Since our friendship began last fall, my friend Tyler has been raging about Corgi Beach Day. “They’re just so derpy!” Tyler would say of the awkwardly adorable pups. Makes sense this made him so excited, since Tyler’s niche in photography is capturing derp faces at cosplay conventions. I’ll admit I’m more of a cat-person, but the idea of a bunch of stubby-legged, fox-like seemingly smiling dogs, like, hundreds of them, prancing along a Californian shore, was kind of an irresistible notion for me.
If you’ve been paying any attention to the content of my blog, you’d gather that I was going through a bit of a rough patch – an understatement. So Corgi Beach Day at Huntington Beach couldn’t have come at a better time.
We drove down at 8am, which to me was an incredible feat for a Saturday morning. How many people could there possibly be at this hour? Turns out, quite a few; over 1,000 Corgis alone attended, not to mention their owners and friends. We whipped out our cameras and set to capture these pooches as they engaged in water play, posing in doggy photo booths, and meeting their famous TV counterparts. Not to mention, the contests: costume contests (both tiki-themed and anything goes), a bacon-flavored-bubble eating contest, a limbo contest and a talent show.
The owners of these dogs were so dedicated to their attire and training that it almost seemed cultish. But – the kind of cult where, if I were to have a dog, I’d definitely want to join. Furthermore, these dogs just seemed fucking HAPPY. I envied them: sitting there in their cool goggle-shades, every human fawning on them like royalty, many of them with way more instagram followers than me, and just rolling with it.
Trying to understand happiness these days and where it comes from, I set out to understand these pups by asking the folks who would know best, their owners, what they thought their best friends were thinking in the Corgi Beach Day experience, and here’s what they said:
Winston the White Corgi (4 yrs)
“He’s probably thinking that everybody’s here to see him play fetch. Oh he loves an audience. He does – oh yeah. So even when we walk around on the street, like any other day, he just kinds of looks up at people thinking, oh they’re gonna come talk to me. He’s used to all the attention and he’s usually a good sport. He’s a big ham. We call him our little diva, he just loves an audience, so anytime anyone comes over he needs to find a ball to show off his fetching skills. So he probably thinks all of these people are here to throw his ball. I think he also thinks he’s probably the best one. He has a healthy amount of confidence. Winston was born in Ariozona, we found him through a breeder, it just so happened they had one male available, so that’s how we got him. But we didn’t get him knowing he was going to be white. He turned white. We thought he was going to be the red and white color that a lot of the corgis are and then over time he grew lighter and lighter and then people just started calling him ‘white corgi’ and it just stuck.”
Tina from New York City
IG: @winstonthewhitecorgi FB: Winston the White Corgi
Goji the Corgi (3 months)
“He’s just excited for the attention. He’s loving it. He’s loving it. He’s having the best time of his life. Then he’s gonna sleep really well in a couple of hours. This is his second time [to the beach]. He loves to play with dogs. That’s his thing he loves it. He’s got freckles and one blue eye.”
Ani from Hermosa Beach
Zooey the Corgi (4 yrs)
Savanna: He got her from the Hudson River Mall. She’s ecstatic right now I think. She loves all the attention. Everybody just comments on her, wants to see her. She carries a toy in her mouth all seconds of the day, she has to have her toys all the time. Her little piggy toy [is her favorite.]
Chuckie: She’s been going to the Corgi Beach day for three years now. She didn’t go to the parade. [Sherry] made the costume and then [Savanna] made the shirts.
Sherry: She’s spoiled-rotten and has over 115 stuffed animals.
Chuckie: She sleeps on the bed with us, and we built stairs for her to go up and then she just learned how to go up the stairs backwards and we put it up on her instagram.
Savanna, Chuckie and Sherry from Redlands
Cona and River
“They are friends. We had Cona first and her other friend passed away. And actually we didn’t know if she would be able to get along with somebody because she’s very much an alpha female but they’ve assimilated very well. He has a very passive personality and so he defers to her. So she’s really accepted him and that was more than we could ask for. This is their first [Corgi Beach Day.] They’re thinking please do not leave us here. I think [they’re a little shy.] They’re like, this is fine, as long as we can keep you in eye contact at all times. We get a lot of attention. She’ll roll over, and he, because I think he’s still getting used to people, he’s a little bit more resistant. Her [signature move] is to roll over for a belly rub and his is when I go out and try to water the plants, he flies through the air and he tries to bite the water. I think that he was interested in [the ocean.]”
Lisa and Gary from Boulder City, NV
Waffles (3 yrs) and Biscuit (5 yrs)
“We flew them here and this is their first Corgi Beach Day and we are very excited to be here. They came from Virginia, we got Biscuit with an AKC breeder, and Biscuits sister is Waffles’ mother and the niece. So they’re sort of related. They come here to California quite frequently, that’s where we’re originally from, so they come here, but less than ten times at the beach, so this is just a different world to them I think and they’re just overwhelmed. I think they’re loving the attention, like I’ve never seen them smile so hard and so long. They do pose with a couple of other Corgi’s out in Virginia out in the DC area all the time. We do have a Corgi meetup for Washington DC called the March of Corgis. So we do that, they’re one of the five Corgis I found in that group there. Waffles is the drama queen she likes to start trouble with everybody. She likes to really show her dominance. She’s Miss sassy. She likes the attention to be for her. Biscuit is very, very passive, she’s just more, ‘I’m here,’ you know. Biscuit can do a ‘sit-pretty’ and she can also roll over. We learned that when she was a puppy by herself. It took maybe a week or so. Waffles loves food more than anything. You show her food she’ll do anything for you, pretty much. [Her favorite thing to do is] beg. My husband and I are both foodies and I’m a chef. So naturally, it was just the names and we love brunch, so… These [goggles] are Doggles; you can find them on Amazon. They’re UV-protective so it protects their eyes. Especially being out here in the sun.”
Mahm from Washington D.C.
To see the entire album of insanely adorable photos from Corgi Beach Day go here!