The Yorkshire terrier is a fantastic toy dog breed. They are beautiful with their long and lowing hair and they are very active little dogs. They like to go for a walk every day but they also like to just lie around especially when they are in someone’s lap. Yorkshire terriers are not susceptible to very many health problems and they will live longer than larger dogs. They sometimes get a few health problems.
Yorkie’s as they are often called get canine hypoglycemia and this is low blood sugar and needs to be checked out. The dog will be lethargic, weak, twitching, trembling, seizures, lack of coordination, loss of appetite, dilated pupils, and apparent blindness and in severe cases a coma. This usually happens in dogs under 3 months old.
They also can get a disease called congenital patellar Luxation. This disorder affects the kneecaps. This muscle skeletal disorder often affects many toy breeds. The bones around the kneecap are not aligned properly and this causes the kneecap to become displaced and unable to glide along its normal groove in the femur. Occasionally this will result in trauma. This problem will usually develop when the dog is one year old. The disease can be managed with supplements, exercise and diet but some severe cases will need surgery.
Small dog breeds often have dental health problems, their small jaws cause this, and their teeth can become crowded causing a problem. Sometimes the teeth will fall out on their own and this will cause food and plaque to build up on the remaining teeth. The bacteria can result in periodontal disease. These diseases can affect other parts of the dog’s body. This disease can cause heart and kidney problems. To help prevent this problem give your dog teeth cleaning chew toys that will help reduce the plaque build up. You will also need to brush your Yorkie’s teeth on a daily basis.
Yorkie’s can also get a disease called Porto systemic shunt. This is caused by an abnormal blood flow to the liver and this is when the blood returns to the heart and does not go through the liver. This causes the toxic byproducts of the liver to be carried throughout the dog’s body. This will cause mental and neurological problems. Treatment will require a physical exam, X-rays, blood work and several other tests. Sometimes this problem can be controlled with medication and a proper diet. Good liver function is vital to your Yorkie’s health.
Small breeds do not have as many health problems as larger breeds but they do get some that need to be treated. A veterinarian should check your dog at least once a year. He should get a healthy diet and get enough exercise. It is best if you get your Yorkie puppy from a reputable breeder and the chance of him getting sick will be lessened. If you get a healthy puppy and keep him that way, he will be a happy dog.