Follow, Share & Care: Help Dog Rescues!

Last Updated on November 20, 2023 by Scott Allen

Unveiled: Yorkie vs Maltese Showdown – Who Reigns Supreme?

Yorkie vs Maltese

Choosing between a Yorkie and Maltese for your next pet? You’re not alone. These small dog breeds are popular choices, each with their unique traits and history. This article will guide you through the comparison of these two charming toy breeds – from size to temperamentintelligence to health concerns and more.

Ready to find your perfect match? Let’s dive in!

Key Takeaways

  • Yorkies and Maltese are popular small dog breeds with unique traits and histories.
  • Size differences: Yorkies weigh 4 to 7 pounds, while Maltese dogs weigh between 4 and 9 pounds. Yorkies stand at a height of 6 to 9 inches, while Maltese dogs stand at a height of 7 to 10 inches.
  • Appearance differences: Yorkies have long, silky hair in brown, black, blue or silver coats. Maltese dogs have white fur with lemon or tan shades mixed in. Both breeds require regular grooming.
  • Temperament differences: Yorkies are feisty and confident, while Maltese dogs are gentle and affectionate. Both breeds can be loyal and loving towards their owners but may have different sociability levels with strangers or other pets.
  • Intelligence and trainability: Both breeds are intelligent and trainable using positive reinforcement methods. Yorkshire Terriers rank slightly higher in intelligence than Maltese dogs but both respond well to training techniques.
  • Consider your lifestyle and preferences when choosing between these two charming toy breeds!

Yorkie vs Maltese: Size

Maltese vs Yorkie

Yorkies are generally smaller and lighter than Maltese dogs, with Yorkies weighing around 4 to 7 pounds and standing at a height of about 6 to 9 inches.

Differences in weight and height

When it comes to size, both the Yorkshire Terrier and Maltese are on the smaller side of the dog spectrum, yet there are some key differences in weight and height.

Yorkshire Terrier Maltese
Weight Up to 7 pounds Between 4 and 9 pounds
Height 8 to 9 inches 7 to 10 inches


Despite the slight size differences, both breeds are small enough to get along well in various settings. However, the Maltese tends to be generally larger than the Yorkshire Terrier. They both make fantastic pets for those looking for a smaller dog breed.

Factors that can affect size

Many things can change the size of Yorkies and Maltese dogs. These things include good food, eating habits, fitness levels, age, hormones, where they live and health issues. If a dog is sick it may not grow as big.

Also if a mother or father dog is small or big their puppies could be the same.

Besides that other things could help predict their size too. For example genetics tell us a lot about what we can expect when Yorkies and Maltese pups grow up. Lastly remember how pups are bred can also play role in their grown-up size.

Yorkie vs Maltese: Appearance

Yorkshire Terrier vs Maltese

Yorkies and Maltese have distinct differences in their appearance, including variations in coat color and grooming needs, as well as contrasting physical features.

Coat color and grooming needs

Maltese and Yorkie dogs both have unique coat colors and grooming needs.

  1. The Maltese dog is known for its white fur color. Some may have shades of lemon or tan mixed in.
  2. On the other hand, Yorkies stand out with their brown, black, blue or silver coats.
  3. Both breeds need daily teeth brushing.
  4. Dark brown eye stains are common in both breeds and should be removed regularly for a clean look.
  5. Grooming these dogs takes some work due to their hair – like fur.
  6. Yorkies need more grooming time than Maltese because they are high – maintenance dogs.
  7. To keep them looking nice, both Yorkies and Maltese should be groomed often.

Differences in physical features

Yorkies and Maltese dogs have distinct physical features that set them apart. Firstly, let’s talk about their hair or coat. Yorkies have long, silky, and straight hair, while Maltese dogs have a luxurious, silky, and straight coat that reaches the ground.

When it comes to body structure, Yorkies are known for their compact and sturdy bodies. On the other hand, Maltese dogs have a slightly rounded skull and a compact body with a level topline.

In terms of ears, Yorkies have erect ears that are small and V-shaped, while Maltese dogs have drop ears that are set high on the head. Moving on to their eyes – Yorkies typically have round dark eyes whereas Maltese dogs boast large dark eyes that are set well apart.

