All You Can Learn About Yorkshire Terriers
Yorkshire Terrier Facts & Information
Also known as: Yorkie
Country of Origin, History of the breed:
As a hunting group, Terriers were brought up to have a feisty nature, a high level of courage, and the tenacity to chase small, burrowing animals over a long distance. The Yorkshire Terrier was bred for all these qualities, to chase and kill rats, mice and other vermin.
As its name suggests, the Yorkshire Terrier originated in Yorkshire County and the neighboring Manchester County. In the mid-nineteenth century, craftsmen from Scotland who came to Yorkshire for work, brought with them several different varieties of small, long-coated Terriers, generally known as Scottish Terriers.
Although the specific breeds that make up the Yorkshire Terrier are not known, some breeds are commonly thought to be its ancestors. The Scotsmen seeking employment in and around Yorkshire is believed to have brought with them certain Terrier breeds such as the Clydesdale, Paisley, Skye and Waterside, some of which are now extinct. The Yorkie was first brought into the United States in the year 1872, and was one of the first twenty five breeds to be approved by the American Kennel Club. At the time of the Victorian era, the Yorkshire Terrier gained particular popularity among Americans.
A general appearance of the dog:
One of the first things to notice about a Yorkshire Terrier is its long silky coat, and a small but well proportioned body. Though a toy breed, the Yorkshire Terrier exudes ample intelligence and vitality which is reflected in its active nature. Short and erect, the Yorkshire Terrier has a small head with a prominent set of eyes, a short muzzle with a deep black nose. Their ears are v-shaped, pointed, and should stand erect. Both front and hind legs are straight, with elbows neither turned inward nor outward, when viewed from front or back. Yorkshire Terriers have a small, straight tail and a slightly slanting back.
Steel blue colored body and tail, and a deep rich tan around the 'headfall', with the base of the ears and the area around the muzzle darker than the rest of the face. The tan color should not extend to your Yorkshire Terrier's back or neck.
Coat type: (whether thick or with undercoat, etc.)
Three important things to note about your Yorkshire Terrier's coat are color, quality, and quantity. Moreover, Yorkshire Terriers do not have an undercoat, unlike most other dogs. A good coat means hair that is soft and silky with ample shine and lustre. All of its body hair, particularly the head hair (known as the head fall), the hair on their muzzle, should be long, with a rich tan color. While hair in between their paws maybe clipped to give a neat look, the hair on their ears needs regular trimming to help them stand erect. Yorkies hardly ever shed their coat, but you need be diligent in caring for messy, tangled hair. Although most photographs of Yorkshire Terriers show them in long coats, it is only one of their styles. If you fail to regularly groom, shampoo, and condition your dog's long coat, it will be a mess. You may give your dog a short crop - more popularly known as the 'puppy cut'. This cut is relatively easy to maintain, but you will still need to groom your dog frequently.
Sketch Artist's rendition of a Yorkie Puppy
Our Yorkies are an Artist's dream.
Temperament of the dog:
Despite their small structure, the Yorkshire Terrier has an attitude that is so exuberant and courageous, it would lead us to believe that the dog is not aware of its actual size. Though a toy breed, this dog displays ample courage and alertness which makes it a perfect home-guard. This is also because the Yorkshire Terrier has an acute sense of hearing. Although Yorkshire Terriers usually live peacefully and in harmony even with outside pets, they can be at times very territorial, especially male Yorkies. This is why introduction of a new pet cat or dog should be done very carefully. In case you are planning to keep a hamster or a rat (as a pet) along with your Yorkshire Terrier, drop the idea! Given their hunting instincts, your Yorkie is sure to devour your other pet, unless of course you plan to watch over like a hawk.
Better suited to an indoor or outdoor lifestyle?
A Yorkshire Terrier is undoubtedly an indoor pet and rightly so, considering some of its basic characteristics. Firstly, the Yorkie has a small, light body structure and is surely very easy to carry and barely takes up any space. Despite having a hairy coat, the yorkie hardly ever sheds, making it a true blessing for those of us allergic to dog hair. Moreover, the dog is swift, alert, yet graceful, and sure to inform you of just about any intruder. If you do not have a big house or a very spacious backyard, you can still keep a Yorkie, for this is one breed that requires hardly any exercise. Also, the Yorkshire Terrier is, above all, a fairly well behaved, peaceful dog, tolerant of other pets around them and it is precisely all these qualities that make a Yorkie one of the best loved indoor pets.
Are they suited to homes with kids?
