Meet Ellie the Fluffy Corgi: Lynnwood dog in running for America’s Favorite Pet

Ellie is in the running for America’s Favorite Pet.

At only five months old, Lynnwood resident Ellie Joy Myles might be a little young to be watching the show “Brooklyn 99” every night to fall asleep. Ellie, however is a puppy, so the rules are different for her. The fluffy, happy Pembroke Welsh Corgi of Lynnwood is in the running for America’s Favorite Pet.

The America’s Favorite happens primarily online, where you can vote for America’s favorite pet for free once per day, or you can “buy” votes by donating to the nonprofit PAWS, based in Lynnwood. As of Saturday, Feb. 27, “Her fluffiness” (her Instagram handle) was in 2nd place in her group and will compete to be the winner.

When group winners are selected, the competition goes into quarterfinals, semifinals, and then finals. The final winner of America’s Favorite Pet gets a $5,000 cash prize and full-spread feature in Dogster or Catster Magazine.

Ellie’s owner James Myles said it’s Ellie’s sheer charm that has gotten her this far. “Ellie loves everybody and everybody loves her,” he said. When he and his wife, Mandy, picked Ellie up from Sultan, Wash. in November, she had the name “Joy” because the breeder loved her so much. Now, Joy is literally her middle name.

Ellie was also the only corgi in her litter that had the “fluffy” trait. Ellie’s fluffiness is the result of an extra-long second coat of hair. Though Corigs with this trait are not considered their own breed, they are the way they are because of a genetic mutation. The “fluffy” gene is hard to find, since it is recessive and doesn’t kick in until the corgi is several weeks old. Myles said they had been looking for their fluffy Corgi for about a year when they found Ellie.

Ellie with a favorite toy.

Ellie has proved herself to be unique in ways other than her hair, though. “She’s scary smart sometimes,” Myles said. “She’s very manipulative.” Ellie has been known to stack toys in order to have one at the perfect height for chewing. She’s learned to cycle through the tricks she knows in the hopes of snagging an unprompted treat. She can “wave,” she can play dead, and she can deduce when she’s being tricked into entering her crate. “She’s a little queen, and she knows it,” Myles said. If she were to win America’s Favorite Pet, Myles said, a good portion of the prize money would go toward more toys and snacks for Ellie.

Ellie’s participation in the contest isn’t about the fame or money, though. “I don’t really care if she beats other dogs or cats,” Myles said. “It’s not really so much about that, it’s just we love her to death and I think everybody who’s met her feels the same way.” And indeed, Ellie has plenty of admirers. As of this week, Ellie has nearly 1,000 followers on Instagram (@herfluffiness_ellie) and over 1,600 followers on Facebook (Ellie The Fluffy Corgi).

Ellie is “scary smart,” owner James Myles says.

In addition, Myles said he appreciates that the competition goes to support the work of the nonprofit PAWS, which rehabilitates and rescues animals. “I really like that it’s not just a big ol’ popularity contest, there’s a lot of people who benefit, a lot of animals that benefit,” he said.

Myles said they joined the contest after seeing an advertisement on Instagram, but ultimately, he doesn’t want it to interfere with their life as a family. Myles works from home as a saxophone teacher, and Mandy Myles works at the Goddard School teaching toddlers, and raising Ellie has been an adventure for them both. Mandy Miles has never had a dog before Ellie, and while James Myles had dogs growing up, he was never responsible for them. “It’s been a big learning curve, how to train her, how to raise her, how to make sure that she’s living a happy life,” he said.

The Myles family is excited about Ellie’s success in the competition for America’s Favorite Pet, however, and will be encouraging support over the next month in the coming rounds of voting. Votes—bought or free ($1 for PAWS = 1 vote) – can be submitted through a link on Ellie’s Facebook page or Instagram. The Myles family says thank you, and Ellie says “bark!”

— By Martha Harding





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