Lastly, there is a difference in tails as well. The tail of a Yorkshire Terrier is usually docked to a medium length whereas the tail of a Maltese dog is long and plumed; it is carried over the back gracefully.

Yorkie vs Maltese: Breed History

Yorkshire Terriers and Maltese have unique breed histories that trace back to different parts of the world.

Origins and evolution of each breed

The Yorkshire Terrier, or Yorkie for short, has an interesting history. This breed originated in England and was initially bred as a ratter hunting dog to catch rats in mills and mines during the 19th century.

Over time, they were crossbred with various small terriers to achieve their current size and appearance. From being working dogs, Yorkies transitioned into beloved companions and lap dogs.

On the other hand, the Maltese has a more mysterious past. Their origins are often debated among fanciers, with some suggesting that they have ancestors like terriers, spaniels, or spitzes.

However, many believe that this fluffy white breed is indigenous to Malta, hence the name “Maltese.” They were highly favored by royalty throughout history and prized for their beauty.

Popularity and recognition worldwide

The Yorkshire Terrier (Yorkie) and Maltese are both popular and recognized breeds around the world. The Maltese has a long history that dates back to ancient times, and it has remained popular throughout the years.

Interestingly, many other dog breeds that were popular during the time when the Maltese first appeared are now extinct. This shows how special and enduring the Maltese breed is. On the other hand, Yorkies have gained popularity due to their availability from breeders.

That’s why there can be a difference in price between these two breeds. Overall, both Yorkies and Maltese are well-known and cherished by pet owners everywhere for their unique backgrounds and adorable qualities!

Yorkie vs Maltese: Temperament

Yorkies are known for their feisty and confident personalities, while Maltese are typically more gentle and affectionate. Both breeds can be loyal and loving towards their owners, but Yorkies may have a tendency to be more assertive and protective, whereas Maltese are generally more laid-back and easygoing.

Differences in personality and behavior

Yorkies and Maltese have distinct differences in their personality and behavior. When it comes to temperament, Maltese are generally easier to train compared to Yorkies. They tend to be more obedient and responsive during training sessions.

On the other hand, Yorkies can be a bit stubborn at times, requiring patience and consistency during training.

In terms of sociability, Yorkies are often more outgoing around strangers compared to Maltese. They tend to be more curious and friendly towards new people they meet. However, both breeds can develop barking habits when they feel threatened or anxious.

When it comes to affection, both Yorkies and Maltese are known for being loving towards their owners. They enjoy spending time with their family members and thrive on attention and interaction.

However, it’s important for owners of these breeds to provide proper socialization from an early age so that they can get along well with children and other pets.

Temperament towards children and other pets

Both the Yorkshire Terrier and the Maltese have different temperaments towards children and other pets. While they are generally friendly and playful, both breeds may not be suitable for homes with small children or other dogs.

The Maltese can sometimes be snappy with young children, although they usually get along well with other dogs and older kids. On the other hand, Yorkies may become easily agitated if handled roughly by children or if they feel threatened.

It is important to socialize both breeds from a young age to ensure they develop good behavior around people and other animals.

Yorkie vs Maltese: Intelligence and Trainability

Yorkies and Maltese both demonstrate high levels of intelligence, making them relatively easy to train.

Comparison of intelligence and ability to train

Despite their small size, both the Yorkshire Terrier (Yorkie) and the Maltese are known for their intelligence and trainability. It’s interesting to delve into the specifics of just how they compare in these areas.

Yorkshire Terrier (Yorkie) Maltese
Intelligence Yorkshire Terriers are considered to be the more intelligent of the two breeds. Their quick-witted nature comes in handy when learning new commands and adjusting to varying scenarios. Maltese dogs are also intelligent, though they rank slightly below Yorkies in overall intelligence. Despite this, with proper training, they are fully capable of learning new commands.
Trainability Yorkies are easily trainable and respond well to a variety of commands. They love to please their owners, making them eager learners. Also, they respond particularly well to positive reinforcement training methods. Like Yorkies, Maltese dogs are also easily trainable and responsive to commands. They too are most effectively trained using positive reinforcement methods. These techniques tap into their desire to please and earn rewards.
Suitability for Obedience Training The intelligence and trainability of Yorkies make them suitable for obedience training. This helps them adapt well to different environments and social situations. Maltese dogs, despite being slightly less intelligent than Yorkies, are equally suitable for obedience training. Their eagerness to learn and ability to pick up commands makes them adaptable and easy to manage.
Training to be Good with Children Yorkies can be trained to be good with children, making them a suitable choice for families. This requires consistent training and socialization from a young age. Maltese dogs, with the right training and socialization, can also be great with kids. They are known to enjoy the playfulness and energy that children bring to the house.


