It’s the battle of the terriers! Silky vs Yorkie, which of these breeds will come out on top?
Although they’re similar, there are some differences. Let’s compare these two terrier breeds to see which one would suit your home best!
Perhaps you’re wondering if the breeds are really as similar as they look?
Let’s take a look at everything from temperament and appearance to health and the types of family they suit.
But first, where did these breeds start out?
Silky vs Yorkie History
Sometimes breeds that seem similar from their looks can actually have quite similar histories!
The history of your chosen dog breed might not be a hugely important factor to you. However, it can be really interesting to learn, and fun to tell others!
Let’s see just how different the Silky Terrier is from the Yorkie Terrier.
Origins of the Silky Terrier
The origins of the Silky Terrier are a little ambiguous.
This Australian breed was originally called the Sydney Silky Terrier and became the Australian Silky Terrier in 1955.
The Silky Terrier was the result of Australian Terriers and Yorkshire Terriers breeds mixing in the 1900s.
They are believed, like their Yorkie cousins, to have been used as rodent hunters.
However, the lineage of this breed is debated by many online.
Origins of the Yorkie
The history of the Yorkshire Terrier, or Yorkie, goes back a little further than the Silky Terrier’s.
Yorkies grew popular in Yorkshire, England in the 1800s.
They were adored as lap dogs for fashionable Victorian women across the country.
However, they originated in Scotland from various Scottish terrier breeds.
In Scotland they were popular rodent exterminators in textile mills and coal mines.
So, the Silky Terrier and Yorkshire Terrier breeds developed on opposite sides of the world, even though they had a similar purpose!
But how similar are the rest of their characteristics?
Silky vs Yorkie Appearance
These two breeds do look quite alike, but there are some key differences.
Although both are small breeds, the Silky Terrier is slightly bigger.
The Silky Terrier grows up to 10 inches, and usually weighs around 10 pounds when fully grown.
Whereas the Yorkshire Terrier grows up to 8 inches and weighs around 7 pounds when fully grown!
This smaller size has contributed to its popularity as a lap dog.
Silky Terrier Appearance
Let’s take a look at the appearance of the Silky Terrier first.
The Silky Terrier has a wedge-shaped head, almond eyes and distinctive V-shaped ears.
It is a low set dog, but isn’t fragile by any standard!
It is known for its silky, long coat, which can act and feel a lot like human hair!
Silky Terrier Coat Colors
Silky Terrier fur can come in a huge variety of colors.
It can be
or a mixture of any of these colors.
So how different is this to the Yorkie?
This breed is petite in appearance, with similar pointed ears to the Silky Terrier.
The Yorkie has long, luscious hair that hangs evenly down its sides.
Yorkie Coat Colors
This breed has four standard coat colors.
It can be
- black and gold
- black and tan
- blue and gold
- or blue and tan!
With these similar appearances it can be easy to see how these two breeds get compared!
Silky vs Yorkie Temperament
When you’re getting a new dog, you’ll want to know all about its personality.
Researching a breed’s temperament is a great way to find out which breed will best suit your family.
Both Silky Terriers and Yorkies are known for being friendly, affectionate and active.
They are both very people-focused dogs.
This means the Silky Terrier and Yorkie are great choices for families that have a lot of time to spend with their pooch.
As these aren’t breeds that like being left alone!
Silky vs Yorkie Natural Instincts
These terrier breeds are known for their origins in hunting small vermin.
Therefore there are some natural instincts to watch out for.
The Silky Terrier and Yorkshire Terrier breeds may both have a chase instinct around smaller animals.
If you have smaller pets, such as rodents, you’ll need to consider this before getting a Silky Terrier or Yorkshire Terrier.
You should make sure to keep any smaller pets somewhere they can’t be chased or caught by your Terriers!
This strong prey drive is also important to remember when taking your Yorkie or Silky Terrier outside.
Whilst it’s easy to control other pets in your own home, you can’t do the same for unfamiliar or wild animals outside.
Because of this, Silky Terriers and Yorkshire Terriers should be kept on leashes when taken outdoors, or kept in enclosed areas.
Silky vs Yorkie Training
When finding a new dog, training is another element you’ll need to consider.
If you haven’t had a dog before, you might want to choose one that is more receptive to training.
Training can also help control any natural instincts of these two breeds to an extent.
Let’s take a look at how the Silky Terrier and Yorkshire Terrier react to training.
With both breeds, it is important to start both training and socialization as early as possible.
Silky Terrier Training
The Silky Terrier is an adaptable breed that generally takes well to training.
