Small, loving, and smart as a whip, the Yorkipoo is a unique and lovable designer hybrid perfect for apartment living…if you can tolerate a bit of a barking problem. The Yorkipoo is not a high maintenance dog, though they do require some particular types of care.
If you have your eyes set on this popular hybrid, make sure you are okay with the following requirements of this hybrid breed before you adopt:
- Daily exercise and play
- Daily walking
- Regular grooming, including haircuts, brushing, and bathing
- You’ll need to tolerate a lot of barking.
- Yorkipoos can be stubborn.
- Their tiny bodies can be fragile.
So, while there may be a few challenging aspects to the ownership of a Yorkipoo, don’t let this dissuade you from bringing one of these lovely little creatures into your family. Believe us, the benefits of owning one of these adorable hybrids far outweigh the challenges you may face. For further proof and a great guide on the care of these pooches, read on.
First, The Yorkipoo Basics
In case you don’t already know, the Yorkipoo is a hybrid breed composed of the Yorkshire Terrier and a Miniature or Toy Poodle. They are part of the Doodle craze that has struck a chord with dog-lovers over the last several decades.
The addition of poodle genetics into another canine lineage often has very desirable results. The most sought-after of those traits is usually the hypoallergenic, low-shedding nature of the resulting dogs’ fur as well as the Poodle’s trademark intelligence.
The Yorkipoo shares with the Yorkshire Terrier in the looks department and may often be confused for a purebred Yorkie, though they can tend more towards their poodle heritage. The poodle genetics do give them a bit more of a curl to their coat and a more “big-dog” look to their facial features.
They are a unique, petite dog that is full of affection and confidence despite their small frame. Yorkipoos are likely to be slightly larger than a Yorkshire, though still in the miniature or toy ballpark, coming in at around 10 pounds well-fed.
Pros and Cons of Owning a Yorkipoo
Like any dog type, the Yorkipoo is not without challenging aspects to care for, though it is still relatively low maintenance compared to many other designer breeds and crossbreeds.
To care for one of these dogs to the best of your ability, you should know the good and the bad. That way, you can be prepared for anything. So that’s what we’ll start with.
Let’s take a look at some of what makes the Yorkipoo shine as a companion:
- They Are Adaptable: Yorkipoos can make themselves comfortable almost anywhere. From life on a sprawling Montana ranch to a tiny studio apartment in Queens, a Yorkipoo is going to love it, so long as they get their daily walk.
- They Love Everyone: Yorkipoos make great constant companions to old and young, child or adult. They do well with a single pet parent or with a large family. Yorkipoos are adaptable not only with their accommodations but with the people they live with as well.
- They Are Less Social: In a good way. Yorkipoos don’t require as much socialization as Yorkshire terriers, thanks to their poodle parent. They also do well in single dog households.
- Yorkipoos Are Smart: Both parent breeds are known for their intelligence, making for a very smart crossbreed indeed. They respond well to routine and consistent training and can learn every trick in the book, given the time.
- They Make Great Watchdogs: They like to bark, but they do it for a reason. Yorkipoos can be suspicious of strangers, and they live to defend their loved ones and home. This makes them excellent watchdogs. That makes them good alarm systems to warn their humans of danger.
- They Hardly Shed: You may have heard that they don’t shed, though it isn’t true. They just shed significantly less than most breeds—good news for those that like to wear black without having to lint roll forty times a day.
- They Are Less Allergenic: Yorkipoos shed less, which makes the crossbreed a shoo-in for those who suffer from animal dander allergies. They aren’t 100% hypoallergenic, but they are much less likely to cause issues thanks to their unique coat.
- Yorkipoos Are Cuddle Bugs: We can’t speak for every dog, but these specific dogs are usually huge snuggling fans. And they are always down to play. For a Yorkipoo, the more physical attention they get, the better.
- They Aren’t Escape Artists: Yorkshire Terriers can sometimes be known for their desire to escape and run away. The poodle mixture has somewhat subdued that drive to wander and roam. So, they are less likely to leave the house, even if the door is left open, than their Yorkie parents.
- They Do Alright Alone: While a Yorkshire Terrier tends to suffer from separation anxiety, the poodle-mix deals with isolation a bit better. They are more independent and, thus, do better when left alone during the day.
- They Are Good with Kids: Yorkshire Terriers can be afraid of or downright rude to children. Yorkipoos are usually much more easygoing with kids, likely due to their more substantial build and calm poodle temperament.