Training methods and techniques that work best for each breed

Both Yorkies and Maltese are intelligent breeds that can be trained effectively. Positive training methods, such as using rewards and praise, are recommended for both breeds. Here are some training methods and techniques that work best for each breed:

  1. Start with basic obedience training: Both Yorkies and Maltese benefit from learning basic commands like sit, stay, come, and fetch. Consistency is key when teaching these commands.
  2. Use positive reinforcement: Reward your Yorkie or Maltese with treats, praise, or playtime whenever they exhibit desired behavior. This encourages them to repeat the behavior in the future.
  3. Socialization is important: Introduce your Yorkie or Maltese to different people, animals, and environments early on. This helps them become more comfortable in various situations and reduces fear or aggression.
  4. Be patient and consistent: Training takes time, so be patient with your Yorkie or Maltese as they learn new skills. Consistency in your training approach will make it easier for them to understand what you expect from them.
  5. Keep training sessions short and fun: Both Yorkshire Terriers and Maltese have relatively short attention spans, so keep training sessions brief (around 10-15 minutes) and make them enjoyable by incorporating playtime or using interactive toys.
  6. Use problem-solving exercises: Challenge your Yorkie or Maltese with puzzle toys or interactive games that stimulate their minds. This helps keep them mentally engaged and prevents boredom.
  7. Consider professional training classes: If you’re struggling with training your Yorkie or Maltese on your own, enrolling them in a professional obedience class can provide additional guidance from experienced trainers.

Yorkie vs Maltese: Exercise and Energy Levels

Yorkies and Maltese have different exercise needs and energy levels.

Differences in need for exercise and activity

Yorkies and Maltese have different exercise needs and energy levels. Yorkies are more active compared to Maltese and require at least 30 minutes of exercise each day. They have a high energy level, so they need regular physical activity to stay healthy.

On the other hand, Maltese dogs have moderate exercise needs. They are generally friendly dogs with an average energy level, making them suitable for individuals with semi-active lifestyles.

Both breeds can adapt well to limited spaces and do not require excessive exercise.

Recommended exercise routines for both breeds

  • The Maltese breed can be satisfied with just a daily walk or an active play session.
  • The Maltese breed requires two walks per day for optimal exercise.
  • Yorkshire Terriers have higher exercise needs compared to Maltese.
  • Maltese are full of energy but only require occasional exercise.
  • Parti Yorkies, a variation of the Yorkshire Terrier breed, also require daily exercise.
  • The exercise routines for both Yorkies and Maltese should be tailored to their specific energy levels and needs.

Yorkie vs Maltese: Health Concerns

Yorkies and Maltese both have their own set of common health issues that owners should be aware of.

Common health issues for each breed

Ways to prevent and manage these health problems

To prevent and manage health problems in yorkies and maltese dogs, consider the following:

