Five reasons why California Gov. Jerry Brown should keep the corgi dog

California Governor Jerry Brown and his wife are temporarily caring for a Welsh corgi named Sutter. Should the Browns keep the dog? The view from a former corgi owner.

AP Photo/Rich Pedroncelli
California Gov. Jerry Brown starts his first full day in office Jan. 4 by walking to the Capitol with his wife, Anne Gust Brown, in Sacramento. Out in front is Sutter, a Welsh corgi dog that is living with the Browns on a trial basis.

To adopt or not to adopt – is it even a question?

California Gov. Jerry Brown and his wife Anne are considering making a Welsh corgi named Sutter a permanent member of the first family in Sacramento. Their former dog, a lab called Dharma, passed away last year. The corgi actually belongs to Governor Brown’s sister, but she’s moving to Chicago, sans Sutter, and now the cinnamon-colored pooch is padding around with the Browns on a trial run.

The advantages of corgis are many, but here are five from this former corgi owner:

1. Corgis are herders, which will come in handy as the governor tries to corral notoriously late lawmakers during the budget season and drive them to a timely agreement. The critters may be short (half-a-dog high, two-dogs long), but they know how to nip at the heels.

2. In an age of globalization, a corgi adds international panache to a household. It’s hard for Californians to think beyond their state (it has everything, after all). But these are the favorite canines of Britain’s Queen Elizabeth, who has a passel of them at her palace. Look for them in movies about the royals: The King’s Speech (now in theaters) and The Queen (2006).

3. Corgis will make even your enemies your friends. No one can resist the fox-face of a corgi, even perfect strangers. I was once walking our little guy, Chester, when a woman pulled up in a great big Cadillac. The window on the passenger side slid down, and the blond-headed driver leaned over: “Ooh, ooh, that dog is so cute!” The window slid up, and the Cadillac moved on.

4. On those tough days when nothing is going right, a corgi will always be there for you. Trying to close a $28 billion deficit? Sutter will sense this, and come lie at the governor’s feet or put a paw on his knee.

5. No scent of scandal with a corgi. These dogs have a sweet fur (and personality to match) such that when you pet them, your hand comes away clean – no dog smell.

6. Corgis are smart, and the governor will sound smart when he answers the eternal question about what breed he has: Pembroke or Cardigan? The correct answer is Pembroke (the Pemmies have no tail; the Cardigans do).

You may have noticed I've offered more than five reasons. I couldn't help myself. Just watch, the Browns won't be able to resist either.

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