The Yorkipoo is a fun-loving mix breed dog. A cross between a Yorkshire Terrier and a miniature or toy Poodle the Yorkipoo is a popular choice for those looking for a small dog to share their lives
In the ten months since our golden doodle, Tilly, became the newest member of our family, we have met both a Bernedoodle and a Sheepadoodle while on our daily walks.
When I mentioned this to my vet, she chuckled. “Oh yes. They are doodling just about everything these days.”
While I have never seen a basset doodle, it is true that pooches whose names end in doodle or poo have become popular in recent years.
But what can you expect if you decide to bring a Yorkipoo into your life? How do you decide if Yorkipoo dogs are right for you and your family?
They will be small dogs with characteristics of either breed or a mix of both.
Some topics to consider include physical characteristics, temperament, health issues, and finding the right breeder.
Read on to discover if the Yorkie Poo is a good match for you.
Designer Dog Controversy
Mongrel, mutt, hybrid, mixed breed, designer dog. Are they all the same?
Well, not exactly.
Some of the best family dogs I know are rescued mongrels or mutts.
However, the ancestry of a mongrel or mutt is unknown and could be a mix of several different breeds.
A hybrid, mixed breed, or designer dog is an intentional cross between two purebred dogs.
Some believe that purebred dogs are superior.
Others believe that, genetically, designer breeds are at an advantage.
Myths exist in both camps.
One disputed claim revolves around a genetics phenomenon called hybrid vigor.
This term refers to an increase in qualities such as size and fertility in a hybrid over those of its parents.
Breeders can use hybrid vigor by mating two different purebred dogs that have certain desirable traits.
Its supporters see it as evidence of a hybrid advantage over a purebred.
On the other hand, some proponents of hybrids go so far as to believe that genetic diseases do not exist in designer dogs.
While this might be true for the breed-related disorders that occur once in a blue moon, it is not true of common genetic diseases that afflict breeds across the spectrum.
Care in Breeding
Rather than debating the merits of purebred versus designer dogs, the conversation we should be having is purposely bred versus randomly bred.
In other words, the care that a breeder takes to prevent inherited disease is the most important component to the healthy outcome of a litter.
It is important to note that breeds considered as purebreds today were themselves hybrids when they were being bred for certain characteristics.
This brings us to the history of two purebreds—the Poodle and the Yorkshire Terrier.
History of the Poodle
With its regal bearing, fanciful grooming, and proud swagger, many incorrectly assume the Poodle originated in France.
The Poodle was bred as a water retriever for duck hunters—in Germany.
With its good nose, the Poodle was even used as a truffle hunter!
Later, it became a popular breed among the nobles of France and other parts of Europe.
The American Kennel Club recognized the breed in 1887, and in the early twentieth century the toy Poodle was first bred in the U.S. as a companion for city dwellers.
Today the Poodle is the 7th most popular breed in the US and the 22nd most popular in the United Kingdom.
History of the Yorkshire Terrier
Of course, it is not difficult to figure out that the Yorkshire Terrier came from Yorkshire County, England.
But there is an interesting piece of history that predates the beginning of the breed as we know it today.
Scottish laborers may have brought black and tan terriers with them when they traveled south to work in the cotton mills and mines.
The small size of the dogs made them well suited to crawl into cramped spaces in these mills and mines and kill rodents.
Some believe this breed was then mixed with Maltese and Skye Terriers, giving us the Yorkshire Terrier we know today.
So as the dog evolved into the Yorkshire Terrier, its beginnings were in hard labor.
Like the Poodle, the Yorkie moved up the social hierarchy when they became trendy lap dogs for ladies.
According to the Kennel Club UK, a dog named Huddersfield Ben founded the breed in 1865.
The American Kennel Club recognized the breed in 1885.
Today it is the 9th most popular breed in the U.S. and the 15th most popular in the U.K.
Yorkie x Poodle = Yorkipoo
As Yorkipoos made their debut only 10 to 20 years ago, neither the American Kennel Club or Kennel Club UK have recognized the breed yet.
The Yorkipoo is referenced by an array of names with varied spellings, including:
- Yorkie Poodle mix
- Toy Poodle Yorkie mix
- Yorkshire Terrier cross Poodle
- Yorkie cross Poodle
- Yorkshire Terrier Poodle mix
- Yorkie and Poodle mix
Because both the Poodle and Yorkshire Terrier are hypoallergenic, chances are high that the Yorkie Poo will also be hypoallergenic, a trait that many seek out of necessity.
