Yorkshire terrier in a nutshell
Alternative names: Yorkie
Country of origin: Great Britain
Height: 7-9 inches
Weight: 3-9 pounds (1,5- 4 kg)
Activity level: Moderate
Life expectancy: 12-14 year
The Yorkshire Terrier gives the impression of being a very modern, even fashionable dog.
That is why it is hard to imagine that this dog is more than a century old.
If one compares it with the average Terrier, who is nevertheless supposed to follow the game underground, then the question arises whether the Yorkshire Terrier really belongs in this group. However, that is indeed the case.
This long-haired ‘playboy’ among the Terriers turns out to be a bourgeois counterpart and a descendant of the Terrians who came to live as a pest or predator killer.
His ancestors followed the game underground or traced the rats on the farmyard.
The Yorkshire Terrier also hides many of these qualities under its beautiful appearance.
How he ended up as a guide on the hunt and a farm farmer on the farmyard in the elegant salons of world cities has everything to do with the origins of this breed.
The Yorkshire Terrier owes its origin to the relocation of textile workers from Glasgow and the surrounding area to the county of Yorkshire in North East England. That happened at the beginning of the 19th century.
This was generally very poor Scots who were possessed by hunting, or rather all kinds of poaching.
Because of the often humiliating circumstances in which these people had to live, their passion came in handy.
That way, they at least managed to get some protein-rich food. Agile and courageous dogs are needed for both hunting and poaching.
It is believed that the predominant type of poaching dog from those days must have been much like the Skye Terrier.
The dogs of the textile workers from Glasgow often only had a long, straight and soft coat instead of the long, straight and stiff coat of the Skye Terrier.
These dogs were fairly common in Glasgow and the surrounding area, and were called the Clydesdale Terrier, Paisley Terrier or also called Silky Skye Terrier.
The breeders of the Skye Terrier sometimes found such softly hairy dogs in the nests of their breed, but found that nothing.
They believed that these dogs, which moreover had no undercoat, had to be killed.
Yet there were enthusiasts for the Clydesdale Terrier, especially in the vicinity of the valley of the Clyde (hence the name).
This Terrier not only had a different coat structure, but also a different coat color.
The fur was steel blue from the back of the head to the tail root, without brown, light or dark hair.
The head, legs and feet had to be of a clear tan, without gray, dark or sooty spots.
The Clydesdale Terrier was very noble, but much tougher and more robust in construction than the later Yorkshire Terrier.
In 1884, a breed club for the Clydesdale Terrier was even established in Glasgow, but it soon died.
Four years later, the establishment of the Paisley Terrier Club under the wings of the Kennel Club.
These dogs also belonged mainly to weavers, just like those of the emigrants in Yorkshire.
However, when people’s home weaving machines were replaced by mechanical weaving machines in factories, the weavers’ bond with these dogs was broken and the breed disappeared. For some Paisley’s it is still known that they were huge rat catchers.
The textile workers from Glasgow took their Clydesda Terriers to Yorkshire.
These small, but rather long and heavy dogs were crossed with local Terrier breeds.
This included the Skye Terrier, the Dandie Dinmont Terrier, the Manchester Terrier (then not yet divided into a normal and a toy variety, the later English Toy Terrier) and small variants of the famous Old English Broken Haired (Black and Tan) Terrier.
The result of this was a much smaller, but high-legged and lightly built Terrier, the direct predecessor of the Yorkshire Terrier.
This extremely alert dog was quickly underground and fierce in the wild. An additional advantage was that it had such a small size that it could easily be hidden in a bag if the poacher was caught red-handed. It was therefore an ideal dog for the Scottish emigrants.
The only thing missing from this new creation was an excessively long coat.
Now British sailors brought all sorts of sights to their trips to the Mediterranean Sea, including Maltese.
It is believed that the Yorkshire Terrier originated from crosses between the small poacher terrier and the Maltese.
This small, courageous, calm and loyal dog did not remain alone in the hands of the weavers for long.
He apparently exerted so much attraction that the well-to-do bourgeoisie seized him.
The original breeders did such good business that they set up special breeding lines for the breed.
This gave it its modern, homogeneous form. The Yorkshire Terrier then also made its appearance at dog shows.
That first happened in the category of non-recognized terrier breeds, but from 1886 in own classes.
In that year the Yorkshire Terrier was officially recognized by the Kennel Club.
The establishment of a Yorkshire Terrier Club soon followed, but it took until 1898 before an official standard was established.
However, this relatively long phase without pedigree did not harm the breed, because it had been very homogeneous for a long time and the traits were well established.
As in the later standard, the emphasis was not only on character and type, but also on coat quality and coat color (the fact that the Clydesdale was also bred on color would not have been strange).
Moreover, breeding was favored by the fact that Mr. Franck Pearse from Kent has been breeding a pedigree for this breed since 1874.
The Yorkshire reached the American continent before 1880, while it was imported into Belgium and the Netherlands at the beginning of this century. The breed was therefore quickly successful and underwent a corresponding expansion.
