Yorkshire Terriers, also known as Yorkies and even the ‘Tomboy Toy’, are small but energetic dogs that thrive when given a job to do. Despite their size, these dogs are full of courage, confidence, and spunk in addition to being a bit high maintenance. Their size makes them great for apartment life but they can, unfortunately, be a bit yappy so training can be important.
Bred by blue collar workers in Yorkshire county in northern England to catch rats and mice, the exact origin of Yorkies is a bit murky. Nowadays, these dogs stand 8-9 inches at the shoulder and weigh 4-7 pounds and are small but formidable dogs with a long, silky coat. As terriers, this breed is a great companion dog but can be suspicious of strangers and will bark at strange noises. They’ve also been known to be aggressive towards unfamiliar dogs, will chase after squirrels if given the chance, and can be difficult to housetrain. But the good news is that the breed is intelligent and otherwise very trainable. Patience and positive reinforcement training can go a long way with Yorkies.
Care for these dogs can be time intensive, especially because of their well-known long, silky, and perfectly straight hair. Their single coat rarely sheds but they still need almost daily brushing to keep their coat from matting or tangling. Grooming a Yorkie isn’t for the faint of heart but professional groomers can be extremely helpful and haircuts can help keep things a bit more manageable.
This breed is prone to some health issues, including eye infections, a delicate digestive system, bronchitis, and patellar luxation (slipped knee joint). Avoiding more exotic treats (including table scraps) can help with potential digestive issues and regular vet visits can hopefully catch any possible health problems. Additionally, Yorkies are prone to dental problems and tend to form a lot of tartar on their teeth, which makes brushing their teeth incredibly important.
If you’re looking for a small but energetic dog, a Yorkie might just be the dog for you. This breed loves to go on walks and love to play, making them great family and apartment dogs. They have a tendency for barking and for small dog syndrome but positive reinforcement training can help. Grooming a Yorkie’s long coat can take time but there are so many cute haircuts these small dogs can pull off! Ultimately, a Yorkshire Terrier is a truly lovable and small terrier that would love to be a part of a family.
Have you ever had a Yorkie before? Let me know in the comments!