What Are the Characteristics of Yorkies?

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Dog breeds differ greatly in terms of color, height, and personality. If you intend to adopt a dog or are simply curious about the breed, you may be wondering about the characteristics of Yorkies.

What Are the Characteristics of Yorkies?

The most distinguishing characteristics of Yorkies are their long silky coat, as well as their never-ending energy. Given this, they are a very particular breed to care for; they demand a lot of quality time from their owners, as well as a lot of grooming.

A long-haired Yorkshire terrier with black and brown coatings sticking its tongue out

To provide good care, it is key to be aware of all of these aspects before getting a Yorkie. If left alone, this breed is prone to being sad, unwell, and bored; thus, knowing about them is crucial.

Their hair and energy are only two of their care needs; there are additional aspects to think about before bringing one of these breeds into your house.

They Are Fearless

Yorkies are tiny. However, this doesn’t prevent them from being courageous. This breed (just like any other petite breed), is fearless when it comes to fights with other puppies. If they see a dog twice their size in their territory, they might start a fight with them, regardless of the height.

This is due to how vulnerable they feel in the presence of other dogs and people. When a big dog approaches, their instincts may tell them they will get injured, which is not the case. However, this does not imply that they are bullies; on the contrary, they are quite loving and calm, though sometimes they might start unnecessary fights.

On the other hand, bigger dogs do not pick fights too often. They do not get scared that easily when other dogs come, which is why they remain relaxed. Of course, breed and height are not the only things that influence this behavior; each dog’s personality is different, just like humans.

They Are Hunters

Yorkies are also known as Yorkshire Terriers, that being said, it is important to consider that all Terriers were once bred to be hunters. In this case, Yorkies were bred to excel at catching rats and other small animals. This means that, if they see a small animal in your house, they are prone to go catch it.

This could be a problem if you have small pets in your house such as hamsters, parrots, or even lizards. If you adopt a Yorkie when they are recently born, they could learn to get along with these pets, however, it is recommended to always be cautious.

They Are Very Vocal

Yorkies are very alert when it comes to their home. If they sense that someone unknown is coming in, they will start to bark until they recognize they are not a threat. It is important to highlight that this doesn’t mean they are aggressive, they are just very communicative about their feelings.

It is their way of alerting you that someone unknown is in your house. That being said, they are great watchdogs that will react to potential threats (although, most of the time, they will be squirrels, mailmen, and other dogs).

Yorkshire terrier with black and brown coatings standing on grass

They Have Lots of Hair

Just like I mentioned before, one of the Yorkies’ main characteristics is their very long and silky hair. Therefore, they need to be brushed daily. On top of that, Yorkie need to have a haircut very often; if not, the hair can grow too long, blocking their eyesight and hindering their steps.

If the hair on their paws grows too long, they will have a hard time walking (especially on a ceramic floor). That, combined with blocked eyesight, could make them stumble against the walls or the furniture. One common way to avoid this is to fix their hair in a bun. This way, no matter how long it is, it will not block their eyes.

They Are Smart

It is said that Yorkshire Terriers are pretty smart. This means they can understand tricks and games faster than other breeds. Also, they can learn certain commands that will teach them how to behave. Overall, they are a breed that will learn very quickly if you use positive reinforcement.

They Have Lots of Energy

Another very unique characteristic of Yorkies is their energy. Yorkies are very active and will rarely run out of energy. This also means that owners need to train Yorkies on a daily basis; if not, they could get very chaotic. Here you can see the traits of a bored Yorkie.

  • They could start digging too much in your yard
  • They could frenetically start running around your house
  • They could get depressed out of lack of attention
  • They could start biting and breaking things around your house

They Are Sociable

Even though they are little dogs that may get into pointless conflicts, they are frequently laid back. Even if they do not interact with outsiders very often, this breed is prone to becoming best friends with anyone. If they don’t represent a threat to them, of course.

For example, while they may initially bark at your guests, give them less than 10 minutes and they will begin to play with them. The nicest part is that they will always remember them, thus they will no longer bark at them.

Yorkshire terrier with brown and black coatings seated on a grass field

Related Questions

Here are some frequently asked questions about Yorkies.

Is a Yorkie a Good Family Dog?

Yes, Yorkies are great family dogs. Due to their high levels of energy and great social abilities, they are good for large and medium households. They are also very good with children, though, caution is always needed.

Do Yorkies Have Lots of Health Problems?

No. Yorkshire Terriers do not have more or fewer health problems than other similar breeds. They are susceptible to pancreatitis, hypoglycemia, and other bacterial infections, however, this can be prevented with a good diet and a good lifestyle.

What Is So Special About Yorkies?

One of the most special characteristics of Yorkies is their never-ending energy. That, combined with their social abilities and their long hair, makes them a very particular dog.


When it comes to breeds, there are a lot of unique characteristics that distinguish them from others. In this case, Yorkshire Terriers are very loving, sociable dogs who will never run out of energy. This makes them a great breed for large and medium households.