Following on from my last post, I decided to write about some breeds of dogs – I’ll probably stick to the popular ones and throw the odd one in every now again so as not to turn this blog into a Dog Breeds manual.
So lets kick off with my first breed post!
The Yorkshire Terrier
Yorkshire Terriers are little bundles of fun to have around the house. They seem to have boundless energy and are surprisingly tough for their small size and “handbag dog” label that they seem to have acquired rather unfairly. This is probably thanks to their being a favourite with older women who love to pamper them. I’ve seen plenty of these little rascals trotting alongside their owner who has carefully brushed their locks to perfection and tied a little bow in the top of their heads!
Ok, pets can be pampered, but a bow in the hair?
Hair being the correct word here, as Yorkies don’t have true fur like most breeds of dog, it is more like our human hair and doesn’t moult in summer. This means it’s good news for houseproud owners who don’t have to go chasing around behind them with a vacuum cleaner to pick up all the dropped fur! The downside is that the hair keeps growing so has to be cut regularly, meaning lots of trips to the doggy hair stylist – all of which goes toward the unfair image that many people have of these dogs.
In fact, they are very tough, having been originally bred to catch rats and chase rabbits out of their burrows. Once one of these dogs gets a rat in its jaws, it will shake it’s head violently until the rat’s neck is broken. They are also themselves great burrowers and once they get into their heads that they have to dig out a rodent, they will dig furiously with their front paws without stopping until they have caught their prey – even to the point where their paws will bleed and they still will not stop.
So not such prissy pets after all!
They are, however incredibly fussy eaters. What to them may be a gourmet meal one day with have their noses turned up at the next. They do like variety and generally won’t eat regular tinned dog food, at least not for very long (see my previous comment!). They are, however very partial to whatever their owners are eating: So if you have problems feeding your Yorkies, just make a little more of whatever you’re having for your meal and give them the extra! Works like a charm.
Being such small dogs, most owners don’t bother with training, but this can be a mistake and lead to unruly behaviour and narky, ill tempered little scamps when taken for a walk. Training only need be basic just to make sure your dog knows that you’re the boss and will respond to basic sit, down, stay and heel commands.
Yorkies that get it into their heads that they are the alpha (male or female) of the family pack can be unbelievably naughty. Bad behaviour can start with ripping up shoes and anything else of yours they get their teeth into, to dragging you down the road on walks (they are stronger than their diminutive size belies) and trying to attack every other dog they encounter (no matter how big and ferocious). So stamp out any such behaviour as soon as possible by using some of the techniques I wrote about in my previous posts under the mini-series entitled “Tales From The Pack”.
Yorkshire Terriers make good family pets as they are good with children and small enough that they are unlikely to hurt them even when playing boisterously, unlike some larger dogs who wouldn’t knowingly hurt a child but accidents can happen due to their sheer size.
Finally, spend time playing with your Yorkshire Terriers, as they love to be the centre of attention and will reward you with hours of entertaining play (if you let them). Enjoy them as they are great little dogs to have as pets!
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