Yorkshire Terrier Dog Breed: Info, Pictures, Overview and more

Yorkshire Terrier Dog Breed Information and Pictures

Breed Overview

With a lively and affectionate temperament, this breed is known for its small size, silky coat, and confident personality. Originating from England, it was initially bred for catching rats in mines. The Yorkshire Terrier excels in canine sports and loves being the center of attention. Despite their small stature, they are brave and make excellent watchdogs. Regular grooming is essential to maintain their luxurious coat, and they thrive in households with older children and experienced owners who provide consistent training and socialization. Overall, the breed is a delightful companion with a big personality packed into a small body.


Known for their spirited and affectionate nature, these small dogs boast a big personality. With confidence and curiosity to spare, they are lively and always eager for fun. While they tend to be independent and sometimes stubborn, they are also incredibly loyal and thrive on human companionship. Yorkshire Terriers are known for their bold demeanor and make excellent watchdogs due to their alertness. They are often fearless, but also loving and affectionate towards their families, making them fantastic companions for those seeking a mix of spunk and sweetness in a canine friend.

Size and Appearance

Small in size, the Yorkshire Terrier is characterized by a compact, well-proportioned body with a straight back and level top-line. Their head is small and rather flat on the top, adorned with a distinctive silky coat that is long, straight, and glossy. They have small, V-shaped ears that stand erect, expressive dark eyes, and a small black nose. The breed boasts a confident and feisty demeanor, despite their petite stature, with a perky carriage and a distinctive blue and tan coat coloring, making them a popular choice for those seeking a charming and playful companion.

Health and Lifespan

Health and Lifespan: The average lifespan of this breed is about 11-15 years, but proper care and attention to their health can help them live even longer. Yorkshires may be prone to certain health issues, including patellar luxation, tracheal collapse, dental problems, and portosystemic shunt (liver condition). Regular veterinary check-ups, a balanced diet, dental care, exercise, and grooming are essential for maintaining their well-being. Yorkies with a healthy lifestyle and good genetics can enjoy a happy and active life well into their teens.

Family Compatibility

Yorkshire Terriers are incredibly family-oriented and loyal dogs, making them excellent companions for families of all sizes. They thrive on human interaction and love being involved in family activities. Their small size makes them suitable for indoor living and they enjoy cuddling with their family members. While they can be energetic and playful, they also appreciate quiet time and are known for their affectionate nature towards their owners. With proper socialization and training, Yorkshire Terriers can get along well with children and other pets in the household, forming strong bonds with everyone in the family.

Exercise Needs

Yorkshire Terriers have moderate exercise needs, requiring daily walks and playtime to stay healthy and happy. Interactive toys and short training sessions can help keep them mentally stimulated. They enjoy indoor activities, making them adaptable to apartment living. Engaging in activities like fetch, agility training, and interactive games can help meet their exercise requirements. Despite their small size, they have a surprisingly high energy level and enjoy activities that challenge them physically and mentally. Regular exercise not only maintains their physical health but also helps prevent behavioral issues due to boredom.

Diet and Feeding

This breed requires a balanced diet rich in high-quality protein to maintain their energy levels. It is essential to feed them smaller, frequent meals to prevent hypoglycemia, a common issue in small breeds. Yorkshires also benefit from a diet with Omega-3 and Omega-6 fatty acids for healthy skin and coat. Avoid overfeeding to prevent obesity, as this breed is prone to weight gain. Fresh water should always be available, and treats should be given in moderation to prevent digestive issues. Consulting with a veterinarian for specific dietary recommendations based on the individual dog's needs is advisable.
Yorkshire Terrier Dog Breed Information and Pictures

Living Environment

Yorkshire Terriers thrive in indoor environments, making them well-suited for apartment living. However, they still require regular exercise to stay healthy and happy. A moderate daily walk and playtime indoors should suffice. It's essential to create a safe space for them as they can be prone to getting underfoot. Due to their small size, they are vulnerable to extreme temperatures, so it's crucial to keep them comfortable and provide them with a cozy bed. Overall, a loving home with attention and care is all a Yorkshire Terrier needs to flourish.


Regular grooming is crucial for this breed due to their long, silky coat. Daily brushing is recommended to prevent matting and tangling, as well as monthly baths to keep them clean and fresh. You'll need to trim their nails regularly to avoid overgrowth and potential discomfort. Don't forget to clean their ears and brush their teeth to maintain their overall hygiene. Some owners choose to keep their hair clipped short for easier maintenance, while others prefer the classic long-haired look, requiring more frequent grooming sessions to keep them looking their best.

Training and Intelligence

Highly intelligent and eager to please, this breed excels in training with consistency and positive reinforcement. Yorkies have a sharp mind and quick learning ability, making them adept at picking up commands and tricks. While they can be a bit stubborn at times, their intelligence shines through in obedience tasks and agility training. It's important to start training early to establish good behavior habits and prevent any potential stubbornness. With the right approach, patience, and motivation, Yorkshire Terrier can reach impressive levels of obedience and showcase their intelligence in various training activities.

