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The adorable Yorkshire Terrier is one of the smallest breeds around, but they have a huge character. This is exactly what makes them such cool pets. These little dogs are entertaining to be around, and people focus mainly on their small size. Yet, there is much more to this dog than its adorable and beautiful appearance.

Today, Yorkies are one of the most popular household pets among different types of people: it could be the choice of a professional athlete, essay writer pro, or even a pilot, but they had different beginnings.

We love these little dogs, and we decided to dig a little deeper and find out what makes these dogs so famous and adored. Here are some fun facts about the Yorkshire Terrier that you probably didn’t know.

1. Goldielocks

Yorkshire Terriers have a unique coat. They have silky soft hair that barely sheds, one characteristic that makes them so popular. Living with a Yorkie will require quite a bit of grooming; if their beautiful coats are not maintained, they can easily become tangled.

Yorkies have a unique hair texture, which closely resembles human hair. If you ever attend a dog show, you will come across numerous Yorkies with long, combed hair. Most “casual” owners will trim them because a shorter coat is easier to maintain. Regardless of how you decide to groom your Yorkie, we’re sure they’ll be absolutely adorable.

2. War Heroes

It would be impossible for such a small dog to become a war hero, right? Well, you’ve probably never heard of Smoky, the brave Yorkie. In 1944, when interest in small dog breeds was minimal, Army Corpsman William Wynne and his soldiers found Smoky in the jungles of Papua New Guinea. She had been wandering in the wilderness for who knows how long. These soldiers took her under their wings.

She dragged a communications cable through a narrow drainage pipe and restored the communication systems of the U.S. Army. She was part of many missions. Once she arrived in the United States, she made public appearances and visited Army veterans in hospitals. Smoky is considered the first American therapy dog.

3. Work History

This is another fun fact that may seem impossible, but Yorkshire Terriers were working dogs. All Terriers are hunters, with the smaller ones specializing in hunting vermin and rats. This is the job the Yorkshires were entrusted with. They were one of the best at hunting rats and mice in tunnels and burrows.

Yorkies became extremely popular with weavers and miners because of their hunting and extermination skills. These small dogs helped these craftsmen keep their work area free of rodents.

Their tiny bodies allowed them to access tiny areas and control disease-carrying rats and mice. One might think that tiny bodies are a disadvantage in this line of work, but it allowed the Yorkies to be agile and easily catch rats.

4. Yorkies Created A New Breed

The Biewer family, Gertrud, and Werner were famous German Yorkshire Terrier breeders who bred some of the best Yorkies in the world. In 1984, they received a dog named Schneeflocken von Friedheck, who had a unique color.

That dog was white, gold, and blue and was used as the basis for an entirely new breed separate from the Yorkshire Terrier. This is the first breed in history to be recognized based on genetic testing.

The Biewers began carefully breeding this new “version” of the Yorkie and carefully established a breeding line. Because of their distinct appearance and lovable characters, the new Terriers became extremely popular, especially in the U.S.

Soon, there was a massive demand for these small dogs named after their creators. The American Kennel Club provisionally accepted the Biewer Terrier in 2014, and in 2021 these dogs were fully accepted and registered.

5. Celebrity Owners

Nothing can give a more significant boost to popularity than a celebrity, and Yorkies seem to have been adored by many different celebrities in recent years. It all started when Audrey Hepburn introduced the world to her Yorkie, Mr. Famous. She even included her dog in some scenes in the famous 1957 movie “Funny Face.” His co-stars in the movie were Fred Astaire and Kay Thompson.

Hepburn was the first to share some attention with her dog Mr. Famous, and the list only starts there. Celebrities across America are madly in love with these little dogs. Some of the names include Tom Brady and Gisele Bundchen, Natalie Portman, Liev Schreiber, Miranda Kerr, Molly Sims, Ivanka Trump, Alyson Hannigan, and Naomi Watts. Even former U.S. President Richard Nixon had a Yorkie.

6. Yorkie Reunions

It shouldn’t surprise you that Yorkie owners are crazy about their dogs. They wanted to show the world their appreciation, so they started different groups and clubs dedicated to these adorable dogs. One of the biggest Yorkie Meetups is organized in New York.

The Big Apple has many of these dogs, and their owners wanted to introduce them to other Yorkies. They meet and discuss the breed, and several of them are breeders who found breeding partners that would help them improve and create healthy, happy puppies. Yorkies are adaptable, and their hypoallergenic and non-shedding properties make them ideal dogs to have in apartments.

7. The Smallest Dog Breed In History

Although Chihuahuas hold the title of the world’s smallest dog breed, it was actually a Yorkie that holds the title of the smallest dog in history. A Yorkie from the 1940s was barely larger than a human fist.

He was 2.8 inches tall to the shoulder and 3.75 inches long. That makes it the smallest dog on record. The current record holder is Milly, a Chihuahua who measures 3.8 inches at the shoulder. This little dog weighs less than 1 pound.