- Easy to Groom: Yorkipoos are much easier to groom than Yorkshire terriers. Their low shedding, double-layered fur requires regular brushing and the occasional trip to the groomer. If you’re trying to avoid the groomer’s bill, the Yorkipoo will help protect your wallet.
We’ve spoken of some of what makes these little dogs so great, but we would be remiss if we didn’t mention some of the downsides too. While certainly wonderful dogs, they do have some issues that may turn off prospective Yorkipoo owners:
- Yorkipoos Don’t Like Strangers: Yorkshire Terriers are already a suspicious and territorial breed, and it is as if the Yorkipoos hybrid breeding has exacerbated the issue. Yorkipoos are wary of people they don’t know and can take some coaxing to make new friends with those they find threatening.
- Yorkipoos Don’t Like Cats: If raised alongside them, a Yorkipoo and a cat are likely to get along. But, just as with strange humans, Yorkipoos won’t usually tolerate strange cats in their home, on their walk, or outside the front window.
- Yorkipoos Aren’t Good with Small Animals: All terriers come from lineages that were bred to hunt and kill pests, vermin, and other manners of prey. These old genetics still lay deeply rooted in the Yorkipoo, so it would be best not to leave them alone with small birds or the family hamster.
- The Barking: We’ve already mentioned it a few times before this. Yorkipoos love barking. They do it to defend their home, say hello, alert everyone of squirrels, and sometimes just for fun. Luckily, it’s not a booming bark, though it could drive you nuts if you’re not okay with a high level of bark.
- Yorkipoos Are Stubborn: With many breeds of dogs, intelligence often comes paired with stubbornness. Yorkipoos are no exception. This means that while they are very trainable, it can sometimes take a little coaxing and extra work to get them to do what you want.
- They Can Be Fragile: Yorkipoos can be very small, depending on the size of their poodle parentage. Because of this, they can be more fragile than some. They are smart enough to get out of harm’s way, but they are vulnerable to children and other, larger animals.
- They Are Expensive: Expect to pay upwards of $1200 for a Yorkipoo from a reputable breeder. This can be a hard pill to swallow, considering there are millions of dogs available for adoption.
- They Have A Prey Drive: This means they like to play the role of predator. The Yorkipoo doesn’t have a significant prey drive, but it is higher than a Yorkshire Terrier. They should not be left unsupervised with unfamiliar cats and other small animals.
- Their Hypoallergenic Nature Is Not Guaranteed: A Yorkipoo is highly likely to be low-shedding, but because it is a crossbreed, there can be a lot of variance in its attributes thanks to the dual nature of its heritage.
So, you can see that the Yorkipoo has more positive traits than negative. There isn’t much in the way of unfortunate features that will scare away lovers of these little furballs. If you can handle high levels of small barks and good grooming and playing routines, you’re good to go.
Next, we’ll go over some parts of a Yorkipoo care routine so that you can familiarize yourself with what it’d be like to own one of these creatures.
Feeding A Yorkipoo
Yorkipoos don’t need an advanced, special diet. Just healthy, high protein, low carbohydrate food made with the right ingredients. Although they won’t get huge, you still want them to grow up as big and as strong as possible.
One thing you do want to be sure of is that you purchase food that is made with small breeds in mind. Instructions will always note this on the bag in one way or another. These foods are specially-formulated and sized for little mouths and stomachs.
Feeding A Yorkipoo Puppy
You’ll likely bring your puppy home at about eight weeks when it is capable of leaving the mother and feeding on its own. You’ll start out feeding your little pup with a small breed, puppy food.
Dogfoodadvisor.com is a great resource that has tools for you to find the perfect food for your dog. You’ll want something high in protein, low in carbs, and possibly grain-free. We recommend this Blue Buffalo, Small Breed Food.
It can help your pup’s digestion if you add a bit of water to the dry food to soften it up. This not only encourages healthy eating and makes a puppy wiggly with excitement, but it can also help the animal break their food down easier.
Simply follow the feeding instructions on the bag for the proper amount. This is gauged according to your dog’s body weight. Easy cheesy.
Transitioning to Adult Food
At around a year, your pup should be ready for adult food. You should be able to tell your dog’s preference at this point as well and be able to decide on dry, wet, or a mixture of both.
Again, look for a type of food right for your Yorkipoo, both in size and age. Small dogs, even adult small dogs, have different metabolisms than larger dogs of other breeds. So, even though your dog is now an adult, they still need specific food.
