The Yorkshire terrier is one of the most popular breeds of dogs. They’re well-liked by pet owners for a whole host of reasons: they’re cute and adorable, and are also very playful and loveable.
But whether you’ve owned a Yorkie before or are just now deciding to get one, it’s important to familiarize yourself with the breed, its particular personality traits and characteristics, how best to care for these dogs, and more.
In this information guide we’ll look at what it’s like owning and raising a Yorkshire terrier.
There are two things that you need to remember about Yorkies. First of all, they may look cute and adorable, but they can be quite highly-strung.
Second, these dogs can be quite delicate, and were bred to be pampered. When it comes to personality, many dog owners like Yorkie for their high energy levels and curiosity. They also like to cuddle and to snuggle in pillows. One thing you’ll definitely notice about Yorkies is that they are quick-witted and have very sharp minds — they tend to learn easily and quickly.
So are you prepared to welcome a yorkie in your home? Let’s have a look at the breed in detail.
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What’s the history of the Yorkie breed?
The working classes of Northern England coined the word Yorkie. These small, fast dogs were bred to catch the mice and rats that would plague the mills. The origins of this dog breed are not completely established, although some say that they originated from Scotland. Yorkies may originally have been larger, but over the years, they were bred to become the popular small dogs that are now known as Yorkshire terriers.
Should you own one?
If you’d like to get a dog but you aren’t sure which breed to adopt, there are several important things to consider. If you’re looking for a small dog that’s easy to carry and doesn’t need a whole lot of space at home, the Yorkie might be one of the best options for you.
Another great thing about these dogs is that they don’t need a whole lot of exercise, but they’re still very lively. In terms of grooming, they need a lot of grooming as their hair can easily get matted, but they shed less compared to other breeds, which make it easy to keep them groomed. Plus, Yorkies are very loyal and dedicated to protecting their owners.
On the other hand, Yorkies might not be right for you if you don’t want to deal with brushing your dog regularly. They’re also notoriously difficult to train, particularly because they’re so easy to spoil.
How do they shape up in looks?
The Yorkie is a relatively small dog, with an average height of about 6-7 inches and an average weight of 3-3.5 kilograms. What you’re bound to love about this breed is these dogs have simply beautiful coats, with very fine, long and glossy fur.
In terms of color, you’ll notice that the fur varies from lighter to darker shades around the eyes and on the head. It’s not uncommon to see their hair tied up in a bow, so if you’re looking for a dog that you can dress up and play with then this might be just the breed for you.
Here’s a video on how to groom your pup
How does their temperament shape up?
Don’t let the Yorkie’s small size fool you — these dogs are adventurous, full of energy, clever and quick-witted. But just like any other dog breed, Yorkies also have undesirable traits. Pet owners who fail to train their dogs correctly can find it really challenging to control their Yorkshire terrier’s behavior. If spoiled, these little dogs can be really bossy and tend to have minds of their own.
It’s essential to properly train your Yorkie using positive reinforcement, especially if you have a baby or children at home, On a positive note, thanks to their high intelligence levels, these dogs are very trainable and can quickly pick up new tricks. It’s really just a matter of having the time and patience to train your pet.
Do Yorkies have any health issues?
The Yorkie can live for up to 16 years, and some have reportedly lived for far longer than that. They are prone to certain health issues, however — primarily eye infections and tooth decay, due to their small mouths. Therefore, it’s imperative to be particularly mindful about what you feed your Yorkie. They often need food or treats that are designed to help clean their teeth.
What’s their personality like?
Just like people, every dog has a different personality, a wide variety of factors can impact your Yorkie’s mood and behavior. Your dog’s personality will largely depend on how you raise your pet. Some Yorkies are lively and spirited, while others get spoiled and can develop a diva-like attitude that can be difficult to control. But in general, Yorkies make for great companion animals, especially for elderly folks who want a dog that’s full of energy and love.
How active are Yorkshire terriers?
Some dogs need more physical activity than others in order to stay happy and healthy. The nice thing about Yorkshire terriers is that they don’t need a whole lot of exercise to stay in good health. Just walk them a few times a day and take the time to play for at least 15 minutes in order to meet this dog breed’s daily activity requirements.
But make sure to keep your dog on a leash when you’re outdoors until they’re properly trained. Yorkies might be small, but they tend to chase after things and even pick fights with other dogs, usually much bigger than them.