The result of all this was that the Yorkshire Terrier became a fashion dog.
Numerous breeding farms flung themselves to the multiplication of the breed without bearing in mind the objectives required for healthy and responsible breeding.
Puppies of dubious origins, with forged papers and often not even weaned, were also traded as Yorkshire Terriers.
Therefore, a Yorkshire Terrier must always be purchased through the breed club.
The address can be found through the umbrella organization in the field of cynology.
In this way it is certain that the puppies are at least registered in the studbook, vaccinated and tattooed, and come from parents who meet certain conditions (for example, a minimum number of qualifications at exhibitions).
The Yorkie is a very small, well-balanced dog with square proportions and a high head carriage. Its skull is small and flat; the muzzle is tapered with a small, black, button nose. The naturally erect ears are small and V-shaped. The distinctive coat is long, silky, and glossy, parted down the center of the black and hanging straight to the floor. The long hair on the head is parted or tied into a bow. The hair on the muzzle is long and blends into the chest hair. Puppies are born black and tan but by about two years old develop their adult steel blue and tan coloring.
The personality of a Yorkshire terrier
The York quickly grew into a perfect companion dog in England. However, the spicy Terrier character has never been lost. This makes them both intelligent and fearless.
The latter sometimes runs a little in recklessness. Because of this you have to protect the York against itself. He can be very vigilant or overestimate himself when you meet other dogs.
This dog therefore benefits from a clear, consistent upbringing. Otherwise he can get pretty talks and you and the rest of the neighborhood are probably not waiting for that.
The York is very affectionate and loyal to his boss.
He loves family life and wants to be everywhere. The story even goes that these dogs place more value on human companionship and attention than on contact with other dogs.
Yet they generally get along well with other pets. Provided that they were introduced with this during socialization, of course.
They are also fun with children. They love playing. However, never leave children alone with this dog. The York is small, but will not be turned upside down!
Therefore, always guide children when dealing with animals, an accident is in a small corner.
The York is extremely fast and tends to become somewhat dominant. Pay extra attention to this during education.
Older children in the home are no problem, provided that the York is treated with care.
Yorkie maintenance & Health
The Yorkshire Terrier is a dog that hardly loses hair. However, the long, silky coat needs daily care.
In addition to this daily check for dirt and tangles, it must be brushed and combed through at least twice a week. You do this layer by layer.
When you quietly introduce the York with this brush ritual, he will love the coat care!
Yorkshire Terriers are generally not a scribe. However, the ears must be checked for long plucks.
If you do not want to be able to keep up with the long coat daily, a grooming salon can trim the coat 3 to 4 times a year, so that it is easier to maintain.
Unfortunately, the breed has some health problems. Like many other small dog breeds, the York is susceptible to Legg-Calvé-Perthes disease. This is an inflammation in the hip bone.
Hereby the blood supply to the femur is cut off, causing the bone to die. This hurts a lot and is usually diagnosed in puppies between 4 and 8 months old.
In addition, Patella luxation (loose kneecaps) occurs regularly. Your dog will start limping in a very typical way. On three legs while he tries to stretch the fourth.
As a result, the loose kneecap sometimes shoots back into place, but in more serious cases, it can linger next to the joint. In this case the vet must put the kneecap back in its place.
The Yorks also have a tendency for dental problems, because they have a very narrow jaw. Therefore consult with a veterinarian or nutrition professional about appropriate nutrition. This is very important because Yorkshire Terriers also regularly suffer from hypoglycaemia (low blood sugar).
The eyes are also a source of concern. Cataract (cataracts, cloudiness of the eye) and distichiasis (lower eyelashes irritate the cornea) are both common.
Most of these disorders are hereditary. It is therefore important to test both parent animals for hereditary disorders before a litter of puppies is planned. This way you keep the breed healthy.
Yorkshire Terriers are often very sensitive to food,
But most of them are also very picky,
Don’t make too much variety, but keep a set pattern with a solid food brand,
Occasionally a snack can not hurt in small sizes,
It is best to offer dogs up to 6 months 3x a day food in the morning, afternoon and evening
It is very good for the growth and development of the dog,
it is best to give the food at a fixed time so the dog knows exactly when they are going to eat,
From 6 months and older you can give them twice a day in the morning and in the evening,
Which food brand?
We recommend the following food brands, Royal Canin or Eukanuba,
Why? Because these brands have a composition specail for the Yorkshire Terrier
For optimal digestion, bones and joints, less tartar formation, shiny fur,
What is toxic to my dog?
What is very bad for your dog is everything that is bad for humans,
This list below is very toxic to your dog and never give this to you!
This is so toxic that your healthy dog can even die!
- Chocolate: contains caffeine and ombromine, two components that are not digested by the dog’s digestive system; these components continue to pass through the dog’s digestive system into an endless circle that eventually poisons the dog. The different types of chocolate contain different amounts of these substances. Milk chocolate is the least toxic, dark chocolate is very toxic. This also applies to coke, coffee and tea.
