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General Information for Yorkies

Meet our Vet:  Dr. Jessica Darnell.  She is with Twin Oaks Veterinarian Hospital.  They are located in Sparta, North Carolina and since we live in Galax, Virginia, that should tell you what great vets they have working there.  We don't mind the 45 minute drive to get to their office at all.  They will come out to our farm when needed and they are available 24/7 for emergencies!!!!!  Love, Love, Love everyone there!!!!!!

General Yorkshire Terrier Care

Pets are like children, they will need your attention, love and dedication in order to grow strong and healthy especially when they are puppies and their immune system is weak and fragile.

Here are some general Yorkshire Terrier care facts, which are vital for the good health, happiness and long life of your pet friend.

The Right Diet

Just like with human beings the right food and exercise will ensure a long and healthy life for your pet. The safe and way to achieve this is to contact a veterinary as soon as you acquire your pet and firstly confirm your pet’s present state of health and then the vet can decide on the right nutrition and diet to follow.

Yorkshire Terriers are toy breed dogs, which put them in the small dog category weighting approximately 7 pounds and generally measuring about eight to ten inches. Therefore, little quantities of food can satisfy them but they need three meals a day and some treats in between. An Important factor is to not overdo their treats as we only tend to; this will kill their appetite and in the long run their diet and health.

NOTE:  We recommend and feed our adult dogs and puppies Hill's Science Diet Small Bites for small breed dogs.  We suggest maintaining this diet for at least 30 days after you take your puppy home.  You can change to whatever brand of dog food you like after the 30 days, but do it gradually over a period of weeks to avoid digestive problems.

Grooming Your Yorkshire Terrier

The beauty of the Yorkshire Terriers is their fur; they are single coated, which means that during the winter you will require to provide them with a body coat or sweater in order to keep them warm and comfortable. A big part of your Yorkshire Terrier care will be grooming because their fur grows quickly and needs DAILY BRUSHING. It is advised to wash your Yorkie every 7 to 10 days with special dog shampoo as yours has a different ph and will not be suitable. Conditioner is required as well if you want to comb his or her fur with ease and to keep is shiny you may want to apply a mask or cream occasionally.  Your vet can recommend a good shampoo and conditioner.   You can use a small tub or any sink in the house to wash your Yorkie as they are small and fit with ease, dry them quickly and blow dry with a dryer on medium or low depending on the size of the fur so it is not too hot on the skin, you will be able to feel the heat on your hand but remember the skin on their body is more sensitive than the back of your palm Professional grooming will be required occasionally for the overall fur, in the ears, around the feet as well as around the rectum, where feces may get attached. Yorkshire Terrier care also includes trimming the nails in order to have them short and blunt so he or she does not hurt other or himself or herself. The Yorkshire Terrier care extends to the teeth of your pet too, as they are prone to plaque and from there any diseases can develop; ask the veterinary what is the right way to clean your dog’s teeth and with what products.

Finding The Right Veterinarian For Your Yorkshire Terrier Care

There are a few common health concerns such as hypoglycemia and collapsed trachea that you may encounter in your Yorkshire Terrier care. For an emergency but also for regular checkups you will require a veterinary. The right veterinary is one that is qualified and certified to practice, has his office close to your home in case of an emergency and also provides you with a telephone number should you need an emergency advice when the office is closed. With pets, just like with children, you never know when a health emergency will come up and if you don’t have the knowledge how to handle it, the next best thing to do is rush to a veterinarian.  We recommend that you take your new baby to your vet within 5 days of taking him home for a check up and to continue his vaccinations (THIS IS VERY IMPORTANT).  We also recommend that you do not let your puppy around any strange animals until he has completed all of his vaccinations, which is around 3 months of age.




The Terrier breeds are known for their hardy dispositions and overall good health. As with all breeds there are some issues that are more problematic with Yorkies, and it is important for owners to be aware of these conditions and to seek medical attention from a veterinarian at the earliest symptoms.
This can save heartaches and possibly money down the track!


If your dog begins to exhibit any unusual behaviors in eating or eliminating waste, check for any changes that have occurred in the environment or in the dog's schedule. Sudden changes in food, even in the brand of food, can cause stomach disorders and may lead to diarrhea or stomach pains and excessive gas in Yorkies or any dog for that matter. Usually changing food gradually will solve this problem, but a vet should confirm that there are not any other issues causing the problems.
Yorkies are known to have more sensitive digestion than other dogs, so they should be fed a minimal amount of human food or dog treats. Keep garbage and other tempting items away from your Yorkie's reach, as they are keen hunters and can quickly track down food that they should not have access to. Little rascals!
It's important to have a good understanding of the advantages and disadvantages of fresh dog food versus commercial, plus be aware of the best premium foods.


