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Last Updated on November 21, 2023 by Scott Allen

Yorkie Vs. Bichon Frise

yorkie vs bichon frise

Choosing the perfect pet is a tough decision, especially when deciding between two adorable breeds like the Yorkie and Bichon Frise. Both being small-sized dogs with a friendly demeanor, they make for delightful household companions.

This article will guide you through the quirks and qualities of each breed – from their historical background to their grooming needs – helping you understand which dog could be your best fit.

Let’s dive into the charming world of these lovable canines!

Key Takeaways

  • Yorkies and Bichon Frises are small – sized dogs with friendly personalities, making them great household companions.
  • The Yorkie is slightly smaller and lighter than the Bichon Frise, which may influence your choice depending on your lifestyle and preferences.
  • Both breeds have specific health concerns, such as dental issues for Yorkies and skin allergies for Bichon Frises, so regular vet check-ups are important.
  • Grooming is essential for both breeds to keep their coats healthy, but the Yorkshire Terrier requires more frequent hair maintenance due to its long coat.
  • Bichon Frises are generally low – energy dogs that require less exercise compared to the more active Yorkies. Consider these energy levels when deciding which breed fits your lifestyle.


History and Background of the Breeds

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The Bichon Yorkie is a mix of two breedsDog lovers in the United States made this breed. They used a Bichon Frise and a Yorkshire Terrier to do it. The Yorkshire Terrier comes from England.

People there made this dog during the industrial revolution in the 1800s.

Bichons have roots in France and Spain. Long ago, people connected them with Tenerife Island. Half of the Yorkie Bichon breed is like a Bichon and half is like a Yorkie. This new blend of dog does not have clear beginnings or much known history yet because it’s so new.

Physical Characteristics and Aging Profile

Bichon Frise vs Yorkie

Yorkies are small-sized dogs, typically weighing between 4 to 7 pounds when fully grown, while Bichon Frises are slightly larger, ranging from 10 to 18 pounds.

Size and weight comparison

The physical characteristics such as size and weight are crucial to consider when choosing between a Yorkshire Terrier and a Bichon Frise. Both breeds are small, yet they differ slightly in height and weight.


Breed Typical Height Typical Weight
Yorkshire Terrier 8 to 9 inches 7 pounds
Bichon Frise 9 to 11 inches 12 to 18 pounds


Though both breeds are compact in size, the Bichon Frise is slightly taller and significantly heavier than the Yorkshire Terrier. This difference may impact your choice, depending on your lifestyle and personal preferences. Some people may prefer a smaller and lighter dog like the Yorkshire Terrier, while others might opt for the slightly larger and heftier Bichon Frise.

Lifespan and aging needs

The lifespan and aging needs of both the Yorkie and Bichon Frise are important considerations when deciding on which breed to welcome into your home.


Breed Average Lifespan Aging Needs
Yorkie 10 to 12 years Yorkies, despite their small size, are quite robust but they do require regular dental cleanings and can be prone to certain genetic health issues as they age. Regular vet check-ups, a healthy diet, and regular exercise will help ensure they live a full and healthy life.
Bichon Frise 12 to 15 years Bichon Frises are known for their long lifespan. They require regular grooming to keep their fluffy coats in good condition. Regular health checks, a balanced diet, and moderate exercise will help keep them healthy in their golden years.


Temperament and Intelligence

Yorkies are known for their confident and independent personalities, while Bichon Frises are friendly and sociable dogs.

Comparison of personality traits

Yorkshire Terriers and Bichon Frise both have unique temperament qualities that can significantly influence an owner’s experience with the breed. This comparison offers an understanding of the two breeds’ personality traits.


Characteristics Yorkshire Terrier Bichon Frise
Intelligence Yorkies are highly intelligent, ranking 34th among 138 qualifying breeds. The Bichon Frise also showcases its intelligence, being just a step behind the Yorkies in ranking.
Curiosity Yorkshire Terriers are known for their curiosity, which can sometimes lead them to be independent. Bichon Frise dogs generally have a curious nature and are active, making them quite engaging.
Independence Yorkies are independent dogs that aren’t afraid to explore their surroundings. While not as independent as Yorkies, Bichon Frise dogs still display a good level of independence.
Loyalty Yorkshire Terriers are extremely loyal, often forming a strong bond with their owners. Bichon Frise dogs are also known for their loyalty and affection towards their owners.


These are just a few of the distinct personality characteristics that the Yorkshire Terrier and Bichon Frise breeds possess. Both breeds have their unique qualities, which can make them an excellent choice depending on an individual’s preferences and lifestyle.

