Tiny yorkies are adorable.
There is no question about that.
But is a 3 pound yorkie healthy?
That is a different matter.
The truth is that such a low weight could indicate a health issue. But a 3 pound yorkie can also be perfectly healthy.
We’ll show you how to check if your dog is over or underweight.
But that’s only part of the problem. The smaller the dog, the higher the risk of injuries and other health issues.
Keep reading to learn how to determine if your three-pound yorkshire terrier is healthy, and what special care you should provide your teacup yorkie to ensure it lives a long, happy life.
- 1 3 Pound Yorkie: Are They Healthy?
- 1.1 Average Yorkie Weight And Size
- 1.2 How To Tell If Your 3-Pound Yorkie Is Healthy
- 1.3 Risks Of An Underweight Dog
- 1.4 Caring For An Underweight Yorkie
- 1.5 Yorkie Development
- 2 Three-Pound Yorkie: Conclusion
3 Pound Yorkie: Are They Healthy?
A 3-pound yorkie can be perfectly healthy, but not all are. And even the healthy ones frequently require special attention.
Tiny yorkies are more prone to severe health issues and birth deformities. The unfortunate aspect of many of these diseases is that you will not be aware of them until much later. The result is a shorter average lifespan for mini yorkies.
Yorkshire terriers are small, charming dogs that are surprisingly intelligent. But some yorkies are small even compared to other yorkies.
What is too tiny for a Yorkshire terrier?
Let’s take a look at the average size and weight of this breed, before we get into how you can make sure your mini dog is healthy.
Average Yorkie Weight And Size
The Yorkshire terrier’s minimum weight was once set as 4 pounds by the AKC (American Kennel Club). However, they have changed the breed standards since then. Now, a full-grown Yorkshire terrier can weigh up to 7 pounds.
Regardless of this shift, the majority of Yorkshire terriers fall in the 4 to 7 pound weight range. That range is the average weight for a Yorkshire terrier.
A dog that is smaller than this when fully grown is considered excessively little. Those tiny pups face an increased risk of size-related yorkie health problems.
It is also not uncommon for a yorkie to reach 8 to 10 pounds. How healthy a puppy is will be determined by its bone structure and whether or not it is overweight.
A huge yorkie might also be the result of an unsuitable dam and sire combination. Some breeders fail to produce standard-sized Yorkshire terriers.
Yorkshire terriers can grow to be as large as 10 pounds, or even 15 pounds in exceptional cases. A big yorkie is frequently the result of mixing another breed somewhere along with the yorkie’s ancestry. You may not have a purebred yorkie if your yorkie is overly big.
Despite all of the weight regulations, there is no defined height for yorkies. But in general, an adult should measure between 6 and 9 inches from the ground to its withers.
They generally reach this height by the time they reach one year of age. Read “When Is A Yorkie Full Grown?” for more.
How To Tell If Your 3-Pound Yorkie Is Healthy
Some owners have problems weighing their dog on a scale (they don’t always want to sit still) or they simply aren’t sure if their dog is the right weight for its size.
But weight alone isn’t always a good indicator of health anyway. You should always undertake a visual or physical examination of your dog’s physique. This is good to do this when picking out a yorkie, too. You don’t want to get stuck with a sickly dog.
And if you determine that your dog is underweight, we have an article entitled “How To Make My Yorkie Gain Weight” that can help you get your Yorkie to a healthy weight the right way.
Place your hands on the sides of your dog’s body, on the ribcage. You should be able to feel each rib without being able to see them. If you can see your dog’s ribs, it may be underweight. If you can’t feel the ribs, your dog is likely overweight.
If your yorkie’s hair prevents you from making a visual evaluation, you can use your hand alone. Try to feel for any obvious physical indicators that indicate whether your dog is overweight or underweight. Run your fingers down your dog’s spine to complete this evaluation.
Inspect From Behind
To make a visual inspection, look down the length of your dog from behind. As you direct your gaze from the rib cage to the waist, you should see the waist curve gently inward. The curvature inward will be sharp and significantly smaller, if your dog is underweight.
Inspect The Abdomen
You can inspect your dog’s abdomen by gazing at its side profile. It will slope slightly upward from the rib cage if the dog has a healthy weight. A slender dog will have little visible body fat and will have its stomach tucked straight upward from the ribs.
Inspect The Pelvic Bones
A protruding pelvic bone and prominent vertebrae indicate that your dog is underweight. You should be able to feel a thin layer of fat between your dog’s bones and skin, if it is at an appropriate weight. It will be hard to tell if the dog is overweight using this check.
Risks Of An Underweight Dog
Because of their small size, a yorkie that is somewhat too little or too big is quickly at risk for a number of health concerns.
- Non-regular blood sugar levels
- Inability to exercise
- Increased risk of injury
- Hip dysplasia
Your veterinarian should be able to provide you advice on how to care for your yorkie, if it is over or underweight. The veterinarian will teach you how to deal with any weight problems you may have. They may recommend that you adjust your dog’s activity, habits, or the way you feed it.
