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Last Updated on November 21, 2023 by Scott Allen

What Is the Typical Behavior of a Yorkshire Terrier?

Are you baffled by your Yorkshire Terrier’s bossy behavior and demanding demeanor? Fear not, it is simply part of the breed’s specific behaviors. In this article, we’ll delve into the typical antics and traits of these lively little canines to help you understand what makes them tick.

Keep reading for an insightful journey into the world of Yorkies!

Key Takeaways

  • Yorkshire Terriers are small but energetic dogs known for their brave and bold behavior.
  • Owners play a crucial role in shaping the behavior of Yorkies by establishing themselves as calm and confident leaders.
  • Socialization, training, and a calm home environment are important in developing good behavior and reducing anxiety in Yorkshire Terriers.
  • Common quirks of Yorkies include frequent barking, potential separation anxiety, assertiveness, and specific eating habits.
  • Regular grooming is essential to maintain the long, silky coat of Yorkshire Terriers.
  • Dental problems and patellar luxation are common health concerns for this breed.
  1. Yorkshire Terriers are small yet energetic dogs that require strong leadership from their owners to develop good behavior traits.
  2. Proper socialization, training techniques, and a peaceful home environment help reduce anxiety in Yorkies while fostering well-rounded companionship.
  3. Frequent barking, potential separation anxiety, assertiveness, special eating habits, dental problems like crowded teeth or collapsing trachea, patellar luxation along with regular grooming needs such as brushing their hair often will keep them looking great!

Overview of the Yorkshire Terrier Breed

Yorkshire Terriers are small-sized dogs that typically weigh between 4 to 7 pounds and have a life expectancy of around 12 to 15 years.

Size and weight

Yorkies are tiny dogs. They do not weigh a lot, often being less than seven pounds. They are small enough to fit in one hand when they are puppies. Many stay about eight or nine inches tall full grown.

Their small size does not stop them from being brave and bold dogs though! Even though they’re so little, Yorkies have lots of energy and love to play.

Life expectancy

Yorkshire Terriers have a relatively long life expectancy compared to other dog breeds. On average, they can live for around 12 to 15 years. However, with proper care and a healthy lifestyle, some Yorkies have been known to reach the age of 17 or even older.

This means that if you decide to bring a Yorkshire Terrier home as your pet, you can expect many years of companionship and joy together. It’s important to provide them with regular veterinary check-ups, a balanced diet, plenty of exercise, and lots of love and attention to help ensure they live a long and happy life by your side.

Temperament and personality traits

Yorkshire Terriers, or Yorkies, have their own unique personalities. They are often described as tenacious, feisty, brave, and sometimes bossy. Despite their small size, they have a bold and confident demeanor.

Yorkies are affectionate and loyal, making them excellent companions. They are highly intelligent dogs with an active and curious personality. In addition to being protective of their owners, they can also be wary of strangers.

Some Yorkies may even exhibit an arrogant attitude at times. These dogs love attention and enjoy being the center of their owner’s world.

Factors That Influence Yorkshire Terrier Behavior

The owner plays a crucial role in influencing Yorkshire Terrier behavior, as they need to establish themselves as the leader and provide consistent guidance. The home environment and level of socialization and training also significantly impact their behavior.

Owner’s role as leader

Owners play a crucial role in shaping the behavior of Yorkshire Terriers. These dogs need a strong, consistent leader to guide them. By establishing themselves as the pack leader, owners can help Yorkies feel secure and well-behaved.

It is important for owners to set clear boundaries and rules, providing structure and consistency in their interactions with their pets. Positive reinforcement techniques, such as reward-based training methods, can be effective in teaching desired behaviors and discouraging unwanted ones.

Consistent socialization with other animals and people also helps Yorkshire Terriers develop good manners and reduce anxiety. Owners who establish themselves as calm, confident leaders can create a harmonious relationship with their Yorkie companions.

Home environment

Yorkshire Terriers are adaptable dogs that can thrive in various home environments. However, they do best in homes where they receive lots of attention and companionship from their owners.

Yorkies long for human interaction and may become lonely or anxious if left alone for long periods. They enjoy being part of the family activities and will happily curl up on the couch with their owners.

A calm and peaceful home environment is beneficial for Yorkies as loud noises or chaotic surroundings can make them stressed or nervous. Additionally, providing a safe and secure space within the home with access to toys, bedding, and water will help keep your Yorkshire Terrier comfortable and content.

Socialization and training

Socialization and training are crucial for Yorkshire Terriers to develop good behavior and manners. Early socialization helps them feel comfortable around different people, animals, and environments.

It also reduces the likelihood of aggression or fearfulness. Training should focus on teaching basic commands like sit, stay, and come. Yorkies are smart dogs that enjoy learning new things, so training sessions can be fun and engaging for both the owner and the dog.

