Because of its athletic frame, the Yorkshire Terrier is a very agile dog breed.

The Yorkie is a toy breed with an AKC-required maximum weight of 7 pounds (3.17 kilograms), but it still needs plenty of activity to be in excellent shape.

Key Takeaways

Exercise Type Benefits
Moderate Exercise (Walking) Releases pent-up energy, maintains muscle mass, and benefits cardiovascular health.
Cardiovascular Exercise (Sprinting, Ball Chasing) Enhances metabolic rate, improves sleep quality, and provides sensory stimulation.
Interactive Games (Agility, Frisbee, Hide and Seek) Strengthens bond between owner and Yorkie, improves physical agility, and provides mental stimulation.

The advantages of regular exercise include the following:

  • Assists the dog in releasing pent-up energy that would be misdirected otherwise (excessive barking, destructive chewing, etc.)
  • Helps maintain muscular mass
  • Benefits cardiovascular health
  • Aids in maintaining an efficient metabolic rate.
  • It may help you get a better night’s rest;
  • It provides a chance to acclimate to the outdoors and make new friends.
  • Providing visual, olfactory, auditory, and kinetic stimulation may make a dog happier and less bored. For the sake of a contented canine family member, this goes a long way.

Let’s talk about how much activity a Yorkie requires, how much exercise they need, how to make that activity enjoyable, and how to teach your Yorkie to walk gently by your side.

Exercise Recommendations for Yorkshire Terriers

A Yorkie has to do two different kinds of physical activity:

  • Moderate exercise is taking your dog or puppy on walks regularly but not so quickly that they get out of breath.
  • Cardiovascular exercise is sometimes known as sprinting after a ball or other high-intensity activities.

Yorkie exercising

The Ideal Amount of Time Spent Walking a Yorkie

At least once every day, a Yorkshire Terrier must go for a walk. Taking two walks every day is recommended, preferably in the morning and again in the early evening. It does not matter what time the owner decides to do this. However, it is recommended that the walks be conducted simultaneously daily. Yorkies, and many dog breeds, thrive on a daily routine and benefit significantly in happiness and behavior. A Yorkie will quickly learn the way and anticipate their walks.

The speed at which you walk should be comfortable yet relatively quick. It’s important to remember that a tiny Yorkie will consider the rate you’ll be jogging. If you want your dog to enjoy the walk, set off at a speed where they are consistently progressing but aren’t panting.

The recommended time for walking your Yorkie puppy is 15 to 20 minutes. The optimal session length for adults (those older than two) is twenty-five minutes. If you can’t fit two 30-minute walks into your day, at least one should be at this interval. The other walk of the day, however, may be shorter.

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Taking a dog for a walk before leaving him home alone is an excellent way to let him burn off some steam and may help him maintain his composure for longer. Evening walks with your Yorkie might improve his quality of sleep. A dog may be kept awake by engaging in moderate to vigorous activity from the hour before tonight. Because of this, you shouldn’t go for your “after-dinner stroll” any later than two hours before bedtime.

Aerobic training Conditioning for the Yorkshire Terrier

It’s expected that this would be brief and more dramatic than usual. Getting this at least once a week and ideally twice would be best. There are several options on how to do this. Dogs of all breeds and sizes like having their owners toss a ball in the air and watch them race after it. When playing with them, teaching your Yorkie some basic commands like “Get” and “Return” is an excellent use of time.

Typically, Yorkies are content to just run about. This breed would benefit significantly from being brought to a park or open field. But always remember to keep your dog under close supervision only to unharness or unleash your Yorkie if it is a safe option.

A Few Exciting Methods to Exercise

Besides the obvious health benefits, walking your Yorkie is also an excellent opportunity to spend quality time together.

It’s important to remember that, like other little toy breeds dogs, a young Yorkie might sustain severe injuries if allowed to leap from a great height. Dogs of this breed should be prevented from jumping from heights to avoid the luxating patella, in which the kneecap dislocates from the hip socket.

You may play several activities with your Yorkie that double as a workout for both of you.

Agility

Learning agility with your Yorkie may be fun and rewarding, even if you have no plans to compete in dog shows. Yet, you may have a lot of fun with your dog by building an obstacle course at home (just be careful of heights with a small puppy).

