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Don't Be Afraid Of The Yorkshire Terrier Breed Standard

Feb 4, 2008
How can you tell if that little perky dog at the animal shelter is a Yorkshire Terrier? By seeing if the dog mostly lives up to the Yorkshire Terrier breed standard. A Yorkshire Terrier is easiest to identify in the incredibly long show coat. Most Yorkshire Terriers live in clipped coats, for practical and hygienic reasons. Other distinctive features of the Yorkshire Terrier include a black nose and level spine. Many common faults not seen in the show ring are black hairs and a silver blue instead of steel blue coat.

The point of a breed standard is to have a goal for all breeders to aim for. When a dog is judged in the show ring, it is judged against the breed standard and not against the other dogs. Since the Yorkshire Terrier is the second most popular breed of dog in America, there are a lot of Yorkshire Terriers around that fall short of the breed standard goal.

A lot of Yorkshire Terriers are bought on impulse or as a gift that the receiver soon regrets. Although Yorkies are cute and need a bare minimum of exercise, they need money invested in their health and coat care. They also have very small bladders, making housetraining difficult. These dogs are also efficient bodyguards and will attack any one they think is threatening. So, most Yorkies are abandoned through no fault of their own. By knowing basic Yorkshire Terrier information, you can avoid this tragedy.

You can find the Yorkshire Terrier breed standard in a variety of places. All breed dog books are not very good if you are looking for a detailed description. They only give the most general descriptions of breed standards. You need to go the American Kennel Club or a Yorkshire Terrier rescue group website in order to find the most recent Yorkie breed standard (which can be updated occasionally). There are also books focusing on just the Yorkshire Terrier that may available in your local library.

In general, Yorkshire Terriers are lively, bright-eyed toy sized dogs that weigh an average of six to seven pounds. For the most part, their ears are pointed, but sometimes they are floppy in adults. Puppies almost always look to be black and tan, and lighten to the distinctive steel blue and tan as they mature. The spine is level, the muzzle pointed and the tail is usually, sadly, docked. Very rarely will you find a Yorkie with a long tail.

But the physical appearance is perhaps the only way you can tell a dog's breed at your local animal shelter. The Yorkshire Terrier is small, averaging just seven pounds. They have V-shaped ears which usually (but not always) stand straight up. Their noses are black and their muzzles pointed. They have big, bright eyes and their teeth should meet in a scissors or an even bite.

They are to be steel blue and tan, with black and tan in puppies only. However, there are a lot of purebred Yorkshire Terriers who are other colors. Also, some may have dewclaws and a full, long tail that resembles a purebred Poodle's (without the pom-pom). The coat is very soft and silky and fast growing. The Yorkshire Terrier needs to be groomed every day and needs his coat trimmed about once a month, otherwise he will be a muddy mess and miserable. Show dogs don't have dewclaws, but purebred Yorkies are still often born with them.
About the Author
Susan Bailey grew up with and still lives with all kinds of dogs, including Yorkshire Terriers. The Yorkshire Terrier is the perfect pet for some people. Many articles can be found on the Internet that contain lots of Yorkshire Terrier information .
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