Yorkshire Terrier

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Yorkshire Terrier

Canis lupus

Last updated: June 16, 2022
Verified by: IMP
Image Credit tsik/Shutterstock.com

Yorkies hold many records for smallest dog.

Yorkshire Terrier Scientific Classification

Scientific Name
Canis lupus

Read our Complete Guide to Classification of Animals.

Yorkshire Terrier Conservation Status

Yorkshire Terrier Locations

Yorkshire Terrier Locations

Yorkshire Terrier Facts

Fun Fact
Yorkies hold many records for smallest dog.
Lively, playful and affection-seeking
Common Name
Yorkshire Terrier
Highly energetic and eager for adventure!

Yorkshire Terrier Physical Characteristics

  • Blue
  • Black
  • Gold
  • Tan
Skin Type
15 years
3kg (7lbs)

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Yorkshire Terrier as a Pet:

General Health
Energy Level
Tendency to Chew
Family and kid friendliness
Yappiness / Barking
Separation Anxiety
Preferred Temperature
Average climate
Exercise Needs
Friendly With Other Dogs
Pure bred cost to own
Dog group
Male weight
3-7 lbs
Female weight
3-7 lbs

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The Yorkshire Terrier, a.k.a. the Yorkie, is the epitome of the toy-size canine. It’s a dainty thing, typically growing to no more than seven pounds and no more than nine inches at the shoulder.

Though the teacup pup’s considered a purebred, his origin is from cross-breeding. He’s a mix from breeders crossing the Clydesdale terrier and the now-extinct Paisley terrier.

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The Yorkie may be small, but it’s feisty, tenacious, brave and as pushy as a poo gets. They’re pretty bold and are a popular breed across the country in both big cities and with urbanites.

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The Yorkie has all the characteristics of a terrier. The Yorkie is long-lived and loves being a companion. He’s unique, makes a great little watchdog and will definitely keep you entertained!

Yorkie puppies and adult dogs have different coloring. They’re born tan and black. Over the years, their coat turns blue before the tan goes richer into an almost gold shade.

The Different Types of Yorkie Mixes

The record books only record the puppies we all know and love as the Yorkshire terrier. There are several breeds created from a mix.

There is the Biewer (pronounced beaver) terrier, a new breed borne from Yorkshire terriers. The Biewer Terrier is that charming dog with the elegant long hair.

Health and Entertainment for your Yorkshire Terrier

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The Biewer is a rarity. A purebred created from the occurrence of a piebold gene in two Yorkshire terriers. You have the Mismarked terrier whose differentiation from the Yorkie is its unique coloring.

Breeders have done a lot with the Yorkie. Designer Yorkies include the Chorkie — a mix of a Yorkie and a Maltese. While teacup is associated with many types of dogs, the Teacup Yorkie, a purebred, is noted not so much for its size but its condition. Often, they are mini because of health issues.

Yorkshire terrier crossbreeds run the gamut. Some of these include:

Owning a Yorkshire Terrier: 3 pros and cons

The Yorkie is constantly in the AKC’s top breeds lists. She’s a tiny package with a massive personality. Still, ownership doesn’t mean you’re golden. To balance things out, here are three pros and three cons linked to the dog.

Pros! Cons!
Sheds very lightly

The lack of hair loss makes the Yorkie one of the best breeds for allergy sufferers. Other dogs you needn’t worry about are the Norwich Terrier, Italian Greyhound, and Airedale Terrier.
Physically fragile

Due to its minuscule size, your mini dog may require close supervision and monitoring. They can be easily harmed. Don’t allow your Yorkie to run free in open spaces around others. It’s important to watch when they’re around small children who may get aggressive in play.
Doesn’t need a lot of exercise

Unlike a lot of dogs, the Yorkie only needs around 30 minutes of physical activity a day. That’s half the time of most canines. Your dog will appreciate a nice walk or a romp around the yard with a toy.
Easily spoiled

This is not necessarily the fault of the dog. Owners tend to treat the Yorkie like a flower, carrying him around and such. This can lead, on the dog’s part, to shrillness, suspicious nature, and even nastiness.
Potential to be at peace with other pets

In general, the Yorkshire terrier has no issue with other dogs in the house. If given proper socialization training, these puppies can learn to get along with cats too.
Housebreaking will be a task

These dogs are famous for their stubbornness and capacity for breaking the rules, especially if they’re spoiled. These puppies seriously need early training and a clear understanding of who’s boss!
Yorkshire Terrier in the garden

Mr. SUTTIPON YAKHAM/Shutterstock.com

Yorkshire Terrier Size and Weight

Yorkies tend to be inconsistent when it comes to size. For puppies, a single litter can have one pup weighing four pounds while another weighs up to six pounds. And, usually, one of those puppies will become a 15-pound adult.

