Yorkshire Terrier

Written by Susan Gardner. Posted in Dogs

Information

Name: Yorkie
Origin: Yorkshire, England
Breed Group: Toy dogs
Size: Small
Hypoallergenic: Yes
The Yorkshire Terrier belongs to the Terrier dog breed group. This group of dogs is characterized by a small size. They are energetic dogs with little tolerance for other pets. Despite their small size, these types of dogs are hunters, although their pray is proportional to their size. Although the Yorkshire breed shares many of the traits which characterize the Terrier group, they do have some unique traits as well. Yorkshire Terrier Picture Yorkshire Terrier Picture Origin This dog breed developed in Yorkshire, England during the 19th century. They were trained to kill vermin, mostly rats, and their hunting history is still reflected by their unfriendly behavior towards other animals. This breed also goes under the name of Yorkie. While the exact history of this breed is still unclear, it is believed that the Paisley Terrier and the Maltese contributed greatly to the development of this breed. In the early years of this breed's history, most Terriers with long coats, trimmed ears and docked tails were accepted as Yorkies. It was only in the late 1960s that this breed's characteristics were better defined. In North America, this breed was acknowledged by the American Kennel Club in 1885. This breed also served as a part of the development of the Australian Silky Terrier. Yorkshire Terrier Picture Yorkshire Terrier Picture Physical description The most distinct characteristic of a Yorkshire Terrier is the weight, which should never exceed 7 pounds, the preferred weight being 4-5 pounds. The Yorkies should be 8-9 inches tall (measured at the shoulder). A lot of breeders offer smaller Yorkies, affectionately called tea-cup terriers. While these dogs are adorable, they are prone to numerous genetic disorders. You should not buy such dogs as you will be encouraging an improper breeding. However, you must keep in mind that this dog breed can be inconsistent in size. Puppies from the same litter can grow to weight anywhere between 1-15 pounds. The most common colors for the Yorkie's coat are blue on the back and brown on the chest, face and legs. The head should be small and flat on the top. The nose is black and the ears are small and pointed.The body is compact and the tail is docked. Yorkshire Terrier Picture Yorkshire Terrier Picture Personality What they lack in size, the Yorkshire Terriers make up for in energy. These dogs can be very curious, overprotective and loving. While they are classified as toy dogs, they are not submissive as most lap dogs. They adapt easily to new environments and people. They don't mind travelling and they make great pets for a lot of families. However, they are not the calmest of dogs. They get easily annoyed, which is why they should be avoided by families with children under 8. In order to calm their hunter instincts, these dogs need to be socialized from an early age with different types of people and pets. However, they should never be left unsupervised with children and other pets. Yorkies can also make for good watchdogs as…

Characteristics

EASE OF TRAINING
INTELLIGENCE
SHEDDING
KID FRIENDLINESS
ADAPTABILITY
ENERGY LEVEL
EXERCISE NEEDS
GUARDING ABILITIES
WATCHING ABILITIES

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The Yorkshire Terrier belongs to the Terrier dog breed group. This group of dogs is characterized by a small size. They are energetic dogs with little tolerance for other pets. Despite their small size, these types of dogs are hunters, although their pray is proportional to their size. Although the Yorkshire breed shares many of the traits which characterize the Terrier group, they do have some unique traits as well.

Yorkshire Terrier Picture Yorkshire Terrier Picture

Origin

This dog breed developed in Yorkshire, England during the 19th century. They were trained to kill vermin, mostly rats, and their hunting history is still reflected by their unfriendly behavior towards other animals. This breed also goes under the name of Yorkie. While the exact history of this breed is still unclear, it is believed that the Paisley Terrier and the Maltese contributed greatly to the development of this breed. In the early years of this breed’s history, most Terriers with long coats, trimmed ears and docked tails were accepted as Yorkies. It was only in the late 1960s that this breed’s characteristics were better defined. In North America, this breed was acknowledged by the American Kennel Club in 1885. This breed also served as a part of the development of the Australian Silky Terrier.

Yorkshire Terrier Picture Yorkshire Terrier Picture

Physical description

The most distinct characteristic of a Yorkshire Terrier is the weight, which should never exceed 7 pounds, the preferred weight being 4-5 pounds. The Yorkies should be 8-9 inches tall (measured at the shoulder). A lot of breeders offer smaller Yorkies, affectionately called tea-cup terriers. While these dogs are adorable, they are prone to numerous genetic disorders. You should not buy such dogs as you will be encouraging an improper breeding. However, you must keep in mind that this dog breed can be inconsistent in size. Puppies from the same litter can grow to weight anywhere between 1-15 pounds. The most common colors for the Yorkie’s coat are blue on the back and brown on the chest, face and legs. The head should be small and flat on the top. The nose is black and the ears are small and pointed.The body is compact and the tail is docked.

