Yorkshire terriers are tiny and full of energy.
They are always bouncing around and they have a short attention span.
They are also stubborn.
This combination has resulted in a reputation for being hard to train.
But they are also highly intelligent. If you know the right way to train them, they actually learn incredibly quickly.
We’ll show you exactly how to teach a Yorkie tricks effectively below.
We’ll also give you a few popular tricks for Yorkies and walk you through the training process for each one.
- 1 How To Teach A Yorkie Tricks
- 2 Tricks For Yorkies
- 3 Yorkies’ Tricks: Related Questions
- 4 Yorkshire Terrier Tricks: Conclusion
How To Teach A Yorkie Tricks
The biggest obstacle to teaching a Yorkie tricks is their short attention span. If you can overcome that, Yorkies learn very well, thanks to their high intelligence.
The key to overcoming it is to eliminate distractions and keep training sessions short.
Before we get into that, let’s take a quick look at the materials you will need in order to successfully teach your Yorkshire terrier tricks. You don’t actually need anything, but there are two items that will make training much easier.
- Treats (list of the best treats for Yorkies)
- Training clicker (article on Yorkie clicker training)
Again, you can train your pup without either of these things, but using a clicker and treats makes it so much easier. Dogs respond very well to rewards for good behavior.
The key to training your Yorkie effectively is to remove any potential distractions. These could include loud noises like the television, any toys, children, or other pets.
You may also want to keep any treats in your pockets, because having them in your dog’s line of vision can also be distracting to your Yorkie.
It’s important to remove these types of distractions, because Yorkies are famous for having short attention spans, particularly when they are younger. They are also more confident and stubborn than other dogs, which adds to the difficulty of training them.
However, once you’ve got the training mastered, your dog will be sure to love all of the attention that it receives when training. It won’t be able to wait to show off all the tricks it has has learned and to impress everyone, including other all of the dogs, when you’re out and about.
Limit Training Time
The other key to teaching a dog with a short attention span is to limit training time. Usually, training sessions should not last more than 10 or 15 minutes.
Once your dog’s attention wanders, there is no point in continuing. It will only lead to frustration for you and your pup. Better to leave off for a while and have another training session a little later.
Basic Obedience Comes First
Before you get started with tricks, you’re going to want your Yorkie to know basic obedience. If it can’t follow simple commands or it isn’t well behaved, then it is not going to be able to learn any tricks.
Basic obedience means your Yorkie should know at least the seven basic commands, including coming when called, sitting, staying, heeling, and more
If your Yorkie does not know these basic commands yet, then you should work on learning those first. Once your dog has mastered the basic commands, it will be ready to move onto more advanced tricks.
Tricks For Yorkies
Here a couple of popular tricks you can teach your Yorkie, along with instructions on how to teach them.
You might want to start off with one of the easier tricks first. Teaching your Yorkie to speak is a good first trick.
Start by having a treat in your hand. You want your Yorkie to see the treat. As soon as it has seen it, hide it again and don’t let your pup see it or have it until it barks.
You’ll need to be patient with this trick, but your dog will eventually bark. The temptation of the treat is just too strong. Every time your pup barks, make sure you say the word “speak”, so that your dog begins to associate barking with this word.
Make sure you give your Yorkie a treat asa reward every time it speaks. Otherwise, showing the treat ad never giving it is just teasing your poor little pup.
This is a great trick for your Yorkie to perform and one that will no doubt bring plenty of attention, which all Yorkies love.
It’s a little trickier to master than some of the other tricks, so you may want to grab the training clicker for this one.
Start by having your Yorkie lie down on the floor (it should already know the “down” command). Once it is down, go ahead and give it a treat.
Then, hold another treat on one side of its body and slowly move it around to the other. As your pup’s nose follows the treat, so should the rest of its body.
When your Yorkie rolls over, make sure to say “roll over” and click your training clicker at the same time, so that your dog can register that noise with the command. Give it a treat and a pat and plenty of effusive praise.
This trick does take a little practice, but it is most certainly a crowd pleaser, once your Yorkie masters it.
To start this trick, your Yorkie will need to be sitting, with you sitting in front of it, facing each other. Show it a treat in your hand and then ask it to give you “five”.
Next, you’ll need to lift up its paw and touch it with your hand. Once your Yorkie has done this, give it the treat. For more help, read our article on how to teach a puppy to give paw.
You may also want to use the training clicker on this trick just like you did on the roll over trick. It is also a difficult one and the training clicker will add a little extra support to the learning process.
Just make sure you’re rewarding your Yorkie every time it performs the trick. As always, be patient and don’t forget that practice makes perfect.
Yorkies love to lick faces, so use it to train them. Every time your pup licks your face, you’ll say the word “kiss” and reward it with a treat and praise.
Before long “kiss” will become a fun trick that your Yorkie will love to show off with anyone in the house.
This trick is a bit more challenging, but it is certainly doable for a tiny genius like the Yorkshire terrier. To start, get your Yorkie to sit.
Once it is in a sitting position, hold a treat over its head. Raise the treat to encourage your dog to raise its front legs into a begging position.
As it gets into the begging position, say the command “beg”. Reward your pup with a treat and praise, as always. This trick will take a lot of repeating before your pup gets it down.
Yorkies’ Tricks: Related Questions
The following questions are ones we commonly get in relation to teaching a Yorkie tricks. If you have any additional questions, please ask them in the comments below.
Are Yorkies Easy To Teach Tricks?
It is not always easy to teach a Yorkie to perform tricks. They are an intelligent breed of dog, but they just have shorter attention spans compared to other breeds. They are known for being curious and this can lead to distractions when you’re trying to teach them new tricks.
But they are also a breed that loves to please. Once they’ve got a trick mastered, you’ll be pleased to know that they won’t be too shy to show it off. In fact, they will love all the attention that comes with performing a trick.
How Do You Punish A Yorkie?
My advice would be to not punish your Yorkie. Scolding is an ineffective method when it comes to teaching your Yorkie tricks or basic behavior.
As a breed that loves attention, they may see any form of communication as a reward, even negative communication. Scolding your pup could lead it to do more of what you don’t want it to do.
Your best bet is to ignore any bad behavior. This will lead your Yorkie to become bored of whatever it is that it is doing that you consider wrong. If your dog is not receiving any attention for its behavior, it will soon stop doing it.
Teaching your dog a new trick can be a lengthy process. It can sometimes even take a couple of months to pick up a new trick.
If your pup doesn’t get it the first few times, don’t get frustrated and scold your dog. Stay patient and encourage your Yorkie with treats and tons of praise when it gets something right.
Many humans have a hard time learning new things. It takes most of us time, too. You can’t expect your dog to just learn a new trick instantly either.
Yorkshire Terrier Tricks: Conclusion
Yorkies are famous for being stubborn and energetic. Along with that comes a short attention span. This can make teaching a Yorkie tricks challenging, but if you know how to deal with it, the breeds intelligence shines through.
The key is to keep training sessions short and to remove distractions. Doing those two things ensures your dog focuses on you and the lesson. It will learn much faster.
If your puppy already knows the basic dog commands, go ahead and try teaching it some of the tricks listed above. It’s a wonderful feeling when your dog learns something new, both for you and for your little Yorkie.
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