Portosystemic shunts are irregular routes that the blood can take to bypass the liver. The liver is the organ that cleans the blood of toxins and other impurities, so blood that is not properly cleaned leads to a build up of toxins within the animal's body.
These shunts can be congenital (present at birth) , and will usually be diagnosed within the first year of life, or can develop as the animal gets older. Usually the later forming shunts are due to liver disease or injury. Liver shunts are more frequent in smaller breeds of dogs, and animals with shunts are usually very small for the breed standard, and tend to be less active than littermates. As the animal matures the symptoms that are exhibited are:

* Increased drinking of water
* Increase in urination
* Muscular seizures
* Lack of coordination
* Coma

These conditions are more pronounced after eating when the amount of toxins in the blood is highest.
Liver shunts can be diagnosed by a vet with blood tests and urine tests, as well as specialized pre and post-feeding ammonia tests to determine the liver's capacity and functioning.

Most liver shunts that are external to the liver can be treated with surgery if diagnosed at early onset. Medication may also be used to control the amount of ammonia in the blood. A specialized diet that is low in protein can also assist in eliminating toxins in the blood. Usually a combination of all three of these strategies is used to treat the condition.
Yorkies that have liver shunts should NOT be used for breeding purposes.


Yorkshire Terriers latter in life are prone to dental problems including excessive tarter build-up, gum disease and premature tooth loss. These conditions can all lead to digestive problems as well as other infections in the body, so care should be taken to brush the Yorkies teeth as frequently as possible.
In addition to frequent brushing it is important to have your vet regularly check the condition of your Yorkies teeth at routine check-ups and vaccinations. Yorkie's often have trouble being anesthetized, so it is important to only complete the scaling procedure at the vets when necessary. Home dental care will minimize if not eliminate the need for the vet procedure.
Regularly feed your Yorkie dry food to help scrape the teeth. Some wet food can be mixed in if necessary, but it is critical to feed high quality dry food as the main dietary component. Avoid rawhide bones or toys for Yorkies as they can easily chew off pieces that can then become logged in the back of their throat and can choke or severely limit breathing and swallowing functions.


Yorkies have a true hair coat, much like human hair. They do not have the furry and wooly undercoat that many breeds have, so they are less susceptible to skin conditions and allergies than many other breeds.
Yorkies are still, however, capable of having skin allergies, food allergies or respiratory allergies. Careful monitoring of the food, environment and activities that the dog is doing can help determine what your dog is allergic to. In dogs allergies are usually noted as:

* Constant scratching, licking or biting at the skin or hair
* Rubbing their heads constantly against objects
* Hair loss
* Hot spots on the skin
* Dry, red or flaky patches on the skin's surface

If you notice any of these symptoms, try checking to see if any changes have occurred in the dog's food or environment. If you have started using any new grooming products including shampoo, conditioner or dry cleaners immediately discontinue use. The products may not be directly applied to the dog; rather they could just be in the area. For example, some carpet shampoos or spray air deodorants can cause allergic reactions.
Check for any changes or additions to the dog's diet. Eliminate any scraps or treats and then gradually reintroduce items to determine when the reaction starts to occur again.
The vet can prescribe allergy pills or shots to help with seasonal type allergies or overall allergic reactions. See your vet as soon as possible, to prevent any bacterial or viral infections from developing from the constant scratching or hot spot areas. Antibacterial creams and antihistamine topical applications may be required to clear up any skin conditions that have become infected or irritated.




Low blood sugar in puppies, or transient juvenile hypoglycemia, is caused by fasting (too much time between meals). In rare cases hypoglycemia may continue to be a problem in mature, usually very small, Yorkies. It is often seen in Yorkie puppies at 5 to 16 weeks of age. Very tiny Yorkie puppies are especially predisposed to hypoglycemia because a lack of muscle mass makes it difficult to store glucose and regulate blood sugar. Factors such as stress, fatigue, a cold environment, poor nutrition, and a change in diet or feeding schedule may bring on hypoglycemia.
Low blood sugar can also be the result of a bacterial infection, parasite, or portosystemic liver shunt. Hypoglycemia causes the puppy to become drowsy, listless (glassy-eyed), shaky and uncoordinated, since the brain relies on sugar to function. Additionally, a hypoglycemic Yorkie may have a lower than normal body temperature and, in extreme cases, may have a seizure or go into a coma.
A dog showing symptoms should be treated by a veterinarian immediately, as prolonged or recurring attacks of hypoglycemia can permanently damage the dog's brain. In severe cases it can be fatal.  This is common in puppies sometimes, and we recommend keeping HONEY on hand.


