Is My Yorkie Too Skinny? (Explained!)

With most Yorkies being small in size, it is sometimes hard to tell whether the Yorkie is too skinny or not. They will naturally be a smaller type of dog, even when they get a little heavy, so how are the Yorkie owners supposed to know when their dog is too skinny or when the Yorkie is just the right size for their breed.

Yorkies will be considered too skinny if they are under four pounds. This may seem very small, but the average weight for most Yorkies will be between four to seven pounds. Once the Yorkie gets under this weight limit, they are at an increased risk for many health problems and injuries. If your Yorkie gets too small, it may be time to talk to their vet.

Let’s take a close look at the average size of a Yorkie and some of the ways that you can tell your Yorkie is too skinny or not and some of the steps that you can take if your Yorkie does weigh too little.

Is My Yorkie Too Skinny?

Yorkies are pretty small to start with so it is sometimes hard to know whether your Yorkie is just small like they should be or if they are too skinny.

Most Yorkies are going to fall somewhere between four to seven pounds. While the teacup Yorkie is becoming popular and these dogs are often under the four pound limit, this is often not a safe option to work with. Yorkies who are under the four pounds are going to run into many health problems because of their small size.

What is the Average Size of a Yorkie?

Yorkies are going to stay pretty small for most of their lives. This can sometimes make it hard to tell if they are too much weight or too little. A Yorkie who is an adult will be somewhere between 7 to 8 inches tall when you measure them from the ground right up to the ridge between their should blades.

This can make any weight gain or weight loss appear very quickly on your Yorkie. Your Yorkie could lose a little bit of weight and appear to have lost too much. This will make it difficult for the Yorkie owner to know whether their dog is getting too skinny or not.

What is the Average Weight of a Yorkie?

You also need to consider what the average weight of the Yorkie should be. Since these Yorkies are going to be small to start with, you will not see them weigh all that much. Yorkies will often come in between four to seven pounds, though it is not uncommon for purebred Yorkies to sometimes weigh a little bit more and be closer to 10 pounds.

In a few cases, Yorkies can weigh a higher number closer to 15 pounds. This is not very common though unless there was another type of dog added to the genealogy at some point. Most Yorkies are going to tend towards the heavier side rather than being too skinny because they like to eat and get treats from their owners.

It is possible that the weight of your Yorkie is going to fluctuate depending on their lifestyle, exercise, and nutrition. However, if you have an adult Yorkie who weighs less than four pounds, then this is a sign that the Yorkie is underweight.

Any Yorkie who is less than this weight will be known as a teacup Yorkie. While these are a popular option for many dog owners to consider, they do have a higher risk of different health problems compared to other dogs too.

How Can I Tell If My Yorkie is the Right Size?

It is often hard to weigh a Yorkie on a scale. Our traditional ones at home are not able to handle this that well and your dog may not sit down very well either. You could take them to the vet who will have more precise measuring tools. But a physical assessment can work too. Some of the things that you can do during this inspection include:

Look down at the dog from behind them. You should notice that their waist curves in a bit as you move from the ribcage down to the waist. If the Yorkie is underweight, the curve inward will be sharp and small.

You can also look at them from the side and look at the Yorkie’s abdomen. If the dog is a healthy weight, you will notice their stomach goes upward from the ribcage. A Yorkie who is too skinny will have a stomach that appears sharply tucked upward from the ribs.

Another way to check out the weight is to place your hands on the sides of the dog’s body, right at the ribcage. You should be able to feel the ribs without seeing them. If you are able to see any of the ribs, then this is a sign that they do not weigh enough. If you can’t feel the ribs, on the other hand, this means you have overfed the dog.

If you find that the hair on the Yorkie makes this visual assessment hard, then you can use your hands to help you get a feel for some of the drastic physical signs that your dog is underweight and not feeling well. If you can feel the ribs, the vertebrae are prominent, or you notice the pelvic bone is jutting out, then this is a sign the dog does not weigh enough.

Why Should I Worry About My Yorkie Being Skinny?

When your Yorkie is underweight, this can be a sign that they are not getting enough food. When they do not receive the amount of food that they should, they will not receive enough nutrition to help them stay healthy and to grow properly.

If you do think that your Yorkie is too skinny, then it may be time to consider a more nutrient dense food with a few more calories to help.

Yorkies who are too skinny are more prone to health conditions as well. Being underweight can be hard on the body and will make it hard for them to get nutrients, fight off infections, or stay healthy at all.

While the teacup Yorkies are great to have in. your home sometimes and can look cute, these are at a higher risk for being unhealthy and needing more visits to the vets office.

There is nothing wrong with the Yorkie being at the lower end of the weight limit that we talked about before. Some Yorkies are naturally smaller than others and this can be perfectly healthy as long as there are no other issues at play. The problem will come when the Yorkies get below that limit.

Some are bred for this, but it can still be dangerous to the health of your Yorkie if they start to get too small.

How Do I Care for a Yorkie Who is Underweight?

Yorkies are known for being small and even when they go above the seven pounds, they will be tiny dogs compared to many of the other dogs out there.

Even if you have a Yorkie who is an ideal weight based on their stature, you will need to be careful how you take care of them because they are small. If the Yorkie is underweight, then they need their owners to care for them to make sure they are not injured.

Be careful about dropping or tripping over the dog. Watch out when you are walking to not accidentally step on the Yorkie. These underweight Yorkies are more likely to have broken bones and fractures because of these accidents if you are not careful.

If you are worried about your Yorkie being too small, then it is time to discuss this with your vet. They will be able to give you some recommendations on the different types of food that you can try and other options to make sure your Yorkie can gain a little bit of weight and will not be as likely to become injured in the process.

Keeping Your Yorkie Healthy

Your Yorkie needs to stay within the ideal range of four to seven pounds in most instances because that is the amount that is the healthiest for them during growth and development. There are different factors that will determine how big or small the Yorkie will be including how much they play, how much they eat, and different genetic factors.

It is important to be careful about letting your Yorkie be too skinny though. This can lead to a host of health problems for the dog that are hard on them.

While a Yorkie who is closer to the four pound weight is completely normal, when they start to dip below that number, it can turn into a big issue on their health. Talk to your vet or try some of the suggestions we talked about earlier if you worry your Yorkie does not weigh enough.