Dogfoodadvisor.com comes in handy yet again with a selection of the best brands of food for small breed dogs. So, you should be able to find something in the right price range to feed your spoiled pooch the best they can get.
Yorkipoos don’t require any more special feeding other than this. As long as you’ve got small breed food, you should be good to go.
Attitude, Temperament, and Personality
If you’re looking for a small companion animal, the Yorkipoo is an excellent choice indeed. They are loyal little pups. Loving their humans is something that comes naturally to a Yorkipoo, and they will do their best to stay close to the ones they adore, both for ample affection and to defend what is theirs.
As stated earlier, the Yorkipoo isn’t the biggest fan of strange people and animals, but once they get to know a person, they can form a powerful bond. Once that bond is formed, they will always be on the lookout for opportunities to snuggle and play.
Unfortunately, that likely won’t be the same for other animals. Even after making their acquaintance, they still might not become friends. All dogs have individual personalities and often defy the attributes handed to them by their genetics. Still, likely, a Yorkipoo will not enjoy the company of cats or other dogs outside of its pack.
Overall, these dogs can be a bit opinionated, but they are incredibly affectionate and loving. They are big fans of laying down, relaxing, and observing their kingdom.
Yorkipoos And Prey Drive
We’ve mentioned that they aren’t the biggest fan of strangers, animals, and humans, but their interactions with smaller animals can differ. Both parent breeds, the Yorkshire Terrier and Poodle, were bred to hunt and kill.
Yorkshire Terrier dogs were initially bred to hunt and eliminate rodents that attempted to infest clothing mills and mines. A pet hamster scurrying alone in front of a Yorkipoo could be misconstrued as a pest and prey instead of a pet.
Poodles are often thought of as a luxurious and fancy breed kept only by nobles and aristocrats. While they certainly have the look and poise of nobility, Poodles were originally bred as hunting dogs. Specifically, waterfowl and other birds. They are great in the water, hence the extra webbing between their toes.
With both parents coming from hunting and pest-control backgrounds, it is safe to say that it would not be a good idea to allow your Yorkipoo access to small critters unsupervised.
Are Yorkipoos Good with Kids?
When children are involved, it is wise to be more concerned for the dog than the children. A Yorkipoo has no desire to harm a human. They want to love everyone in the family. But their petite bodies are fragile and young children are not exactly known for their gentle touch.
It is best practice to avoid interactions with small kids that could unwittingly harm one of these little pups. A tiny paw can be broken even under a small child’s foot, so they should be watched very carefully. Child and dog alike.
That said, if the kids are older and own more control over their movements and actions, a Yorkipoo will be very loving to the young ones in the family, so long as they aren’t stepping on paws or pulling tails and ears.
About the Barking
They will bark at anything and everything, especially when they are young, which is why it is crucial to begin consistent training early. While they are primo-all-star barkers, Yorkipoos are vastly intelligent dogs and can learn nearly any trick in the book.
It still might be challenging to break them of their penchant for yapping completely, but you are likely to make a reasonable reduction in future barking if it is worked on early and regularly.
It is also important to note that barking does have its place and time. A dog that has been harshly stripped of its bark-reaction might give no warning as a burglar breaks in the front door. The Yorkipoo’s barking makes it an excellent alarm system and deterrent for break-ins and other funny business.
A survey involving twelve ex-burglars listed barking dogs as one of the main deterrents when deciding on a home to rob. So, a barky dog might be a good thing.
Yorkipoos And Separation Anxiety
Yorkipoos are okay at being left alone. They can be trained to deal with isolation better than some breeds, though puppies will likely need crate training at some point to avoid destructive behaviors.
Yorkshire Terriers, one of the parent breeds, are susceptible to separation anxiety and terrible at being left alone for long periods. A Yorkipoo isn’t the best at being alone, but they are better than Yorkies.
They are likely, especially when puppies, to bark, whine, and cry when left alone, but this can be worked on, and acceptable behaviors can be reinforced to the point where the dog doesn’t suffer unduly.
Daily Yorkipoo Care and Maintenance
Yorkipoos need a fairly standard level of care. Not too high maintenance, but they aren’t a lazy couch potato breed. They do require daily exercise and mental stimulation to live the happy and healthy lives they deserve.
They are an indoor breed, meaning they do well with access to a sofa or soft dog bed rather than a wooden doghouse in the backyard. They should have limited exposure to the elements, as they aren’t the best at generating a lot of their own heat.
