Silky Terrier vs. Yorkshire Terrier: Differences and Similarities

The Silky Terrier and Yorkshire Terrier, while both small, have significant differences. The Silky Terrier typically has a more refined, dainty appearance, with a long, glossy and fine coat. On the other hand, the Yorkshire Terrier has a more robust, sturdy build with a glossy, fine, and perfectly straight coat.

The Silky Terrier also has a more laid-back personality, typically getting along well with children, strangers, and other animals. Meanwhile, the Yorkshire Terrier tends to be more protective of its family, which may result in a more defensive demeanor around strangers or other dogs.

In terms of size, the Silky Terrier is slightly larger, usually weighing between 4 to 10 kg, while the Yorkshire Terrier usually weighs between 2 to 3.5 kg. Both breeds require regular grooming, exercise, and are relatively healthy, although the Yorkshire Terrier’s smaller size could make it more susceptible to certain health issues.

Last Updated on September 20, 2023

Quick Summary: The Silky Terrier (Silky) and Yorkshire Terrier (Yorkie) are both toy dog breeds. Comparing their appearance can be difficult because they are hard to distinguish from each other as they look so much alike. The Silky is a little bigger than the Yorkie and is more active. Therefore, they require more food and exercise than the Yorkie. Since these two terriers have similar coats, they also have the same grooming requirements. Both the Silky Terrier and the Yorkshire Terrier can live up to 15 years old.

Comparing the Silky Terrier and Yorkshire Terrier for your next family pup? It would be easy to confuse these two terrier breeds or assume they are the same breed. They look very similar and have very similar temperaments – they simply have a lot in common because they are related to each other.

The Yorkie Terrier played a major role in the creation and development of the Silky Terrier. The Silky’s parent is the Yorkie. Still, while there are many similarities between the two breeds, they have some differences. The differences between these two breeds are subtle, however. 

Let’s now take a closer look at their similarities and, more importantly, their differences.

Silky Terrier vs. Yorkshire Terrier

Breed Background and History

It is important to look back at the history of a breed. This helps potential owners learn more about their dog breed and how they will behave as family pets. It will also explain why they are similar. In the case of Silky Terriers vs. Yorkshire Terriers, it is because their histories are intertwined.

Silky Terrier Overview

The history of the Silky Terrier is less clear than that of other pedigree breeds. The truth of the story will vary depending on who is telling it. The most popular theory is that his parents were the Australian Terrier and the Yorkshire Terrier. A few other small Terrier breeds are unknown.

He was created in Sydney, Australia, in the early 20th century. He was thought to have been bred slightly larger than the Yorkshire Terrier to exterminate slightly larger vermins. He is one of the largest dogs in the toy breed group. He is much more popular in Australia than in America, and in 2020 he was ranked as the 112th most popular dog breed in America by the American Kennel Club (AKC).

Yorkshire Terrier Overview

The Yorkshire Terrier originates from 19th century Victorian England, and it was believed that the working-class weavers of Scotland bred them from the feisty Scottish Terriers, who are now extinct. They were then commonly used in the mines in Yorkshire to exterminate the rats and other vermins, where they were then renamed the Yorkshire Terrier.

Despite their vermin-hunting heritage, they quickly evolved into lapdogs for the upper-class women of England. Their popularity as lapdogs has remained constant ever since. They came to America in 1870, and they have secured many famous roles in films. Audrey Hepburn’s pup, Mr. Famous, is the most well-known Yorkie. In 2020 he is ranked as the 10th most popular dog breed in America by the AKC. Because of this breed’s popularity, it’s become common to mix the Yorkie with other breeds and even create a teacup version of the breed.

Appearance and Size

Comparing the appearance of the Silky Terrier and the Yorkie can be difficult because they are hard to distinguish. The appearance of the Silky Terrier is very similar to that of the Yorkshire Terrier. The Yorkie is a smaller version of the Silky. 

According to breed standards, the Silky measures between 9 to 10 inches. They weigh around 10 pounds, although they can be bigger than this. Yorkies are smaller than their larger cousins, measuring between 7 and 8 inches in height. Yorkies are approximately 7 pounds in weight, but they can also be smaller.

The Silky has a more square face than the Yorkie. Yorkies are more rounded with a domed skull and larger eyes. They also have bigger noses. The Yorkie has smaller eyes which are button-like. These features may not be immediately obvious, but those who are keen to distinguish between the two can easily spot them.

The most obvious difference between the breeds’ appearances is their ears. Silky’s ears have a pointed V-shaped shape and are high above his head. It gives them the illusion of being larger. Yorkies have smaller ears. The ears are slightly smaller because they are located further down his head. His long hair often covers the ears of Yorkies.

They both have the same long, silky coat. They usually have their long hair tied above their eyes if they have a natural coat. They share similar colors, with black and tan being the most popular. However, according to breed standards, the Yorkie only has 4 recorded coat colors, whereas the Silky has 13 color variations.

Temperament and Personality Traits

The Silky Terrier and Yorkshire Terrier are both toy dog breeds. They are elegant and beautiful in their appearance. Their Terrier traits shine through, making them both playful and feisty. They have slight temperament differences.