Trainability and intelligence levels

Yorkie Bichons and Bichon Frises are both known for their trainability and high intelligence levels. These breeds are smart, clever, and quick learners. They have sharp minds and are easily trainable. From a young age, they show a keen interest in learning tricks and commands. Both Yorkie Bichons and Bichon Frises have high cognitive abilities and are quick-witted dogs. Their intelligence makes them suitable for families with children and other pets as they can adapt well to training and learn new things easily.

It’s important to note that both breeds possess similar traits when it comes to temperament and intelligence. Their friendly nature combined with their trainability makes them great companions who can excel in obedience training or even more advanced tasks if properly trained.

Adaptability and Tolerance to Weather

Both Yorkies and Bichon Frises are adaptable to different environments, making them suitable for various living conditions.

Ability to adjust to different environments

Both the Yorkie and Bichon Frise breeds are known for their ability to adjust to different environments. They are flexible, adaptable, and resilient dogs that can easily adapt to changes in their living conditions and daily schedules.

Both breeds also have an open-mindedness and resourcefulness that allows them to navigate new surroundings with ease. While there may be individual variations in preferences, it is safe to say that both the Yorkie and Bichon Frise are highly accommodating and compatible with different environments.

Hot and cold weather tolerance

Bichon Frise dogs are generally more tolerant of hot weather compared to Yorkshire Terriers. They can handle high temperatures and hot weather conditions quite well. On the other hand, Yorkshire Terriers may not tolerate hot weather as effectively as Bichon Frise. When it comes to cold weather, Bichon Frise dogs have a decent tolerance to chilly conditions. However, dogs with low cold tolerance, like Yorkshire Terriers, may need to live inside in cool climates or wear jackets or sweaters during chilly walks.

Health and Grooming Needs

Both the Yorkie and Bichon Frise have specific health concerns to be aware of, including dental issues for Yorkies and skin allergies for Bichon Frises. Regular grooming is essential for both breeds, with the Yorkie requiring more frequent hair maintenance due to their long, silky coat.

Common health issues in each breed

Bichon Frises can have health problems like overweight, arthritis, gastrointestinal disorders, cataracts, dental disease, ear infections, urinary tract and liver problems, and hormonal issues.

Grooming requirements

Grooming is important for both Yorkies and Bichon Frises to keep their coats healthy and looking good. Here are some important points to know about grooming requirements for these breeds:

  1. Regular brushing: Both Yorkies and Bichon Frises require regular brushing to prevent their hair from matting and tangling.
  2. Coat care: Proper coat care includes brushing out any tangles or mats, as well as ensuring the hair is clean and free of debris.
  3. Matting prevention: Regular brushing helps prevent matting, which can be uncomfortable for the dogs and may require professional grooming to remove.
  4. Trimming: Yorkshire Terriers need to be trimmed every four to six weeks to maintain a healthy, long coat.
  5. Grooming frequency: Grooming for a Yorkie or Bichon Frise may be required once or twice a month to keep their coats in good condition.
  6. Professional grooming services: If grooming becomes overwhelming, professional grooming services can be sought for both breeds.
  7. Healthy coat maintenance: Regular grooming helps promote a healthy coat and prevents skin issues that can arise from neglecting grooming needs.

Activity and Exercise Needs

Yorkies and Bichon Frises have different energy levels and physical activity requirements.

Energy levels and physical activity requirements

Bichon Frise dogs and Yorkies have different energy levels and physical activity requirements. Bichon Frises are generally low-energy breeds and only need around 30 minutes of daily exercise to stay fit. They enjoy going on short walks or playing in the yard. On the other hand, Yorkies are more active and require at least an hour of exercise each day. They love engaging in playtime, running, and exploring their surroundings. It’s important to understand these differences when considering which breed is a better fit for your lifestyle and ability to meet their exercise needs.

Suitable activities for each breed

Bichon Yorkies and Bichon Frises have different exercise needs. Here are some suitable activities for each breed:

  1. Bichon Yorkie:
  • Daily walks: Bichon Yorkies benefit from regular walks to burn off energy and stimulate their minds.
  • Playtime with toys: Interactive toys, such as puzzle toys or treat-dispensing toys, can keep them entertained and mentally stimulated.
  • Agility training: Bichon Yorkies enjoy agility exercises that challenge their problem-solving skills and physical abilities.
  • Obedience training: Training sessions that include commands and tricks can help keep them engaged and mentally sharp.
  1. Bichon Frise:
  • Gentle play sessions: Bichon Frises do not require intense physical activity. They prefer gentle play sessions indoors, such as playing with a soft ball or tug-of-war with a plush toy.
  • Indoor games: Games like hide-and-seek or find-the-treat can provide mental stimulation without too much physical exertion.
  • Short walks: Bichon Frises have small exercise requirements, so short walks around the neighborhood or in a nearby park are sufficient to meet their needs.
  • Training exercises: Basic obedience training sessions at home, using positive reinforcement techniques, can help keep them mentally sharp.

