Compact, friendly, and playful, Yorkie Terriers are the perfect pets. With a maximum height of just 7 to 8 inches and weighing in at 7 pounds, Yorkies are among the smallest breeds of dogs out there.
Their small size means anyone can keep them as pets since they require very little space. They are, however, very active and love to exercise.
As with any breed, it is important to learn about the dog’s personality and disposition so you can raise them properly.
Puppy Care From 8 Weeks To Adulthood
Yorkies reach adulthood when they are four years old. If you are getting an eight-week-old Yorkie puppy, it is still a baby. As the puppy grows and becomes an adult, its needs and requirements change.
It is important to adapt the care according to your Yorkie’s age. Here is how you should proceed to care for your Yorkie puppy:
Determine The Breed And Age
Even if you are a dog lover and have had dogs as pets in the past, it is better to be sure of the breed and the age.
The first thing you should do is take your dog to the vet. Some people confuse Yorkshire Terriers with Silky Terriers.
Getting an expert opinion can be helpful. If you are specifically looking for Yorkies, check out Breeder Best for a comprehensive list of top breeders.
Care At 8 Weeks
An eight-week-old puppy is still quite small. Getting the vaccination up-to-date is a priority at this stage since your puppy is so young. Their immune system is developing, so regular visits to the vet are necessary.
At eight weeks, puppies are still in the baby phase. Much like human babies, expect your Yorkie puppy to sleep for at least 18 to 20 hours a day. This may sound much; however, sleep consists of regular naps.
You will also need to feed them small portions frequently, giving them wet food at first. Constant food intake combined with sleep leads to healthy growth.
At eight weeks, while your puppy is not independent, its needs are increasing. Provide them with their own space, a comfortable bed, and toys so they can mark their territory.
It is also the time around which Yorkies start to form memories. This means they realize and remember how certain behaviors are encouraged through reward.
Bad behavior, on the other hand, is discouraged through reprimand. This means you can start training them. Toilet training and forming other important habits, like sitting in the crate, start at this young age.
It is better to start training sooner for the best results. Regular baths and necessary grooming measures, like trimming the nails and hair, will keep your Yorkie in good health.
Caring for safety is important. Your puppy will try to explore their surroundings. Install a dog door to prevent them from going towards the stairs or the kitchen. Cover electrical outlets and keep dangerous tools and chemicals in a locked cupboard.
12 Weeks To 6 Months-Growing Pains
Your Yorkie will grow considerably during this phase. Yorkies are already quite small, but you will be able to see a clear difference. Dogs also begin to display personality traits at this stage.
You can start taking your Yorkie out for playtime and exercise. They can also begin to socialize and form bonds with other dogs as part of their growth.
You may need to help them adjust to the change at first. Going out can be stressful initially, so be sure to compliment and encourage your dog.
You will notice your Yorkie is not napping as much. They are more likely to sleep through the night and take a nap or two during the day. Food choices will also change.
They can start eating dry foods and eat larger portions less frequently. Be mindful of not overfeeding your Yorkie. Research indicates that most people overestimate the amount of food their Yorkie needs.
6 Months To 1 Year-Teenage Dream
Six months and above, your Yorkie is a teenager. An excess of energy and a desire to explore marks this period.
Physically speaking, your Yorkie is fully-grown. They reach their full growth potential at around 8 to 10 months.
This is the time when most of the training takes place. You can reinforce behavior through a system of giving rewards. Your Yorkie is better able to communicate with you and able to understand your emotions.
It is time to check with your vet to neuter your dog. This is also when you start giving them adult food and increasing socialization and going outside. It is a time when your dog is starting to become more independent.
4 Years To 8 Years-Adulthood
Your Yorkie is in the prime of its life during these years. They have grown fully, physically as well as mentally. They are still full of energy but are much calmer than before.
This is the time when you can enjoy your Yorkie the most as they require the least amount of care, at least in terms of training. They are very independent and know how to behave.
Naturally, you will need to care for their basic needs, like giving them food, taking them out for walks, and grooming them.
Considering the small size of a Yorkie, these are simple tasks. Playtime is a joy as they listen well to commands and follow you.
One thing to keep in mind at this stage is to visit the vet regularly. Doing this will help diagnose health problems before they become serious.
Caring For Your Yorkie
Yorkies make the best pets. They are lovable and friendly. The stage of your pet’s life is a wonderful experience.
There are new challenges and issues you will have to deal with at each age. It is through these times that you form a beautiful bond with your dog.
So, whether you are caring for an adult Yorkie in Colorado or Yorkie puppies in California, helping them through the journey from puppy to adulthood is very rewarding. You get to see your furry friend grow up and develop in front of you.