Yorkshire Terrier Picture Yorkshire Terrier Picture

Personality

What they lack in size, the Yorkshire Terriers make up for in energy. These dogs can be very curious, overprotective and loving. While they are classified as toy dogs, they are not submissive as most lap dogs. They adapt easily to new environments and people. They don’t mind travelling and they make great pets for a lot of families. However, they are not the calmest of dogs. They get easily annoyed, which is why they should be avoided by families with children under 8. In order to calm their hunter instincts, these dogs need to be socialized from an early age with different types of people and pets. However, they should never be left unsupervised with children and other pets. Yorkies can also make for good watchdogs as they always signal the approach of strangers. When kept indoors, their barking can be controlled with proper training. These dogs are reasonably smart and eager to please at times.

Yorkshire Terrier Picture Yorkshire Terrier Picture

Health

Yorkies are, above all, house dogs as they are very sensitive to extreme temperatures. Like all breeds, the Yorkshire Terrier breed is prone to certain genetic disorders. In order to avoid these health problems, make sure to buy Terrier puppies from a good breeder which can provide medical clearances for the puppies’ parents. The most common genetic disorders which can affect the Yorkies’ health are Distichiae, Legg–Calvé–Perthes syndrome, hydrocephalus, hypoplasia of dens, tracheal collapse, retinal dysplasia, luxating patella, bladder stones, Hypoglycemia and portosystemic shunt. Most of these disorders can be treated either through medication or through corrective surgeries. However, it is important for a Yorkie to be taken to the vet periodically. If the dog suffers from a genetic disorder, it should not be bred, even if the disorder was treated.

Yorkshire Terrier Picture Yorkshire Terrier Picture

Care

This breed is generally very active indoors, so it does not take a lot of work to exhaust them while taking them for a walk. They are receptive to training, as they enjoy praise and attention. As far as house training goes, crates have proven to be very efficient. A lot of people consider crate training to be a tad cruel. However, if the training is done in a positive manner, it can be very constructive. As far as entertainment goes, Yorkies love chewing toys, especially the squeaky ones. A Yorkie’s diet should be divided into two regular daily meals, each one containing 1/4-2/4 cups of dried food. However, the food quantity depends mainly upon the dog’s size. As this is an elegant dog breed, it is essential for Yorkies to be in shape. Their waist should be visible at first sight and their ribs should be felt when petting the dog, but they should not be visible from a distance.

Yorkshire Terrier Picture Yorkshire Terrier Picture

Coat

The coat is an important element in a Yorkie’s physical description. It is usually straight, fine and silky. The coat is usually grown long, but it should never be so long that it impedes movement. On the back, the coat should be black (darker towards the tail). The coat on the head, the chest and the legs should be a bright tan, darker towards the roots. There are also atypical Yorkies with extremely fine coats or silver blue and brown coats. Atypical Yorkies should not be bred because the different coat color and texture could be an indicator of a genetic defect. As far as brushing goes, it goes without saying that the long, silky coat of the Yorkies requires regular combing and brushing. Another interesting fact about Yorkies is that despite their long coat, they don’t shed a lot. Their coat is considered hypoallergenic by many allergists. However, people who suffer from allergies need to be very carefull because it is possible for allergies to be triggered by the dog’s saliva or dander. During competitions, the Yorkies coat requires extensive grooming rituals. Competing dogs must have long, untrimmed coats and it is not uncommon for the coat to be treated periodically with special oils and rice paper or plastic wrappings.

Yorkshire Terrier Picture Yorkshire Terrier Picture

Friendliness

As we mentioned above, Yorkies have a lot of energy which can cause them to be irritable at times. They are easily annoyed by children, which is why they are only recommended for families with children older than 8 years old. As far as other pets go, the natural predator instinct of the Yorkshire Terrier makes them very unfriendly, particularly with small pets.

Yorkshire Terrier Picture Yorkshire Terrier Picture

Ease of Training

Yorkies are not extremely easy to train. They are generally recommended for experienced dog owners. They do like receiving treats and affection when they perform certain tricks but they can be stubborn and strong willed at times. However, the Yorkie breed is a dog breed accustomed to working with human assistance, so the training routines can come naturally to certain dogs, especially if they are trained to be obedient from a young age. Crate training has proved to be very efficient for these dogs, as they are particularly challenging when it comes to housebreaking. However, if the training is done right, there is no reason why a Yorkie can’t perform a lot of tricks. After all, they are ranked 27th in Stabley Coren’s book, The Intelligence of Dogs.

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