Yorkshire Terriers are usually fond of people and children. Due to their size and the fragility of their structure, it is best for Yorkshire Terriers to be monitored when interacting with really young children. Moreover temperaments differ among Yorkies and some may not prefer children like some others. However, if handled with care and a lot of love, Yorkies are sure to return your affection and be great companions.
How to take care of the Yorkshire Terrier puppies?
Needless to say, puppies will need extra care right from the time of birth until they are old enough to move around the house freely on their own. Update yourself on various puppy diseases, such as Toxic Milk, Hypoglycemia, Fading puppies, etc. From the time they are about 8 weeks old, puppies will need proper vaccinations at regular intervals; talk to your Veterinarian and schedule appointments per your pup's requirements. Be sure to remove all possible hazardous things from your pup's reach, such as moth balls, detergents, bleaches, aerated cans, plastic scraps, fruit pits, and foodstuffs, such as chocolates, bones, or play items like balls, batteries, etc. Keep your puppy well protected and make it feel safe. Often plastic or fiberglass crates or cages acts like an indoor home to them. Buy one that does not have any sharp edges, but is comfortable at the same time. However, do not leave your puppy on its own before you have accustomed him to be that way.
Yorkshire Terriers tend to be a little more difficult to train than some other breeds as a result of their very nature to work without human interaction or assistance of any sort. This independence and free-spirited nature of Yorkshire Terriers makes them rather difficult to house-break. However, consistent training will result in your Yorkie learning a great deal. All you really need to do is be patient and invest sufficient time and energy into training your dog.
Exercise needs of a Yorkie is relatively simple and it readily acquires the activity level of its human. Moreover, a Yorkshire Terrier hardly requires rigorous exercise, due to its frail, miniature structure. However, if where you live does not have harsh weather, it is okay to take your Yorkie out for frequent walks.
Health & Care:
Cautions about Breeding the Dog:
Before you decide to breed your dog, it is important that you educate yourself on the various conditions that may arise, and be prepared.
Is your dog a healthy example of its breed? Several infections transfer through breeding, therefore please ensure that the Bacteria Cultures and Brucellosis Tests have been performed on both the male and the female dog. Check the female dog additionally for diseases such as the Luxating Patella's, Cardiomyopathy, or Hypothyroidism, which are very much a reality of breeding. Above all, ask yourself if you have the time or inclination to find out about probable hereditary faults.
Complications do occur, and it is best not to take anything, especially your dog's health, for granted. Do not leave your Yorkshire Terrier alone close to her whelping time, and make sure you stay with her for a day, both before and after she gives birth to her young ones. Educate yourself more and more on raising young puppies and ask your Veterinarian about conditions such as Scepticemia, Toxic Milk, Hypoglycemia, Fading Puppies, etc. Once the puppies reach eight weeks old, vaccines need to be monitored at regular intervals until they are about four months old. Please remember that breeding your Yorkie will need ample time, money and the best care from you, as the caretaker.
Yorkshire Terriers require frequent bathing and brushing to keep their coat clean and silky. A dry, tangled coat needs to be wet with warm water first, and slowly worked out with fingers. Soft pin brushes with a rubbery texture is a good grooming device. Brush hair daily or weekly, (depending upon your dog's need) with a metal comb that has long teeth to ensure you cover the entire length of the coat. Be careful not to break your dog's hair in case it is tangled or feels dry. If you must blow dry your dog's coat, make sure you dry them using low to medium heat since their skin is far more sensitive to heat, and burns easily. The area around and under your dog's eyes needs to be cleaned of the mucous, and dried on a regular basis. Use a damp, soft cloth or cotton ball to gently clean under their eyes.
To keep your Yorkshire Terrier's ears perfectly erect, trim them every few weeks carefully, along the contours, so as not to ruin the original shape, or cut the ear leather.
Excessive hair needs to be trimmed from significant areas; such as the rectum and under the paw, (to help keep your pet clean at all times)
Height: Male 7-9 inches Female 7-9 inches
Weight: Male 4-7 LBS. Female: 3-7 LBS.
Life span: 12 to 15 years
National Breed Club: The Yorkshire Terrier Club Of America.
Recognition: CKC, FCI, AKC, UKC, KCGB, CKC, ANKC, NKC, NZKC, APRI, ACR
Webmaster Note: This article is informative and gives many valid pointers in the care/training/nature of the Yorkshire Terrier Breed. I did, however, find repetition within content. This is helpful, in that it emphasizes important points in choosing and caring for the breed.