How Big Does A Yorkie Get?

As a proud Yorkie owner, I know firsthand how important it is to understand the various sizes of Yorkshire Terriers. Whether you’re considering adding a Yorkie to your family or simply curious about your current companion’s growth, it’s essential to have a clear understanding of the different size categories and the factors that influence a Yorkie’s adult size. In this comprehensive guide, I’ll walk you through everything you need to know about Yorkie sizes, from teacup to giant, and provide insights on how to care for your furry friend based on their unique size.

Key Takeaways

Key Takeaways Explanation
Yorkie size categories Yorkshire Terriers come in four main size categories: teacup (2-4 lbs), toy (4-7 lbs), standard (7-10 lbs), and giant/large (over 10 lbs).
Factors influencing size Genetics, breeding practices, nutrition, and health conditions can all impact a Yorkie’s adult size.
Growth and development Yorkies experience rapid growth in the puppy stage, reach adult size by 12-18 months, and may require adjustments in care as they enter their senior years.
Pros and cons of different sizes Each size category has its advantages and disadvantages, such as the adorable but delicate nature of teacup Yorkies or the sturdiness of standard Yorkies.
Caring for Yorkies of different sizes All Yorkies require proper grooming, exercise, health care, training, and socialization, with some variations based on their size and specific needs.
Misconceptions about size Teacup Yorkies are not a separate breed, larger Yorkies are not always overweight, and size alone does not determine a Yorkie’s health or quality.
Choosing the right size Consider your lifestyle, budget, family dynamics, and the importance of responsible breeding when selecting the perfect Yorkie size for your household.
Prioritizing health and well-being Regardless of size, the most important factor is ensuring your Yorkie receives proper care, love, and attention to maintain their health and happiness.

Yorkie Size Categories

Yorkshire Terriers come in a range of sizes, each with its own unique characteristics and health considerations. Let’s take a closer look at the four main size categories:

Teacup Yorkies

Teacup Yorkies are the smallest of the bunch, typically weighing between 2 to 4 pounds and standing at a mere 5 to 7 inches tall. These tiny companions are often sought after for their adorable, pocket-sized appearance. However, it’s crucial to note that teacup Yorkies are not recognized as a separate breed by the American Kennel Club (AKC) and are often the result of breeding the smallest Yorkies from each litter. This practice can lead to various health concerns, such as fragile bones, hypoglycemia, and respiratory issues. As a responsible Yorkie owner, it’s essential to prioritize your dog’s health over their size and to be prepared for the extra care and attention that a teacup Yorkie may require.

Toy Yorkies

Toy Yorkies are the most common size category, with a weight range of 4 to 7 pounds and a height of 7 to 8 inches. These pint-sized pups are closest to the breed standard set by the AKC and are often considered the ideal size for a Yorkshire Terrier. Toy Yorkies are known for their big personalities in a small package, making them excellent companions for apartment living or families with older children. While they may be small, toy Yorkies still require regular exercise, mental stimulation, and a balanced diet to maintain their health and happiness.

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Standard Yorkies

Standard Yorkies are slightly larger than their toy counterparts, weighing between 7 to 10 pounds and standing at 8 to 9 inches tall. These Yorkies are generally more robust and may be better suited for families with young children or those looking for a more substantial lap dog. Standard Yorkies that fall within the AKC breed standards are eligible to participate in show competitions, where they are judged on their appearance, temperament, and conformity to the breed’s ideal characteristics. As with any size category, standard Yorkies require proper care, including regular grooming, exercise, and a nutritious diet.

Giant or Large Yorkies

Giant or large Yorkies are a less common size category, with weights exceeding 10 pounds and heights over 9 inches. These larger Yorkies may result from breeding with other larger toy breeds or simply from genetic variations within the Yorkshire Terrier breed. While some may find the idea of a larger Yorkie appealing, it’s important to remember that these dogs may face unique health challenges, such as joint issues or a higher risk of obesity. As with any size, giant or large Yorkies require responsible breeding practices and dedicated care from their owners to ensure their health and well-being.

Factors Influencing Yorkie Size

Several factors can influence a Yorkie’s adult size, including:

  • Genetics and lineage: A Yorkie’s size is largely determined by the size of their parents and ancestors. Breeding two smaller Yorkies is more likely to result in smaller offspring, while breeding larger Yorkies may produce a bigger pup.
  • Breeding practices: Responsible breeders prioritize health and temperament over size, while less reputable breeders may focus on producing the smallest Yorkies possible, potentially compromising the dog’s health.
  • Nutrition and diet: Proper nutrition plays a crucial role in a Yorkie’s growth and development. Feeding your Yorkie a high-quality, balanced diet appropriate for their age and size can help them reach their full potential.
  • Health and medical conditions: Certain health issues, such as portosystemic shunts or growth hormone deficiencies, can impact a Yorkie’s size and overall development.