Diet and Feeding

Each breed has specific dietary needs and feeding recommendations that are essential for their overall health and well-being.

Necessary nutrients for each breed

Proper nutrition is essential for the overall health and well-being of Yorkies and Bichon Frises. Each breed has specific dietary requirements that need to be met to ensure they get all the necessary nutrients. Royal Canin offers specialized formulas for certain breeds, such as the Bichon Frise and Bulldog, which are designed to meet their unique nutritional needs. It’s important to consider their genetic makeup when choosing their diet, as Yorkie Bichons may have specific dietary needs based on their genetic predispositions. By providing them with a balanced diet that includes the right combination of proteins, carbohydrates, fats, vitamins, and minerals, you can help support their growth, energy levels, and overall health.

Feeding recommendations

To ensure that your Yorkie or Bichon Frise is healthy and happy, it’s important to provide them with the right food. Here are some feeding recommendations for these breeds:

  • bichon’s diet should consist of at least half meat, as they need animal protein for their nutritional requirements.
  • To meet their nutritional needs, it’s important to feed them a balanced diet that includes grains, fruits, vegetables, and meat.
  • Many pet owners prefer to feed their dogs high – quality, premium brands of dog food that contain all the necessary nutrients.
  • Dry kibble or canned wet food are commonly fed to dogs and are good options for providing a complete and balanced diet.
  • Food specifically designed for small breeds like the Yorkie and Bichon Frise is recommended to meet their unique needs.
  • It’s important to follow the feeding recommendations on the dog food packaging and adjust portion sizes according to your dog’s age, weight, and activity level.

Child and Family Friendliness

Both the Yorkie and Bichon Frise are known to be child-friendly, making them great options for families with kids.

Compatibility with children

The Bichon Frise is a dog breed that is known for being very child-friendly. They are great companions for families with children as they love to play and are generally tolerant around kids.

On the other hand, the Yorkshire Terrier may not be as tolerant and may require more supervision when interacting with children. If you’re looking for a dog that will actively engage with your kids and enjoy their company, the Bichon Frise would be a better choice.

However, it’s always important to teach children how to properly interact with dogs and supervise their interactions to ensure everyone’s safety.

Tolerance for other pets and family members

Bichons, being adaptable companions, have a friendly and accepting nature towards other pets and family members. They tend to get along well with other dogs and are generally good with children.

This means that Bichons can integrate easily into a household with existing pets or be introduced to new furry friends without issues. Their ability to coexist harmoniously with others makes them suitable for families looking for a pet that will fit in seamlessly and create a sense of inclusion within the household.

Similarly, Yorkies also display a level of tolerance and patience when it comes to interacting with children and other family members. They are known to be family-friendly dogs who can adapt well to their surroundings.

Conclusion: Which Breed is Right for You?

In conclusion, both the Yorkie and Bichon Frise are intelligent and adaptable breeds. The Yorkie is smaller with a higher energy level, while the Bichon Frise is larger and has a lower energy level.

Consider your lifestyle and preferences when choosing between these two lovable companion dogs.


1. Are Yorkies and Bichon Frises good family pets?

Yes, both Yorkies and Bichon Frises can make great family pets with proper training and socialization.

2. Which breed is easier to groom, a Yorkie or a Bichon Frise?

Bichon Frises are generally easier to groom compared to Yorkies due to their non-shedding coat that requires regular brushing and professional grooming every 4-6 weeks.

3. Do Yorkies or Bichon Frises require a lot of exercise?

Both breeds need daily exercise, but Yorkies may require slightly more physical activity than Bichon Frises due to their higher energy levels.

4. Can I leave my Yorkie or Bichon Frise alone for long periods of time?

Neither breed does well when left alone for extended periods as they thrive on human companionship. They may experience separation anxiety if left alone for too long.

5. Are there any major health concerns specific to Yorkies or Bichon Frises?

Yorkies are prone to dental issues such as tooth decay and gum disease, while Bishon Frieses may have allergies or skin problems that require regular care from a veterinarian