On average, these mini pooches will be eight to nine inches to the shoulder. They will weigh no more than seven pounds with four to six pounds considered the best weight.

Height (Male) 8 to 9 inches
Height (Female) 8 to 9 inches
Weight (Male) 7 pounds
Weight (Female) 7 pounds

Yorkshire Terrier Common Health Issues

Yorkies are victims of three types of health issues. These are acquired inherited or congenital diseases. Only a few breed-specific conditions are hereditary. Your mini terrier carries these health risks throughout its lifespan.

You should talk with breeders or vets early to help with quick diagnosis and treatment. Here are health hazards your puppies may fall victim to.

  • Hypoglycemia
  • Legg-Perthes Disease
  • Skin Allergies
  • Retinal Dysplasia
  • Kneecap Dislocation

Yorkshire Terrier Temperament and Behavior

All dogs require early socialization. The Yorkshire Terrier is no different. She needs exposure to varying sights, sounds, people and experiences. Socialization for mini puppies increases the chances she’ll be well-rounded and friendly.

She’ll be a great companion and friend, but you, the owner, have to set the stage. Yorkies need a leader and limits. Early training, when they are puppies, increases the chances to easily correct bad habits later.

In the dog world, the Yorkie has a higher than average intelligence. This helps makes her trainable. She is energetic, communicable, and really, really independent. All these traits make for a varying temperament.

These mini dogs can also be unfriendly and ferocious. But, again, with appropriate training and socialization, you can curtail this behavior.

How To Take Care of the Yorkshire Terrier

Keep up with vet visits as your pooch is a fragile creature. Keep an eye on him if he is particularly small. This could be a sign of some disease or disorder. The pooch has a high energy level and you want to make sure he takes a break.

Your poo likes to keep busy and will run all day. That’s why your dog needs a little confined space of his own, perhaps an indoor canine playpen. It allows him to rest or maybe take a nap.

We can’t recommend crates as your pet will get stressed. Gated rooms may work for an adult as long as they aren’t too large. Avoid accidents by using pee pads, but don’t rely on them as alternatives to house braking or walks.

The Best Dog Food for Yorkshire Terriers

You have to take care when feeding a Yorkie. Being mini, they don’t need a lot of food. They also may not be as active as other dogs. Base their meals on size and activity. The moderately active pooch only needs about 150 calories a day. Split feedings into small meals, up to four a day.

To help prevent hypoglycemia, make sure you feed your Yorkshire Terrier a hearty meal at least ninety minutes prior to exercise and activity. Make sure you choose a dog food with adequate protein and fat. Due to their long coat length, you should also consider a formula that is high in omega-3 and 6 fatty acids.

At A-Z Animals, we’ve looked into the ingredients of Hill’s Science Diet Adult Formula, and believe it is the best dog food for Yorkies. It has omega-3 and 6 fatty acids (which support the long coat of Yorkies), as well as smaller kibble sizes that make it easier to eat and digest for smaller dogs.

Read more about the best dog food for Yorkies, including our top picks for puppies, adults, and seniors.

Overall Best
Hill’s Science Diet Adult

  • Highly rated and veterinarian-recommended
  • Made with highly digestible ingredients
  • Includes an antioxidant blend specifically for lifelong immune support
  • Contains omega-6 fatty acids and vitamin E

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Yorkshire Terrier Training

Yorkies are inquisitive and smart, so learning is in their nature. They are also independent. Consistent, sensible training and leadership will ensure she behaves. If you send her to obedience school, it’s important you take all the instructor’s suggestions to heart. Under a firm, but positive, hand, the Yorkie is a quick learner.

Yorkshire Terrier Maintenance and Grooming

Yorkies need daily brushing to keep her coat soft, silky, and free of mats, tangles, and debris. The trick is to never brush a dry coat. Dry brushing can break a doggy’s fine hair. But you don’t have to bathe her first. Just give your poo a spritz. Use a shine conditioner or plain water. After getting the coat damp, safely brush the dog.

The occasional professional grooming is always recommended. But if you’re doing the haircut at home, talk with your vet, breeders or check out a lot of YouTube videos.

