We take a look at Queen Elizabeth’s dogs – her most treasured companions for over 50 years – and their names.
Queen Elizabeth II is an avid animal lover who loves nothing more than spending time with her pet dogs.
Her Majesty has bred over 30 canines during her reign and has said some sad goodbyes to a number of pets – including the Queen’s last corgi in 2018. We delve deeper into the Queen’s long-held love for her furry friends.
How many dogs does the Queen have and what are their names?
The Queen currently has two dogs called Candy and Muick.
Candy is the eldest canine, who is believed to have been around for at least 10 years.
Candy was one of four who posed with the Queen for a series of special portraits marking her 90th birthday in 2016 – along with Willow, Vulcan, and Holly, who have sadly passed away since.
Muick is understood to be a new addition, and one of two dogs that Prince Andrew gifted to the Queen in February. Muick, pronounced Mick, is said be named after a beauty spot near Balmoral Castle – the Queen’s Scottish residence.
An insider told the Sun that Her Majesty was “delighted” by her new pets, who were “brought in to cheer her up during a very difficult period”.
They added that the “adorable” pups were responsible for bringing “a lot of noise and energy into the castle” when Prince Philip was ill in hospital.
Sadly, Muick’s sidekick, five-month-old Fergus died in May leaving the Queen “devastated”. The young pup was allegedly named after her uncle Captain Fergus Bowes-Lyon, who died during the First World War.
Fergus’s death comes just six months after the death of her beloved Vulcan in December 2020.
In the past, the Queen has also owned other corgi’s named Dookie, Emma, Susan and Linnet, as well as cocker spaniels named Bisto, Oxo, Flash, Spick and Span, and dorgis Tinker, Harris, Pickles, Brandy, Berry, Chipper, Piper, Cider and Berry.
What is a dorgi?
The Queen’s current dogs are dorgis, which are a dachshund-corgi mix. This dog breed hybrid came about when one of Elizabeth’s corgis mated with her sister Princess Margaret’s dachsund Pipkin.
This cross-breeding led to a number of Dorgi dogs with names including Brandy, Chipper, Pickles, Piper and Tinker. And the Queen’s current canine companion Vulcan is a direct descendant of the first dorgi the sisters bred.
Her Majesty has also owned corgis and this Pembrook Welsh breed have a long-held history with the 95-year-old monarch.
Queen Elizabeth II’s love for dogs was inherited from her father King George VI. He brought home the family’s first corgi, a puppy named Dookie in 1933.
The Queen was instantly besotted by the young pup, selecting Dookie over two others for his longer tail which showed “whether he is pleased or not.”
In 1936, the Queen received her own corgi Susan as an 18th birthday present. So strong was their bond, that the Queen snuck Susan on her honeymoon in 1947 – much to the despair of husband Prince Phillip.
In his book Not in Front of the Corgis, royal biographer Brian Hoey claimed that the Duke of Edinburgh “loathed” the corgis for being “too yappy”.
This however did not stop the Queen from breeding dogs for over five decades. Though sadly, Her Majesty’s last corgi Whisper died after a short illness in 2018.
What do other Royal Family members make of the Queen’s dogs?
Princess Diana once famously dubbed the Queen’s corgis as “a moving carpet” that followed the monarch around everywhere.
Her sons have also spent time with the Queen’s dogs. Though it was Meghan, and not Harry whom the dogs took an instant shine to, as the Duke of Sussex revealed in the couple’s engagement interview:
“The corgis took to you straight away,” Harry told ITV in 2017. “I’ve spent the last 33 years being barked at – this one walks in, absolutely nothing.”
According to Meghan, they were “just laying on my feet during tea, it was very sweet.”
Prince William has previously said that the Queen’s pets are the secret to keeping his grandmother happy during her reign.
“I would definitely argue the sanity of all the corgis barking the whole time, I don’t know how she copes with it,” the Duke of Cambridge said in a TV interview in 2012.
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