Exercise and Activity Requirements

Yorkshire Terriers are a small breed with moderate exercise needs. Daily walks and playtime are essential to help maintain their physical and mental well-being. Despite their size, they have moderate energy levels and enjoy activities such as fetch, short hikes, and engaging in interactive toys. Regular exercise not only helps prevent obesity but also strengthens the bond between the dog and its owner. It's important to provide them with opportunities to release their energy to prevent behavioral problems. A well-exercised Yorkshire Terrier is a happy and content companion.


Socialization is crucial for this breed, starting as puppies to develop well-rounded personalities and good behavior. They benefit from exposure to various people, animals, and environments to prevent shyness or aggressive tendencies. Early socialization can help them adapt to different situations and become confident and friendly companions. Regular interactions with other dogs, positive reinforcement training, and supervised playtime are essential for their mental and emotional well-being. Owners should prioritize socializing these small dogs to ensure they grow up to be sociable, well-mannered pets that enjoy the company of both humans and animals alike.


Yorkshire Terriers typically have a lifespan of 12 to 15 years, making them a long-lived breed for their size. Proper care, including regular veterinary check-ups, a nutritious diet, and regular exercise, can contribute to their longevity. Maintaining a healthy weight, dental hygiene, and addressing any health issues promptly can also help extend their lifespan. It is important to provide a loving and safe environment for Yorkshire Terriers to ensure they live a happy and healthy life for as long as possible.

Common Behavioral Issues

Common behavioral issues seen in this breed include separation anxiety, excessive barking, and stubbornness. Yorkshire Terriers are known to form strong bonds with their owners, leading to distress when left alone for extended periods. Their alert nature can trigger frequent barking, a trait that needs consistent training to manage. Additionally, Yorkies can exhibit stubborn tendencies, making training sessions challenging but rewarding with patience and positive reinforcement. Providing mental stimulation, regular exercise, and socialization can help address these behavioral issues and ensure a well-adjusted and happy companion.
Yorkshire Terrier Dog Breed Information and Pictures

Special Considerations

Exercise is crucial for this breed to prevent obesity and maintain overall health. Regular grooming, including daily brushing and visits to a professional groomer, is necessary to manage their long, silky coat. Due to their small size, they are prone to dental issues, so dental care is essential to prevent dental disease. Additionally, they can be prone to certain health conditions like luxating patella and tracheal collapse, so regular veterinary check-ups are important to monitor their health. Lastly, early socialization and training are key to prevent behavioral problems and ensure they are well-adjusted companions.

Guardian Instincts

Yorkshire Terriers have a strong guardian instinct despite their small size, making them excellent watchdogs. They are alert and quick to bark at any potential threats, making them ideal for alerting their owners to any unusual activity. This protective nature stems from their history as working dogs in mines and mills, where they were tasked with hunting down rats. However, it is important to socialize them early on to prevent excessive barking or territorial behavior. Overall, their guardian instincts make them loyal and devoted companions who will always look out for their family.

Allergies and Shedding

Yorkshire terriers are hypoallergenic dogs with a non-shedding coat, making them suitable for allergy sufferers. Their hair continues to grow instead of shedding, requiring regular grooming to prevent mats and tangles. They have hair instead of fur, which contributes to their low-shedding nature. Regular baths and brushing can help reduce allergens in their coat. As with any breed, individual dogs may vary, so it's essential for potential owners to spend time with a Yorkshire terrier to ensure they don't trigger any allergies. Proper grooming and care can help minimize shedding and potential allergic reactions.

Cost of Ownership

The cost of owning a Yorkshire Terrier includes expenses for high-quality dog food, grooming supplies, regular vet check-ups, vaccinations, flea and tick prevention, training classes, and toys to keep them entertained. Additionally, potential owners should budget for grooming appointments every 4-6 weeks to maintain their beautiful coat. It is important to invest in dental care products and regular teeth cleanings to prevent dental issues common in small breeds. Emergency medical care should also be factored into the budget, as these tiny dogs can be prone to health problems. Despite their small size, Yorkshire Terriers require a significant financial commitment to ensure their well-being.

Availability and Adoption

Yorkshire terriers are a popular breed and can be found in many animal shelters and rescue organizations. Due to their small size and high demand, Yorkshire terriers are often available for adoption from breed-specific rescues as well as general animal shelters. Potential adopters should be prepared for grooming needs and potential health issues common in this breed. Additionally, there are reputable breeders who may have Yorkshire terrier puppies available for adoption. It's essential to do thorough research and consider adoption as a great way to provide a loving home for a Yorkshire terrier in need.

Famous Examples

One of the most famous examples of this breed is Smoky, a Yorkshire Terrier who served in World War II and became a war hero. Another notable Yorkshire Terrier is Mr. Famous, who gained popularity on social media for his fashionable outfits and stylish appearances at various events. Additionally, Lucy from the TV show "The Lucy Show" starring Lucille Ball was a beloved Yorkshire Terrier known for her on-screen charm and presence. These famous examples showcase the breed's versatility, intelligence, and endearing qualities that have captured the hearts of many around the world.
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