While there are plenty of grooming tools, you want the best one for your dog’s haircut. Again, this is a discussion with a pro. They’ll help you decide if your pet needs a double side comb or rotating pin comb. And make sure you have a nice haircut kit.

When you do bathe, don’t use a lot of shampoo. Use half the dosage recommended on the product. Double rinse to ensure all shampoo gets washed away.

Brush his teeth every day for a few minutes. With routine, the usually stubborn dog’s resistance will wane. At the least, brush once a week. You can scrape as well, once per month or twice a year.

Yorkshire Terrier Exercise

Yorkshires are active, energetic, and love to engage in fun activities. But we as owners must remember these animals are small and fragile. You can’t push her to extremes. Thirty minutes a day is a good length of time. Don’t take her for long runs or bike rides.

Stick to a schedule with your doggy. He’s smart and mentally prepares himself for getting out. He could even be waiting for you so that he can relieve himself before breaking the rules.

He enjoys fetching, frisbee and getting the ball or stick. With his hunting traits, retrieval is a fine sport for the Yorkie.

Yorkshire Terrier Puppies

If you’re looking to get a Yorkie puppy, check out breeders, and rescue and shelter operations. Buying one outright may come with a hefty price so give the rescue a chance.

Do your research. You’re getting a friendly, loving and energetic friend. But you’re also getting a dog that’s going to need your attention and a firm hand. You’ll be responsible for its grooming, its diet and much more.

Petite Yorkshire terrier puppy 7 weeks plays in the garden


Yorkshire Terrier and Children

Younger children should not spend unmonitored time with a Yorkie. Kids can be overly playful and the frail Yorkie can get flustered. She may snap or growl at children who mean her no harm. It’s important to have concise boundaries for your pet and children’s interactions. Socialization will help a lot, as will training and positive disciplining.

Dogs Similar to Yorkshire Terrier

Here are three dog breeds like the Yorkshire terrier.

  • Yorkillon: A mix of the Yorkie and Papillion created this adorable mini dog. She makes for a fantastic companion and doesn’t hesitate to let you know something suspicious is going down.
  • Havashire: The Havashire is truly teacup-sized. Breeders came up with these puppies through a mix of the Havanese and the Yorkie. She bonds with family and is extremely protective. BUT, without proper socialization, you’re looking at a dog that may be quite yappy around your visitors.
  • Maltese: This white mini dog is a cross of the Yorkie and a Morkie. This pooch is also known as a Maltiork, Malkie, Yortese, and Yorkiemalt. He has a beautiful white coat and steals hearts wherever he’s seen.

Here are some popular and great names for a Yorkshire pup.

  • Alfie
  • Oscar
  • Bailey
  • Bella
  • Lola

Famous Yorkshire Terrier

The most famous Yorkie may be Smoky. A rescue during WWII, Smoky saved American lives. She dragged a communications cable across a 60-foot long culvert, allowing troops to keep an open line. The doggy visited wounded soldiers in hospitals, possibly making Smoky the first therapy dog. The book Yorkie Doodle Dandy is about Smoky. A half-dozen memorials honor her. One’s at the AKC’s Museum of the Dog.

Other famous Yorkies include:

  • A Yorkie lived in the White House during the Nixon administration.
  • Tiny Pinocchio appeared on The Today Show and Oprah.
  • On the reality TV show, Being Bobby Brown, Whitney Houston had a Yorkie named Doogie.

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What’s the right dog for you?

Dogs are our best friends but which breed is your perfect match?






If you have kids or existing dogs select:

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Should they be Hypoallergenic?



How important is health?
Which dog groups do you like?
How much exercise should your dog require?
What climate?
How much seperation anxiety?
How much yappiness/barking?

How much energy should they have?

The lower energy the better.

I want a cuddle buddy!

About average energy.

I want a dog that I have to chase after constantly!

All energy levels are great — I just love dogs!

How much should they shed?
How trainable/obedient does the dog need to be?
How intelligent does the dog need to be?
How much chewing will allow?
About the Author

AZ Animals is a growing team of animals experts, researchers, farmers, conservationists, writers, editors, and — of course — pet owners who have come together to help you better understand the animal kingdom and how we interact.

Yorkshire Terrier FAQs (Frequently Asked Questions) 

Is a Yorkshire Terrier a good family dog?

As long as owners are willing to spend a lot of time with their pets and don’t have kids under 10 years of age, then the Yorkie can be a fantastic choice for a family.

Do Yorkshire terriers bark a lot?

