Teacup, mini, micro, toy.
How are there so many different sizes of yorkies, when they’re already so small?
The answer is that there aren’t.
Those words all refer to the same thing.
Well, not completely. But we’ll get into that below.
Suffice it to say that there are not nearly as many different sizes of yorkies as you might think.
Keep reading for a in-depth yorkie size comparison, where we look at each type and compare and contrast them, to help you figure out which one is best for you.
- 1 Yorkie Size Comparison
- 2 Yorkie Vs Teacup Yorkie: Differences
- 3 Teacup Yorkie Vs Regular Yorkie: Which Is Best For You
- 4 Yorkie Sizes: What You Need To Know Before Getting Any Yorkie
- 4.1 Barking Level
- 4.2 Training
- 4.3 Shedding
- 4.4 Grooming Requirements
- 4.5 Health Issues
- 4.6 Feeding
- 4.7 Relationship With Children
- 4.8 Personality Traits
- 5 Yorkie Size Comparison: Conclusion
Yorkie Size Comparison
As mentioned, you will come across numerous types of yorkies. Here is a quick list of them.
- Toy yorkie
- Mini yorkie
- Micro yorkie
- Teacup yorkie
The important thing to know is that most of those are the same thing. In reality, there are really only two types of yorkies. Let’s take a look at the two different sizes of yorkies and how all of the above names fit into that.
Different Sizes Of Yorkies
A yorkie can be of two different sizes. There are regular yorkies that weigh between 4 and 7 pounds and teacup yorkies, which weigh less than 4 pounds.
Regular Yorkshire Terriers
The yorkshire terrier is a recognized purebred dog that belongs to the toy group of dogs. It is the only recognized type of yorkie. No matter the size or the various other names, the American Kennel Club only recognizes one type of yorkie.
Their official guidelines state that yorkies can weigh up to 7 pounds. That means any yorkie weighing more than 7 pounds is not officially considered a member of this breed. However, many yorkies weigh more than that.
Obviously, names like mini or teacup indicate a dog that is even smaller than the already modest stature of a regular dog of this breed. But, as mentioned above, there are really only two different types of yorkies (unofficially).
And more than just size distinguishes them. There are also disparities in the estimated lifespans of the different types, along with some other key differences. We’ll get into those further below. For now, let’s take a look at each of the other yorkie names we saw above.
Yorkshire terriers are in the toy group of dogs. All yorkies are classified by the AKC as toy dogs, so the name does not actually denote anything unique. A toy yorkie is simply a yorkie, of any size.
Teacup yorkies are simply smaller yorkies. As mentioned above, the AKC does not recognize any different type of yorkie, so they do not acknowledge any difference between a teacup yorkie vs a regular yorkie.
But there is a difference. Teacup yorkies usually weigh 2 to 4 pounds, while regular ones weigh 4 to 7 (officially; as mentioned, many actually weigh more than 7).
Most teacup yorkies are purposefully bred from two undersized parents. But there are a lot of ethical issues with this.
It puts the mother and the puppies in more danger. The smaller dogs are also more prone to injury and disease. But breeders continue breeding them in larger numbers than is even needed to meet the demand, because teacup yorkies fetch a higher price.
Of course, not all of these smaller Yorkshire terriers are bred on purpose. Some teacup yorkies are simply born smaller naturally.
Mini yorkies are smaller than normal, just as the name indicates. So what makes them different from teacup yorkies?
These are just two different names for the same thing: a smaller 3 pound yorkie or so, on average. You may also come across the term micro yorkie. That is another name for the exact same thing.
Yorkie Vs Teacup Yorkie: Differences
Size And Weight
Teacup yorkies are quite a bit smaller than regular ones. That is obvious at first glance. As mentioned above, mini yorkies usually weigh between 2 to 4 pounds, while regular ones come in at 5 to 7 pounds.
The regular ones measure 7 to 9 inches of height at the shoulder. Teacup yorkies can be as small as 4 inches tall.
Because of this tiny size, you have to be even more careful when handling the mini variety, because they are fragile, and any careless mistakes, like accidentally stepping on your pup, can cause serious injury.