  1. Regular veterinary check-ups: Take your dog for regular check-ups to catch any potential health issues early on and ensure they receive necessary vaccinations.
  2. Proper diet and nutrition: Feed your dog a balanced diet that meets their specific nutritional needs. Consult with your veterinarian to determine the best food options for your breed.
  3. Exercise and weight management: Provide regular exercise to keep your dog at a healthy weight. Obesity can contribute to various health problems, so monitor their calorie intake and engage them in physical activities.
  4. Dental care: Brush your dog’s teeth regularly or provide them with dental chews/toys to maintain good oral hygiene. Dental problems can lead to more severe health issues if left untreated.
  5. Grooming practices: Regularly groom your dog to prevent matting of their hair, which can lead to skin infections or other complications. This includes brushing their coat, cleaning their ears, and trimming their nails.
  6. Environmental safety: Keep hazardous substances out of reach from your curious canine companion, such as toxic plants, chemicals, and small objects they could swallow.
  7. Eye care: Keep an eye on changes in your dog’s eyesight or any signs of irritation or infection. Promptly seek veterinary attention if you notice anything unusual.
  8. Breed-specific precautions: Be aware of the specific health conditions common in each breed (collapsed trachea for yorkies, progressive retinal atrophy for maltese) and take preventive measures accordingly.
  9. Emotional well-being: Pay attention to your dog’s mental health by providing socialization opportunities, mental stimulation through toys/puzzles, and plenty of love and affection.
  10. Health insurance or savings account: Consider getting pet insurance or setting up a savings account specifically for unexpected medical expenses to ensure you can provide necessary healthcare when needed.

Which Breed Makes a Better Pet?

Deciding which breed makes a better pet ultimately depends on personal preferences and lifestyle factors.

Considerations for choosing between a Yorkie or Maltese as a pet

When choosing between a Yorkie or Maltese as a pet, there are some important factors to consider:

  • Size: Yorkies are smaller in size compared to Maltese. If you prefer a smaller dog, then a Yorkie might be the better choice for you.
  • Grooming Needs: Yorkies require more grooming compared to Maltese. If you prefer low-maintenance grooming, then a Maltese might be the better choice for you.
  • Energy Levels: Yorkies are high-energy dogs, while Maltese have an average energy level. If you lead an active lifestyle and enjoy lots of exercise, then a Yorkie might be the better choice for you. However, if you have a semi-active lifestyle, then a Maltese might be more suitable.
  • Temperament: Both breeds can get along well with family members and house guests if properly socialized. However, it is important to note that both breeds do better in households with older children who can treat them with care and respect.
  • Lifestyle Compatibility: Consider your own lifestyle and living environment. Are you able to provide the necessary time and attention for these breeds? Do they fit well into your household dynamics?

Suitability for different lifestyles and living environments

Yorkshire Terriers are best suited for pet parents who can dedicate a large portion of their day to their furry friend. These dogs thrive in homes without young children, as they prefer a quieter environment.

They require a significant amount of attention and time from their owners to be happy. On the other hand, Maltese dogs are small and compact, making them well-suited for apartment living or smaller homes.

They can adapt well to different lifestyles and living environments, as long as they receive proper care and exercise. Whether you have a busy lifestyle or live in a smaller space, both breeds can make wonderful companions with the right level of commitment and care.


In conclusion, Yorkies and Maltese are both small and affectionate breeds, but they have some differences in size, appearance, temperament, and exercise needs. Yorkies are slightly smaller and may be better suited for homes with older children, while Maltese dogs tend to be more sociable.

Ultimately, the best breed for you will depend on your lifestyle and preferences. Take the time to research each breed carefully before making a decision.


1. What is the difference between a Yorkie and a Maltese?

The main difference between a Yorkie and a Maltese is their appearance, with Yorkies having long, silky hair and Malteses having thick, fluffy white coats. They also differ in size, temperament, and exercise needs.

2. Are Yorkies or Malteses better for families with children?

Both Yorkies and Malteses can be good for families with children; however, it’s important to supervise interactions to ensure the dog’s small size is not an issue. Proper training and socialization are key for any breed around children.

3. Which breed requires more grooming: Yorkie or Maltese?

Malteses require more grooming compared to Yorkies because of their longer coat that tends to mat easily. Regular brushing, bathing, and professional grooming are necessary for maintaining their coat’s health.

4. Are Yorkies or Malteses easier to train?

Yorkies tend to be easier to train than Malteses as they are known for being more obedient and eager to please. However, both breeds benefit from early socialization and positive reinforcement training methods.

5.Can I keep both a Yorkie and a Maltese together at home?

Yes! Keeping both a Yorkshire Terrier (Yorkie) and a Maltese together at home should generally be fine as long as they are properly introduced, trained, supervised around other pets or small animals you may have at home since each dog has its own personality quirks that could lead them into trouble if not managed correctly