Like the westie, the Yorkshire is also a fairly recent creation. Origins are believed to be from the north of England by men wanting to rid their mine shafts and clothing mills of the mice and rat plagues. The dogs were multipurpose as they could also be used on properties for ridding them of fox and badgers.
The exact breed mix is lost in time, but is believed to be attributed to the dogs that Scotsmen brought to Yorkshire such as Skye Terrier, Dandie Dinmont, Paisley, Manchester Terrier, Maltese terrier and Clydesdale terrier (extinct). These were then further crossed with the Leeds terrier to make a fairly large dog that has been bred down to the smaller size that we know today.
From these tenacious beginnings these dogs were soon adopted in the middle 20th century as a fashion item, becoming the original handbag dog. It is noted that from a 1984 litter of piebald colour Yorkies (from a recessive gene) another Yorkshire breed variant was created – the Biewer Yorkie.
As you can imagine from these hard core ratter origins, this dog should have retained its awesome respect, but the whole fashion thing seems to have diluted that reputation somewhat. And here in lies the problem with how these little dogs are now often treated, as toys! Because they are easily trained and quite intelligent, they have been further relegated away from their original dog instincts by owners preferring to keep them as inside dogs. However as with any terrier, do so at your own peril.
An UN-socialized Yorkie, not walked enough will soon let you know about it by barking and digging. They are known to have big personalities and enjoy being the center of attention and very assertive. That is until they get tired, when they will require privacy for naps, unless you want a snappy little dog on your hands.
The yorkie is not good with children, particularly ones that want to treat them as toys or move suddenly.
Yorkshire terrier size: 15-18 cm, 3-3.5 kg
Yorkshire terrier Grooming: The Yorkie’s coat is long and fine and glossy. It falls straight down on either side of the dog and comes in either a tan or steel blue color. Their head hair is so prolific that it should either be cut regularly or tied back.
Because of the straight fine nature of the coat, it needs to be regularly groomed. This means daily or near daily combing and brushing. To reduce work, people often keep the coat clipped moderately short. The yorkie sheds very little hair, and is a true non shedding dog.