Consistency is key when it comes to training a Yorkie, as they may test boundaries due to their assertive nature. With proper socialization and positive reinforcement-based training techniques, Yorkies can grow up to be well-behaved companions.

Common Quirks and Behaviors

Yorkshire Terriers are known for their tendency to bark frequently, their potential for separation anxiety, and their assertive nature. Read on to learn more about these common quirks and behaviors of this breed!


Yorkshire Terriers are known for their tendency to bark. They have a vigilant nature and will often alert their owners to any perceived threats or changes in their environment by barking.

This can make them good watchdogs but also means they may bark excessively if not properly trained and socialized. It’s important for Yorkshire Terrier owners to provide consistent training and establish themselves as the leader to help manage barking behavior.

Separation anxiety

Yorkshire Terriers can sometimes experience separation anxiety when they are left alone for too long. This is because they form strong bonds with their owners and become very attached to them.

When their owners leave, it can cause stress and anxiety for the Yorkie. As a result, they may exhibit behaviors such as excessive barking, destructive chewing, or attempting to escape from the home.

It’s important for Yorkie owners to address separation anxiety by gradually getting their dog used to being alone and providing them with comfort and reassurance when they’re away.


Yorkshire Terriers are known for their assertive nature. Despite their small size, they have a bold and confident demeanor that can sometimes come across as bossy. They are not afraid to stand up for themselves or assert dominance when necessary.

However, it’s important for owners to establish themselves as the leader in order to prevent any behavioral issues that may arise from excessive assertiveness. With proper training and socialization, Yorkshire Terriers can learn to channel their assertiveness into positive behaviors and become well-rounded companions.

Eating habits

Yorkshire Terriers have specific eating habits that owners should be aware of. These small dogs tend to have a good appetite and enjoy their meals. However, it’s important to feed them the right amount of food to prevent overeating and obesity, as they can gain weight easily.

Yorkies often prefer smaller, frequent meals throughout the day rather than one large meal. It’s also important to provide them with high-quality dog food specifically formulated for their size and breed.

Additionally, some Yorkshire Terriers may be picky eaters or have dietary restrictions, so it’s essential to consult with a veterinarian for guidance on their individual nutritional needs.

Health and Grooming Considerations

Yorkshire Terriers have specific health concerns that owners should be aware of, such as dental problems and patellar luxation, and they require regular grooming to maintain their long, silky coats.

Health concerns

Yorkshire Terriers are generally healthy dogs, but like any breed, they can be prone to certain health issues. One common health concern for Yorkies is dental problems. Due to their small size, their teeth can become crowded and may require regular cleanings or even extractions.

Another condition that Yorkshire Terriers may experience is a collapsing trachea, which can cause coughing and difficulty breathing. Additionally, Yorkies are susceptible to patellar luxation, which is when the kneecap slips out of place.

Regular check-ups with a veterinarian and a balanced diet can help keep your Yorkshire Terrier in good health and prevent these potential issues from becoming serious problems.

Grooming needs

Yorkshire Terriers have specific grooming needs that should be attended to regularly. Their long, silky coat requires frequent brushing to prevent matting and tangling. Additionally, regular baths are necessary to keep their fur clean and healthy.

Trimming their nails is essential too, as long nails can cause discomfort or even lead to injury. It’s important to clean their ears regularly as well, as Yorkies are prone to ear infections.

Regular dental care, such as brushing their teeth and providing dental chews, helps maintain good oral hygiene for these small dogs. Overall, proper grooming is crucial in keeping Yorkshire Terriers looking and feeling their best.


1. What is the typical behavior of a Yorkshire Terrier?

A Yorkshire Terrier, also known as a Yorkie, is an energetic dog breed with a lively and inquisitive nature.

2. How would you describe the temperament of a Yorkshire Terrier?

The temperament of a Yorkshire terrier may range from domineering to affectionate. They are often active and playful yet can display bossy or even arrogant attitudes at times.

3. Are all Yorkies energetic dogs?

Yes! Most Yorkies have high energy levels due to their small dog behavior traits, making them vigilant pets that require ample playtime.

4. Can male and female Yorkshires showcase different personality traits?

Male and female Yorkies can indeed differ in their personalities. The females might show more assertive terrier nature than males who tend to be slightly mellow but it mostly depends on their individual personality.

5. Does every Yorkshire exhibit domineering behaviors or habits?

Not every Yorkie will be overly jealous or proud, but many do show these tendencies due to their strong-willed characteristics inherent in the terrier temperament.

6. Can my Yorkshire’s assertive attitude turn into behavioral problems?

If not managed properly, an assertive demeanor could evolve into issues such as jealousy or dominance; hence it’s important for owners to understand their pet’s routines and patterns.