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Yorkshire Terrier

This little guy may be classified as a Toy dog, but his personality is a pure terrier. Spunky and smart, he loves to play, gets along well with cats, and has the ability to rule bigger family dogs with an iron paw. The breed comes with one caveat: His beautiful coat is high maintenance, even if clipped short.

The Yorkie is alert, trainable, and insatiably curious, making him a quintessential “big dog in a little dog’s body.” Typically weighing less than seven pounds, Yorkies are the darlings of the purse-dog set, but they also need ample time on the ground. He’ll happily take long walks, and he can be quite a determined — and boisterous — watchdog, as well.

His tough-minded personality aside, the Yorkie isn’t a good choice for families with small children because his own small size puts him at risk of injury. He can also be nippy with overzealous kids, aggressive with other dogs, and obstinate about house-training. Consistent and structured training is a must for the Yorkie, who needs to learn that he can’t challenge every dog that crosses his path.

The Yorkshire Terrier’s bold nature descends directly from his ancestors, which include the long-extinct Clydesdale Terrier and the Black-and-Tan Terrier. Scottish weavers who migrated south to England during tough economic times took their terriers with them to York, Manchester, and Leeds. The weavers ultimately crossbred their little terriers with local dogs, creating the small but feisty terrier known today for its shimmering cloak of blue and gold.

Yorkies proved to be fine ratters in the English woolen mills, a skill they retain to this day. As they became more and more of a companion dog, breeders began to select for a smaller size. The dog considered to be the foundation sire of the modern Yorkie, Huddersfield Ben, was born in 1865. At the time, the dogs were called Broken Haired Scotch Terriers or Toy Terriers, but by 1870, they were known as Yorkshire Terriers, after the region where they were first produced. It wasn’t long before these tough ratters morphed into domestic sidekicks for fashionable ladies, and began appearing at dog shows as “fancy terriers.”

By 1872, Yorkshire Terriers had made their way to the U.S., where they quickly became upper-crust favorites and even political mascots. The Nixon family shared the White House with their beloved Yorkie, Pasha. The Yorkshire Terrier currently holds third place among the breeds registered by the American Kennel Club.

Although the Yorkshire Terrier is a Toy breed, he won’t settle for a boring life. The Yorkie is smart and independent, making him a dog who is both entertaining and notoriously stubborn. Yorkies want to please — until something more interesting strikes their fancy. So if you really want a lazy lap dog, opt for another breed.

Yorkies have two distinct personalities: cuddly and mischievous. Cuddly Yorkies have a perky nature, but they tend to be more laid back. Some people say males are sweeter and more likely to enjoy snuggling, while females are more particular about when — and if — they’ll hang out in your lap.

Yorkies may be tiny, but their bravery is legendary: Smokey, a World War II hero, managed to pull 70 feet of wire through an underground tunnel. Oliver, who lived in upstate New York, saved a woman from a mauling by diverting the other dog’s attention. In fact, the breed’s fearless nature often poses a problem for owners — Yorkies aren’t shy about taking on dogs three times their size!

Most Yorkies respond well to training because they adore all the attention they receive for doing tricks and competing in agility trials. Positive praise and food rewards are key to training this breed. It’s also easy to spoil a Yorkie — he’s just as capable of learning good manners as any other dog, but people who give their puppy a pass because he’s little and cute will find that bad habits in adults are hard to break.

Yorkies are definitely not low-maintenance pooches. If you keep their coats show-dog long, they need to be brushed daily, with their long topknot tied up and kept out of their eyes. Most pet-owners opt for a “puppy” clip, with the facial hair left a bit longer than the hair on the body. Regular trips to a professional groomer are a must, along with weekly baths.

On the plus side, Yorkies don’t shed much, possibly making them less problematic for some people with allergies. However, this varies from dog to dog, so don’t believe anyone who tells you that Yorkies are “non-allergenic.”

The rest is basic care: Trim his nails every week or two. (They should never get so long that you can hear them clicking on the floor.) And brush his teeth regularly with a pet toothpaste for overall health and fresh breath.

If you’re looking to buy a puppy, Allie’s Pet Corner in Rochester, NY has new puppies for sale every week.  Check out our available puppies, and signup to be alerted by email when our new puppies come in:

Article Source: VetStreet


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