Lifespan of Yorkies

Small and active, Yorkshire terriers commonly live to 14 years of age and are often in good health for nearly all that time. However, their small size can make them more susceptible to injury — they are often tripped over, knocked down, and even forgotten. Hereditary illnesses can also shorten their lifespan or bring large veterinary bills.

Yorkies do age well, and they generally avoid many of the musculoskeletal disorders common among some larger breeds. They can stay spry and active far into old age, slowing down only a little toward the end of their lives. They are most likely to suffer dental problems in their later years and may require changes in their diet to keep them eating well.

This dog is a perfect model for the Yorkshire terrier breed standard.

As with most dogs (and humans, for that matter), Yorkies can become hard of hearing as they age. You need to be aware of this, as they won't be as quick to scuttle out of your way as you approach. The loss of hearing can also cause irritability or paranoia, as they will feel as though they are being snuck up on.

As long as you understand the problem, you can make certain changes to accommodate your aging Yorkie. For instance, make a little more noise when you approach him, try to approach him only when he's facing you, and generally be more mindful of where you step.

There are several signs that mean your dog is suffering certain aspects of old age. If the dog starts bumping into table legs or walls or becomes hesitant about moving freely around the house, she may be going blind. If your dog does not respond when called or does not react as excitedly to certain stimuli as she used to, she may be going deaf. There isn't much you can do for her in these cases except be understanding, give her plenty of space and time to move around, and comfort her when she becomes frightened.

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