The small size of the mixed breed, along with the blending of desirable attributes, also makes the Yorkie Poo appealing to many.
So what are these attributes that small dog parents seek?
Defining Characteristics and Temperament of the Poodle
The Poodle comes in three sizes: standard (40–70 pounds, 15 inches or more), miniature (10–15 pounds, 10–15 inches) and toy (4–6 pounds, under 10 inches).
Though three sizes, all Poodles share the same standards.
Keep in mind that the Yorkipoo is bred with only the miniature or toy versions.
Poodles’ coats come in a spectrum of solid colors including white, black, gray, blue, silver, brown, café-au-lait, cream, and apricot.
Variations in coloring can occur.
The curly coat has adapted to water as the Poodle is a very strong swimmer.
As mentioned earlier, the Poodle is hypoallergenic.
Highly regarded as intelligent, the Poodle is easy to train.
The dog is also well proportioned and very active.
The life expectancy of a Poodle is 10–18 years.
Defining Characteristics and Temperament of the Yorkshire Terrier
As members of the toy group of dogs, the Yorkshire Terrier weighs no more than 7 pounds and reaches just 7–8 inches above the floor.
Don’t be fooled by his diminutive size though. The Yorkie can pack a punch in his tiny frame.
In fact, he is tough and feisty and has a high prey drive.
His boldness leads to excessive barking if he is not given early training.
Like the Poodle, Yorkies are hypoallergenic.
Puppies are born with black and tan coats which change to steel blue and tan as they grow into adults.
The Yorkie is also known for the quality of its hair which is of a silky texture and will grow straight to the floor if left on its own.
The life expectancy of a Yorkshire Terrier is 11–15 years.
What Does a Yorkipoo Look Like?
The weight of a Yorkipoo, full grown, will fall between 4 and 15 pounds, likely somewhere in the middle.
The Yorkipoo size is small, so it would be a great fit for an apartment or small house.
Though he will be a good family dog, supervise children around him because of his small size.
Like Yorkshire Terriers and Poodles, Yorkie Poo adults could be a wide range and mix of colors—ingredients for unique and beautiful coats.
Yorkie Poo Temperament
Though small, the Yorkie Poo is lively, seeks attention, and is very smart.
He is best suited for a home in which he has people around most of the day.
Yorkie Poo training could be easy or difficult, depending on which parent he takes after.
As a small dog, the Yorkie Poo also has the advantage of longevity.
With good health, the Yorkie Poo lifespan is into the teens.
Exercise Needs of a Yorkipoo
Because the Poodle is an active dog, he requires lots of exercise.
This might include walking, chasing a ball, and swimming.
The Yorkshire Terrier does not need quite as much activity, though like all dogs, needs small amounts on a regular basis.
The amount of energy-burning activity required for a Yorkie Poo will probably depend on the parent your Yorkie Poo favors.
Both parent breeds are fine candidates for teaching tricks and playing games in the backyard or at a park.
Because the Poodle is highly intelligent, he will thrive when his mind is challenged.
And the Yorkshire Terrier is a spirited and sometimes comical little fellow.
Regardless of the parent your Yorkie Poo takes after, plan on scheduling playtime into your routine.
In order to discuss the care needed for your Yorkie Poo’s coat, we need to first define the difference between fur and hair.
Fur implies a double coat that has a quicker cycle of growth.
As such, dogs with fur shed more than dogs with hair.
On the other hand, dogs with hair have a single coat, and their hair grows longer but in slower cycles.
Many of these dogs shed but not as much as a dog with fur.
Neither is indicative of whether a dog is hypoallergenic.
Yorkie and Poodle Hair
The Poodle and Yorkshire Terrier share two similarities
They both have hair and both are hypoallergenic.
The Poodle is non-shedding, unlike the Yorkshire Terrier.
However, as noted above, the Yorkshire Terrier will not shed as much as a dog with fur.
Also, while the texture of the Yorkshire Terrier’s hair is silky and straight, the Poodle’s is curly.
As a result, it is possible that a Yorkie Poo could minimally shed, depending on if he favors his Poodle parent or his Yorkshire Terrier parent.
The genes he inherits will also determine his hair’s texture and whether it is curly, wavy, or straight.
Yorkie Poo haircuts may be in your future, depending on which coat he inherits.
In general, you will need to brush your Yorkie Poo frequently, if not daily.
The hair can matt if left unattended too long.
Even if brushed daily, small mats can still occur.
The best daily brush to use on a Yorkie Poo is a pin brush, which has wire pins tipped with plastic or rubber.