However, training does need to be consistent from a young age for best results.
Training from an early age will help give your Silky Terriers perfect manners.
But what about the Yorkie?
Yorkies are intelligent dogs, shown by their use as service dogs, like therapy dogs.
Like Silky Terriers, they love being around and pleasing their family.
However, the Yorkshire Terrier can have a stubborn streak.
Like the Silky Terrier, consistent positive training is the best way to achieve a well-behaved pup.
Both breeds are known to excel in canine sports like agility and obedience.
Early socialization can help both Silky Terriers and Yorkshire Terriers feel comfortable in new and unfamiliar situations.
Socialization allows Yorkies and Silky Terriers to feel more confident as adult dogs.
Silky vs Yorkie Exercise
Every dog needs exercise, but the amount a breed needs can help you decide if it’s right for you.
Especially if you have a smaller house, or less time to spend getting out and about.
Silky Terrier Exercise
Silky Terriers are quite energetic given their size!
This breed will be happiest in a family that can provide it with enough exercise each day.
This could be in the form of active play, daily walks, or even training for sports!
Daily exercise is vital for the Silky Terrier.
And it isn’t too different from its Yorkie cousin!
Yorkie Terrier Exercise
The Yorkshire Terrier also needs daily active time.
Your Yorkie will love spending time with you whilst burning off energy through a walk, or a fun game like fetch!
As mentioned previously, both Silky Terriers and Yorkshire Terriers can do really well in dog sports like obedience and agility.
Not only can exercise like this keep your terrier pup physically healthy, but it can be a great way to provide mental stimulation.
Overall, daily exercise will result in a happy terrier!
But, this breed can still suit those in more urban settings – as long as it gets this daily activity.
Silky vs Yorkie Health
Finally, and potentially the most important part, we need to look at the health and care of Silky Terriers and Yorkshire Terriers.
Before getting either breed, you should know the health conditions they are prone to.
This can help you be prepared for any vet bills you might encounter in your pup’s life
But being familiar with a breed’s common health problems can be a good way to notice any symptoms!
Health Conditions in Common
These two breeds are relatively healthy.
However, the Silky Terrier and Yorkie are prone to some health conditions including:
- patellar luxation, and
- eye problems, like cataracts.
A study has also suggested Yorkshire Terriers are prone to inheritance of liver shunts.
Other General Care
Both breeds should have their teeth and ears checked regularly to avoid any infections or wax build-ups.
To help you get the healthiest dog you can, only choose breeders who screen their dogs for health conditions.
Silky vs Yorkie Grooming
Another responsibility that falls under health and care would be grooming requirements!
You might have already guessed, but the Yorkshire Terrier and Silky Terriers don’t have the smallest grooming needs.
The Silky Terrier can look its best with regular grooming. You should brush it twice a week as a minimum.
Tangles in your Silky Terrier’s fur can be unsightly, but can also be uncomfortable for your pup, so make sure to groom it enough!
Yorkshire Terrier fur is similar to Silky Terrier fur, and also needs to be brushed several times a week – ideally every day.
Bathing and Haircuts!
Long hair around your Terrier’s face can be irritating for your dog, so you might want to get this trimmed.
Your Yorkie and Silky Terriers will also need regular bathing.
If you’re struggling with these grooming requirements, specialty groomers are a great option.
If you still can’t decide which of these breeds is your favorite, maybe you should widen your search!
There are plenty of other small breeds that might be perfect for you. Check out some of our articles below.
Silky vs Yorkie – Which Breed Makes a Better Pet?
So, we’ve looked at everything you need to know about the Silky Terrier and Yorkshire Terrier breeds.
Have you managed to choose a favorite?
Both breeds are great for families that want to devote all their time to their dog.
Whether this is during exercise, training, or simply as it follows you around the house!
They need owners who are happy to spend time training them, otherwise they may exhibit some pretty poor manners.
Make sure you’re fully prepared for the strong prey drive they make have, and any potential health concerns!
Have you had one of these unique terriers before?
What did you like most about them? Let us know below!
References and Resources
- M. R. Alam (et al), 2007, ‘Frequency and Distribution of Patellar Luxation in Dogs’, Veterinary and Comparative Orthopaedics and Traumatology.
- Kird N. Gelatt and Edward O. MacKay, 2005, ‘Prevalence of Primary Breed-Related Cataracts in the Dog in North America’, Veterinary Ophthalmology.
- Karen Tobias, 2003, ‘Determination of Inheritance of Single Congenital Portosystemic Shunts in Yorkshire Terriers’, Journal of the American Animal Hospital Association.
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