Though they are inside dogs, they do need to get outside regularly for their daily stroll.
Yorkipoos Need Daily Walks
Though these dogs need daily exercise, they don’t require a crazy amount. These aren’t large working dogs or sporting dogs that need to move their muscular bodies day in and day out.
Yorkipoos have a smaller threshold for what constitutes a good workout. This is great for those of us that like to take a leisurely walk around downtown, through the park, or on the trail. You won’t have a Yorkipoo dragging you through the bushes to get closer to a squirrel pulling at its leash the entire walk.
They are usually well-behaved on the leash and a pleasure to walk around with. They carry themselves with a regal poise inherited from both sides of their lineage. A short walk, usually not more than a mile, should be more than enough for a Yorkipoo.
If you can’t get them out every day, you should aim for three times a week. The rest of their exercise can be made up in the yard or the house, with some games, toys, and fetch. A fair go at tug-of-war followed by a snuggle on the couch isn’t going to get a complaint from your Yorkipoo.
Thanks to their single coat of hair, Yorkipoos are straightforward to groom. The combination of coat types from Poodle and Yorkshire Terrier DNA results in hair that is unlikely to matt, bind, or knot. And they hardly shed!
Daily, or at least weekly, brushing can help to avoid constant trips to the groomers. Yorkipoos are not as prone to getting covered in mud and yard muck like some other breeds (we’re looking at you golden retrievers), which is a plus, as you won’t need to bathe more than necessary.
So, just regular brushing, a bath here and there, and nail trim are all they need. There is a chance that your dog has more Yorkie than a Poodle coat, and this can result in some longer hair. This is usually relatively manageable and can easily be trimmed every other month or so by a groomer or a brave owner.
Yorkipoo Health Problems
Luckily, Yorkipoos aren’t too likely to suffer from many health problems. Though, there are still genetic predispositions that the crossbreed, and their parent breeds, can be susceptible to:
- Ear Infections: Likely the most common problem with any type of dog with floppy ears. Warm, damp ears are the perfect place for bacteria and fungi to set up shop. So, you’ll need to keep a close eye on your dog’s ears for redness and itching. A cleaning solution and a cotton ball can help to keep infections at bay.
- Atopic Dermatitis: Like eczema in humans, this disease can make your dog’s skin scaly, dry, flaky, and itchy. Grooming and baths can help prevent the worst symptoms, though sometimes steroids and drugs are needed to help your pup.
- Epilepsy (Seizures): This disorder does pop up in both parent breeds from time to time. Seizures in dogs can present differently than in people. This means that erratic behavior, frantic running, disorientation, and vomiting can be symptoms. It is treatable by your vet.
- Patellar Luxation: Also known as “Slipped Stifles,” this disorder can be extremely painful and debilitating to a dog. The result is the knee joints coming in and out of place. Ouch. Though not cured, it can be treated, but dogs with this condition can still live rich, full lives.
- Portosystemic Shunt: A disease of the liver and the circulatory system that causes loss of appetite, GI issues, and UTIs. Surgery and diet can help to avoid the worst this disease has to offer.
- Hypothyroidism: Epilepsy, low energy, weight gain, and various skin conditions are part of the spectrum of ailments caused by this disease. Again, diet and medication can help to correct most, if not all, of the problems associated with this disease.
- Addison’s Disease: Caused by a lack of adrenal hormones, Addison’s disease can be fatal. Symptoms can include vomiting and loss of appetite, so the condition can be hard to detect.
You will be the one that knows your dog the best, and if you suspect that something is wrong and your dog isn’t feeling well, the best option is to call your veterinarian and set up an appointment.
For the Yorkipoo, you are getting a dog with a healthy genealogy that is unlikely to develop life-threatening issues, especially if they come from a reputable breeder. However, the possibility will always remain, so it is best to have checkups and regular observations.
The Yorkipoo is a beautiful little dog that is positively brimming with affection, intelligence, and a lust for life. They are great companions for single folks and families alike, so long as they aren’t around little kids unsupervised where they could get hurt.
If you are in the market for a small breed that won’t kick your allergies into overdrive, the Yorkipoo is an excellent option. Remember to always check out a breeder first before making a purchase, and if you can, check out local adoption spots in your area. You never know; you might just find a Yorkipoo waiting for you that needs a family.
These low maintenance, bark-happy couch companions should fit right into your home. So long as you can handle a bit of yapping and a stubborn attitude, you’ll be rewarded with a furry friend that will stick to you like glue.