, treats and simple praises encourage them to look forward to the following sessions.

Merle Corgis also tend to be much more vocal than other dog breeds. This means you must understand your dog; otherwise, you will frequently hear it howl or bark without any clue.

Overall, these dogs can be wonderful pets. Considering that even British royalty had over 30 Corgis, the breed must be exceptional!

Merle Corgi Lifespan and Health Issues

Merle Corgis are generally healthy, provided they are bred from healthy parents. These dogs can survive for around 12 to 15 years, just like other Corgis.

However, the merle gene that gives Corgi puppies their beautiful and intriguing appearance is known to have some negative effects on the dog.

The most common health problems associated with merle Corgis include the following:

  • Deafness: This refers to the dog’s inability to hear. It can affect either one or both ears. Unfortunately, any genetically induced deafness that exists in a Corgi is irreversible, which means it cannot be cured.
  • Blindness: This condition might not be life-threatening, but it could have a negative impact on your merle Corgi’s quality of life. In addition, blindness is usually untreatable, but there are methods to support your dog.
  • Squamous Cell Carcinoma: This is a type of skin cancer that is frequently brought on by excessive sun exposure. A lack of melanin makes a dog’s skin less likely to be protected from the sun’s UV radiation. Treatment available for squamous cell carcinoma will depend on size, location of the affected area, and depth.

A Corgi may have a lower risk of developing the aforementioned health issues if it carries only one merle allele.

However, if it is a double merle, the Corgi will have a twofold chance of being born with these conditions — and even a major genetic disorder!

A merle Corgi may additionally be vulnerable to breed-specific health issues. This includes intervertebral disc disease, canine lymphoma, and hip dysplasia.

How Much Does a Merle Corgi Cost? Puppy Prices & Expenses

Merle Corgi puppy running outdoors

The Corgi breed is already far from being budget-friendly. Therefore, adding more beauty to it will make it more expensive. Given that, you may anticipate a merle Corgi to be around $1,000 to $2,000.

The final price of a merle Corgi will also depend on other factors, such as age, gender, location, bloodline, and more.

Aside from the puppy price, you should also prepare your pocket to purchase the following initial items once you bring home a merle Corgi puppy:

Type of ExpenseCost
Food and Treats$70 – $110
Bowls$10 – $30
Toys$30 – $60
Beds$40 – $200
Collars and Leashes$15 – $50
Crates and Carriers$50 – $370
Grooming Essentials$50 – $160
Initial Vet Visits$100 – $500
Initial Vaccine Shots$50 – $300
Deworming, Flea, and Tick Medications$40 – $300
Neutering or Spaying$50 – $500
Microchipping$40 – $60
Dog License$10 – $20
Other Essentials$20 – $50
Total Initial Cost$505 – $2,710

Medical costs are among the ones that you would most likely incur for your merle Corgi puppy. As your dog ages, the cost of vet visits, shots, and other medications can go up.

For this reason, you might want to think about getting pet insurance. Some insurance policies cover routine and unexpected costs throughout your puppy’s life.

Places to Find Merle Corgi Puppies for Sale and Adoption

Breeding dogs with merle coats has become increasingly popular in recent years.

Although this means finding your merle Corgi pup will be quite easy, it may also suggest that you are more likely to encounter scammers or irresponsible breeders looking to make a quick buck.

The following are some trustworthy merle Corgi breeders committed to providing a healthy puppy:

  • AKC Marketplace – AKC Marketplace is one of the trusted places that connect breeders with families looking for AKC-registerable puppies. Sign up on their website to message merle Corgi breeders and receive notifications for listed pups.
  • Magnolia Creek Corgis – Magnolia Creek Corgis has more than 20 years of practical experience in breeding, obedience training, trials, herding, and working. With this vast experience, they are known to be excellent in creating high-quality Corgi puppies, including those with merle coats.
  • San Diego Corgi’s – Located in Perris, California, San Diego Corgi’s is a small family-run hobby breeder. They take great satisfaction in breeding excellent Pembroke Welsh Corgis, particularly red merle Corgis, blue merle Corgis, and tri-colored Corgis with stunning blue eyes.