The Silky is more curious than the Yorkie. The Yorkie could spend most of the day laying on his back with his master, enjoying the comfort of his lap. Silky Terriers can be more restless than other Terriers.

Remember that bored Terriers can be destructive Terriers. You’d be wise to buy them a variety of toys to keep them entertained.

The Silky is much more independent. They can be left alone for extended periods of time and not feel anxious. Yorkies are more likely to experience separation anxiety. It is a good idea to crate-train both breeds in order to reduce anxious behavior.

Because the Yorkie is super tiny, some argue that he is not a suitable pet for families with small children because they often treat him as they would their cuddly toy. We disagree and say it is a personal preference. Just make sure you supervise children and dogs around one another.

Other household pets can be a bit unpredictable with the Silky and Yorkie. They might feel less threatened if they are well socialized as young pups, and the animal is larger than them. This is a personal choice. Make sure you have a pre-meet with your household pets prior to committing to anything.

Exercise Requirements

The Silky Terrier requires slightly more exercise than the Yorkshire Terrier. This is often a deciding factor between these two breeds. As mentioned above, Silkies are more curious than other breeds. Silkies need around 45 minutes of exercise every day to keep their minds and bodies happy. The Yorkie only needs around 20 to 30 minutes of exercise every day.

While this may not seem like much, it can make the difference between an active and inactive family. The Silky may be better suited for you and your family if you are more active than the Yorkie. The Yorkie tends to get tired quicker. The Yorkie may be a better choice if you’re looking for a house dog.

The Silky is more curious and would prefer variety in his exercise program. A Yorkie will enjoy a walk around the neighborhood and a romp in his garden. Silkies make great running partners and enjoy interactive games like fetch and tug-of-war. They are also great participants in agility classes.

You can be certain that both breeds will enjoy a garden. However, make sure your garden fencing is strong and high. They will run away faster than any other breed, especially the Silky if they see a cat or mouse. Watch out and ensure they don’t eat a mouse or little critter while you aren’t paying attention!

Training and Socialization

The Yorkshire Terrier is more protective than his master. This is due to him being more anxious as a pup, while the Silky Terrier is more relaxed and less busy chasing squirrels. Socializing the two of them in unfamiliar situations with animals of all sizes and shapes is key to curbing protective behavior.

The Silky is a bit easier to train because he is more motivated and eager to learn than the Yorkie. You can be certain that the Yorkie will not participate in a training session if he is not feeling the need. End of!

Remembering that both breeds would benefit from having a crate in their house, particularly the more anxious Yorkshire Terrier, you will find much use from crate training them both as a puppy. Certain crates that are made for anxious dogs can help calm your pup.

Grooming Requirements

When comparing the grooming needs of the Silky Terrier and the Yorkie, it is apparent that they have almost identical grooming requirements. Both will need to be brushed daily to prevent their silky locks from becoming tangled and remove any dirt they might have picked up while on walks.

Their eyes will need regular cleaning, and their teeth should be brushed a few times a week with the correct doggy products. Both breeds should be bathed once every 8 to 12 weeks with all-natural dog shampoos to ensure that their beautiful silky locks are well cared for.

Both of these breeds are considered to be relatively hypoallergenic dogs. However, it is important to keep in mind that not all furry dogs are completely allergenic. If dog hair is an issue for you, then you may want to consider another breed.

Nutritional Guide

When comparing the Silky Terrier and the Yorkie in terms of food, the Yorkshire Terrier eats less simply because he’s smaller and less energetic. The Yorkie will consume around 1 cup per day, while the Silky will consume around 1 1/2 cups. It all depends on their size, energy level, and age.

They would be both happy on a high-quality diet consisting of dry kibble. Both are known to have periodontal disease, and dry kibble can help break down plaque.

To prevent hypoglycemia in smaller dogs, it is recommended that they are fed three to five different meals, to maintain a balanced sugar level throughout the day.

Health and Lifespan

When comparing the Silky Terrier vs. the Yorkie regarding health, both the Silky Terrier and the Yorkshire Terrier can live up to the age of 15. Hypoglycemia and diabetes are more common in small dogs. We will discuss this further in the nutrition section. A good feeding regimen can balance sugar levels.

Both the Silky and Yorkie have been known to suffer from eye diseases and frequent eye infections. It is vital to check their eyes regularly. Luxating Patella, a common problem in Yorkies, is something breeders will look for before breeding their pups.

Reputable Breeders and Puppy Prices

The cost of a Yorkshire Terrier starts from around $1,200 from a reputable breeder. The Silky Terrier starts from around $1,000. This is because the Yorkie breed is more in demand today, which allows breeders to charge higher prices. However, Silky Terriers are rarer and may command a higher price in your area.

Other costs, such as insurance, crates, and harnesses, are the same. The only price difference is the 1/2 cup of food Silky eats more of every day.


The Silky Terrier and Yorkie are very similar. The only difference between the two is the Silky’s energy, which often makes it the deciding factor in deciding between the breeds.

You can be certain that you will get a cute little toy Terrier from whomever you choose. He will be full of love, laughter, and lots of fun.

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