Yorkshire Terrier Blog

Yorkies Characteristics: All You Need to Know

Yorkies are a breed of small dogs, but although being small, they tend to have a substantial personality. When you think of dog breeds with such personalities, you may be more inclined to think bigger dogs would possess that trait, which would make sense. Their size, their build, their dominance and the way they walk around like tough guys – everything about bigger dogs logically makes them out to be how yorkies are. 

Yorkies are very sweet lap dogs and they make great companions. However, given the opportunity, they will show you their true personalities. But just how in-depth do their personalities go? This article gives you a look into the most noticed characteristics of a Yorkie. But before we dive into those, let’s identify the origin of a Yorkie. After all, the best way to understand something is to take a look into the history of it. In this case, the history of yorkies. 

History Of Yorkies – Understanding The Breed

The history of how yorkies came about is an interesting one that many may not know of. Around the time of the 19th century, Scotland workers packed up their belongings and moved north with their dogs. During this time, a vast majority of said workers had dogs that were known as terriers. 

There was a show in 1861 where these terriers would be shown off for their beauty. What is now known as a dog show. The dogs were referred to as Yorkshire Terriers, coming from Yorkshire, England. The name stuck with them for a few years and in 1870 it was declared that this breed was to officiate the name. Thus giving them the nickname of Yorkie. 

Although there were other mixes of the Yorkie breed, they would just classify all of the dogs to be yorkshires. Now, today, we know of a wide variety of Yorkshire Terrier mixes.

As you can see, the story behind how yorkies got their name is both simple and interesting. But it doesn’t stop there. Yorkies are very versatile dogs with many notable characteristics, both physical and personality-wise. 

Everything from being smart to being as dominant as can be, yorkies are truly a wild and fun-filled dog breed to own. Whether you own one now or you’re looking into owning one, you can never go wrong with learning more about the traits they possess. 

With that being said, I have compiled a breakdown of the top characteristics about yorkies that all Yorkie owners should know.

Characteristics Of A Yorkie 

Human-Like Hair

Typically, a dog’s coat is referred to as for, but a yorkie’s coat is referred to as hair. Mainly due to the fact that it is so similar to human hair. And while their hair is beautiful, like human hair, it is more prone to becoming tangled and dirty. 

Continuing on with the trend of having human-like hair, yorkie’s also don’t shed as much. They don’t have a secondary coat underneath the first one so, if they do shed, it’s only about as much as you would lose after brushing your hair. Very minimal. Given that most dogs shed a lot on a daily basis, this is a huge difference. Speaking of brushes, grooming a yorkie’s hair is extremely essential, along with baths. Grooming should be done once or a few times a week regardless of the hair style they have. 

For reference, aside from the cool haircuts they’re given, yorkie’s possess one of their three main hair styles:

  • Puppy coat: Usually a short, thick style that they have while growing up
  • Silky coat: Straightened, long, smooth hair style in which resembles a skirt
  • Cotton coat: Shorter, thicker, and wavy hair coat that appears to look like fluffy wool. 


As small dogs coming from a pack, you would probably assume that yorkie’s are afraid to be alone or that they prefer company. That is not the case. Yorkie’s actually enjoy their independence very much. In small increments that is. 

Although they are sweet dogs, they often don’t appreciate being scolded with ‘no’ or being told what to do. Instead, they would much rather do whatever they please and have their owners basically congratulate them for it. Silly, right? The only way to really keep your title as the boss with a Yorkie is to have a regular and consistent routine with them, otherwise they will essentially walk all over you. 

However, don’t think that this independence means that your Yorkie is fine with being alone a lot, they don’t. They still require lots of daily attention to remain happy and thriving. 

Bold/Spunky: The trademark of Yorkies characteristics

Bold. Spunky. Intrepid. All synonyms of the same word, just not the first word that would come to mind when describing a Yorkie, right? Yorkies are bold in many ways, that’s a fact. But how could there possibly be so much boldness in one tiny yorkie package? 

Yorkies love attention and they’ll do whatever necessary to get it. However, once they get it, if you’re not focused enough, they will reject you and find someone and something else worth their while. These dogs were originally bred to be this way, some just show it differently or not as much. They were bred to be capable enough to hunt rodents and that said boldness has only progressed since then. 

Nowadays, you may catch a Yorkie overpowering a bigger dog breed or confidently walking into a situation with the courage to take action. 

Yorkies are Intelligent

Given how independent and bold yorkies are, it’s safe to say they are incredibly intelligent as well. As puppies or grown up dogs, yorkies are one of the smartest dog breeds around. During their adolescent puppy years, yorkies are known to catch on to whatever training they’re going through after only a couple of weeks. 

From that point on, they are learning tons of useful things left and right. It’s called adaptive intelligence, meaning they are basically able to begin teaching themselves after a little while. 

Teaching dogs commands has never been so easy – yorkies will pick up on the commands after hearing them a handful of times, especially if you use some of their favorite training treats.

Possible Health Concerns are the part of Yorkies characteristics

The final top characteristic that any dog owner should be aware of prior to getting a dog – the possible health concerns and/or conditions they may be more prone to. Although, if you already own a Yorkie, it’s never too late to learn more about these things. 

yorkie characteristics

As with any dog breed, there’s a list of health concerns that yorkies are more prone to. This is not to say that all yorkies will go through these things, it’s just to educate and inform so that owners can help their yorkies. With that being said, here is a short list of possible health concerns within yorkies:

  • Kidney stones 
  • Joint problems 
  • Collapsed windpipe
  • Allergies
  • Early tooth decay 
  • Possibility of kneecaps dislocating

Yorkies Characteristics: Wrapping up

To conclude, yorkies are pretty incredible dogs with a vibrant personality and the intelligence to blow people away. They are a very lively breed and have an interesting life story. If you have owned or do own a Yorkie, you know exactly how amazing they really are and you’ve witnessed these characteristics first hand. If you have never owned a Yorkie or you’re looking

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