If you want to acquire this dog through adoption, here are the organizations where you can adopt a healthy merle Corgi:

  • East Coast Corgi Rescue(ECCR) – ECCR is a network of volunteers that assists people in Washington, DC, and the neighboring states who need to find a new home for their Corgi or are interested in adopting one. Several Corgi rescues on the east coast collaborate with them; therefore, finding a merle Corgi would be much easier.
  • Arizona Cactus Corgi Rescue(ACCR) – ACCR is an organization that aims to rehabilitate and rehome abandoned Pembroke and Cardigan Welsh Corgis. While under their care, all of their Corgis, including merles, receive appropriate immunizations, heartworm prevention, and flea/tick prevention.
  • Cardigan Welsh Corgi National Rescue Trust (CWCNRT) – CWCNRT is a group of volunteers and regional coordinators who make sure that purebred Cardigan Welsh Corgis have loving, long-term homes. Once you have been matched with a suitable merle Corgi, a non-refundable $250 adoption fee will be required.

There are so many rescue organizations, so it will be impossible to list them all in this guide. Drive around your neighborhood to find some.

Best Dog Names for Your Merle Corgi Puppy

Merle Corgi puppy running on the grass

You don’t get to welcome a merle Corgi puppy into your home every day. So to make it even more special, you should give your pooch a cool name that it will appreciate for the rest of its time with you!

The list below contains dozens of merle Corgi names. In case you don’t yet have a preference, feel free to mix and match as you scroll through the options.

You may choose from the names below if you have a male merle Corgi:

  • Blue
  • Brownie
  • Blister
  • Chip
  • Dusty
  • Flakes
  • Freckles
  • Leo
  • Marbles
  • Mark
  • Oreo
  • Pete
  • Quake
  • Sky
  • Spot
  • Spectre
  • Toast
  • Truffles
  • Tux
  • Willows

Meanwhile, if you own a female merle Corgi, check out the following names:

  • Ashley
  • Callie
  • Cloudy
  • Cookie
  • Cruella
  • Dixie
  • Dottie
  • Doris
  • Hershey
  • Kisses
  • Luna
  • Merle
  • Moo
  • Paisley
  • Patches
  • Pebbles
  • Pepper
  • Pixie
  • Sparkle
  • Sprinkle

In choosing names, remember that there is no such thing as perfection. However, you may select a name that accurately represents your puppy so that it can be easily recognized.

Frequently Asked Questions

Merle Corgi sitting on dried leaves

Are Merle Corgis Rare?

Merle Corgis are rare. As a matter of fact, the merle gene isn’t naturally found in all Welsh Corgis — only in Cardigans.

In addition, a lot of breeders refrain from breeding these dogs out of concern for the possibility of producing double merles, which are predisposed to blindness, deafness, and other health complications.

Do Merle Corgis Shed?

A merle Corgi has a thick coat that sheds all year. This dog is known to be a moderate shedder but may shed significantly more during peak shedding seasons.

Shedding helps it maintain healthy skin and fur by getting rid of old, unhealthy fur and making room for new, healthy fur to grow.

Are Merle Corgis Hypoallergenic?

No, the merle Corgi is not hypoallergenic. If you’re allergic to dog dander, this breed is likely to set off your immune system and result in allergy symptoms. After all, it’s an average-to-heavy shedder.

Nonetheless, brushing and bathing will remove excess fur and pet dander. These ways let you direct the fur that causes allergies away from your home.

Can You Breed Two Merle Corgis Together?

It is never a good idea to breed two merle dogs together; the same goes for Corgis.

Breeders who bred two merles reported that some of their puppies had abnormalities at birth and that others developed serious health problems after a few days.

Do Merle Corgis Have Blue Eyes?

Corgis with the merle gene tend to have blue eyes. The AKC, however, believes that blue eyes constitute a fault or failure to meet the standard, although they are acceptable in merle Cardigan Corgis.

Furthermore, blue eyes only happen when the iris’ melanin (pigment) levels are low. Brown eyes, on the other hand, will result when there is sufficient melanin present.

Final Thoughts

The merle Corgi is a beautiful and entertaining dog. It has all the loving disposition of a typical Corgi plus the amazing features of the merle gene, which gives it random blotches and blue eyes.

However, as was already discussed, this merle pooch has a unique set of issues. If you want to adopt this breed, you should be aware of them. Deafness, blindness, and skin cancer are just a few.

Hopefully, this guide has enlightened you with everything you need to know about the merle Corgi, which will benefit you as you embark on your adventures with it.

Feel free to share your thoughts about merle Corgis using the comment section below. We appreciate your feedback!

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