Frequent and excessive barking is one of the biggest complaints that Yorkshire terrier owners have about their beloved pets. While being vocal and alert is great for increasing home security, owners should consider desensitization training for doorbells and other common triggers.

How big does a Yorkshire Terrier get?

Yorkies are one of the smallest dog breeds available. Adults are generally only 7 to 8 inches tall at the shoulders and weigh between 3 and 7 pounds.

What Kingdom do Yorkshire Terriers belong to?

Yorkshire Terriers belong to the Kingdom Animalia.

What class do Yorkshire Terriers belong to?

Yorkshire Terriers belong to the class Mammalia.

What phylum to Yorkshire Terriers belong to?

Yorkshire Terriers belong to the phylum Chordata.

What family do Yorkshire Terriers belong to?

Yorkshire Terriers belong to the family Canidae.

What order do Yorkshire Terriers belong to?

Yorkshire Terriers belong to the order Carnivora.

What genus do Yorkshire Terriers belong to?

Yorkshire Terriers belong to the genus Canis.

What type of covering do Yorkshire Terriers have?

Yorkshire Terriers are covered in hair.

What is an interesting fact about Yorkshire Terriers?

Yorkshire Terriers are highly energetic and eager for adventure!

What is the scientific name for the Yorkshire Terrier?

The scientific name for the Yorkshire Terrier is Canis lupus.

What is a Yorkie?

The Yorkshire Terrier is a favorite for companionship. They’re a top choice to mix with other dogs as breeders want the ideal lapdog.

How much does the Yorkie cost to own?

Yorkshire terrier puppies will cost between $600 and $2,500. The average price is $1,200. First-year expenses will hit around $3,855. After, you’ll be spending $1,230 annually. Throughout the doggy’s lifespan, owning the Yorkie price will run around $18,615.

Is the Yorkie good with kids?

Yes, if they’ve had the proper training and socializing.

How long does the Yorkie live?

Yorkies have a lifespan of 13 to 16 years.

Do Yorkies shed?

No. These safe dogs won’t impact your air quality.

What are Yorkies known for?

They are hunters, loving, and are extremely popular with breeders looking to create a new lapdog.

What problems do Yorkies have?

Yorkies can be resistant to training and are easily spoiled, which can make them difficult to deal with.

What’s the difference between Yorkies and Shih Tzus?

The main difference between Shih Tzus and Yorkies is their coat types and colors. Shih Tzus are also less mischievous compared to Yorkies.

What were Yorkies bred for?

Yorkies original role was to hunt rats in mines and factories.

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  2. Yorkie Info Centre, Available here: http://www.yorkieinfocenter.com/yorkie-puppy-care
  3. Wag Walking, Available here: https://wagwalking.com/daily/fun-facts-may-not-know-yorkshire-terriers
  4. Your Pure Bred Puppy, Available here: https://www.yourpurebredpuppy.com/reviews/yorkshireterriers.html#pros-cons
  5. Borrow My Doggy, Available here: https://www.borrowmydoggy.com/doggypedia/guide-to-dog-breeds/yorkshire-terrier-information-guide#:~:text=How%20much%20exercise%20does%20a,ensure%20a%20happy%2C%20healthy%20pup.
  6. The Nest, Available here: https://pets.thenest.com/yorkies-aggression-toward-cats-6691.html
  7. Dog Time, Available here: https://dogtime.com/dog-breeds/yorkshire-terrier#/slide/1
  8. Yorkshire Terrier Guide, Available here: http://yorkshireterrierguide.com/common-health-problems-yorkies/
  9. Yorkie Info Center, Available here: http://www.yorkieinfocenter.com/yorkie-temperament-behavior
  10. Yorkie Advice, Available here: https://yorkieadvice.com/yorkie-temperament/
  11. Animal Wised, Available here: https://www.animalwised.com/caring-for-a-yorkshire-terrier-things-you-should-know-253.html
  12. Pets World, Available here: https://www.petsworld.in/blog/how-to-take-care-of-a-yorkie-puppy.html
  13. Trudog, Available here: https://trudog.com/ultimate-guide-caring-yorkie/
  14. The Happy Puppy Site, Available here: https://thehappypuppysite.com/yorkie-grooming/
  15. Family Pet Planet, Available here: https://familypetplanet.com/how-to-meet-a-yorkies-exercise-requirements/
  16. Rover, Available here: https://www.rover.com/blog/yorkshire-terrier-puppies-everything-you-need-to-know/

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