When it comes to Her Majesty’s corgis, all other royal family pets are commoners. That was the case for the Duke and Duchess of Cambridge’s cocker spaniel Lupo this Christmas. Her Majesty, with concern that cocker spaniels are a friendly and playful breed, and corgis who are slightly more territorial and rather unpredictable, decided it would be best for all concerned that Lupo spend the holidays in Berkshire with the Middletons.
Dr. Roger Mugford, noted animal psychologist, farmer and founder of the The Animal Behaviour Centre who has in the past advised Her Majesty on matters involving the corgis, noted in an interview with The Telegraph that, “The commotion of Christmas – the large number of people, the unfamiliar faces and all the distractions – can make them unpredictable. Another dog coming into their territory, with all of that going on, isn’t necessarily going to be welcomed by them.”
The corgis are notorious for their behaviour and antics. In Brian Hoey’s newest book: Pets by Royal Appointment: The Royal Family and their Animals, Hoey details the most recent altercation between the corgis and a Royal family member’s dog.
Princess Beatrice received her Norfolk terrier Max for Christmas when she was thirteen. A devoted owner, she had her 2005 Christmas card feature the dog. So the Royal was distraught when she learned her Grandmother’s corgis attacked Max during a walk whilst at Balmoral.
“The terrier nearly lost an ear and his body was covered with horrific bites. He had to be seen by a vet immediately. Beatrice was not at Balmoral at the time – her father had taken Max up to Scotland for her – but she arrived shortly afterwards whereupon the Queen told her how upset she was that the incident had occurred. Roger Mumford was then called in to calm Her Majesty’s animals – not poor old Max.”
Prior to Beatrice’s dog being attacked, Mugford was also dispatched when Princess Anne’s bullterrier Dotty mauled the Queen’s dog Pharos, attacking the corgi so viciously that he had to be put down the next day. Dotty, no stranger to trouble, was spared as “Her Majesty thought it impossible to blame Dotty as it was in the dog’s make-up to attack other animals, so the bull terrier was not put down.”
Perhaps Lupo will be allowed to join in the holiday merriment someday. Hoey writes; “As Duke of Cambridge, William recently said, perhaps only half-jokingly, that one of the changes he will make when he eventually succeeds to the throne is to get rid of the corgis. ‘They bark all the time,’ he said, but not within hearing distance of his grandmother. Of course, he would never do or say anything to upset her during her lifetime, but there may have been more than a little truth in what he said.”
Photo credits: Michael Middleton/PA Wire