You also need to be aware that the teacup variety is more prone to congenital diseases than the regular sized one. And they are already prone to issues like that, in comparison to most other breeds.
When it comes to color, the two are almost identical. Yorkies, whether mini or regular-sized, are typically available in a variety of hues, including yellow, chocolate, and black. Often, their color even changes from birth until they reach maturity.
Teacup yorkies have a much shorter life expectancy than regular-sized ones. How long do teacup yorkies live? The average lifespan of a mini yorkie is 7 to 9 years, while regular yorkies live 13 to 16 years.
When it comes to their disposition, the general belief is that teacup yorkies are more lively than regular ones. But that is not necessarily the case. It varies from dog to dog nd there is no evidence whatsoever to suggest that the mini version is more lively or outgoing than the larger one.
This belief likely comes from the lightness of teacup yorkies. That might make them seem more lively. The truth is that all yorkies are aggressive when compared to other breeds. They are also playful and outgoing, and they can be quite needy. They love being the center of attention.
If you want a lively dog it is up to you t make that happen. If your pup is healthy and gets a lot of love and attention, then it will naturally be more lively and outgoing. In other words, your dog’s temperament depends in large part on how you treat it.
Teacup Yorkie Vs Regular Yorkie: Which Is Best For You
As mentioned a few times, regular-sized yorkies are generally the better choice from an ethical standpoint. The widespread overbreeding, and the poor breeding practices, make teacup yorkies a bit of an ethical gray area.
But we also mentioned that some mini yorkies are simply born smaller, and are not the result of two tiny yorkies being bred together.
The bottom line is that from an ethical standpoint, the decision is yours, and yours alone, to make. Do what you feel comfortable with.
Whichever type of dog you go with, you do, however, want to vet the breeder, pet store, or other place from which you plan to adopt your pup. Make sure you only get one from a reputable place. Otherwise the chances of getting a sick dog are simply too high, especially with teacup yorkies.
Make sure you get to meet your puppy’s parents and that the breeder has complete documentation. Once you have located a good breeder, pay attention to the following factors when choosing your puppy.
Yorkies sell for a wide range of prices. The cost of a yorkie depends primarily on the breeder and the parents. If the breeder has a big kennel, the dog might be pricey. Furthermore, if the parents are show dogs, prepare to take more than a thousand dollars from your wallet.
A teacup yorkie is usually more expensive than a toy yorkie. But this isn’t always the case.
You also need to factor in other things when looking at the price. Has the dog had all of its vaccinations yet? If so, that will save you money. If not, that is an additional expense you will have after bringing your pup home.
Believe me when I say that a dog’s personality is vital when choosing a puppy. Nobody wants a dog that is constantly bothering them.
Size, weight, and color are probably less essential than his personality. At least for me. As I previously stated, both teacup and standard yorkies have similar personalities. Teacup yorkies can be a bit harder to train on average, but this is not always the case.
Yorkies come in three basic colors: yellow, chocolate, and black. Both mini and normal Yorkshire terriers are available in any of the three colors. In terms of color, there is no difference between the two varieties.
Another crucial point to remember is that these yorkies may change color as they get old. While you might buy a puppy that is a certain color, there is no guarantee it will remain that color. Again, I find personality much more important than color.
Care And Attention
Teacup and standard Yorkshire terriers both demand plenty of attention. Grooming and a well-balanced diet are the two most critical factors in keeping your pup healthy.
You must feed your pet with proper food. No matter the size of your dog, they all require nutritious food to help them grow and thrive.
Buy only the best dog food for yorkie puppies. This ensures your puppy has good skin and fur and plenty of energy.
Along with food, the bowl for the food is a consideration, too. The smaller the dog, the smaller the dog bowl should be. Not having the correct bowl size for your yorkie can cause your pup discomfort at best, and serious injury at worst.
Personal Tip When Choosing A Puppy
A puppy will acquire at least a few traits from its parents. I already touched on this above, but it is crucial to meet the parent dogs before committing to a purchase.
