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Yorkshire Terrier

Yorkshire Terrier

Other Names: Yorkie
Country of Origin: England
Dog Group: Toy

Originback to top back to top

British born and bred, the Yorkshire Terrier is a man-made dog of fairly recent origin. It is believed that Scottish weavers brought a small terrier with them during a period of immigration from Scotland to Yorkshire and Lancanshire during the 1850s. These ‘Scotch Terriers,’ sometimes also known as ‘Halifax Terriers’ interbred with local small terriers. It is believed that Yorkies have in their lineage the Manchester Terrier, the Maltese, the Skye, Dandie Dinmont and the Paisley terriers. Shown as the Scotch Terrier in 1861, the dog later became known as the Yorkshire Terrier and was recognized as such by the Kennel Club in 1886. It is during that decade that the Yorkie was transported to the United States and was established as a breed over there as well. Thus the Yorkie is considered a breed of ‘the working classes’ and was primarily known as a ratter. Popular belief states that the Yorkie was bred to guard small children from rat bites at night, one Yorkie on guard at the head of the bed and one at the foot, rather like furry guardian angels, though somewhat less benign.

Descriptionback to top back to top

A small, sturdy dog of blue and gold colouring, the Yorkie is best known for it’s full flowing tresses of a texture quite similar to human hair. Indeed, if the coat texture is correct and in not in any way cottony, many allergic people find they can tolerate Yorkies with no bother. These lovely locks do take a great deal of daily care though.

Size Toy
Colour The typical colouring of the Yorkshire Terrier is blue and gold. The blue is a steel blue, often lightening to grey with age. The gold should be a rich tan.
Coat Length Medium Long
Age Expectancy As with many small dogs, the Yorkie can be long lived, often reaching the teens.
Weight/Height Range The Yorkshire Terrier is a toy dog, weighing in at between 2 - 3 kg and stands no taller than 20.5 cm.

As mentioned earlier, Yorkies tend to develop bad teeth due to their tiny, overcrowded mouths. In addition, make sure that any retained deciduous (milk) teeth are removed by the vet if they do not fall out on their own by the time the dog is 7 - 8 months old. Obesity is common among Yorkshire Terriers and it can be a real killer. Keeping the weight down will hopefully help your Yorkie keep its stifles in place. Yorkies do have a tendency to have loose kneecaps. Another ailment Yorkies are prone to is tracheal collapse.

Common ailments: Bones (Developmental) - Legg Perthes disease, Bones (Developmental) - Patellar luxation, Brain (Congenital) - Hydrocephalus (water on the brain), Endocrine - Hypothyroidism, Eye - Cataract - Hereditary, Eye - Distichiasis, Eye - Entropion, Eye - Keratoconjunctivitis sicca (KCS)/ Dry Eye, Eye - Progressive retinal atrophy (PRA), Eye - Retinal detachment, Eye - Retinal dysplasia, Haemolymphatic - Bleeding disorders - Von Williebrands disease, Liver - Portosystemic shunt (liver shunt) - Extrahepatic, Mouth - Retained deciduous teeth (retained temporary/baby teeth), Mouth - Dental calculus, Mouth-Dental tartar, Mouth - Periodontal disease, Skin - Dermatitis - Acute moist ("wet eczema" or "hot spot"), Skin - Mange - Demodectic, Skin - Seborrhoea, Spine - Hypoplasia of dens, Windpipe/Trachea - Tracheal collapse
Breed Classification Yorkshire Terriers belong to the toy group and are today used as companions and make a spectacular sight in the show-ring.

Feeding & Ownershipback to top back to top

The Yorkie can subsist on very little food. It is very easy to overfeed a Yorkshire Terrier. Obesity is a serious state for the small dog and can lead to several nasty diseases, such as diabetes, joint problems, kidney failure, etcetera.

Food Cost Up to $5
Other Expenses If a professional groomer is required this will also add to the cost. Annual veterinary check ups are recommended.

Personalityback to top back to top

The Yorkshire Terrier is a small dog with a big attitude. This is a dog that will one minute happily snuggle on grandma’s knee, delicately eating digestives and the next minute leap through the air and tear after the neighbour’s Rottweiler, promising to show it who is boss. Yorkies are terriers after all, and will protect their territory valiantly. The Yorkie is an affectionate dog but not naturally good with children. If a Yorkie is brought up with children or exposed to them as a puppy, it should be fine. However, children need to understand that the Yorkie has small bones that break much easier than most toys. Supervision is highly recommended.

Intelligence Puppy play sessions are probably a good idea for any Yorkie as they will teach the dog to respect the size and strength of larger dogs, socialise them with children and humans of both sexes and generally instill good manners. You must be firm and consistent, even with these tiny dogs. People often complain that you cannot housetrain Yorkies. This is not true. As long as you stick to the same rules that you would apply to a large dog, a Yorkie will learn to eliminate according to a human’s preferences.
Energy Medium
Suitability for Children Low
Tendency to Bark High
Overall Exercise Requirement To keep your Yorkie healthy and fit, daily exercise is a must. Yorkies love walking and will trot on for Kmss if allowed. A short walk will please a Yorkie so long as he gets a good sniff around and some mental stimulation. Do remember that Yorkies aren’t just lap dogs though and do like to run, fetch and play like any dog.
Suitability as a Guard Dog Medium
Ease of Transportation High
Level of Aggression Medium
Other Animal Compatibility Medium

Groomingback to top back to top

As a pet, the coat needs to be brushed daily using a brush and comb to ensure all tangles are removed. The topknot especially should be taken down, brushed out and redone. Leaving an elastic band in for days will destroy the coat. Hair under and around the tail should be checked for faeces. The teeth should also be brushed daily, as the small mouth leads to overcrowding and a tendency to teeth decay. Once mastered, the daily grooming should take no longer than 15 minutes. Bathing should not be done more than once a month.

Grooming Requirements Every Day
Trimming Required Occassional
Amount of hair shed None
Avg. 4.3 / Ratings: 22

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