If your dog does develop mats, try a stainless steel de-matting comb to carefully pick through the mat.
Health Issues of the Poodle
The Poodle is prone to a number of particular diseases and disorders, as is any other breed.
Be aware of these possibilities—ask potential breeders if the parents have been tested for these ailments.
Two health disorders to watch for among miniature and toy Poodles is Legg-Perthes disease and patellar luxation.
Although hip dysplasia is usually considered a disease of large breed dogs, it can also occur in small breeds and is an affliction seen in Poodles.
One preventative measure to guard against hip dysplasia is to avoid overfeeding a growing dog.
Poodles are also one of the breeds most susceptible to the development of mammary gland tumors as noted in an epidemiological study that took place from the years 2002 to 2012.
Mammary glands extend from a dog’s chest to her lower abdomen and produce the milk used to feed her pups.
If you spay her before her first heat, the risk for developing mammary gland tumors significantly decreases.
According to the American Kennel Club, other health concerns include:
- Addison’s disease
- chronic active hepatitis
- Cushings disease
- neonatal encephalopathy
- optic nerve hypoplasia
- Von Wiellebrand’s disease
Health Issues of the Yorkshire Terrier
One concern that breeders of the Yorkshire Terrier should test for is an abnormality in the vascular connection between the intestine and the liver.
This condition leads to poor liver function.
The American Kennel Club recommends that breeders also screen for eye abnormalities and patellar luxation.
Both conditions are common to the Yorkshire Terrier.
Others to watch for are hypoglycemia, Legg-Perthes Disease, collapsed trachea, and hemorrhagic gastroenteritis.
Health Issues of the Yorkipoo
Though a Yorkie Poo is at some risk of all the conditions noted above, several are seen more than others.
Because the Yorkie Poo will be 15 pounds or less, the conditions that afflict the smaller breeds are most likely.
These include two joint disorders to which both the Yorkshire Terrier and Poodle are prone.
Patellar luxation is a condition in which the kneecap dislocates.
Corrective surgery is an option for this condition.
Complications from such a surgery are minimal for dogs under 20 pounds.
Legg-Calve-Perthes Disease is a joint disease that can lead to disintegration of the hip joint resulting in inflammation, pain, and even lameness.
Studies indicate recessive inheritance in both the miniature Poodle and Yorkshire Terrier.
One, both, or a mix of the parents can determine the physical attributes and temperament, and the same is true of health risks.
For this reason, it is important that Yorkie Poo breeders have both parents tested for genetic diseases and abnormalities and make this information available to potential puppy parents.
Yorkipoo Puppies—Right For You?
Are you looking for a dog with a hypoallergenic coat that sheds minimally or not at all?
Do you want a small dog?
Are you home enough to give a Yorkipoo the attention and affection he needs?
Do you want a dog with some spunk that will play and do tricks and then later lay in your lap to rest?
If you answered yes to any of these questions, the Yorkie Poo may be worth further consideration.
If and when you do decide to visit a breeder, do your due diligence!
Ask to meet both of the parents and see their papers.
Make observations of their size and temperament.
Ask the breeder how long they have been breeding this particular dog.
Find out if both of the parents have been tested for the genetic diseases noted above.
Also, inquire about a health guarantee and contract on any Yorkie Poodle mix puppies.
With the proper amount of research, you will be able to determine if the Yorkie Poo is the puppy that you can envision bringing home to love.
Do you have other Yorkie Poo information or something you want to share about your adorable Yorkipoo?
Leave us a comment below!
The American Kennel Club, http://www.akc.org/
The Kennel Club UK, https://www.thekennelclub.org.uk/
Bell, J. The Clinical Truths About Pure Breeds, Mixes and Designer Breeds National Interest Animal Alliance, 2013
Van steenbeek, F. et al Inherited liver shunts in dogs elucidate pathways regulating embryonic development and clinical disorders of the portal vein Mammalian Genome, 2012
Tobias, KM Determination of inheritance of single congenital portosystemic shunts in Yorkshire terriers Journal of the American Animal Hospital Association, 2003.
Kealy, R.D. et al Effects of limited food consumption on the incidence of hip dysplasia in growing dogs Journal of the American Veterinary Medical Association, 1992
Arthurs, G. et al Complications Associated with Corrective Surgery for Patellar Luxation in 109 Dogs Veterinary Surgery, 2006
Robinson, R Legg‐Calve‐Perthes disease in dogs: Genetic aetiology Journal of Small Animal Practice, 1992