Queen Elizabeth II reigned for 70 years, making her the British monarch with the longest reign. She died at the age of 96, surrounded by loved ones, including her beloved pets.
The Queen has long had a fondness for horses and dogs, and they remained an important part of her life throughout her reign. They had been her first loves. She found time to ride her loyal steeds and was frequently spotted at horse events or out in the garden with her dogs.
As the world mourns for Her Majesty, we thought we’d travel back in time to see when the Queen first fell in love with horses and when corgis first entered her home.
Her fondness for Corgis
Corgis or dorgis (corgi and dachshund mix) have always been at Queen Elizabeth’s side – and typically more than one. Her Majesty admired short-legged breeds and received her first corgi, Susan, for her 18th birthday.
Her love of dogs, like her love of horses, lasted her entire life. She has owned over 30 dogs and ensured that they were all well-behaved. She even devised a specific feeding schedule in which the eldest dog was fed first, followed by the others in order of seniority.
“When she’s talking about her dogs or horses, you see a completely another side to her,” said Dr Roger Mugford, an animal psychologist who has dealt with canine behavior issues at Buckingham Palace for the past 20 years. She unwinds. Dogs are terrific levelers and are unaffected by social standing, which must be a huge comfort for her. It’s no surprise she enjoys being around them.”
According to Newsweek, she left behind two corgis named Muick and Sandy, a dorgi named Candy, and two Cocker Spaniels.
All of her cherished pets will be cared for by family and staff.
The horses of the Queen
When she was four years old, she obtained her first horse, a Shetland pony named Peggy. She continued riding after successfully learning how to stay on the pony and was an expert rider by the age of 18.
Her love of horses never faded and only became stronger over time. She has owned and bred numerous horses over the years. She gave each one a unique name and adored them all. Some, though, had a special place in my heart. In 2020, Horse & Hound published an exclusive story highlighting the Queen’s favorites.
She also enjoyed riding in the annual Trooping the Colour ceremony, which she participated in as a princess for the first time in 1947.
The Royal Family shared a photo of the Queen with two of her horses on Facebook ahead of her 96th birthday, writing, “First staged in 1943, The Queen has attended every single Royal Windsor Horse Show.”
Even in her latter years, she continued to bike.
An Ending of an Era
The Royal Family notified the Queen’s death, and King Charles III stated, “The passing of my dear Mother, Her Majesty The Queen, is a time of deep sadness for me and all members of my family.” We are deeply saddened by the death of a beloved Sovereign and Mother. I know her passing will be felt deeply throughout the country, the Realms, and the Commonwealth, as well as by many people worldwide. During this time of loss and transition, my family and I will be comforted and sustained by the knowledge that The Queen was held in such high regard and affection.”
Flowers have been placed at Buckingham Palace and other Royal Residences. People can also write messages in online Books of Condolence. Visit the royal website for more information on her funeral and grieving procedure.
Many people were impressed by Queen Elizabeth II’s determination, grace, and love of animals. She’ll be sorely missed.