It is important to know when a Yorkshire terrier is ready to breed, especially if you are thinking of breeding it. The Yorkie is a small breed and is usually around seven inches tall. They were initially bred to catch rodents in mine shafts. The dog usually comes in heat in six month cycles and the first one is seen when the dog is six to 18 months old. For small breeds such as the Yorkshire terrier, the first heat comes sooner.
A Yorkie becomes sexually mature during six to 18 months old. During this period the female dog comes into heat. Male Yorkie usually start producing sperm during their sixth month. At this age, the dogs are not yet socially mature and they can’t find a mate until they reach the age of two. There are three parts of the heat cycle.
These are proestrus, estrus, and dietrus.
- Proestrus is the first phase and often indicated by the swelling of the vulva as well as the bloody discharge from the vagina. The female will not want to mate with any male. The phase can last up around nine days.
- Estrus is the second phase of the heat cycle. The discharge from the vagina becomes lighter in color and reduced amount. During this phase, the vulva swells more compared to the first phase. The female will now entertain male dogs. The phase can last between three and eleven days. The veterinarian can perform a vaginal smear to determine whether it is the right time to breed the dog.
- Diestrus is the last phase of the heat cycle. It starts as soon as the second phase ends. The vulva starts to decrease in size and the discharge becomes redder. If the Yorkie is not pregnant, the last phase lasts from 60 to 90 days. If the dog is pregnant, then the phase continues until the dog gives birth.