Corgi breeder experience

If you don’t personally know me, I am a corgi lover! I’ve wanted a corgi for I don’t know how long, like 10 years. Since I’ve been working part time, I’ve had more time and thought I’d finally pull the trigger. I started reading more about the breed, what to look for, price range, etc. I started looking at breeders and found one about 45 minutes away from my house so my husband and I decide to visit the puppies which were at this point about 6 weeks old. This was back in June 2019.

Some background information:
-Puppies go home around 8-10 weeks
-They need a lot of exercise as they’re herding dogs so they’ll also nip and chew A LOT as puppies. Be prepared for that!
Corgis are prone to some genetic diseases:
–DM (degenerative myelopathy) – where they eventually lose all mobility in their hind legs however they it doesn’t hurt them. There is no treatment for this disorder. The signs and symptoms appear in older corgis, average around 11 years old.
–VWDI (Von Willebrand Disease I) – bleeding disorder where corgis who are affected have less than half of the clotting factors in normal dogs which results in bruising more easily and prolonged bleeding after trauma.
–EIC (Exercise induced collapse) – neuromuscular disorder where after exercising 5-20 minutes, their gait becomes unsteady and they may lose muscle tone. They don’t feel this and may continue to over exercise and further injuring itself. Worst case is it may even result in death!
-AKC registered dogs = American Kennel Club corgis meet a certain criteria to be registered, essentially, they’re pure bred.

Genetics! A little background on how genetics work. If somebody is all clear of the disease, they would be considered to have two genes that are dominant, or for example, “AA.” If somebody is a carrier of the mutation gene, then they’d be “Aa,” which would result in a really rare case to ever express the mutation/disease. If somebody is “aa,” which means they are recessive for the disease, they are at risk of expressing that.

Okay! Now that you’re all caught up, we visited the breeder at their house and were instantly greeted by the dad of the puppies, friendly amd somewhat overweight yet pretty calm. The mom seemed pretty small and sweet. Going into this, the breeder and I had exchanged emails back and forth about the pups. I asked about their genetics and specifically about DM. They said they didn’t test because they got one parent from North Dakota and the other parent from Yakima so their lineages aren’t close at all. If you know anything about genetics, their distance has nothing to do with it. The dad is about 9 years old and they said the disease would have presented itself by now. They also said none of the other dog owners complained about their dogs presenting with this disease, however their dogs are only about 4 years old. The mom is also on the younger side so the disease wouldn’t have presented itself yet.

I was a little skeptical but hopeful it would work out. We ended up putting a deposit down for one of the pups that seemed really low key. The breeder agreed to do a cheek swab that I paid for that would tell us if Otis was at risk for the disease. I’m a first time dog owner and I just wanted a healthy pup not that I wouldn’t care for it if it had the disease. I think personally, I just wanted to prevent any kind of heartache down the road. The breeder had asked us what we’d do if Otis had it and I said we’d likely regretfully pass. :/

A week or so later, I get a text from the breeder and I kid you not, it says:
“Otis came back positive so I will be looking for a new loving home as you said you didn’t want him. Good luck finding one without this potential DM. My research says 70% have it and usually die from something else”

WOW. Is that super passive aggressive or what?! I asked them to call me to clarify if he is a carrier or at risk because they are two different things. They fail to call me and I call them after several hours. I understand they’re upset but I was upfront with them. The conversation was harsh and they said things like “I learned a very valuable lesson from all of this” and “You screwed me over 2 weeks of not being able to sell the dog.” I asked for the results because I paid for them and they said I’m not getting him so it doesn’t matter. I’m interested to know what lesson they learned – not to test their dogs and to not breed dogs at risk? Clearly, they’re just in it for the money and and I’m glad I went through this to find the truth about them. I would not want to support them and I just feel bad for the dogs.

I ended up finding another breeder who tested their dogs prior to breeding and went home with a really sweet pup who loves cold tiles, chewing on everything, and can sit. I couldn’t have asked for a better little guy.

This is Tobi!
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Finale

The last full day in Europe! It definitely went by really fast. We were able to spend some time in Krakow before heading to the airport to fly back to Paris for the last leg home. We went to the Pharmacy Museum and I really had a blast. There was so much history and they had such a pretty display of mortars, pestles, scales, dried plants, and everything. They had a huge monstera plant on the top floor and I was quite happy to see it since they’re one of my favorite plants.

We stayed one night in Paris before flying out the next morning. And I had booked an Airbnb for the night in Roissy en France which was close to the CDG airport that we would be flying out from. The hosts sat and chatted with us for about 30 minutes asking about our journey. It was a private room in a house and the hosts were unbelievably nice! They served us some wine and crackers. The host’s brother spoke English pretty well and even showed us around the town and gave us recommendations on where to get dinner. We ended up at a crepe restaurant. I thought it was a fitting finish to the trip.

Of course we had to go for the dessert crepe as well

After dinner we walked around the park and the town. It was March and they had some cherry blossoms and we even encountered some bee hives in the park. It was such a charming town and we really enjoyed walking around together.

The next morning we took an uber to the airport. Easy as pie!

On regards to Krakow…
PROS:
Walkable
Less crowded
Very affordable
Angie, she made it effortless for us to get around!

CONS:
Wish we had a little more time to explore

It was such a fun trip and I can’t wait to come back and visit other places. Everything in Europe is so close and it just so easy to hop around.

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A look into the past

The next day we went on an all day tour to Auschwitz (concentration camp during the Holocaust) and the Salt Mines. It was a really long day, but well worth the experience. We took a Sprinter van with about 15 other people for the tour. I specified Sprinter because we actually have a van that we’re building out as a camper! A post on that sometime 🙂 Our tour guide was great and was so knowledgable. He went into great detail about everything.

