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Should I get a Yorkie? 

yorkie
Photo by Crystal Huff on Unsplash

This post is dedicated to the handbag-sized dog that is adorable yet feisty: the Yorkshire Terrier, or Yorkie.

yorkie

We’ve all seen these adorable little purse dogs walking around with their owners. But do they make the perfect household pet? Yorkies are full of personality and spunk, but being aware of their traits will help you decide whether this breed will be a good fit for you. They are kind pets with distinct looks and adorable personalities. Adding any dog to your home is a big decision. We are here to help you know all the ins and outs before committing many years to your new furry best friend! 

Traits and characteristics

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Yorkies are known for their feisty, bossy, and brave characteristics. Even though they only stand at an average height of seven inches, this little dog will surely blow you away with its fun and fierce personality. Yorkies are one of the most common dog breeds – and for a good reason. They make the perfect house pets. They do equally well in even a tiny apartment because their activity needs aren’t too demanding. These small dogs have long and silky coats and are cute as can be with their somewhat feisty personalities. They were originally bred for small vermin hunting. This might seem surprising, but bear in mind that the original yorkie was much larger than the ones you see today. They have become a pocket-sized version through natural selection, now only weighing between 2 and 7 pounds. 

Shedding 

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Yorkies will need a fair amount of grooming throughout their lifetime. Their fine and silky hair require regular brushing unless it’s cut short. Because they do not have an undercoat, they do not shed a lot. Essentially, they shed at the same rate as us humans. No dog is 100% hypoallergenic. However, dogs with this kind of coat are less likely than others to cause an allergic reaction. Their coat doesn’t go through high shedding seasons as other dogs do. Consequently, they won’t leave tufts of hair all over your furniture. This great news no matter if you’re allergic or not.

Lifespan 

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The good news about yorkies is that they are very small, and small dogs live the longest! Yorkies and other miniature dog breeds can live up to 20 years. The average lifespan, though, is between 10 and 13 years. Feeding a Yorkie high-quality food and keeping up with their regular vet checkups, your Yorkie can live an amazing and long life by your side. 

How fast is a Yorkie? 

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Yorkies have tiny little legs, but they can run surprisingly fast! A larger purebred yorkie can run up to 20 miles per hour, whereas the average yorkie can reach speeds of up to 10 miles per hour. The problem is they can only keep up this speed for a short time. Because yorkies have tiny little bodies, you probably can’t take them jogging, but they can absolutely keep up on a brisk walk. 

Do Yorkies make good pets?

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Yorkies make amazing pets, but because they are so tiny and sensitive, they are better off not being around small children. Very young children might not know how to be gentle enough for a Yorkie. They could potentially drop them, which would cause great damage – worst case resulting in a broken bone (and an expensive vet bill.) However, Yorkies are playful and affectionate, which makes them amazing companions. The only downside is that they can be difficult to house-train. With some patience and regular training, though, they make great pets. 

Do Yorkies bark a lot? 

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Like many other small dogs, yorkies have a tendency to be a touch yappy. It should be noted, though, that it depends on your pupper’s personality and will vary from dog to dog. Because they are territorial of their home and their owner, they need to “guard” the house. This causes them to bark at the smallest noise and investigate the source. There are many tools to stop a dog from yapping, and with the right training, they can become calm and quiet dogs. But if you’re a bit sound-sensitive and yapping bothers you, you might want to consider another breed.

Are Yorkies high maintenance? 

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Yorkies are considered high maintenance due to their constant grooming needs. Even when their coat is clipped short, they need weekly baths, and if their coat is kept long, they need daily brushing. On the other hand, yorkies do not require as much physical activity as most other breeds. They can easily be left alone while you are at work and are not likely to chew things around the house. In a way, their low activity requirements cancel out their high grooming needs.

Do Yorkies like to cuddle? 

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A Yorkie will never turn down a chance to cuddle; they are considered phenomenal lap dogs. This makes them great companions, and stroking their silky coats will undoubtedly calm you and give you that warm and fuzzy feeling. It’s easy to see why they turned from ratting dogs to companion dogs with their sweet demeanor, strong personality, and lap dog qualities. They are deemed “velcro dogs,” meaning they will likely bond closely with one person – usually the “leader” of the pack or their primary caretaker. However, that doesn’t mean they won’t enjoy the company of others in the household. 

Are Yorkies good with kids? 

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Due to their playful nature, Yorkies do great with kids as long as the children know how to be gentle. Because they are so small, they can get hurt easily. Leaving them unsupervised with a small child is not recommended. Because they were bred to hunt vermin originally, they may play a little rough. Teaching them to refrain from biting from a young age will stop them from nipping when they play with your kids. To teach them this, you will need to “act” like one of their siblings. When it bites you, and they bite down too hard, make a whining sound like you are a dog that has been hurt. They will quickly learn not to bite hard, and their mouthing will be harmless! 

How long do their coats get? 

Once your yorkie is 18 to 24 months old and fully grown, its coat will grow to the length of the floor. Keeping their coat at this length requires a lot of maintenance, and unless you are going to be getting your dog groomed every other week, you will need to brush them daily. Getting your dog used to being groomed from a young age is essential to their mental health. If not, grooming sessions will be like pulling teeth. You can do this by using positive reinforcement. When you bring the brush out, your dog should get lots of love and treats. They should be delighted with the sight of the brush and have positive associations with it (e.g., treats) because they will have a long life of grooming ahead of them. Keeping their coat at a shortly trimmed length is also perfectly fine.

Illnesses in Yorkies

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Heart failure is a leading cause of death for yorkies. It is usually caused by a deformity in their heart valves which causes their valves not to close tightly enough. As a result, they leak and consequently weaken their hearts.

They are also susceptible to PDA (patent ductus arterioles) caused by heart parts not forming correctly after birth. Yorkies can equally be susceptible to viral and bacterial infections, but this can be common in all dogs, and vaccinating them on time will prevent this. Some of these include rabies, parvo, and distemper. These diseases can run rampant in places such as kennels, dog parks, and other places where many dogs have been. Keeping up with your dog’s vaccinations and regular maintenance is vital to keeping them happy and healthy. 

Diets of Yorkies 

A yorkie needs a good amount of protein in its diet, but because dogs are omnivores, they can also derive nutrients from plant-based sources. When a dog gets the right amount of protein, it will help support its development and allow its body to steer clear of disease. The yorkie has no nutritional requirement for carbs, so you will want to find foods that are high in protein and low in carbs to suit their needs best. It’s advisable to feed your yorkie two meals a day. Feeding your dog only once a day can cause an upset stomach, which you will definitely want to avoid. 

Wrapping Up

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As you can see, the Yorkie is a fantastic choice for the typical household. They are loyal, pocket-sized pets that are sure to love you unconditionally until the day they die. These doggos are excellent watchdogs with low maintenance requirements, except for their grooming needs. Moreover, they are intelligent and can be a fantastic addition to any family! Adding a Yorkie to your home is a choice you are unlikely to regret. There is a reason they are sought-after little dogs that bring so much love and joy to their families. Now that you know all the ins and outs of the Yorkshire Terrier, hopefully, you can make an informed decision before bringing home your new furry best friend! 

Thank you for reading this article! If you’re still undecided and want to see what other dog types are out there – we’ve got you. Take a look at our post on the Sheepadoodle or the Boykin Spaniel.