Behavior and Trainability
Training a dog is never an easy task. You need both patience and time to teach them to act and behave properly. Fortunately, these dogs are quite easy to train. They may be stubborn and independent, but they are also smart and tend to learn fast. It’s strongly recommended to start training your pet as early as possible — it’s much easier to train puppies than adult dogs.
Don’t encourage this in your pup
When your dog obeys your commands, praise and reward him. This is very important so that he’ll continue to demonstrate good behavior. And try to keep each training session short. They also tend to get bored fast, and like to move quickly between different activities. Another tip is to start the training program with easy commands, progressively building up to more difficult tricks and concepts.
Thanks to their small size, Yorkies are perfect for people who live in smaller homes or apartments. This dog is also a great companion for people with medical issues who can’t get outside to take their dogs for long walks. Their small size is also advantageous when you want to take a trip, as Yorkies are easy to take along with you, and associated fees will be far less than with larger dogs.
Another advantage of owning a Yorkie is that they eat less compared to other dog breeds, which translates into lower costs. Furthermore, despite their long fur, Yorkies are hypoallergenic. They are also known to be very affectionate and loving, which makes them a great family pet — Yorkies love interacting with people. Finally, small dogs like Yorkies tend to live for longer than bigger dogs.
Training your new Puppy
Puppies are adorable bundles of fur that are bound to melt your heart. Raising your pup requires a lot of time and money, but the rewards of becoming a puppy parent tend to outweigh the inconvenience of chewed up shoes or a soiled carpet. Here is the ultimate guide to taking care of your little pal.
Provide a clean, safe and warm place.
During the day, it’s best to keep your puppy in your kitchen or bedroom in order to keep it warm and cozy. Use a crate or wicker basket lined with pillows to create a soft, dry and comfortable bed for your puppy. Also be sure to provide a blanket when the weather turns cold.
Essential tools for grooming
Key grooming tools for your puppy include: bristle brush, comb, dog shampoo and conditioner, dog toothpaste, nail clippers and rubber gloves. Useful accessories for your puppy include a flat collar, a nylon harness and a metal ID tag.
Feeding the puppy
Buy 2 stainless steel bowls for food and water. Puppies eat a lot: From birth up to 6 months of age, he’ll need to eat 2-4 times a day to support all that growth. Puppy food comes in a range of options, including home-cooked nutrition, kibble, raw diet options and canned food. Ask for your vet’s advice to choose the right food for your puppy.
Toys and treats
Lively and energetic, puppies love playing with toys. Give them durable toys that are safe and that won’t pose any risk of injury. The best treats should be small, healthy and easy to chew, such as Zuke’s Mini Natural and BilJac.
Get a good veterinarian for your puppy. He or she will schedule vaccinations that will go a long way toward preventing serious disease. This is a crucial step to assuring that your dog will have a healthy and happy puppyhood.
It’s a very good idea to get proper insurance for your pet as soon as you get them, This means that if anything should go wrong you’ll be covered and you won’t have to deal with any nasty vet bills.
Socializing your puppy
Puppies are highly social, so keep your puppy in the house and around the family. To raise a safe, friendly and confident dog, expose your puppy to everything and anything he’ll do or see as an adult. This includes people of all ages, shapes, colors and sizes; other dogs and pets; being handled and groomed; having people around his food bowl and possessions; and the sights and sounds coming from the house and neighbors, like car engines, dishwashers, lawnmowers, vacuum cleaners, washing machines, and so on.
This should start as soon as your puppy gets home. Puppies need to relieve themselves much more frequently than adult dogs, so take the puppy outside hourly to prevent accidents. Notice early warning signs that your puppy needs to go, such as circling around and sniffing the ground.
So to sum up, a Yorkshire terrier is a wonderful companion as long as you take good care of it.
Now that you’re familiar with the characteristics of a Yorkie, it’ll be easier for you to decide if this dog breed is suitable for your needs and your lifestyle. Keep in mind that owning a dog entails responsibility, so it’s important to choose a dog that’s exactly the right fit for you.
Over to you, do you have a Yorkie or are you thinking of getting one? We’d love to hear about it! Or if you have any specific questions about owning or training your new pup, let us know. We’ll be glad to help!