Our first stop was at the concentration camp. It was a heavy experience. I didn’t take too many pictures because I wanted to just listen and take it in. We walked around the barracks of where people crammed into. They turned these barracks into a museum with displays of personal items like shoes, clothing, suitcases, etc to photographs and stories. There was one room where I saw something extremely disturbing. If you want to know, feel free to ask me I’ll respond personally to you. I feel slightly uncomfortable stating that here. We also toured the second camp, Birkenau, that was built to ease congestion at the first camp. I know. Pretty sad.

Good thing we ended on a happy note at the Wieliczka Salt Mines! It was about an hour drive away. We were one of the last groups to enter the Salt Mines before closing. They had one main elevator so it took awhile to get everyone down beneath the ground. I must say it was a spectacular sight so see so much salt everywhere! No, I didn’t lick the walls to try, although it is tempting. There were statues, sculptures, and even a chandelier out of salt (man made of course).

It was a really long day but well worth it to see everything to see in a short amount of time. I’d recommend this tour for sure!

PROS:
Got to see two of the main attractions in one day
Small tour group ~15 people
Very affordable

CONS:
Long day – about 12 hours
Long time in the car, bring snacks!

Overall, I’d recommend to do this tour especially if you are crunched on time. It’s very informative and the sights are starkly different. I’m glad you end with the salt mines to leave it on a positive note.

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Czesc!

One of the first words I learned in Polish was hello, which is the title. One of my best friends was going to school in Krakow so we thought we’d visit her and some countries in Europe (we actually spent half of our trip exploring with her). We were spoiled with to be able to stay with her and take us around. Surprise! We were greeted with a welcome breakfast plate by her parents.

Ang lives pretty close to some cool sights so she took us on a nice stroll by the Wawel castle and the fire breathing dragon. The dragon randomly has fire lit from its mouth! I thought it was a neat feature.

Walked towards the Jewish Quarter and found some food (of course). First stop was this hip cafe/bar that had a vintage theme and had Singer sewing machines in the front. Got our caffeine fix in, which btw sadly Krakow doesn’t have great coffee. Ang made us try zapiekanka aka open toasted faced sandwiches. The one we got had cheese, mushrooms, pepperoni, pickles, sweet ketchup, and onions. There were so many stands to choose from!

Walked around some more and saw some tons of street art. It’s quirky and interesting and really made it fun to just wander around.

After walking around, we got some delicious pierogis! They are essentially filled dumplings with savory and sweet goodies. They can be boiled or pan fried. Ang took us to Pirozki U Vicenta, a really cute Vincent Van Gogh themed restaurant, but also has really good pierogis. We got apples & sour cream and a meat one. The apples with sour cream were really good!

We then walked around the main square of Krakow and it was huge! One of the largest squares in Europe. It has a gorgeous cathedral and at the top of the hour, there is a trumpeter that plays reflects upon the history of how it was used to signal the opening or closing of gates or alarm the city of a fire or enemy. The end of the song is abrupt to mimic of how he was shot through the throat by an archer.

The square has street performers, stalls selling souvenirs and goods, and rows of shops. On our way back, we stopped by to get Ang’s favorite donut – cinnamon glazed jelly filled! We took the street train back to the apartment to rest before our next busy day.

PROS:
I can’t say it enough – how affordable it is!
Easy transportation/walkable
Friendly
Less crowded

CONS:
Language can be a little difficult

I wish we had more time to visit!

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Lisbon continued

We took it easy our second day in Lisbon because it was supposed to rain. We started the day with some coffee from Copenhagen Coffee Lab just a few blocks away. They were so busy they had to stop taking orders! We were in no hurry and caffeined up for the day. By the way – our whole coffee experience throughout Europe wasn’t particularly the best. It was actually kind of hard to find good coffee! Our next stop was for some food at The Mill, which also had a bit of a wait but it was worth it! Their fresh squeezed orange juice was delicious. Got the avocado toast with bacon and two sunny side up eggs. Johnny got butter toast with chorizo/ mushroom/ tomato combo and an egg.

After brunch, we walked around the city some more. Walked up and down hills, checked out some parks. This one had a cool tree support structure. The city is also known for all the orange tiled roofs everywhere.

Of course it was time for a snack after all of the walking. We stopped in for some decadent chocolate cake at Landeau Chocolate, which was rumored to have the best chocolate cake in the world?! Welp it was pretty darn good.

We took in more sights and our fair share of cable cars on our way back to the Airbnb.

And painted tiles… (second pic of our key for our Airbnb which had the cutest little backyard. It had a lemon tree!)

We got some wine nearby ($4 bucks!) to chill in the afternoon. Then Ang and I hit up a wine bar for some sangria and cheese for a little snack. We may look fancy.. but it was actually super cheap. I think it was less than $15 for all of this.

Wandered around a little more then we were off to our last meal in Lisbon. We dined at Petiscaria Ideal and ate some classic Portuguese food. Reservations were required when we came and we didn’t have one.. so I had made one online after talking to them haha.

Pear, goat cheese, honey, endive, pecan salad (probably the highlight of the meal)
Sweet potato chips with mayo/lime aioli
Tenderloin and mushroom sandwich
Polenta with tomatoes and clams

I also have to share this… I love Haribo and had such a great time trying all the different kinds in Europe.

PROS:
Less crowded – although I feel like it’s an up and coming destination
Slightly cheaper than other places
Beautiful art with all of the tiles
Very nice people
Lots of transportation
Laidback

CONS:
Hills (if you do a lot of walking)

I really enjoyed Portugal! It has a lot to offer and I can’t get enough of those egg tarts.

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