I the parents are lively, you can expect their puppy to be agile and active as well. And vice versa. You can also get a decent estimate as to your puppies final color from the parents, but it is not an exact science.
Yorkie Sizes: What You Need To Know Before Getting Any Yorkie
No matter the size of your yorkie, there are some things they all have in common. You need to know what you are getting into when you choose this breed. Because, while they are amazing dogs, they do come with some unique challenges.
Yorkies have a reputation for being yappy. You will need to begin training your dog from an early age, if you hope to teach it not to bark any time a leaf moves in the wind.
Yorkies are bright dogs, but they have a reputation for being tough to housebreak. People sometimes overlook accidents because of their modest size, but I do not encourage this.
Your best bet is to be firm with them right from the start.
One thing to note is that you may need to let your young yorkie go to the bathroom in the house, because these tiny pups are sensitive to severe temperatures and may suffer if you make them go outside.
If you’re having trouble training your yorkie, there are pros and licensed trainers you can turn to for advice and recommendations.
Aside from basic house training, yorkies are fantastic at learning tricks, agility, and obedience trials. They enjoy strutting their stuff and having a wonderful time.
Yorkies have short attention spans, which is why many consider them hard to train. They key is to remove all distractions and keep sessions short. If you do that, yorkies learn quickly and love learning new tricks all the time.
Yorkies do not shed much, although this varies from dog to dog and does not imply that they are fully allergy-free. But as far as dogs go, they are much cleaner than most, when it comes to dog hair all over your home.
They may not shed their luxurious hair, but that does not mean it needs no upkeep. Yorkies demand a lot of grooming and maintenance.
Regular brushing and keeping hairs out of their eyes will benefit the Yorkie and you as well. Add a spritz of conditioner before brushing to avoid damage. Combing their hair dry will cause it to break. I recommend using safe hair-ties, bows, or pup clips.
Bathe your yorkie at least once a week. Trim its nails after each bath to avoid tearing or getting hooked on items. If you’re not sure how to clip yorkie nails properly, get advice from a groomer or veterinarian.
Yorkies also have a proclivity for developing tartar on their teeth. This can lead to poor dental health and tooth loss as they grow old. I suggest you brush your dog’s teeth daily.
Making grooming a rewarding experience for your yorkie is one of the best things you can do. Use lots of praise and positive reinforcement, including some tasty treats or fun chew bones. This will help make the process as smooth as possible.
One thing to know is that the smaller the dog, the higher the risk of health problems. That is why owning a teacup Yorkshire terrier might not be the best idea. Read “Can teacup yorkies have babies?” for more on the potential health problems.
While the mini yorkies have the highest risk of suffering from health problems, making the teacup yorkie lifespan much shorter on average, all yorkies have an elevated risk for certain congenital diseases. Let’s take a look at the most common ones.
Hypoplasia Of Dens
This is a congenital disease in which the pivot point of the second cervical vertebra does not form properly. This results in damage to the spinal cord.
Hypoplasia of dens can appear at any age. Symptoms can include everything from a neck ache to the dog’s inability to move its legs.
This is when extra eyelashes grow in an unexpected area on the eyelid. It is a common issue in toy dog breeds. It can cause several eye issues that vary from case to case. It depends on the number, hardness, and direction of the hair.
This is when the top of the femur bone in the back legs deteriorates, causing pain and inflammation in the hip joint.
Luxating patellas are more common in yorkies than in any other breed but one. Damage to the patella and the groove in which it runs causes osteoarthritis of the knee. It can cause persistent pain, making it difficult for your yorkie to walk.
Hydrocephalus is a congenital abnormality that affects small breeds. With this disease, an overabundance of cerebrospinal fluid (CSF), which surrounds the brain and spinal cord, leaks into the skull.
This causes increased pressure inside the skull that presses on the brain’s sensitive structures. This issue can result in permanent, irreversible brain damage and death.
Collapsed tracheas are common in small dogs due to more delicate tracheas. It can lead to chronic coughing and other respiratory issues.
Several different types of stones can form in the kidney or bladder. Yorkshire terriers are more likely than other breeds to develop them.
