Who Is the Maybe-Corgi in Queen Elizabeth's Backseat: An Investigation

Who is this very good boy?!

Sometimes, all you need is for a dog to snuggle up to you and lick the tears from your face. When you've been dumped. When you're homesick. When your rebellious grandson and his wife defy your orders and upend the billion-dollar institution to which you've dedicated your entire life. On Friday, the Queen was photographed driving outside Sandringham Estate in Norfolk, and while it's the first time she's been seen in public since Meghan Markle and Prince Harry released that statement and all hell broke loose, I want to draw your attention to something more important: The dog in her backseat.

You see, the Queen, who famously owned and bred corgis her entire life, is no longer a corgi owner. In fact, it caused quite a stir in 2018 when her final corgi, Whisper, passed away"8 Decades of British Royal Corgis Reportedly at an End," blared the New York Times. In 2015, the Queen had stopped taking on new corgis because she didn't want to leave any behind when she passed away. So when this coy corgi lookalike was spotted in her backseat, fans of both dogs and royalty (me) took notice. We (I) wondered: Could the stress of the past week have driven the Queen to renounce her no-corgis pledge?

Here's the Queen on Friday:

I took the liberty of zooming in.

Here's what else is interesting: The Queen is wearing a cream silk scarf with dogs on it. Could the Queen, who has been known to strategically communicate via brooches in the past, be sending a message through her styling choices?

Further deepening the mystery, the headscarf appears to be a print of...beagles. At this point, I broke from my investigation to try to find a similar scarf that I could buy, because investigating issues of international importance can be tiring and self-care is paramount. The one the Queen is wearing is by Hermès and is vintage and is called the MONARCH scarf, which is actually perfection. There are a few available on eBay if you're so inclined!

Anyway. Beagles.

You know which member of the royal family owns a beagle?

Dog, Mammal, Canidae, Dog breed, Companion dog, Carnivore, Human, Puppy love, Rare breed (dog), Ear,

Guy the beagle, who Meghan rescued in 2015, in a now-deleted shot from her old Instagram.

(Image credit: Instagram)

Meghan's beagle is such a big deal, in fact, that Guy the Beagle even has his own book.

So, uh, yeah. I see what you did there, Liz.

But back to the dog in the backseat. I would understand if the Queen had panic-adopted a corgi to get her through the trying times ahead, a.k.a. the "days, not weeks" of four-way calls and people being "incandescent with rage." If I were the head of a historic institution that was being sapped of its very lifeblood, its two most popular members, and I had no dogs, well. I wouldn't make it!

However. It emerges that the Queen quietly holds on to two "dorgis," which are corgi mixes considered basically inferior but fine. Vulcan and Candy aren't often photographed, probably because of said inferiority complex, but they did make a cameo on the Queen's 2016 Vanity Fair cover. You can tell which ones are the dorgis because they look sad about not being considered "real" corgis.

And following further investigation, I have determined an uncanny similarity between this dog, which is either Vulcan or Candy but, either way, is my forever mood:

Dog, Mammal, Vertebrate, Dog breed, Canidae, Carnivore, Companion dog, Scotch collie, Snout, Sporting Group,

(Image credit: Vanity Fair)

And this dog, who still looks sad about being considered a second-class citizen five years later:

Plus, the Queen has also had several hunting dogs over the years, which are bred at Sandringham Estate. And since this was a hunting expedition, it's also possible that this very good boy is Turnip or Tom or whatever these very nice pups that don't appear on Vanity Fair covers are called.

This concludes my investigation. Thank you for joining me on this journey.

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(Image credit: Karwai Tang)
Jenny Hollander
Digital Director

Jenny is the Digital Director at Marie Claire. Originally from London, she moved to New York in 2012 to attend the Columbia Graduate School of Journalism and never left. Prior to Marie Claire, she spent five years at Bustle building out its news and politics coverage. She loves, in order: her dog, goldfish crackers, and arguing about why umbrellas are fundamentally useless. Her first novel, EVERYONE WHO CAN FORGIVE ME IS DEAD, will be published by Minotaur Books on February 6, 2024.