Training Yorkie puppies really does not have to be a difficult time in your life, or in the life of your yorkie. By following a few simple tips and strategies, the process can be pleasant and rewarding for all involved.
The major issue in training Yorkie puppies is to make sure that they are at the correct stage of its life to be able to understand and internalize the training.
Toy breeds such as Yorkie puppies can tend to be high-strung and prone to barking. It is important to start training as early as possible and to be consistent in training as well as in rewarding and socializing Yorkie puppies to prevent problem behaviors like barking from getting started.
The following three tips are essential and important in training a Yorkie puppy, no matter what age or level of training he or she currently has. The more closely you incorporate these tips in your daily training, the better Yorkie puppies will respond.

1.     Make Training Your Yorkie Puppy Fun

Make sure that you are in a positive and enthusiastic mood when you begin training sessions. If you are tired, stressed or unhappy this will be communicated to any dog, but in particular to Yorkie puppies that are very sensitive to tone of voice. Take time to praise the Yorkie puppy when he or she does something correctly, even if it is just a small command and correct response.

Small healthy treats and lots of verbal praise, pets and hugs make Yorkie puppies feel positive about training sessions. Try to have a play session at the end of each training session when the session has gone well - this will help the puppy focus on the training.

2.     In addition, always exercise Yorkie puppies before the training session starts, especially if they have been enclosed or left alone prior to the training. This allows their excess energy to be burned off and gives the puppy the opportunity to focus. If Yorkie puppies are not exercised before training, they may be focused on running around and having fun rather than on the business of learning.

Most Yorkie puppies enjoy learning, being praised, and spending time with their owners. They will look forward to these training times if they are done in a positive atmosphere where the puppy feels successful.

Make Training Natural

Remember that Yorkie puppies are not full grown, nor do they have complete control of their body functions. Take the puppy outside multiple times per day, and positively reward the puppy when it urinates or defecates outside. This process can also work when the puppy sits on its own or comes to you. Catch them being good and reward swiftly.
Often the best options for training Yorkie puppies come throughout the day and in regular interactions. Watch what the puppy does naturally and start using a word command paired with the puppy's daily behavior. For example, when they are going into the crate for a nap, simply say "Crate, Princess" and soon the puppy will associate the word crate with their area.

3. Keep Training Consistent

This is one of the most critical tips for Yorkie puppies. It is very hard for the puppy to understand expectations if they change from day to day or between people in the house. Make sure that everyone is using the same commands with the puppy. For example if one person is using sit and another is using down to get the puppy to sit on its bottom, the puppy will be confused.
This gets even more confusing if, when the puppy jumps up, he is told to get down. Keep commands simple and consistent for Yorkie puppies of all ages.
In addition to the command language, it is also important to keep the expectations the same between people in the home. If, for example, the children let the puppy sleep on the bed but the adults insist the puppy stays off the furniture, it will take much longer to teach the Yorkie puppy.
Talk to other family members about the commands and expectations for the puppy. Taking Yorkie puppies to a puppy obedience class is highly recommended as this will provide both socialization as well as consistency in both training language as well as cues and how the family members are working with the puppy.



Well, the Yorkie is a true terrier, and with this it has some natural hunting instincts. They are known for the intelligence and ability to figure things out. This comes from their amazing hunting ability, where in the past they were required to decide how to get to rats and other vermin that they were tracking.
In addition to being very intelligent dogs, they are also very loving and loyal pets. They bond quickly to caring and loving people, and enjoy being a part of the family.
Yorkies love to be petted and enjoy spending time with humans and are truly a joy to be around.
Yorkshire Terriers tend to bond more strongly with mature people or older children, and can be sometimes a bit nervous of younger children.
If younger children are taught not to tease or scare the Yorkie they can get along very nicely.
As with any small dog, young children want to constantly pick-up and carry the Yorkie, and the Yorkie may find this handling stressful if the children are not taught to hold them properly.
They are terrific at protecting the house, yard and other possessions, and will bark loudly if any strangers approach their territory. Due to their small size they are not too intimidating, but they are great at letting owners know if strangers or strange animals are around.

In closing, I have seen some websites and heard some breeders talk about how fragile Yorkies are; I agree, but only when they are puppies.  If you purchase a healthy puppy, it should grow into a healthy adult.  You can ensure that your dog remains healthy by taking him or her for annual checkups and vaccinations at your vet's office and by feeding him or her a good quality dog food, and lastly by giving your Yorkie all the love and attention that he or she deserves.  We own four Yorkshire Terriers and they are allot of things, BUT FRAGILE IS NOT ONE OF THEM!  My Yorkies are an absolute JOY, one of the most LOVING dogs I have ever owned.  They are friendly, smart, funny, mischievous, curious, loyal, great guard dogs and I could go on and on, and we love them all.