- Table scraps that should be avoided; duck, game roast, pork and veal are all too fat for the dog’s digestive system. Seasoned food and ham upset a dog’s stomach. Boiled chicken, turkey or steak bones are all too brittle and sharp.
- Raw fish; “Salmon poisoning disease” they get when they eat raw fish infected with streams from streams or rivers.
- Onions: raw, cooked or dried have a toxic effect on dogs and cats.
- Almonds, apricots, avocados, garlic, mushrooms, nutmeg, peaches, rhubarb, spinach, potato and tomatoes and the leaves of these.
- All alcoholic beverages
- Plastic packaging and aluminum foil. Dogs sometimes eat this due to food residues attached to it. The packaging and film can cause asphyxiation, or bowel and stomach congestion, resulting in internal bleeding.
- Nuts: walnuts are toxic to dogs and must be avoided. In particular, there is a fungus that is common with walnuts (especially with wet dead walnuts) and that can cause serious periods of illness. Many nuts are not good for dogs in general, their high phosphorus content is supposed to cause kidney and bladder stones.
- Peanuts are poison for dogs
- Potatoes: potato poisoning occurs in both humans and dogs. Raw potatoes, especially potato peels, sprouts are very toxic to the dog.
Note; boiled or mashed potatoes are good for the dog, even quite nutritious and digestible. Note: NOT seasoned !!
- Turkey skin is thought to cause acute pancreatis in dogs.
- Raw pork; never give it, in connection with Aujesky’s disease (Pseudo Rabies)
- Milk; is laxative
Coat and grooming
The Yorkshire terrier and his fur
If you decide to purchase a Yorkshire Terrier you must keep in mind that keeping a coat is a real full time job.
It is often said that the fur of the Yorkshire terrier is medium length.
With show dogs, however, the coat often hangs all the way to the floor.
The fur is perfectly straight and perfectly smooth, it hangs down without waves and is evenly distributed on both sides, with a separation that runs from the nose to the end of the tail.
A healthy Yorkshire has a glossy, fine fur structure and is as soft as silk.
If you are not going to run shows, I would advise you to have your Yorkshire regularly trimmed by a trimmer, because the fur of a Yorkshire terrier does not stop growing.
Models Yorkshire terrier
Although the long hair looks great with the Yorkshire, keeping it up is a lot of work and for many people not to do. This may be due to a busy job, but the reason may also be a medical one. I would like to advise these people to bring the Yorkshire terrier to the groomer every 3 to 4 months. You can ask the trimmer to get your Yorkshire model cut, often it is decided to shave the body and legs short, and cut the head into a nice model. Very practical. But if you have something else in mind, you can always discuss this with your trimmer. You can also ask the trimmer to give your Yorkshire terrier a punk look. But this is more a fun look than a standard cut model.
DIY coat care of your Yorkshire Terrier
To keep your dog nice and shiny as long as possible after trimming, it is very important to take good care of your dog yourself. You do this by regularly brushing and combing, the correct food, and daily or every day to perform a burdock check. But washing and drying your hair also comes with the care of your Yorkshire Terrier.
Washing the Yorkshire Terrier:
Contrary to what many people think, the dog can regularly take a bath without affecting its fur or skin. In fact, regular washing is strongly recommended. Moreover, a clean coat is much easier to maintain and it is more hygienic. You can use a good shampoo and possibly a conditioner for this. There are special shampoos for silver-colored Yorkshire Terriers, which have been developed to retain the gray pigment (color) in the coat. The water must be lukewarm. Place your dog in the bathtub or shower cubicle. Wet the coat with the shower head, after which the shampoo is applied. When washing, make sure that no shampoo gets into the eyes of your dog. Rinse the dog from the forehead at the back. Hold the dog’s head up slightly. In this way no water can run into the eyes and nose of the dog. Only when the water is completely foam-free can it run over the muzzle. Now hold the dog’s head down so that no water can enter the nostrils. Always wash the coat twice and rinse thoroughly. When the coat starts to get longer, the use of a cream rinse is strongly recommended. If your dog is completely foam-free, lift your dog, wrap it in a bath towel, put it back on the floor (or on the table) and dry it. Use different dry towels for this.
Dry blow drying and brushing the Yorkshire terrier:
Make sure your dog is thoroughly dried with the towel. Use a hair dryer or a water blower (a special, very powerful hair dryer). If you use a water blower, go over the fur with the hairline. Only go a little further when a part is dry. When the dog is completely dry, brush it through thoroughly and check with the comb if there are no more tangles.
When using a hair dryer, do not stay in the same place for too long. A hair dryer can get very hot. Always check that the place where you keep the hair dryer does not get too hot. When the dog is completely dry, check with the comb if there are no more tangles in the fur. If this is the case, brush the tangles out and check again. Make sure your dog’s coat is really dry, no moisture should remain in the coat. If it does, your Yorkshire terrier’s coat will become tangled or the coat may smell stale. Do not brush or comb too hard on your Yorkshire, because of its thin coat, too much pressure on the brush / comb can damage the skin. I recommend using a soft pin brush for your Yorkshire terrier.