Overall, mini yorkies cost more to take care of and they cost more to buy. How much is a teacup yorkie? The average price is around $2000 to get one. Over the course of its life, you can expect to spend $15,000 to $20,000 in total.
Caring For An Underweight Yorkie
Yorkshire terriers are always small dogs. The AKC still considers them small, even if they weigh more than the prescribed breed standard of 7 pounds.
It is easy to think that yorkies that are within the healthy weight range don’t need any type of special care. But that is not the case. Yorkies always need extra care, because of their size.
And yorkies that are underweight require extra attention, to avoid injury or other problems.
Small dogs are more prone to be stepped on, accidentally tripped over, or dropped. This can lead to broken bones or fractures. The smaller the dog, the greater the danger of this type of accidental injury.
Here are some tips on how to care for your teacup yorkie.
- Use a harness for your yorkie and be cautious around bigger dogs and busy children
- Keep your yorkie out of populated areas and avoid carrying it with one arm
- Take it to the vet regularly
- Feed it no more and no less than its prescribed food amount (and only the best yorkie foods)
- Use the right size of food and water bowl
Yorkie puppies are miniscule at first, but they grow fast through the early phases of development. Let’s take a look at the usual growth pattern for Yorkshire terriers.
Birth To Two Weeks
During a yorkie’s first two weeks of life, it is at its most reliant on its mother and at its most vulnerable. Their eyes have not yet opened, and they spend the majority of their time sleeping.
They can barely crawl. They just scoot around on their stomachs in search of their mother’s milk. They make a low mewling sound to communicate their sorrow to their mother.
Yorkie puppies usually weigh between three and five ounces at birth. But these tiny little furballs grow swiftly. Most are already over a pound in four weeks.
Infancy: Two To Eight Weeks
The puppies’ eyes open between two and eight weeks, and they transform from helpless furballs to miniature explorers. Some breeders attempt to wean their puppies off the mother’s milk by eight weeks.
Most prefer to wait until 12 weeks. During the 12th week, they will be sucking from mom significantly less frequently.
During this stage, breeders or owners should introduce pee pads, although accidents will still occur. Yorkies have a reputation for being obstinate when it comes to toilet training. It’s best to start training your puppies to use pads as soon as possible.
Eight Weeks To Six Months
These are some of the most formative months for a yorkie puppy. Make sure to feed them healthily and expose them to new situations as their personality develops.
Between the ages of eight weeks and six months, your dog is in full puppy mode. As their small voices mature, the puppies become significantly louder, and they’ll gladly let you know when they want something.
They’ll learn to run faster and become more engaged with other canines and people, if they’re properly socialized. You’ll see your puppy’s confidence growing and its stride lengthening as it proceeds through this phase.
A developing yorkie puppy will sleep a lot. They may sleep up to 18 hours per day or more. Your yorkie’s ears should start to stand up during this phase, and its baby teeth should fall out toward the end of this period.
Six Months To Two Years
A yorkie’s social personality is beginning to solidify at this point. Continuing socializing is critical. Yorkie teenagers will start to assert dominance where they can. If not reined in, they will believe they are the pack leader.
During these years, exercise and plenty of mental stimulation are essential. Yorkie separation anxiety might develop as a result of a lack of socialization and conditioning at this age. A tired puppy is a well-behaved puppy.
By nine months of age, a yorkie puppy’s growth has slowed dramatically and will usually stop at the one-year mark. During this stage, female yorkies gain sexual maturity and go into heat for the first time. Most owners prefer spaying or neutering at this time.
Two Years To Ten Years
Yorkies stop growing by the age of two. Their weight should no longer see any significant changes, if they have a balanced, steady diet. At this time, a yorkie will have established a pattern. You will have a solid knowledge of their personality, energy levels, and likes and dislikes.
They’ll have formed a deep attachment by this point, and they won’t want to be left alone. As a result, your yorkie may follow you around the home at times. It will patrol your home like a miniature guard dog, alerting you to any unusual activity.
Ten Years And On
Yorkies reach their senior years when they are 10 to 12 years old. Their pace will begin to slow, and their nutrition requirements will shift. At this age, arthritis is widespread, and their vision and sense of smell may deteriorate. A Yorkie in this stage of life may require further assistance getting onto or off of furniture.
Three-Pound Yorkie: Conclusion
There’s nothing wrong with having a tiny yorkie, if the breeder used ethical breeding methods. Some canines are simply born very little. Every dog, however, is unique. Only a visit to your veterinarian will reveal whether or not your yorkie is healthy.
That said, use the methods presented above to give you a general idea. You should be able to tell if your yorkie is over or underweight. But the vet visit will let you know if your little teacup yorkie has any congenital diseases that will affect its quality of life in the future.
Our comparison of a teacup yorkie vs regular yorkie has much more on these different sizes of yorkshire terriers.