The Yorkshire Terrier is an Energetic and Loving Companion
A miniature toy-sized breed, the Yorkshire Terrier is an energetic and loving companion perfect for apartment living and suitable for single adults or families with older children. This breed has a life expectancy of 12-15 years and requires basic maintenance and nurturing, easily given by someone with just a rudimentary knowledge of dog care.
The dog is a small breed, typically weighing from three to seven pounds, and measuring approximately seven to nine inches in height. Yorkies, as they are also called, are known for their long glossy coats and their distinct steel-blue and tan hair coloring. Unlike other breeds, the hair on this pup’s head can often be as long as the hair on its body and many owners will pull this back and secure it in place to give the dog maximum visibility.
The exact origin of the Yorkshire Terrier is unknown, but historians suggest that people began breeding them back in nineteenth century England. The Yorkshire breed is a mix of several other breeds of terriers including the Paisley, Clydesdale, Waterside and Skye. They were used by miners during that time period to control the rodent population in the mines. They were also widely used as hunting dogs. Once a much larger breed, the Yorkie was gradually miniaturized through selective breeding over the course of time. First recognized by the AKC in 1885, this breed has become a popular pocket-sized companion for many women who carry them in their handbags.
Living with a Yorkie
The Yorkshire Terrier breed is one that you can train easily, because they are eager to learn and explore. Although loyal and loving, this small dog can develop behavior issues stemming from a lack of a pack leader. Like other small dogs, they try to control their surroundings and their humans if their owners do not show them who is in control. Although small, Yorkies are an active breed and enjoy lots of walks, playtime and attention. They are not typically aggressive unless they feel scared or endangered and are known for their loud, yappy bark that they will use to let you know when something is amiss.
Though typically healthy, the Yorkshire Terrier does face certain dangers and health risks because of its miniature size. Due to this type of dog’s small frame and short legs, their bones are extremely fragile. This means when engaging in rough play or when they try to jump off furniture they can break or fracture their bones. Yorkies do tend to develop issues with their hips and joints, as well as problems with their digestive tracts.
This type of terrier has a long, luxurious coat that needs regular grooming and attention. It is recommended that you have your Yorkie’s hair trimmed regularly to keep it at a manageable length to minimize knots and keep them comfortable. Their coat also needs daily brushing to prevent the hair from tangling and matting. Due to a history of tooth decay and fracture, remember to have your pup’s teeth cleaned by the vet during their regular visits. While not always necessary, many owners tie back the long hair covering the dogs’ eyes, because it opens up their face and lets the dog see its surroundings more clearly.
The Yorkshire Terrier is a breed that doesn’t require excessive care. Their fun, active lifestyle and easy-going temperament make them a great option for many people, excluding those with small, playful children. Proper care and TLC will give your Yorkie everything it needs to live a long and happy life as a part of your family.