This is when the blood bypasses the liver and is thus not cleaned of toxins. The result is that toxins end up being deposited in other organs.
Retinal dysplasia refers to an abnormal development of the retina. The result are folds or lesions that can eve result in blindness, in serious cases.
Yorkies need plenty of food and water. But due to their small size, they are unable to consume all of the food they need in one sitting. This means you will need to feed them multiple times per day. Let’s begin with their water needs, before moving on to the food.
Dogs require between 1/2 to 1 ounce of water per pound of body weight each day. It is better to be on the higher end of that range.
A 5-pound Yorkshire terrier, for example, should drink at least 5 ounces of water each day. But that is just a rough estimate. The actual water they need will depend on their activity, health status, and weather.
There are also some things that you need to know when giving water to your Yorkshire terrier. First, it is generally better to avoid unfiltered tap water.
Tap water in the United States contains hundreds of contaminants. Use a simple water filter pitcher like many of us use to filter the water for ourselves.
Take this advice seriously. Here are some of the harmful contaminants found in tap water in many parts of the US.
- Residues of prescription medicines
- High mineral counts, including iron and lead
- Host of proven carcinogens
One of the most crucial aspects of Yorkshire Terrier care is providing a nutritious and well-balanced diet. Here are some tips when giving meals to your yorkie:
- Pay attention to the label and avoid dog food brands with harmful components
- Avoid foods that might cause allergic responses or health problems
- Avoid low-value ingredients like fillers and by-products
- Let your Yorkshire terrier eat dry kibble, or a combination of wet and dry food; canned food only does not promote healthy teeth and gums and can cause messy stools
Because of their small stature, most yorkies need three or four small meals a day. Teacup yorkies need less food, but more meals per day, due to even smaller stomachs.
The amount to feed varies by brand. The labeling on the package of top-quality brands is usually accurate. We also have an article on what and how much to feed your yorkie puppy.
In addition to the regular meals, it is also good to provide some small snacks and treats throughout the day.
Snacks And Treats
It is never a bad idea to give your yorkie several small, dry snacks in between meals. It will keep your pup busy, but it also helps its digestion.
Even if it isn’t particularly hungry, a little dry biscuit can help prevent your yorkie throwing up yellow stomach bile. It is a common problem with toy breeds who go too long without food in their stomachs.
Below are some tips when giving your Yorkshire terrier snacks and treats throughout the day:
- Give a treat as a reward for learning a new trick or to reinforce excellent behavior
- Maintain the same high standards for this snack or reward as you do for meals for your yorkie; high quality treats only
Relationship With Children
Yorkies get along well with other people, but they are not generally suitable for households with little children. Their small size makes them vulnerable to unintentional rough handling. They can easily be injured by a well-meaning child.
And the opposite is also true. If a child gets too rough a yorkie may feel threatened and bite. Thus the child could get injured too. This does not mean you can’t have a yorkie if you have young children, but you need to be aware of he risk and never leave your dog and child alone together.
Their puppy legs can get them a long way! They enjoy going for walks and getting out in the fresh air, as well as kicking around your house with you.
They adore attention! They respond well to training that with positive reinforcement. They are happiest when they are learning new tricks to add to their repertoire of diversions.
They are courageous and bold, and they are brave! They seem unaware of their tiny size and your yorkie will defend you or your property against even the largest of threats.
Yorkie Size Comparison: Conclusion
Hopefully, you now have a better understanding of the distinctions between a teacup yorkie vs regular yorkie. Since they are the same breed, there are far more similarities than there are differences.
But the differences that do exist are important. The largest is obviously the size and everything that brings with it. Most importantly, mini yorkies are more vulnerable to injury and disease.
The smaller dogs are certainly cuter, but you need to consider all factors when deciding. And don’t rule out larger yorkies over 7 pounds. They may not be officially recognized as yorkshire terriers by the AKC, but they are yorkies. And they are generally less prone to disease and injury.
There is a lot of variety in terms of size among yorkies. That does not mean there is anything wrong with them. Some dogs are just larger or smaller, even in comparison to their own family members. Read our article on why your yorkie is so large for more.