Just by holding up a hula hoop at the right height, you can train your dog to leap through it and teach your Yorkie to weave in and out of obstacles. In most cases, all a dog needs to enjoy this kind of training with your encouragement is some positive reinforcement at the conclusion.

Frisbee

We’ve all seen those professional dog disc contests when huge mastiffs and other giant breeds soar through the air and effortlessly grab a Frisbee. Even your Yorkie wants to get in on the action. Maybe a “baby” Frisbee is something you might look into buying.

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Exercising with your Yorkie may be fun if you train them to chase a ball, time their jumps perfectly, and catch the ball in midair. Note Take care never to yank the Frisbee out of your dog’s jaws.

Your Yorkie may be taught to do the “drop” when you say. Hold a little reward and offer a trade when beginning training for this. When your Yorkie voluntarily hands over an item in response to the command “Drop” or “Give,” praise and treat him.

Games of Hide and Seek with Snacks

Tell your dog to sit, and then have it “hide” goodies all about the house while it watches. The goodies should be little and hidden in various places, such as behind a pillow, under a shoe, on the first stair landing, etc. After hearing the phrase “Go!” or “Find,” your Yorkie will race around the house for snacks.

Physical Activity Risks

Instead of using a collar, a harness is the better option for walking a Yorkie or other small dog. A collapsed trachea is a severe health problem more common in smaller dogs.

This illness is characterized by a collapse of the tracheal structure, which may lead to discomfort and trouble breathing. Although certain dogs may be predisposed to this condition owing to genetics, it may also be caused by the tension exerted on the dog’s neck while walking with just a collar.

The trachea’s cartilage rings might collapse inward if the dog surges forward or the owner pulls back too forcefully on the leash.

Heeling

You are strongly advised to use a properly fitted harness for tiny toy breeds when initially teaching your Yorkie to “heel” and walk politely behind you.

Many dog owners say their pets “walk them” instead. There’s no reason for this to happen. Training your Yorkie to comprehend the command “Heel” and maintaining this behavior will allow you to have pleasant strolls side by side as your pet walks comfortably by your side.

If you want to ensure that your Yorkie stays by your side when you stroll, the leash should be short enough that he can’t go ahead of you but long enough that he can’t dangle behind you. Before you take a step, you should issue the heel instruction. Keep going in the direction you want to go, however slowly, if your dog ever attempts to move differently. Again, if your Yorkie halts, keep going at a gentle trot anyway. As we’ve established, taking a stroll with your Yorkie while wearing a harness won’t endanger you.

Use the command “Heel” whenever your Yorkie walks neatly by your side to reassure and reward him for healing. With your speech, you should express that what they’re doing is outstanding.

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If you’d rather not wear a harness and your dog starts to walk or run ahead of you, it’s best not to halt and pull on the leash. Little dogs shouldn’t undergo that kind of rigorous training.

As your Yorkie pulls ahead, be sure to gradually lessen your pace. Don’t rush ahead of your Yorkie; stop and turn around if necessary. This will teach your dog that if he runs forward, he will miss his destination and instead have to turn around. You may praise your dog for walking well by your side by turning around and going back the way you came.

If your Yorkie has heeled well for most of the walk, reward them handsomely when you return home. If your dog is erratic, you shouldn’t reward him with food. In time, you’ll come to look forward to your strolls together with great anticipation.

Conclusion

Exercise is paramount for a Yorkshire Terrier’s physical and mental well-being. Despite their small size, Yorkies are agile and require a balanced mix of moderate and cardiovascular exercises to maintain their health. Engaging in interactive games not only provides the necessary physical activity but also strengthens the bond between the owner and the Yorkie. Ensuring the safety of your Yorkie during these activities, such as using a harness instead of a collar, is crucial to prevent health issues like a collapsed trachea. With proper training and a variety of exercise routines, Yorkies can lead a healthy and joyful life.

Frequently Asked Questions

How often should I walk my Yorkie?

Daily walks, ideally twice a day for 15 to 25 minutes depending on age.

What are some fun exercise activities for Yorkies?

Agility training, playing Frisbee, and hide and seek games with snacks.

Why is a harness preferred over a collar for walking a Yorkie?

To prevent the risk of a collapsed trachea, a common issue in small breeds.

How can I train my Yorkie to walk by my side?

Using a short leash, issue the “heel” command, and reward good behavior during walks.

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