Breed Info

A Terrier’s Tale: The Fascinating History of the Yorkie

The history of the Yorkshire Terrier is a fascinating tale that spans over a century. This small breed of dog originated in Yorkshire, England in the 19th century and was bred to catch rats in the textile mills of the area. However, their tenacity and charming personality soon made them popular as pets and companions, and they began to be developed as a breed in their own right.

The early history of the Yorkshire Terrier is somewhat murky, and it is not clear exactly which breeds were used to create this delightful little dog. However, it is believed that the Scottish Terrier was one of the main contributors, along with the English Black and Tan Terrier, the Maltese, and the Skye Terrier. The breed was originally called the Broken-haired Scotch Terrier, but over time it became known as the Yorkshire Terrier.

In the early days of the breed, Yorkshire Terriers were much larger than the dogs we see today. They weighed around 12 to 14 pounds and had a rough, wiry coat. However, as the breed was developed for show, breeders began to focus on creating a smaller dog with a silky, flowing coat.

running yorkieIn 1861, the first Yorkshire Terrier was exhibited at a dog show in England. This dog, named Huddersfield Ben, was a small, compact dog with a beautiful blue and tan coat. He quickly became a sensation, and his popularity helped to establish the Yorkshire Terrier as a distinct breed.

Throughout the 19th and early 20th centuries, the Yorkshire Terrier continued to gain in popularity. They were highly sought after as pets, and their size and temperament made them ideal for city living. They were also popular with women, who appreciated their small size and affectionate nature.

During this time, the breed was also being refined for the show ring. Breeders worked to develop a smaller, more elegant dog with a silky coat in a variety of colours. They also worked to refine the breed’s personality, creating a dog that was confident, affectionate, and intelligent.

In 1898, the Yorkshire Terrier Club was founded in England, and the first breed standard was established. This standard outlined the ideal size, appearance, and temperament of the breed, and it continues to be used as a guideline for breeders today.

In the early 20th century, the Yorkshire Terrier began to make its way to the United States. They quickly became popular as pets and show dogs, and in 1978, the breed was recognized by the American Kennel Club.

Today, Yorkshire Terriers continue to be a beloved breed in the UK. They are a popular choice for pet owners due to their small size, adorable appearance, and affectionate personality. They are often seen in cities and urban areas, where their compact size makes them ideal for apartment living. Additionally, many owners enjoy showing their Yorkshire Terriers at dog shows, where the breed is still highly competitive. Despite their small size, Yorkshire Terriers have a big personality and are known for their loyalty, intelligence, and playfulness. In the UK and around the world, the Yorkshire Terrier remains a cherished breed and a beloved companion for many.

In conclusion, the history of the Yorkshire Terrier is a rich and fascinating story that spans over a century. From their humble beginnings as rat catchers in the textile mills of Yorkshire to their current status as beloved pets and show dogs, the Yorkshire Terrier has left an indelible mark on the world of dogs. With their stunning appearance, charming personality, and unwavering loyalty, it’s no wonder that they remain one of the most popular breeds in the world.

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