Yorkie Growth and Development

Understanding your Yorkie’s growth stages can help you provide the best care for your furry friend and estimate their adult size. Here’s a brief overview of the typical Yorkie growth and development stages:

  • Puppy stage: Yorkie puppies experience rapid growth during their first few months, with most reaching about half their adult weight by 3 months old. During this stage, it’s crucial to provide your puppy with a balanced diet, appropriate vaccinations, and socialization.
  • Adult stage: Most Yorkies reach their adult size by 12 to 18 months old, although some may continue to fill out until 2 years of age. At this stage, your Yorkie will require regular exercise, dental care, and a maintenance diet.
  • Senior stage: As Yorkies age, they may experience a slowdown in metabolism and activity levels. Senior Yorkies may benefit from a diet tailored to their changing needs and more frequent check-ups with the veterinarian.
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To estimate your Yorkie’s adult size, you can use a simple formula based on their weight at 6 weeks old. Simply take their 6-week weight in ounces, divide by 16 to convert to pounds, and then multiply by 5. For example, a Yorkie weighing 12 ounces at 6 weeks old would be estimated to weigh around 3.75 pounds as an adult (12 ÷ 16 × 5 = 3.75).

Yorkie Size Comparison to Other Toy Breeds

To better understand Yorkie sizes, it can be helpful to compare them to other popular toy breeds:

Breed Weight (lbs) Height (inches)
Chihuahua 2-6 5-8
Pomeranian 3-7 6-7
Toy Poodle 4-6 8-10
Maltese 4-7 7-9

As you can see, Yorkies fall within a similar size range to other popular toy breeds, with some variation depending on the specific size category.

Pros and Cons of Different Yorkie Sizes

Each Yorkie size category comes with its own set of advantages and disadvantages. Here’s a quick overview:

  • Teacup Yorkies: While undeniably adorable, teacup Yorkies may face more health challenges and require extra care and attention.
  • Toy Yorkies: Toy Yorkies offer the best of both worlds, with a compact size and relatively good health, making them ideal for many households.
  • Standard Yorkies: Standard Yorkies are generally more robust and may be better suited for families with children or those seeking a slightly larger lap dog.
  • Giant or Large Yorkies: While some may find their size appealing, giant or large Yorkies may face more health issues and require more space and exercise than their smaller counterparts.

Caring for Yorkies of Different Sizes

Regardless of your Yorkie’s size, they all require proper care and attention to thrive. Here are some key aspects of Yorkie care to keep in mind:

  • Grooming: Yorkies have long, silky coats that require regular brushing, trimming, and bathing to maintain their signature appearance and prevent matting. Consider investing in essential grooming tools and establishing a consistent grooming routine.
  • Exercise: While Yorkies may not need as much exercise as larger breeds, they still require daily walks and playtime to maintain their physical and mental well-being. Aim for at least 20-30 minutes of exercise per day, broken up into shorter sessions if needed.
  • Health considerations: Regular check-ups with your veterinarian, a balanced diet, and staying up-to-date on vaccinations and preventive care are essential for Yorkies of all sizes. Be aware of common health issues, such as dental problems, tracheal collapse, and luxating patellas, and take steps to prevent or manage them.
  • Training and socialization: Despite their small size, Yorkies require consistent training and socialization to become well-behaved, confident companions. Enroll in a puppy training class, practice positive reinforcement techniques, and expose your Yorkie to various people, animals, and environments to help them develop into a well-rounded adult.
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Misconceptions About Yorkie Size

There are several common misconceptions about Yorkie sizes that are important to address:

  • Teacup Yorkies as a recognized breed: Teacup Yorkies are not a separate breed recognized by the AKC or other major kennel clubs. They are simply Yorkshire Terriers that have been bred to be smaller than the standard size.
  • Larger Yorkies being overweight: While some larger Yorkies may be overweight, others may simply have a larger frame due to genetics or breeding. It’s essential to assess your Yorkie’s body condition based on factors such as their ribs’ visibility and the presence of a waist, rather than relying solely on weight.
  • Size as an indicator of health or quality: A Yorkie’s size does not necessarily reflect their health or overall quality. Responsible breeders prioritize factors such as temperament, conformation, and genetic health over size alone.

Choosing the Right Yorkie Size for You

When deciding on the perfect Yorkie size for your household, consider the following factors:

  • Lifestyle: Consider your living space, activity level, and the amount of time you can dedicate to your Yorkie’s care and exercise needs.
  • Budget: Keep in mind that smaller Yorkies, particularly teacup sizes, may come with a higher price tag and potentially more veterinary expenses due to health concerns.
  • Family dynamics: If you have young children or other pets, a sturdier, standard-sized Yorkie may be a better fit than a more delicate teacup or toy variety.

Ultimately, the most important factor is finding a reputable breeder who prioritizes the health and well-being of their Yorkies, regardless of size. Research breeders thoroughly, ask for health certifications, and visit the breeding facility in person to ensure you are supporting responsible breeding practices.


Understanding the various Yorkie sizes and the factors that influence them is crucial for any current or prospective Yorkshire Terrier owner. By familiarizing yourself with the different size categories, their pros and cons, and the care requirements for each, you can make an informed decision when choosing your furry companion and provide them with the best possible care throughout their life.

Remember, while size may be a factor in your decision, the most important thing is to prioritize your Yorkie’s health, happiness, and overall well-being. By working closely with your veterinarian, providing a balanced diet, and offering plenty of love and attention, you can help your Yorkie thrive, no matter their size.

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